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Sweet Grapes: How to Stop Being Infertile and Start Living Again [Paperback]

Jean W. Carter , Michael Carter
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Perspectives Press (IN); Expanded edition (Mar 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0944934234
  • ISBN-13: 978-0944934234
  • Product Dimensions: 21.5 x 14 x 1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 479,841 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
32 of 32 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This book is surprisingly helpful, supportive, optimistic and is written for both men and women. I am a 40-year-old woman who doesn't have children because of illness. This book is applicable to unwanted childlessness from all causes--not just infertility. An alternate title could be "Sweet Grapes: How to Stop Feeling Miserable About Not Having Children and Start Living Again." With some effort, the whole book can be generalized from the specific case of infertility to childlessness for other reasons.
The authors make the case that a person who is not fertile can actively choose either infertility or childfree living. Their unusual definitions of childfree versus infertile and childless actually made sense after I read their detailed explanations. They write, "It is choice that makes the difference between voluntary and involuntary childlessness. Childfree means turning involuntary childlessness into voluntary childlessness. And we would rather live our lives in the achievement of a major life goal than in the constant reminder of the frustration of one." Childfree does not mean disliking children.
This book does a good job of explaining exactly what childfree living is and how it has worked for them. Luckily, they are not pushing this option on readers.
Key points are:
1. Happiness after infertility is much more likely if one makes active choices about how to spend the rest of one's life than if one drifts.
2. Every loss such as infertility or childlessness also contains the potential for gain and personal growth.
3. Building effective communication skills between partners is important.
4. Decision-making processes and skills can be learned.
Read more ›
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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book I've read on infertility! 2 Aug 1998
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
A wonderful book on infertility, written with courage and grace. This OB-GYN and her husband have shown that you can make it through the pain and heartache of infertility without ending up with "sour grapes".
One thing I really appreciated was the way the book helped me to examine and understand all the emotions involved with infertility, and even why I wanted to have children in the first place. There is a good portion of the book devoted to the option of living childfree (the choice the authors have made). As a result, my husband and I know that if we choose to live childfree we do not need to feel guilty and are not less a part of the human race or child haters. Likewise, if we do adopt it will be because we truely want to raise that child (or children) and not use the child as a way to fix infertility or fill a void. At last, we are no longer "victims" of infertiliy! We are getting on with our life, and our identity is no longer bound on ! whether we have children or not.
The authors have also included sorces/resources that have been helpful to them and I look forward to investigating them as well. I highly recommend this book to anyone going through infertility, their family, and to doctors and therapists that have infertle patients.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Help when needed 12 Dec 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book is a really insightful look at being "childfree".
It highlights the importance of communication in making the desicion to stop infertility treatment and live childfree.
Examples of other people's reaction to this choice allowed the reader to understand that these issues were relatively common.
It has given me further strengths in knowing that to live childfree is a viable option and one that however hard at times was a worthwhile decision .
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.1 out of 5 stars  16 reviews
86 of 89 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book I've read on infertility! 2 Aug 1998
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A wonderful book on infertility, written with courage and grace. This OB-GYN and her husband have shown that you can make it through the pain and heartache of infertility without ending up with "sour grapes".
One thing I really appreciated was the way the book helped me to examine and understand all the emotions involved with infertility, and even why I wanted to have children in the first place. There is a good portion of the book devoted to the option of living childfree (the choice the authors have made). As a result, my husband and I know that if we choose to live childfree we do not need to feel guilty and are not less a part of the human race or child haters. Likewise, if we do adopt it will be because we truely want to raise that child (or children) and not use the child as a way to fix infertility or fill a void. At last, we are no longer "victims" of infertiliy! We are getting on with our life, and our identity is no longer bound on ! whether we have children or not.
The authors have also included sorces/resources that have been helpful to them and I look forward to investigating them as well. I highly recommend this book to anyone going through infertility, their family, and to doctors and therapists that have infertle patients.
35 of 36 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An excellent book on childlessness and infertility 22 July 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This book is surprisingly helpful, supportive, optimistic and is written for both men and women. I am a 40-year-old woman who doesn't have children because of illness. This book is applicable to unwanted childlessness from all causes--not just infertility. An alternate title could be "Sweet Grapes: How to Stop Feeling Miserable About Not Having Children and Start Living Again." With some effort, the whole book can be generalized from the specific case of infertility to childlessness for other reasons.
The authors make the case that a person who is not fertile can actively choose either infertility or childfree living. Their unusual definitions of childfree versus infertile and childless actually made sense after I read their detailed explanations. They write, "It is choice that makes the difference between voluntary and involuntary childlessness. Childfree means turning involuntary childlessness into voluntary childlessness. And we would rather live our lives in the achievement of a major life goal than in the constant reminder of the frustration of one." Childfree does not mean disliking children.
This book does a good job of explaining exactly what childfree living is and how it has worked for them. Luckily, they are not pushing this option on readers.
Key points are:
1. Happiness after infertility is much more likely if one makes active choices about how to spend the rest of one's life than if one drifts.
2. Every loss such as infertility or childlessness also contains the potential for gain and personal growth.
3. Building effective communication skills between partners is important.
4. Decision-making processes and skills can be learned. Decisions addressed are how much infertility treatment to undergo, how to spend the rest of one's life if biological children are not possible and whether to live childfree.
Be sure to read the revised 1998 edition because it includes an Epilogue. Bibliography but no index included.
I highly recommend Linda Hunt Anton's 1992 "Never To Be A Mother: A Guide For All Women Who Didn't--Or Couldn't--Have Children." Written by an infertile, childless, social-worker-therapist, it is the best self-help book I've found on dealing with emotional aspects of childlessness. Readers benefit from her non-threatening writing style, professional training and years of experience in infertility and childlessness counseling.
25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A light at the end of the tunnel... 1 Aug 2003
By Kristi B. - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!! An amazing book to help you survive infertility. After 7 IVF's, several miscarriages and a medical conclusion that what felt impossible, was impossible, this book changed my life. After reading it, I felt as though there was a light at the end of the tunnel. I took control of my life and realized that I could have a rewarding, happy life...I just needed to make the active choice to BE HAPPY! If you feel "stuck", read this book...it will change your perspective on life!
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential Reading for Infertile Couples 11 Jun 2004
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This book, along with "Adopting After Infertility" are two of the most helpful books my husband and I have read on infertility. We're undergoing our third and last IVF in the fall, so we're getting ready to close the door on the possibility of a child who is biologically ours. We credit both of these books for helping to keep us emotionally grounded during the process -- there IS life after infertility!
The Carters have written a warm, honest, personal, heartfelt and non-judgmental book. They acknowledge that Childfree is not for everyone, but openly share how it has worked for them and the decision process they employed to get there. The tone of the book is never pushy or self-righteous, which sadly cannot be said of all infertility books and forums.
We still have not decided whether or not adoption is for us, but we feel better equiped to make that decision thanks to both of these books.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very helpful, calming and a quick read 22 July 2003
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I found this book extremely helpful after our 4 failed IVF attempts along with 2 miscarriages. It helped me get out of the hole that I had dug for my husband and myself and get on with life!
I felt immeasurably relieved after reading it.
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