Always, Katie: Book Review: Shooting Blanks: A husband’s perspective on missing the mark and dealing with infertility

Monday, September 9, 2013

Book Review: Shooting Blanks: A husband’s perspective on missing the mark and dealing with infertility

I was approached last week to review a new e-book, “Shooting Blanks: A husband's perspective on missing the mark and dealing with infertility" by Jonathan Boldt and Steve Ruiz, two men who are each half of an infertile couple.

The book’s description on Amazon is
"Infertility is one of the most gut-wrenching and emotionally draining experiences known to man (and woman) and finding ways to deal while learning to still live a satisfying existence can be a difficult task—even for us guys. We may not say it out loud (and probably won’t); we may not seek help emotionally (honestly, the odds of that happening are slim to none); and we for sure never want to admit that we just might be shooting blanks. But we feel it all. One of the best ways to numb the pain is with the opiate of laughter, and while it may not be a cure, it sure as hell can get you through a lot.”
Y’all know I am a big believer in finding what little humor can be found in infertility. Unfortunately, much of that humor is borderline “blue” humor that can be a little bit uncomfortable to read, so if you are easily offended, this is probably not the e-book for you.

I am also a little bit disappointed in how every book or book chapter I have read that endeavors to speak to men on this topic, speaks to the inner caveman. I promise, my husband is not a caveman, and I’m betting yours isn’t either. Mine is academically and emotionally intelligent, and does not need to be condescended to when discussing matters of the heart or of the reproductive system.

Those two considerations aside, this was a quick and humorous read that helps fill the need I often have to remember that we’re not alone in this. It’s the same need that keeps us (mostly women, I suspect) scouring the internet for new blogs to read. Sometimes, reading parts of our own stories and our own thoughts in someone else’s voice is what we need to reassure ourselves that we are not, in fact, nuts. While the book may have largely “missed the mark” with us, the overall message and goal are great – get men talking about infertility. Infertile female celebrities are starting to “come out” and talk about their struggles to have children, but their infertile male counterparts are still sadly missing from the scene… which I believe is partly to blame for the double standards “normal” couples face regarding discussing their infertility. Until it becomes less taboo for our husbands to talk openly about their MFI or about dealing with the emotional aspects of having an infertile wife, books like these are one of the few sources providing a male perspective (even if they do tend to be a bit caveman-esque) to them or to us, and as such are a valuable contribution to infertile literature.

You can download your own copy of this e-book on Amazon, here. :-) Mine was provided free-of-charge to me for the purpose of my review, but rest assured... the opinions expressed here are my own :-) (More disclosure – all Amazon links are my affiliate links.)
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