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No Easy Choice

A Story of Disability, Parenthood, and Faith in an Age of Advanced Reproduction

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Westminster John Knox Press
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"This well-written, insightful account should serve as a resource to anyone who ponders the intersection of medicine, ethics, and parenthood."
Publishers Weekly

In her new memoir, author Ellen Painter Dollar responds to the ethical dilemmas surrounding assisted reproduction with her personal story of being a mother living with a disability. Dollar describes living with a disabling genetic bone disorder called osteogenesis imperfecta (OI), which she passes down to her first child. As her toddler breaks numerous bones while learning to walk, Dollar considers whether to use assisted reproduction to conceive a second child. Her story brings to light the ethical dilemmas surrounding advanced reproductive technologies:

  • What do procedures such as in vitro fertilization (IVF) and preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) say about how we define human worth?
  • If we avoid such procedures, are we permitting the suffering of our children?
  • How do we identify a “good life” in a consumer society that values appearance, success, health, and perfection?

Dollar considers multiple sides of the debate, refusing to accept the matter as simply black and white. Her book will help parents who want to understand and make good decisions about assisted reproduction, as well as those who support and counsel them, including pastors and medical professionals.

Ellen Painter Dollar is a writer and mother of three living in West Hartford, Connecticut. She has written about faith, motherhood, and disability for a variety of organizations, publications, and blogs, including Christianity Today, the American Medical Association, the Osteogenesis Imperfecta Foundation, the Hartford Courant, and the Episcopal Cafe. She currently blogs at Visit her Web site at

No Easy Choice
A Story of Disabil...
by Westminster John Knox Press
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