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When I graduated college in 2003, I had this big master plan that I was going to be a writer for a major music magazine like Rolling Stone. I mean, how difficult could it be, right? We all know the answer to that question.
My determination to make this dream did not waver – however, my wallet was. I was a broke college grad and I needed a job. That was when my mom approached me and said, “You can always come work for me.”
My mom was a business success story of her own, and probably part of the reason I am the determined businesswoman today. My mom was a stay-at-home mom until my sister and I were in grade school; needless to say, she got a later start in her career. She started as a sales rep for a women’s reproductive health company and worked there for the next 8 years.
When the company she was working for was sold, she didn’t want to be a part of the merger and thought she could do this on her own. 25 years later, my mom still owns and runs her own successful women’s reproductive health company, and I’ve been working with her for the last 11 of those years.
So, you can see how my music writing career turned out. As a struggling 21-year-old, I decided to take the family bait and try my hand in women’s reproductive health and help people make babies. You don’t get a nickname like “Spermin’ Berman” for no reason!
It’s nothing short of amazing how things work out the way they are supposed to. I never would have guessed that working in the family business would lead me to where I am in my career today.
In 2011, I got married to my wife on a beautiful day in October in Provincetown, MA. My wife and I always knew we both wanted to have children, and since I was known as “Spermin Berman” and worked in that industry, we both assumed we would have no problem making that happen. What we forgot to think about was the fact that neither of us has a penis!
After going over our options for trying to conceive – either spend thousands of dollars to have a doctor inseminate my wife, or use a turkey baster – we opted for latter. At least I (as the non-carrying mom) could be involved a little in the process, right?! The fact my wife and I had to use a turkey baster was pretty much atrocious.
All I could think of while holding that turkey baster was “Thanksgiving turkey in the oven” – not so sexy when you’re trying to impregnate your wife! I was even wearing a headlamp, so I could see what the heck I was doing, and trying to maneuver this turkey baster in some sort of non-awkward way. Unless you have done this yourself, it’s hard to even put into words how awkward, awful, and “unsexy” this experience was for us. I started thinking that there HAD to be something better than this for couples like us.
I decided it wouldn’t hurt to do a little research, although I came up empty handed with that as well. So, if nothing existed that was better than a turkey baster, why couldn’t I just invent something? And with that, my inner entrepreneur businesswoman fire was lit.
The next few weeks were kind of a blur. I was exploding with ideas, and that’s when The Semenette was created. I decided to invent a sex toy that would work like a turkey baster and allow people to mimic an ejaculation, but the process would be infinitely sexier and much more pleasurable. I incorporated a new business, Berman Innovations, LLC, and it was time to make this idea into a reality. I sought out a manufacturing company to begin engineering my idea and 2 prototypes later, I had an actual working and functional product. Time to put it to the test!
My wife and I used The Semenette for the first time in June 2013. We decided to do 2 inseminations that month, as we had a very generous and willing known donor that was willing to “donate” to us as much as possible.
Not to toot my own horn or anything, but using The Semenette compared to using the turkey baster was like night and day. We are talking a polar opposite experience! The Semenette allowed me to really feel like I was a part of the baby-making process, and allowed for a level of intimacy and romance that would never be achieved with a turkey baster.
So, at least I knew I had a product that felt good – but did it work? To my wife’s and my utter shock, after those two attempts in June, she got a positive pregnancy test. Holy shit, it worked! And then some of my other friends that wanted to use my prototype got pregnant as well. Holy shit, it REALLY works!
To date, I have many success stories thanks to The Semenette, but what is so special for me is that I saw a problem, thought of a solution, made it a reality, and it’s responsible for my wife and I being able to have our first child. Makes that hair club for men commercial from the 80’s make a lot more sense when the owner said, “I’m not only the president, I’m also a client!”
There is nothing more rewarding than being able to see my daughter’s face every day and know that all of my hard work, blood, sweat, and tears helped contribute to her being here. Talk about being involved in the process!
It’s been an incredible journey for me with this product, and it didn’t stop there. To my surprise, there are so many people and communities other than same-sex couples The Semenette can help, from either a functional standpoint or simply from a pleasure perspective. It’s extremely rewarding to be able to create something that helps so many people in drastically different ways.
What’s the moral of my story? Well, like my mother and now me, if you have a vision, regardless of how tough the road ahead might be, don’t be afraid to follow it. You just might make your dreams come true.