Yesterday I pulled out my copy of "What to Expect," the one we purchased at the beginning of one of our three pregnancies. I was hoping that reading it would give me some good pregnancy vibes. As I scanned through the first few chapters, I got to a question and answer part, and on page 39 of the fourth edition I saw this:
"I conceived my baby through in vitro fertilization. How different will my pregnancy be?"
I immediately began reading the answer, and then flipped out when I got to this sentence: "Because a positivie test doesn't necessarily mean that a pregnancy will be sustained, because trying again can be so emotionally and financially draining, and because it's not known right off how many of the test-tube embryos are going to develop into fetuses, the first six weeks of an IVF pregnancy are usually more nerve-wracking than most." I agree with the sentiment of this statement...it is more stressful, scarier, and there seems to be more at stake. But how can such a well-known, well-respected book perpetuate the idea of "test-tube embryos?" Moreover, that portion of the sentence makes it sound like the little guys develop all the way to fetuses outside the body. What the heck? After all the revisions and research, how can this be in the book? I am sure the authors meant no harm by this statement, but really?!?!? Seriously?!?!?
So what did A do? He immediately got on the publisher's website and found a few email addresses, drafted a respectful but stern email about how offensive we found this as potential IVF parents and how inaccurate the statement actually was, and he had this email sent within an hour of my flip out. But that wasn't enough. He went on Twitter to look for the author directly, but realized he couldn't directly tweet her because she didn't follow him. Then it was on to Facebook, where he located her and copied the same email as a Facebook message directly to her.
The craziest part of this whole story is that six hours later he got a response. We will never know if she wrote it herself, but in the email the author apologized, thanked him for pointing out the issue, and said that she had made a note to change the language in the next reprint. I'll be very interested to read the 5th edition when it comes out to see if any changes have been made.