Path To Fertility Blogger Lisa Rosenthal  

Lisa Rosenthal has over twenty-five years of experience in the fertility field, including her current roles as Coordinator of Professional and Patient Communications for RMACT and teacher and founder of Fertile Yoga, a class designed to support, comfort and enhance men and women's sense of self. Her experience also includes working with RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association and The American Fertility Association, where she was Educational Coordinator, Conference Director and Assistant Executive Director

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Lisa Rosenthal's favorite infertility books of all time


There are books written on the subject of infertility treatment and the quest for a baby that rise above the question of conception and pregnancy rates and go right to the heart of how we live our lives. While there are wonderful books written on the medical aspects, I am choosing to discuss books today that are written to the heart of things. Books that I read still, my quest for fertility and children long over. These books are about how we speak in our lives, how we choose to communicate with other people and ultimately, how we live in our hearts.

One of my favorites is Sweet Grapes, by Jean and Michael Carter. I've written about this book in my blog before. This is the book that first coined the phrase "childfree", forever replacing childless, in my vocabulary. This is a book that I re-read every few years, to remind me of the choices that I have in my life, sometimes to get unstuck.   

Another all time favorite, (also mentioned in a previous blog) written by an author who continues to give and support the infertility community is Kristen Magnacca's, "Love and Infertility; Survival Strategies for balancing infertility, marriage and life. I had been lucky enough to be invited to review this wonderful book, reading about how to manage life, not just infertility.

Patricia Irwin Johnston, a giant in the field of book publishing on the subject of infertility and adoption (Perspectives Press), wrote a fabulous book, titled "Understanding Infertility". This book is designed to give to our families and friends about how to understand what it is we are going through, on our fertility path, as we try to build our families.  

Dr. Randine Lewis another wonderful writer who also experienced her own infertility and has made her life work creating a holistic approach to support you in your challenges. Her book is readable, compassionate, educational and supportive. "The Infertility Cure" is a compilation of so much of the work and research that she has done over the years.

Dr. Alice Domar is THE person responsible for bringing mind and body together (with research and scientific data), and then we are lucky enough to have her write these fabulous books. Her writing is just the tip of the iceberg, but what a tip it is! If you have never read any of her books, or looked up to see who she is, you have a surprise in store for you. "Conquering Infertility" is my personal favorite.   

Above are a few of my favorite non-medical books that I encourage you to look at. Books that helped my heart and self esteem, throughout my long journey with fertility. Books that support the ideas that our RMACT infertility therapists (Dr. Lisa Tuttle and Jane Elisofon, LMSW) were talking about in the blog yesterday about "Magical Thinking".  

Tell me what you think. Tell me your favorite books (medical as well!), your favorite websites. Perhaps your favorites might inspire or support someone else. We will be creating an on-going list of the resources (books, DVDs, websites) and invite everyone to contribute.

I've started the list and included some of my very favorites. Add to our "library", tell us your favorites.


This was a great post-I love to read and am always interested in learning more about what we are going through. The only book I am already familiar with that you mentioned is "The Infertility Cure"-my acupuncturist recommended it and I have found it so helpful and full of hope. Posted @ Friday, February 19, 2010 9:04 AM by Adriana adrianataylorb


Hi Adriana, 
I'm happy to hear that you found this helpful! There are so many books out there and they are not all created equal;and some are not so great. Have you found books that you particularly like? I'd love to share them with our readers. 
Thanks for posting, 
Lisa Posted @ Saturday, February 20, 2010 8:51 AM by Lisa Rosenthal lrosenthal@rmact.



Infertility and the movies-just when you thought you could escape

I've seen two movies in the last 5 months. Well, actually I saw two movies in a month, just hadn't seen anything before that for two months. In each of these two movies,infertility was touched upon. In fact, in each of the movies, it was a defining point in the movie. The two movies were "Julie, Julia" and "Up".

In "Julie, Julia", Julia Child's sister gets married after her, pregnant before her, if not on her honeymoon, within a very short time afterwards. Sound familiar? Julia reads the letter to her husband, Paul, (who is a lovely, loving man, as portrayed in the movie) her face contorted in the effort not to cry and finally succumbing to tears, repeats over and over again, how happy she is. Sobbing into her husbands arms, saying how happy she is. Anyone been there, done that? (Or gone to a baby shower, putting on a "happy face",  visited a friend in the hospital having her second child when you are still longing for your first, listened to a co-worker complain through 9 long months about her pregnancy, heard about the "accident" that results in yet another child for a friend.) In at least 2 more incidents in the movie, you see the sadness break through regarding Julia and Paul's inability to conceive and create a family that includes children. We also see in this movie, (based on a real person) a real couple, their love affair with life, each other, and yes, food.

"Up" is an animated movie and ultimately a love story, a story of human triumph. Again, a defining moment in the movie; the realization that there will be no children, in the doctors office, a miscarriage, pictures with the couple only, no children. We see the husband lose his wife, and realize he's alone, not what anyone of us want for ourselves or our spouse. Not to ruin the movie for you, we also see how this changes, and joy emerges. And a child comes into his life in an unexpected way. 

In case you think this is a movie review, let me assure you it is not. It is my taking the opportunity to point out to all of us how prevalent infertility is in our society. And how it is coming out of the shadows and hitting the silver screen. In both of these movies, one fiction, one most definitely not, the human beings in the movie go on to live happy, fulfilled lives.

If  you think I am turning into a pollyanna and making light of your infertility or singing the theme song of "Annie", (the one that goes, "the sun will come out tomorrow", etc. ) let me assure you, I'm not doing that either. What I am saying, very definitively is that infertility does not have to define you or define your life. While it feels like, and perhaps does, take over your life, that will be for a relatively short time. It may even define your life, if you remain childfree (wonderful book written about childfree living, "Sweet Grapes, by  Jean and Michael Carter- a book about choices and making one in any situation, even when you feel you have none to make).

Infertility does not have to define how you will go on to live your life. Whether you find ways to feel empowered in fertility treatment, (making choices about IVF, IUI, donor egg, types of fertility medications, acupuncture, yoga),  take a break, a vacation, foster a child,  move on to adopt or live childfree, you are taking the steps towards defining your own life, in your own terms, in your own way.

 I am the first one in line to applaud you for taking this journey one step at a time, consciously.




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