Jaime Knopman and Sheeva Talebian behind TRULY MD join Scott Goodson. Today on the Pod, the “Ask Anything” movement in girl health, helping you know your body from a young age and be aware of challenges: fertility, infertility, IVF, pregnancy, postpartum and beyond. Real, powerful. Led by two women MDs, who like to tell stories, tell it straight and shake things up in a male dominated field. For more ideas on Uprising and movements, cultural movements and movement marketing, follow Uprising!!! on Facebook. We’ll continue to publish brand-new columns on a regular basis. Hey, do us a favor and please give Uprising!!! a review on iTunes. Scott Goodson is the author of best-selling book ‘Uprising: how to build a brand and change the world by sparking cultural movements,’ available on Amazon.com. Scott has helped create and build some of the world’s most iconic brands. He is founder of StrawberryFrog the world’s first movement marketing agency.
Uprising Interview transcript
Scott: People are thirsty, you know? It’s like my husband jokes, you’re the woman whisperer. Anywhere you go, someone kind of here’s what you do and then I don’t see you for the rest of the night. And he’s like I don’t know where you go.
Jamie: My husband will be like I walk by and all I hear is the word “vagina” and I think oh, Jamie, you must be talking to them about pregnancy or trying to get pregnant or whatever it may be.
Welcome to Uprising. Each episode takes a look inside what it takes to lead the most dynamic and successful cultural movements. Some of them in the business world, some in the social realm. Some in politics, and some in between. To see why people start uprisings. What gives those initiatives momentum and keeps them going? And most important, what lessons can you learn from these movements and how to apply them to your business and even personal life? Let’s explore the secret to sparking movement s that move people into action.
M: Passionate ideas.
W: Controversial ideas.
M: Uprising ideas.
W: The power is now in the hands of anyone.
M: To start a cultural movement, your movement–
B: To move the world.
Scott: Welcome back to Uprising. it’s 2017, ti is a beautiful day here in New York City and the first show of the new year we wanted to meet Jaime Knopman and Sheeva Talebian, who founded the Truly MD movement. And they actually work a lot with new beginnings, but they also work with healthcare and both of those are relevant right now because we’re at the beginning of the new year, of course. But also there’s great changes afoot in healthcare in the United States again, so welcome to the show, ladies.
Both: Thank you.
Scott: It seems that many of the best and most passionate creative thinkers who created movements have really interesting backgrounds. You know, can you tell us a little bit about where you guys started and how you got to where you are?
Sheeva: Sure. So this is Sheeva. I will start. I am a physician and I am first generation. My father went to medical school in Iran and then came here in the late 60s to be a physician. and my father’s an OBGYN and I followed in his footsteps. For many years I didn’t think I would do that but I did. ANd I also trained as an OBGYN here in the States and then I specialized in reproductive endocrinology and infertility. So I am currently a fertility specialist here in New York City.
Jamie: I have a similar path. Mine is that my dad’s not an OBGYN, he’s actually a psychologist. But I also trained as an OBGYN. I actually am a couple years younger than Sheeva. I’ve known Sheeva for most of my life and I sort of followed in her footsteps. I trained in the same residency program, trained in the same fellowship program, and now we are colleagues and partners in our fertility practice. And together we started Truly MD>
Scott: Do you have a moment in time wehr you guys kind of met up and said okay, there’s something about this other person that just motivates me and we’ve got to change the world, or was it just everything totally accidental?
Jamie: I think it’s probably a combination of both. I think we have very similar passions and we treat patients and sort of view healthcare, particularly women’s reproductive care in a similar, in a similar way. And i think that we wanted to take the message that we give to patients and sort of the way we believe patients should be treated and take that more nationally or–
Jamie: Universally to other women. So we sort of had this I guess lightbulb type of idea together and that motivated us to move forward with Truly MD.
Scott: Like if you go back in time and you think about the things that you share in common, say the point of view of the world and so forth, was there something that happened between the two of you or in your lives independently that you felt made you who you are?
