I like Pam's commentary on how the mode of support for infertility patients has changed over the years. I was one of the many who crawled out of the stigma woodwork 'back in the day' to take advantage of relatively anonymous communications online versus face-to-face.
I wrote about it a few times, the fact that some of us (many? most?) aren't that big on group interaction. Hunkering down, morning coffee or evening wine in hand, with a keyboard in front of a glowing screen suited me far more than driving to an office space or church meeting room, chatting with strangers about my sex life and grief, and munching on cookies. It wouldn't have mattered what kind of snacks were provided. I never felt comfortable in the few groups I attended, though the individuals were pleasant enough. Instead, I formed deep and lasting friendships (I work with and still speak daily to at least one of these women, though we've yet to meet in person since meeting virtually in 1996) on the Internet.
When Fertility Authority -- one of the latest in several new sites vying for infertile eyeballs -- first started its buzz last year, I scoffed. Ask a few of my colleagues. Nothing good to say, though nothing explicitly bad. Honestly, I still haven't re-visited since their 'grand opening' a month or two ago. The pre-opening media visit was enough to scare me -- I hate virtual people hawking their wares to me with sound and motion. It's just a personal bias. If I wanted to actually *hear* people tell me what they think, I'd probably like those group meetings more.
BUT... I digress... I almost... ALMOST... blogged along the lines of "Oh Great Another First-Of-Its-Kind, Never-Before-Been-Done, You've-Been-Waiting-For-This Website" back when Fertility Authority opened its doors. And then came the other sites that Pam mentions in her post. I'm sure more will follow, maybe a year down the road.
Instead, I got the bile out of my system by way of a toned down version of caustic opinion that Monica LeMoine, founder and editor of Exhale Magazine, was kind and brave enough to publish. It's a rant piece that hones in on the weird (to me) genre of "infertility memoir" but the sentiments are quite similar to what I feel when yet another web presence comes to be.
Yeah, that felt good.
Even better, though, was that it cleared my windpipes a bit so that I no longer feel (right now, at this point in time, but give me another few months perhaps) the need to say that if I hear One More Website claim to be the First, the Solution, the Answer, Path, the Way to live successfully through the infertility journey... I may have to speak up and clear the air again.