news item: Giuliana Rancic on infertility at age 35 – “It was a big shock”

So, I don’t really know who Giuliana Rancic is.

Well – sort of. I know of her, but I have never seen her on TV. Mostly because I don’t have TV. I do know who Bill is though, having been insanely addicted to the first season of The Apprentice, approximately 100 years ago. What I know of Giuliana has been gleaned from blogs (both gossip and ALI) and the covers of magazines at the grocery store checkout. I had a vague knowledge of their struggle with infertility, miscarriage, and her battle with breast cancer last year, but again – only a cursory understanding from the pink headlines of the high-quality journalism of People and its cohorts. I have never seen her on TV, or seen their reality show. I did read up on Wikipedia though, and somehow completely missed the story of how they brought their son home this summer. Cue two hour internet vortex – wow!

My point is, when I first read this article last week, I was pleased to see something in the media about infertility, about a famous person no less (!) discussing actual issues surrounding not only the disease state of infertility, but the accompanying emotions as well. Is the article brief and perhaps overly simple? Yes. Is it sensationalized in the same way that say, a recent episode of a popular talk show chose to portray the issue? No.

This tidbit (highlighted in the headline!) was of particular interest to me:

No one ever told me, ‘Oh, by the way, your eggs change when you reach a certain age,'” Rancic told the magazine. “I didn’t think 35 was old! So when the doctor said, ‘It’s not as easy as you thought it would be,’ it was a real blow.

Before I started working in IF in a professional capacity, I used to think this. I thought I had until I was 40 until things started getting difficult. FORTY. Until, at age 26, I discovered that I was dead wrong. Since then, I have been through reams of clinical data that demonstrates that fertility does indeed begin to steadily decline after age 35, even in “healthy” women. This is basic information that women should know before they begin to worry about their fertility, and I am happy to see it being highlighted here in a more or less non-alarmist fashion. So… well played Today.com. (And though I do not watch it, I gather from the social media I use that sometimes the mark is sorely missed by this program as far as ALI issues go.)

I also appreciated reading that she was glad that her struggles were there for others to see. That surprised me, though again, I have never seen the show. As we know, ALI issues are not always (or generally, in my opinion) handled with the greatest of sensitivity or accuracy in the media. That being said, the “Fertility Math?” survey/article the article links to would just NOT OPEN for me, so I hope it is of a similar tone.

Generally speaking, I do not believe that “any press is good press” when it comes to ALI – not when myths or stereotypes are propagated, or the 1% outlier cases are used to sensalizationalize the 1 in 8 couples struggling with this disease every day. Colour me surprised to read an article where none of it curled my lip even a little. Feels good, especially given that my prior knowledge of Giuliana is limited at best. Then again, I didn’t clink the link to their (Today Health’s) Facebook page. I learned not to read the comments a long time ago…

*****

What did you think of this article? And the linked article (if it worked for you)?

What did you know about women, age, and fertility before you began your TTC journey?

Are you familiar with Giuliana Rancic? What do you think of her efforts to educate the public about IF/loss?

Do you think “any press is good press” when it comes to ALI issues? Why or why not?

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