Sheeva: I think what’s in my blood is just this inherent satisfaction that I get from helping other people. It’s just, I always knew that whatever career path i would take would involve me being the giver. ANd for me that is very fulfilling. It gives me purpose every day. It’s sort of like at the end of the day I can put my head down and I feel like I’ve accomplished something. And so I think as a physician it’s a very natural outlet to become a physician if that’s sort of your desire, if that’s what fulfills you, if that’s what drives you. I mean everybody has something different that drives them and everyone thinks of success in a different way. But for me it’s that I feel like I’ve had a successful day if I’ve been able to do just one thing that day to help somebody else. So as a physician that’s a very natural career path and I would say I don’t want to speak for you Jamie but I feel like you have that same drive and motivation in your career.
Jamie: I think to go all the way through medical school, through residency, fellowship, you have to be motivated and obviously we’re both intensely sort of motivated type of people. i think that the impetus to be a doctor and the impetus to start Truly was a little bit different. I think Truly more came out of wanting to make education accessible for all women about specifically reproductive issues, but take that education and almost demystify it and deliver it in a colloquial way so that anyone could sort of understand what infertility meant or preeclampsia meant or hormone replacement therapy so it was accessible. And I think for me it was becoming a physician, taking care of patients and seeing that there was a lot of bad information being disseminated, a lot of care that was very questionable. And then I have two daughters, and I think the having two little girls you really start to think about women’s rights even in a whole other way and in really empowering women to change their bodies or to know what’s going on with their bodies.
Scott: So you launched this revolutionary idea, Truly MD, which is a women’s healthcare movement of, let’s use that term for now sort of in the macro context. What was the impetus behind launching this?
Sheeva: I think it as a confluence of factors. I think it’s having daughters and I think taking care of women every day and having them come to us and say wow, you’re the first person who ever told me this. We really had this aha moment, like we take for granted, we assume that women understand their ovarian physiology. We assume that women understand that at some point your eggs are too old to result in a healthy pregnancy and so many very very educated accomplished women who just don’t understand some of the basics of their body. And you know, I think you go out there and you try to read, and things are dry, they’re medical, they’re technical and so I think the impetus to start Truly really became personally it’s just something we’re passionate about, it’s easy for us to talk about. But we also had a lot of patients who said to us you need to put this out there for people all over the country who don’t have access to you on a day to day basis like I do.
Jamie: And I also think we were seeing women who were smart, I mean top of their careers, very well educated who were not asking the right questions to their physicians and were going in this sort of route or sort of robotic way of receiving treatment and we would be like why did you not ask about that? Why did you allow someone to do that? And so that was also behind it, wanting to give evidence-based information, which is sort of one of the big doctrines of medicine, evidence-based medicine. So we wanted to take evidence-based medicine, how it should be practiced and disseminated to women. And actually give them the information that they need to ask them the questions to change their path.
Scott: Do you think women that you’ve met, once you intervene with them, are thankful? Do their minds immediately open up? Do you find that it’s almost like you’re lighting a candle every time you meet a different woman?
Jamie: I think so. I think they’re appreciative to have the information and knowledge. And i also think, it’s interesting. In fertility medicine obviously we mostly see fertility patients. THere’s a lot of blame that women put on themselves, a lot of blame and a lot of guilt and I think as women we often have blame and guilt whether it’s working and raising kids and many ways but there’s a lot of blame in the fertility culture. And I think by giving women education or real answers to what’s going on, you can help remove the blame and remove the guilt. Because it’s not because you decided to go for a run that you miscarried or that you had a cup of coffee that your pregnancy wasn’t successful. And I think for may many years there’s been this sort of blame, guilt, almost hame surrounding fertility and we wanted to remove that and give you real information so that you could sort of take away the blame that you were feeling.
Scott: Do you focus primarily on fertility? I know that’s your specialty. But do you also try to help women understand sort of a broader health perspective?
Sheeva: Truly MD is a broader concept. Our day to day practice is largely fertility-based and what we call reproductive endocrinology but Truly, we are board certified OBGYNs and fertility specialists so we want to take our dialogue that women are very receptive to and we speak on, from a young girl first entering into womanhood and her first menses all the way until the last menses. SO we want to again educate across that span.
