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A new memoir explores the risks of relying on technology to achieve a pregnancy later in life

CRACKED OPEN: Liberty, Fertility and the Pursuit of High Tech Babies (Interlink – May 2013) is Miriam Zoll’s candid memoir of growing up with the unprecedented opportunities afforded by the women’s movement and new discoveries in reproductive medicine. According to Zoll, the pervasive cultural messages then and today clearly stated that, thanks to science, women no longer had to worry quite so much about their “biological clocks;” professional women now had the option to plan for motherhood after their promotions not necessarily before them.

Zoll delayed motherhood until the age of 40 and when conception did not progress naturally, she and her husband did what many couples in their generation do: they optimistically signed up for fertility treatments. According to Zoll:

“Neither one of us was prepared for the science-fiction world we would enter – a world filled with medical promises and seduction, unknown health risks, and the bioethical quagmires of creating new life in the realm of profit-driven science.”

As she pursued more extensive treatments the beliefs Zoll had held to be true ––“that reproductive medicine had finally eclipsed Mother Nature and women really could have it all”––began to erode. Over time, she came to believe that something was seriously amiss with the information she and her generation had received from the media and the unregulated U.S. fertility industry. In her memoir Cracked Open, Zoll offers a critical consumer’s perspective of a globally expanding fertility industry.

Read more about Miriam’s personal story here.

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