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Silent Sorority: A Barren Woman Gets Busy, Angry, Lost and Found

4.12  ·  Rating details ·  248 ratings  ·  31 reviews
From celebrity and news magazines to TV programs to Facebook pages and mommy blogs, family-building successes are routinely and glowingly shared and celebrated. But where are the voices of those who are unable to have children? In relating what happens when nature and science find their limits, Silent Sorority examines a seldom acknowledged outcome and raises provocative, ...more
Paperback, 216 pages
Published April 18th 2009 by Booksurge Publishing
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Average rating 4.12  · 
Rating details
 ·  248 ratings  ·  31 reviews

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Oct 11, 2012 rated it it was amazing
If only this book was required reading for everyone....

It really baffles me how people, mothers especially, don't understand what it feels like to lose a child over and over again. But many don't, and the insensitive hurtful comments keep on coming. Reading this book would probably help them to understand how hurtful actions and words can be, even when not intended to be.
Sep 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a book I highly recommend to anyone trying to understand a friend or family member struggling with infertility, or as comfort to someone who is experiencing it. It's an excellent chronicle and description of the author's experiences, that I think most women who are or have gone through with this will identify with; though our treatments and individual circumstances vary. I especially appreciated and identified with her descriptions of how isolating and private the experience is.... how e ...more
Nov 06, 2011 rated it really liked it
I absolutely DEVOURED this book. I couldn't put it down. I felt like I was reading about the past 6 years of my life. I wish I could have all of my inner circle read it just to give them a better understanding of the emotional rollercoaster that haunts the most mundane of daily events of an infertile woman. Mrs. Tsigdinos put into words the complex emotions and internal struggles I have been battling since we received our diagnosis and bleak prognosis. She gave me words to use in difficult or un ...more
Jan 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2016
This book is amazing. I felt as if the author was inside my mind, sharing my personal thoughts and feelings. I have had difficulty explaining our journey, struggles and decision to finally stop trying with our "fertile" family & friends, and this provided me with not only ideas for communicating, but also a feeling of support and understanding that is tough to find in our kid-centric, mommy-centric society. Thank you, Pamela! ...more
Sep 17, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book captures so well the pain of infertility. I laughed and cried, sometimes at the same time(!), and felt like the author had been reading my thoughts. I plan to share this with close family and friends to help them try to understand what my husband and I have been dealing with. Thank you, Ms. Tsigdinos, for writing this book.
Feb 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
I'm one of the "fertiles", and although I've always tried to be compassionate towards "infertiles" (her wording!), this let me know just how much more compassionate I should be. Terrifying and brave. This should be required reading for...anyone, really! Since infertility is not discussed, it carries such a stigma, and as she writes, that just adds to the pain women are already experiencing.
Feb 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Pretty much sums it all up. Something that I have struggled to voice. Thank you Pamela Tsigdinos for breaking the silence.
Nov 04, 2015 rated it really liked it
Great book. There aren't hardly any books on the market about infertility, let alone moving on from infertility to live child-free (by choice and by chance). It's truly even more of a small minority group. I can't read enough from women who have also gone through infertility...and come out the other end. It really is like putting yourself back together again, as the author describes in the last chapter. I loved reading how angry, bitter and sad she was because that was my experience, and the exp ...more
Oct 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I finished this book a week ago and am still not sure what to write.
All I can say for sure is, this book ought to be a mandatory read for ALL. 20% of couple struggle to conceive, and 14% are diagnosed with infertility (declared a disease by the WHO). Chances are you know someone personally who is suffering, and they likely have not mentioned it to you. I have been in this "silent sorority" for years, and am just now starting to speak out to those I know and love. It's hard because I don't want t
Pamela Tsigdinos
Oct 15, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Recommends it for: Family and friends who don't fully understand infertility's impact.
Silent Sorority won the 2010 RESOLVE Best Book Award so I'm rating on behalf of the RESOLVE members. Many thanks for this honor.
Jeretta Hall-Robinson
Jul 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I wish that I couldn't relate to this book, but I very much do. Not being able to have children is emotionally and physically draining on so many levels. It hurts you, your partner, family, and friends. In this book, Pamela Tsigdinos writes the experience so well. In so many moments throughout the book, I thought she was writing about me and what I had been feeling. The anger, frustration, endless crying, avoiding people (especially babies and pregnant women) were all things that I dealt (and to ...more
Jun 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderful book; I read it in just two sittings. I wish that this could be required reading for high school sex ed classes. You never know if you're in the fertile group or infertile group until you start trying, and if fertile people read this maybe they'd stop being so insensitive to infertile people.