Scott: THere’s almost an automated process that we humans go through where we just kind of follow these almost invisible guardrails in terms of how we behave and not until something happens that we seek advice and it’s often from the wrong sources. That Moment in time where you’ve been trying, you tried everything, and you just pull your hair out, you don’t know what to do. It’s extremely difficult. And there’s so many weird and brilliant ideas for how you solve that. I remember I read this article once about this doctor who had this theory that if you want to get pregnant you just have to follow the herds of North Africa and if you eat a lot of meat you will eventually become pregnant. Because of how the women in the North African tribes, they all got pregnant during the rainy season because the animals came up for the rainy season and when the dry season came the animals disappear and no one gets pregnant.
Sheeva: Right, because of the heat. Yeah. It’s true, they’re malnourished.
Scott: Malnourished, yeah. Well then you have all these people who are vegetarians, so their lack of protein in their bodies.
Sheeva: Absolutely. 100% with protein and so the big question is does it have to be animal protein and so that’s where there’s some controversy and research going on. But clearly there are people who are vegan that get pregnant all the time.
Jamie: But Sheeva and I joke, we always say the older we get the more eastern we become because western medicine, you’re trained ilke this is your pill, this is your x-ray, this is your thought. Actually in the past couple of years we’ve met some great acupuncturists, people who are into meditation, and we really incorporated that into our practice because I think it’s, we really would do better if we merged the western and the eastern because there’s a lot to both sides. SO we work with a bunch of acupuncturists who we work in concert with nutritionists and we joke around about that that we’ve sort of shifted.
Sheeva: Yeah, we’ve become way more eastern. But again it’s you know, this concept of overall wellness and health. Western medicine is organ-based is what they call it. IT’s each system. It’s like you look at the brain, you look at the brain. You look at the stomach, you look at the stomach. Reproduction you look at the uterus and the ovaries. ANd so you know, there’s the person as a whole and again this, I don’t know, this may just be Jamie and I. I don’t know if this is a generational thing. But I do think within medicine that this is also one of the ships in medicine too with western medicine that’s not so western anymore.
Scott: With your movement and your passions how do you connect with women before they have an urgent issue they needed to address?
Jamie: I think, as subspecialists we often see women who are referred here after there has been some sort of issue or difficulties but we hope that with Truly we’re getting to you before that should ever, you ever need us or may see us. And that was why we decided to go broad to talk to you when you’re thinking about contraception or you’re thinking about pap smears as well as when you’re thinking about if you’re not successful trying to conceive. So that’s why we went broad. We had people advise us along the way and some of the advice was you’re going too broad, you should sort of narrow it and we didn’t take that advice and we sort of thought no, let’s do what we this is true to us, which is talking to women at all stages of their reproductive life.
Scott: There must be a lot of questions that circulate in people’s minds, even with progressive people who have education around women’s health. I’m sure there’s a lot of roads you could go down and have different points of view. So it raises lots of questions particularly with the internet where you can find all sorts of information, most of it probably inaccurate. I would assume that the starting point is moments throughout life when your body’s changing. Whether you’re going from child to womanhood, you’re becoming 13 years old or when you’re first faced with your college exams, you’re in medical schools and you’re stressed out and how do you deal with your body and your mind and then of course at some point you’re having a steady sex life, how do you manage your body in that situation. Of course, having a baby immediately at that stage, people become truth junkies. The minute you see that you’re pregnant you become this huge seeker of information and all of those phases people are trying to figure stuff out, navigate this situation in my life. And many times it’s hormonal so you’re also super emotional. So it seems like a really really big, really really interesting movement to be a part of.
