Okay, I admit it, sometimes I am guilty of some Bravo TV watching. I do know the names of most of the Real Housewives and I also have been known to watch a marathon or two of Flipping Out. Well, just yesterday I learned that Rosie Pope, the star of Bravo TV's "Pregnant in Heels" is also to be a presenter at the FertilityPlanit Show( where I will be on the panel discussing "Letting Go of Having Genetic Offspring"). In case you haven't caught it, "Pregnant in Heels" features fashion designer/ maternity concierge/pregnancy coach, Rosie Pope. Rosie helps ultra-privileged moms to be, ( the kind of moms who seem to have spent more time shoe-shopping than reading "What to Expect When You're Expecting") arrange their pre-labor Brazilian waxings, and organize envy producing baby showers. Rosie also designs luxury maternity wear for her clients who want to chicly optimize their baby bump. And, it got me thinking...if Rosie is "Pregnant in Heels" maybe I could be "Infertile in Heels"? I mean, really, why do the pregnant women get to have all the fun? Maybe I could create a line of clothing that would make it easier and chicer to go in for endless ultrasound procedures? Perhaps I could create match-stick jeans that had with easy accessible injection sights so you don't have to get undressed every time you need a shot of egg stimulating hormones. Really, I would have enjoyed not taking my pants off every time I needed a bruise inducing shot of progesterone in my derriere. It isn't the worst idea I have ever come up with( I have some doozy ideas that I will refrain from sharing in this post).
While I am writing most of this post with tongue firmly planted in cheek, it really would have been nice, if I could have afforded it, to have had an infertility concierge help me with all of the scheduling and organizing and heartaches and headaches of infertility. I certainly could have benefited from having an infertility coach/concierge to schedule my ovulation and injection cycles for me and manage my life for me while I/it was falling apart due to the extreme hormone levels and stressors of another failed round of IVF. I would have likely signed up for a boot-camp on infertility, in order to learn everything that I had to learn on my own.
According to the CDC there would be a big audience for "Infertile in Heels":
- Number of women ages 15-44 with impaired fecundity (impaired ability to have children): 6.7 million
- Percent of women ages 15-44 with impaired fecundity: 10.9%
- Number of married women ages 15-44 that are infertile (unable to get pregnant for at least 12 consecutive months): 1.5 million
- Percent of married women ages 15-44 that are infertile: 6.0%
- Number of women ages 15-44 who have ever used infertility services: 7.4 million
Infertility is not rare. You know someone with infertility, and if you don't, then you know me---at least through the blog. But we infertiles don't really have a show of our own, all the shows are about pregnant women and babies and weddings. Andy Cohen are you listening? There is, I believe, an audience for "Infertile in Heels". And I bet the Childless Not By Choice community has more cash to blow on cupcakes, manicures, cashmere, designer shoes and trips to Saks than her pregnant counterparts. Kids cost money, a lot of it. Last I read it was $235,000 for the average middle-class family to raise a child from birth to eighteen, and that is not including college. So, Andy Cohen, and all you other TV executives and advertisers, you might want to keep that in mind when you do your programing. Another statistic that those in programming might want to consider is that, according to the most recent U.S. Census data report, 1 in 5 women aged 40 to 45 don’t have children. That's a lot of women with a lot of buying power with a lot of shoes.
Okay, so maybe it would be harder to make a show on infertility feel like a combination of an indulgent Sprinkle's cupcake/ episode of Sex and the City and a new pair of Jimmy Choos than it is to make pregnancy seem like a Disney fairy tail covered in marabou, sequins and cashmere---but I believe in you Andy Cohen, and I believe if you can make NeNe a star then you can put infertility into heels. That said, I suppose more people tune into baby/wedding/reality shows for escape and a failed round of IVF hardly offers the kind of escapist joy that "Say yes to the dress" does.
A little side note, on my worthiness of being "Infertile in Heels": When I was going through infertility treatment I wasn't buying clothes as I was convinced I was going to be pregnant any moment and so every time I needed a sartorial spirit lifter I would turn to shoes. I figured I would likely be able to wear the shoes through most of my pregnancy. Well, I never got the baby, but I do have lots of shoes.