I admire the author---her strength, her self awareness---and I appreciate the journey she went through. My infertility struggles are still close/ongoing, but I needed to read something a
Nov 21, 2009 rated it really liked it
I learned a lot from this book. It helped me to better understand what women who can't have children go through. I know I will continue to learn because I will probably never fully realize the magnitude of this unfair condition. I see it can be overwhelming at times and there seems to be no "getting over it". Pamela (this author) feels dealing with it and facing it head-on is what helped her but it is process, with steps like grief, and is different for everyone, just like the grief process. It ...more
Nov 08, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is one of the better infertility memoirs out there. It's comfort and validation for those who have been through the ringer and back to try to have biological children and learned that it's just not possible. It's also really good education (especially the chapters on her experiences with failed IVF cycles most importantly the adoption chapter) for the general "fertile"/childlessness by choice populations that just don't understand why people would go to such lengths to have a baby.

Aug 03, 2011 rated it really liked it
I didn't know it was possible to laugh and cry at the same time until I read this book. FINALLY- a book about what it's REALLY like to struggle with infertility without the typical "happy ending". The author clearly describes the long and difficult road to a complete (and happy!) life without children and the hurdles to get there. I am making this required reading for my family and close friends who have no idea what we're going through.
Holly C
Jun 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I'm not sure how to review this book and do it full justice... A thoughtful and raw account of the reality that infertility plays in our lives, and the in-between world that those of us live in. Not childless by choice, not parents. The author gives hope that there is life without children, but also a haunting reality check that the hurt doesn't ever fully go away. A must read for anyone going through infertility or for their 'fertile' friends and family.
Nov 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
I had a hard time reading this book because it hit a little to close to home. I totally understood the author's frustration, sadness, grief, and outright anger caused by infertility. The world would be a better place if "fertile" people read this book. Some compassion toward those of us who are unable to conceive a child would make a huge difference to so many people!
Mar 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderful memoir of the painful struggle to conceive and the just as painful struggle to accept that it isn't going to happen. Tsigdinos writes in an easy flowing style of a subject that isn't discussed nearly enough.
Danielle Letourneau-therrien
Oct 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Terrifyingly true. I read the first half and thought someone had stolen my diary. I cried audibly when I read it. If friends of mine want to understand me better, they should read this book. Written by a brave soul about her own journey.
Pamela Tsigdinos
Jul 26, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
Silent Sorority won the 2010 RESOLVE Best Book Award so I'm rating on behalf of the RESOLVE members. Many thanks for this honor.
Luann Habecker
a healthy disregard for the status quo

Not surprisingly, ovulation kits were positioned right next to the pregnancy kits. The logic being: if this, then that. HARDLY.

sigh. my self-esteem took another hit. The message was clear: Not qualified. Once more i felt like a failure.
I'd been trying on different clothes or looks to satisfy a greater urge to literally transform physically into a different person-a non-mom.

I always assumed I"d be consumed at this point in my life with more conventional conc
Anne-Marie Scully
Mar 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
As a woman suffering infertility I have read countless memoirs on the subject but this one really struck a chord with me. The author is a very talented writer and manages to inject some humor now and again into what is a very dark subject. I find it interesting how each person copes with infertility and although Pamela coped differently to me I could resonate with all the situations she found herself in. A truly inspiring read for anyone on this painful journey
Lori Holden
Dec 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
If you've ever wanted to get inside the head of someone who has experienced infertility, this is a must-read book. Pamela shares how devastating the diagnosis and treatments can be physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Of all the ways out of infertility, living child-free has been the least understood, and this book shows how one couple endured it.
Dec 22, 2012 rated it liked it
I appreciated Ms. Tsigdinos' raw emotion and her story. The last part of the book felt more like she had scraped some blog comments together into a chapter or two, rather than really exploring what happy adult life without children looked like.
Jul 02, 2013 rated it liked it
I expected a lot from this based on the other reviews. I liked it, but it didn't quite meet my high expectations. I struggle with memoirs a little, and prefer to read novels, which may have contributed to my low-ish rating.
Sep 09, 2015 rated it liked it
This book was heart renching to read. She really gives a voice to women suffering from infertility and offers a glimps into this world of injections and anguish. I was thoroughly engrossed with her story.
Mar 06, 2011 is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Just received my book today!
Courtney DiPiro
Mar 15, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Honest, raw and very well written! I loved it.
Jul 22, 2012 marked it as to-read
Shelves: infertility
Resolve highly recommends it.
Aug 05, 2011 rated it really liked it
I will be sharing this book with others.
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Pamela Mahoney Tsigdinos (Sig-din-us) is an award-winning author, a blogger and an infertility survivor. Her first book, Silent Sorority (2009), became the first memoir about infertility not authored by a mother. In May 2015 her ebook, Finally Heard: A Silent Sorority Finds Its Voice, became available.

Pamela's work gives voice to the large but little known population of women left to confront the

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