Sheeva: For a lot of women they can go to their doctor and ask medical questions but there’s always been such firm lines between kind of medicine to then real life. And so the other factor between Jamie and I, we’re doctors with medical degrees. WE’re also women, we’re moms and we have careers and we’re trying to figure it out as well. And so part of our movement is to just be brutally honest about our personal lives and how do we juggle it all? There were so many things when I was pregnant that I just learned from being pregnant, not from being a doctor, nothing I could find in a textbook. And so it’s this unique ability to kind of combine the science, the textbook to real life and to be open ad share that with other women. We always say you’re stronger together than you are alone and you know, Jamie and I do many things together because we kind of push each other and we give each other the courage to make some big decisions and to shake things up and you know, that same energy is part of that movement. YOu know we want women to help each other and to be allies to each other. And unfortunately all too often that doesn’t seem to happen.
Jamie: I think in terms of what she was saying is community. We really want to build a community where women feel comfortable with sharing their emotions and we felt like it had to start with us. So on the site we both shared very personal experiences that were raw. And we felt that if we shared that, that would evoke a sense of community and let thee almost safer space. But it is true. A lot of times women, we don’t support each other and this was kind of a way to both evoke community and allow people to have a safe place to come and talk.
Scott: Can you share one of the stories that you have shared on the website?
Sheeva: I wrote a piece talking about body image which is something that I think many women struggle with.And my own struggles with ait and how I dealt with it not only in college days but in pregnancy. I think pregnancy is often viewed for, you know, it’s a beautiful process. It’s bringing life into this world. But it can be very very hard to watch your body change, particularly when you’ve dealt with body image and eating issues in the past. So I think all too often we don’t talk about that and we don’t recognize and we say you should be so happy that you’re pregnant and you’re this and that. So I spoke about what it was like to be pregnant, to watch my body change, and then also postpartum because in the postpartum period it doesn’t go back to normal immediately and I think that’s also very difficult. You’re no longer pregnant but you’re still not yourself. Add to that sleep deprivation and the mood swings and my goal was to say it’s okay if you don’t like the way you look because it’s not all feeling wonderful all the time.
Scott: That’s really great advice. I like the idea of sort of a safe space where you can come and you can share stories and the community, obviously it’s, I can see the power, not just value but huge benefit of being the people who have wisdom to share. Because I guess as you go through all these stages, whatever they may be, especially after childbirth is very–as a father of two boys, I’m sure my wife went through many stages of blaming herself for things. Some of it I think is social. You know, society places blame, or at least makes you feel a certain way. And then of course women also can be quite ba at putting blame on other women historically, which needs to change.
Scott: Do you have a set of principles that you believe that let’s say your movement is built on? So you talked about honesty. Are there other values you think are super important for the Truly MD? And what does the name come from?
Sheeva: Some of kind of our principles. So honesty, truth, real.
Jamie: Real is a big one, yeah.
Sheeva: That’s a big one. We, this is real. And so the name Truly MD evolved over time. A lot of talking and back and forth with each other and truly in many ways means honesty and truth. We are MDs. We are medical doctors so we wanted to get that out there as well. I think a lot of current information sites and movements that are out there are sort of a division. There’s mommy sites and there are people trying to build mom communities and then there’s strict sites like a WebMD that are just purely kind of medical information that’s out there. And so we wanted a combination, a name that would sort of illustrate that we’re a combination of those two worlds coming together.
Jamie: Name was not easy. Who knew that picking a name would be so actually difficult? But when we really, we had a word game I guess you would say. When we really looked at the words that we thought represented our movement it was truth. And that we were gonna be true to you, true to our information. We wanted you to be true to yourself. And that we would try and give you basically our honest opinion medically and sometimes personally about different issues.
Scott: When you started Truly and put up this wonderful website, it just blossomed? Was it like literally take of the next day? How did you get your first contact?
Sheeva: This idea has been blossoming in our minds for many years. And the writing started about two years ago. And so it’s really been homegrown. IT’s us and we’re doctors, we’re not designers.
Jamie: We’d sit with a patient and i’d be like oh, wow, we should talk about this, we should write a blog about this. So we sort of collected the blogs for two years, almost and before we really were able to go and put it into the website format. I think that that has been sort of the hardest part is the website design, the social media. As physicians we’re definitely not, we don’t do a lot of social media. So that has been definitely, probably our biggest challenge.
