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Infertility Sensitivity Doesn't 'Time Out'

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<b>When someone close drops a zinger.</b>

a blog by Pamela Tsigdinos

Wouldn't it be nice if there was a tidy set of rules to guide conversations around infertility? An etiquette book sure would come in handy or, better yet, a simple set of instructions. Yeah, that's it! Just think of the applications. We could laminate them. Perhaps create coasters. Or Stickers? T-shirts? Encase them in glass and distribute as paper weights...

Sigh. We infertile folk certainly don't advocate censorship or misplaced political correctness but one has to wonder sometimes what happens to simple, good old common courtesy. Yes, we do our best to let random acts of insensitivity or misplaced hurtful comments from strangers or acquaintances roll off our back. We usually take the hit and walk it off with this handy explanation: They didn't know any better.

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Brain Waves

<b>Obsessed with getting pregnant, we have forgotten what's good about NOW.</b>

a blog by Joy and Jim Meyers

We just watched “brain anatomist” Jill Bolte Taylor’s amazing talk at the TED conference, a symposium dedicated to promoting "ideas worth spreading.” A very accomplished scientist, Bolte Taylor knows more about the human brain than just about anyone. It was this knowledge that enabled her to fully experience, in the moment, her own stroke. One morning in 1996 things seemed strange to her. She was unable to speak or read and her movements became almost foreign to her. She knew that something was wrong, but did not have the mental acuity to figure out why. Plus, she was too busy enjoying herself.

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When a Surrogacy Application Comes to Life

by Dena Fischer

When I called my parents to tell them we were considering surrogacy my dad’s first question was “How do you know these people aren’t doing drugs?” It was valid. How did I know? How would I ever know?

We’d read through a pile of applications and one had floated right to the top for both of us: Shannon & Brad. A smiling couple who lived a couple of hours away from our San Francisco home. Nearly ten years younger than we were – married just as long but with two little girls and a vasectomy behind them – this was a couple who’d decided, for sure, they weren’t having more kids. On paper they were ideal – she ran a home day care (could she love kids any more???); he was a local store manager. Her application talked about how much she loved being pregnant, how easy it was and how they didn’t want any more of their own but she missed, actually missed, being pregnant. They’d passed their preliminary psychological screenings – no red flags.

Four people size each other up to see if they can make a baby together.

RE of the Month John J. Zhang

<b>"Mini-IVF is a more 'organic' approach to infertility treatment."</b>

Profiling the Doctors Who Wow Us

John J. Zhang, M.D., M.SC., PH.D., H.C.L.D.

New York, NY
(212) 517-7676

FertilityAuthority had the pleasure of meeting Dr. John Zhang in his office in NYC last month. The meeting was the result of our research for an article on Mini-IVF (TM), a protocol Zhang’s practiced exclusively for five years (more than 7,000 cases), and one he’s passionate about. We were so impressed by his treatment philosophy that we’re featuring Dr. Zhang as FertilityAuthority’s RE of the Month for July 2009.

The Tyranny of the Basal Thermometer

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<b>Don’t let your mood be dictated by the digital numbers on that purple wand</b>

a blog by Marie Lee

For you ladies who chart, you know your hope can rise and fall like the stock market according to those eensy-weensy, maddening tenths of a degree.

The Oracle of the basal thermometer can hint to you: Luteal phase defect! Anovulation! Spleen chi deficiency! When the thermometer is nice to you, it can give you a feeling of achievement—nice post-ovulation spike, etc.

This is Not a Blog About Michael Jackson

<b>It's bigger than that.</b>

All the talk – inescapable talk, really – about who is the “real” father of Michael Jackson's children is making me angry.

None of us know how his children were conceived, and while speculation is rife, it doesn’t really matter. Regardless of how his kids came into the world – donor sperm, donor egg, insemination, surrogacy, or plain old intercourse – Michael Jackson is and was their “real” father. The truth is that he raised them, provided for them, and by all accounts loved them dearly.

Icebox Dreams

<b>First cycle failed, my hope now lies in the deep freezer.</b>

a blog by Murgdan

My first IVF cycle failed. It didn’t work. I’m not pregnant. I found out while I was at work. I snuck away quietly into the stairwell at 1:30pm to check my cell phone messages. I dialed the number. I entered my code. I listened. Even though I had taken three home tests and they were all negative, I continued to imagine the voice of my ever-cheerful nurse congratulating me. I imagined that I would be jubilantly shocked at the inaccuracy of home pregnancy tests. I imagined that I would rush home in the middle of the day to tell my husband that our dream had come true.

I think you can tell the results from that first hello. Her voice sounded different than any other time I had talked to her. She had me at hello.

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IVF in the UK

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<b>When free health care slows treatment down.</b>

a blog by Liz

As you may know, I live in the UK. After I blogged last week about how I feared that my doctors weren’t taking my infertility seriously enough because they didn’t want to spend the money on me, Fertility Authority alerted me to an article in The Times. The article explained that of 13 European countries, Britain is down in 11th place for access to fertility treatment due to a lack of funding.

Essentially, although there is free health service in the UK through the National Health Service (NHS), each region has an element of choice as to how it spends its funding. Hence of the 161 trust areas, only nine offer three cycles of IVF, with the majority in England offering one (although several don’t offer any). In addition, each sets their own criteria for determining who is eligible for free treatment (e.g. must be under 40, not have any other children, etc.).

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Love Strengthened by Loss

<b>How Disney Pixar's animated movie Up gets infertility right.</b>

a blog by Pamela Tsigdinos

I'm an easy mark when it comes to poignant stories - a regular waterworks. Books, films, commercials, magazine articles, blog entries - you name it - if the narrative contains even the remotest heart-tugging element, I can be found rummaging for a tissue.

One recent film left me especially verklempt as it evoked an all-too-familiar ache. So what was the movie behind the mangled tissue? Up.

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TTC Chronicles

by Nisha Obaidullah for

Over the past few weeks and months, I seem to be getting more and more emails from women asking me what they should be doing to increase their chances of conceiving. Whilst this may seem like a huge and complicated subject to tackle in one article, there are some very basic but essential rules to follow if you are trying to condition your body for pregnancy.

Getting Pregnant - The 5 Health Secrets You Need to Know


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