I was a guest on the Bitter Infertiles podcast on Sunday. Boy, I miss those girls!! This blog has become such a mishmash of fashion and infertility and even lifestyle posts. But it’s important for me to note that it started as an infertility blog, a personal diary detailing my own journey with loss and then became something else: an advocacy tool to try and publicize the real ALI stories out there: the ones no one hears about. The ones 1 in 8 are struggling with. Your friend, your sister-in-law, your colleague would tell you these stories if they could.
My experience with the Ricki Lake producers was really wonderful in the end: they publicized my blog post about Faces of ALI on their site via Twitter and so much traffic and wonderful emails and comments came in. There was no negativity. And it made me wonder: perhaps there needs to be a SHIFT in the way the story is told to the media.
It was quite clear at BlogHer that Martha Stewart, Katie Couric and even the Today show are increasingly looking to bloggers to tell the stories. Katie Couric actually asked us to pitch her stories about untold issues Americans are dealing with: Kathy Benson and I both tweeted about the ALI community.
I am a former PR person who dealt with product launches, political campaigns, controversial issues and even court cases. I was quite good at my job, actually.
But things have changed. I was listening to NPR this morning and there was an interesting debate about peer-based platforms and how they have grown. Silicon Valley has established a totally different way to run things: more bottom up, with engineers more in power and a less top heavy structure.
This was on top of another NPR story about a preponderance of evidence that statistics don’t change people’s minds: STORIES do.
It made me think: We need to tell our stories, sell them even, to media outlets who are open. And it seems like a lot of them are open.
Because here’s the thing: all of our stories are full of the human experience. Our stories display great hope and love and dramatic arcs. I feel like one story could occupy the gifts of some of our greatest storytellers. Our ordinary stories are not ordinary at all: they are extraordinary. I know that reading Faces of ALI changes viewpoints: that NPR story is right.
There was some talk about putting together a blogger platform (a peer-based platform, as it were) as a place for us to tell our stories and share them with others.
What do you think? Can we change the crappy narrative currently being told? How? What ideas do you have?