Sheeva: And it’s also a generational thing as well. I think given Jamie’s late thirties, I’m early forties. This whole world out there social media is really, it’s a little bit past us. Like email came out when I was in college. But we really just kind of launched and kind of organically it’s slowly growing via social media contacts. I mean, just putting it out there on social media. So it’s just again homegrown and organic.
Scott: And when you first started getting people contacting you, how did you feel? Were you, did it all sort of start at once? Was it an avalanche of people or how did it actually start?
Sheeva: Yeah. I mean I think that, we had an email contact on there and o you kind of, you post and then all of a sudden you get all these likes or all these comments and all this positive reinforcement and then personal emails coming to us. Ha an Olympic athlete who emailed us and said thank you so much for writing that exercise during pregnancy is okay and sending pictures of her training for the Olympics. So it’s really, it’s just, I mean you need that positive reinforcement to keep going, you know, somebody’s listening to me. It’s making a difference for somebody. And it’s huge, you know, when you get these personal messages or little comments that are like I was sort of going down a negative spiral and I read your piece and it really made sense or it answered questions for me. You know, that’s, I think for us, that’s just huge that it’s all worth it. You know, if anything that we’re writing is helping somebody else out there, then we keep going.
Jamie: Yeah. We thrive off of making people better or making people well, or for us making people pregnant. It’s that positive, that positive event. So in many ways Truly is sort of hte same thing in that if we know that it’s helping people or they’re deriving some comfort or solace or even being empowered, then I think it motivates us. Alright, let’s keep going, we are helping, we are touching people’s lives.
Scott: So the healthcare sectors has going through massive shifts over the decades. Can you describe tit today versus when you graduated from medical school?
Jamie: I think for us we probably, because we spent so many years in training, our post-medical school was about seven years training, we weren’t around for It guess what was, or the doctors that trained us talked to us about, they always talk about the way medicine “used to be.” We probably didn’t grow up in that model as much. We’ve seen residency training change quite a bit in the sense that recency used to be boot camp, you’re there a hundred plus hours a week, we don’t care what happens to you, just go for it. Now there’s a lot of rules to how residences have changed and there’s now 80-hour work weeks and there’s restrictions. So we can speak to the change in how physicians are trained but I think the way that healthcare has gone is less, we’ve seen less of a change ‘cause that’s always been the model that we have, that we’ve known. Our field is a little bit remote from things like the way the nationalized healthcare system or things like that, that doesn’t impact us as much.
Sheeva: Specifically when it comes to the fertility practice side of things.
Scott: But in terms of like psychology of it though. Like obviously the idea that you can have almost a coach or you’re alongside your patients is significantly different than what it would have been ten years ago.
Sheeva: A hundred percent. And we, I always say our generation meaning Jamie and I, our generation of doctors and then we look to sor to the generation above us who trained us and how they practice. And so this is again where you know, Jamie and I are like, we’re different. The dialogue is different. It’s a two-way conversation rather than a one-way conversation. And You know, no question is off-limits. And the patient has every right to question, challenge, anything that I may say or recommend and that’s the way it should be.
Jamie: For better or worse. I mean sometimes medicine, ti’s, you know, Google is great but Google is also terrible because people are also self-diagnosing themselves and there’s almost sometimes too much information and there always should be a two-way street but we live in the email generation so we are always attached to our phones. Our patients can always contact us. Doctors thirty years ago that was never the case. Nobody called them on their cell phone. ANd I think that there’s pluses and there’s minuses. I do think a lot of the changes, particularly in the field of obstetrics has probably come from women sort of taking almost taking over the field of obstetrics. I think that the addition of women to medicine has probably changed a lot of the way that medicine is delivered. That, and this is not to knock men at all but there’s a lot of old school paternalism that I don’t think exists with women as much. And that sort of women are more, there’s more group practices that women are in place that solo obstetrician really doesn’t exist anymore. There’s more of these group practices and maybe even a softer side of medicine has come from having more female physicians.
