Navigating the Land of IF by Melissa Ford has a refreshing take on the experience of dealing with infertility. The “IF” in the title is named after the online abbreviation for infertility, but also plays on the many “ifs” involved in infertility. The Land of IF is a place no one really wants to visit but many women find themselves isolated there. Melissa Ford writes “There are the what ifs and if onlys and if this, then that …being here is all about living in uncertainty and doubt and wonder and hope”. The author goes one step further than most books on this subject, intimately sharing with the reader what it actually feels like to go through infertility, rather than a more clinical overview of the process. Through her witty and honest writing the reader feels like they are talking to a close friend on the subject of infertility.
She offers hard earned advice on how to survive and stay sane during infertility. Do you have to attend your cousin’s baby shower? If you do, how do you cope? Other sticky situations such as deciding who to tell (or not tell) about your infertility treatment are also discussed. Dealing with all the unsolicited advice you might get from friends or family is a topic most books on infertility do not address. Throughout the book, the author weaves in content about the large online infertility community. The internet is one place patients can discuss their situations and pose questions of other infertiles while still remaining anonymous. The book also serves as a field guide to diagnostic testing, infertility treatments, adoption, third-party reproduction, and living child free.
Melissa Ford is a mother of twins conceived via fertility treatments and runs an award winning blog called Stirrup Queens.