Scott: I think it’s a future proof approach because there’s been a lot of talk lately of the impact in automation in, you know, in artificial intelligence, the impact it’s going to have in loss of sectors and one sector that’s been talked about is medicine, how you know, basically artificial intelligence should be able to diagnose much more consistently but one of the things that artificial intelligence can’t’ do obviously is to provide creative ideas and to be able to have the coaching effect that you are bringing to this. That’s quite unique so I think it’s definitely a future proof idea. Do you have any advice for, let’s say, young women who may be listening to the thinking of a career in medicine?
Sheeva: I think, if this is something that you’re passionate about, I think it’s an intensely rewarding career. It is obviously not an easy road, even though residency hours are a lot more restricted than they maybe were ten to twenty years ago. But it’s, it’s not an easy road and many of the fields of medicine are still very male dominated and some particular fields are I would say ery very difficult to pursue and still have families. There’s certain surgical specialties that are just extremely time-intensive and so I always, I tell women that you have to be kind of know what you want and know what you want in life and know what’s important for you. And then you have to really consider that when planning what particular field of medicine you want to go to. BEcause again some of them have much friendlier overall lifestyles and some of them really are just ninety percent of your life will be your work. And so but you know, I think it’s an amazing field for women because I think many of us naturally are very giving. We like to talk and that’s really, and we like to listen and that’s really important a doctor.
Scott: I have friends who are surgeons and healthcare professionals, doctors, in Sweden and they seem to have quite a good life, work-life balance. Do you thinks ome of the challenges are less around the areas and more around that there’s a lack of systems and structures to support a humane living style for women and also men, like parents? It feel slike more of an antiquated system where you have to give up you’re, either you take a career or you take a family. I don’t see why you can’t do both.
Sheeva: A hundred percent.
Jamie: Yeah. I think that we have molded our personal practices so that we can be moms and we’ve been fortunate enough to work with partners and mol our career. But I think there’s still a lot of areas in medicine where it’s almost impossible to do that as a woman. I’m not gonna say, I mean, you can do whatever you want to do. But I think that, and it’s funny because if you would have told me this at 22 I would have said well, whatever, I’m gonna do it, I’ll be fine. But after having kids I realize that you do have to modify your life and it’s, you can do it. You really can’t do it all but I think the biggest most important thing is partnerships, who you choose for your life partner, who you choose for your partners at work really will be the, will determine how well you can do it and if you can do what you want to do because we don’t do any of this alone. You don’t raise your kids alone, you don’t come to work alone, so you really have to, it’s really important to know who you’re gonna pick to surround yourself with.
Scott: Big question, back to Truly MD. What do you want to change in the world?
Sheeva: I think we want to start out with, like, when girls are young we want them to understand their bodies. That’s the most important thing. If you understand your body from an early age, you will respect that body and you will treat it well over time and you will make the best decisions possible for your reproductive health.
Jamie: And that’s exactly, you get one body. And I think a hundred percent if you know it, if you understand it you will be empowered to make changes that are appropriate and you will, you’ll really respect yourself and I think if we can give women a voice by giving them an education then they will ultimately have more respect for themselves down the road.
Scott: Can you give us an example of how you’re doing this effectively?
Jamie: Well I think by putting pen to paper and getting it out there, getting our message out there in any way we can we’re trying our best to sort of spread this. We also are trying to speak to women when they’re younger, talk about respecting your body at a younger age and I think that message will then translate for the future.
Scott: You know obviously we’re experiencing a social shift here in the United States. Also a change in the way people think about women. How do you describe your movement against this broader social climate? New President, the thinking around healthcare, the change of Obamacare, all that. Everything seems to be in flux. How do you see all this change in the social climate affecting your movement?
Sheeva: You know truthfully, let’s just keep it at the basic. Let’s keep it about the movement and the site is really about let’s talk about what’s real. Let’s talk about the day to day. Let’s learn about our bodies. Let’s talk about day to day struggles. And we’re, I think again there’s so much flux going on outside. There’s positive, there’s negative and again, we’re trying, we have our own personal, political, religious beliefs. We have our own personal beliefs and we really, want to try to keep that to ourselves because we want to make this a safe space for every woman who’s out there, no matter what she believes in or doesn’t’ believe in. And so I think that, I think sometimes it’s like we get lost in the what ifs and the what can happen and I’m just very much a realist, and there’s so much flux going on around me that I’m like okay, I’m just gonna trudge forward. Every day, put one foot in front of the other and do what I know how to do and do it as best as I can. And i think this movement and our site is a reflection of that and you know, this is where Jamie and I can shine. This is where we can help other people and educate other people. And you know, again, being true to yourself, that’s really important in a time like now when so many things are changing.
Jamie: I think it is frightening. We are not immune to the news, we are not immune to what our colleagues go through who live in–
Sheeva: Other places. Yeah.
Jamie: IN a way we realize that we live in a bubble. We both grew up in New YOrk, we’ve spent our whole lives here and so we take for granted I think the freedoms and the openness that we have here so I think sometimes we forget. And obviously we make modern families we say, right. We help patients who make the families they always dreamed of whether it’s two men, two women, a man and a woman, you know, that to us, it doesn’t really matter. It’s sort of whatever you want and we recognize that we are somewhat protected living where we are. So our message hopefully translates further so that people do understand that there are opportunities to do whatever it is that you want to do.
Scott: IF you’re talking to people wherever they may be across America and you were describing a modern family, how would you describe it?
Jamie: Family is what you want it to be. We talk about this with couples every day because we see women who have gone into ovarian failure at a young age or men who have no sperm or you make your own family ad that white picket fence with the 2.1 child and the og, it doesn’t really exist anymore and you drive that. Whether it be you want to have, whether you’re having a child with donor sperm or donor egg or someone else is carrying the pregnancy, at the end of the day, to be a mother or to be a father when that child comes into your life, however they come into your life, that’s the true test in how you raise that child. That’s parenthood. I don’t really think parenthood is your egg, your partner’s sperm, if you carry the pregnancy. I mean, that’s, pregnancy is sort of the asu art of raising a child. IT’s once they are here and you have to teach them and grow them and help them become good people in society so I think helping people let go of maybe what that prototypical family looks like and saying your modern family is whatever you chose it to be.
Sheeva: I mean my vision of the modern family is one of love, support, nurturing, and however way shape or form you create that, that’s what it should be. And if that’s how the next generation is, i think probably this world will be a much better place at some point.
Jamie: A hundred percent. And that’s our job is to help people get there and make it possible.
Scott: Just a side note, I was reading in the New York Times that most Hillary supporters were watching Modern Family and most Trump supporters watched The Voice. That’s interesting.
Sheeva: We have a favorite in our house. I won’t say which one it was but we watch one of those very consistently, actually.
Jamie: Yup. Yup.
Scott: Just in closing I would love to hear if you could describe the feeling you have when you see a baby for the first time and you’ve been through the whole journey, the tears, the disappointments, the bumps in the road, the hitting the walls, the defeatism, he blames, all that stuff and then eventually when you see success, however you define it, however you feel about that.
Jamie: I think one of the best times is when patients will often send us their Christmas cards at holiday season and I can’t tell you how many time i’m brought to tears because it’s really amazing and that is the most incredible part of what we do as doctors is really helping people live their dream. And when you get those cards it sort of reminds you of the work that you do. it reminds you of your positive impact on patients and on other people and I think there is so much joy in that, that it sort of can help you deal with all of the negativity.
Sheeva: Right. You see these pictures and you see these babies and you’re like okay, this is the hope and this is the good in the world. So it’s a constant reminder of how important that is to recognize that. Cause I think it’s very easy, the world can be really negative and so it’s just such an amazing reminder of what is good and what is hope and what is the future.
Scott: Well it’s been a pleasure speaking with you. I don’t think I’ve ever met anyone who works in your field who is so calm and so thoughtful as you, Jamie and Sheeva. So innovative and fresh.
Both: Thank you so much.
Scott: Really great.