Fertility Treatments: For Convenience?

[deleted account] ( 29 moms have responded )

Motherhood—achieving it and surviving it—is a perennially popular topic of blog discussions. But rarely does one comment continue to draw responses years after first being posted, like the following one has from a woman who wanted to undergo IVF fertility treatments as a matter of convenience.

“I don’t have fertility problems,” she wrote, “but I would like IVF because it would be better for my career and lifestyle if I could give birth to multiples rather than prolong my family planning.” The woman then posed this question: “Is it immoral to want fertility treatments to become pregnant with more than one baby?”

That was in 2003, and the responses have continued since, some barbed, all blunt.

“Do you realize how insane and ridiculous you sound?”
“You are better off with a goldfish that doesn’t require your time.”
“Not only are you talking about something immoral, but something that’s just wrong!”

Many women wrote to tell their own stories of the difficulty and danger involved in multiple births, aghast at what they saw as a selfish quest for a “designer” family. “Putting your babies’ lives at risk for the sake of convenience is incredibly irresponsible,” one stated. A mother of triplets answered the original question head-on: “It’s not immoral to try fertility treatments when they’re unnecessary, but it is unethical.”

Others were less judgmental, like this mother who was pregnant with twins as she responded. “You have to do what’s right for you. If you want more than one child, then it’s your decision, no one else’s.” And another woman attempted to create room for discussion. “There are more of us out there that have had that same thought,” she wrote, “although some may not admit it.”

Tell us what you think: Is having unnecessary fertility treatments for career and lifestyle reasons immoral…irresponsible…acceptable?

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Alison - posted on 02/25/2010

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At first this story seems appalling to me, but after reading some of the responses, I started thinking... Did I not use birth control as a means to have my children when it was convenient for me, my finances, my career? Some consider that to be selfish. So where do you draw the line?

I will add that if there was a way and if I had the means to avoid having multiples, I would seriously have considered it.

Jocelyn - posted on 02/25/2010

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If she wants to and can afford it then I believe she has the right to do what ever she wants. But that being said; if her career and life are so important that she views having children as an inconvenience, she shouldn't be having children at all. Or maybe she can just adopt a 6 year old and then she doesn't have to go thru the whole pesky business of actually being pregnant and pulling all nighters, and then potty training...

Mary - posted on 02/25/2010

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I wonder what actually happened to her? My guess is that it probably didn't all go as planned. Anyone who has actually undergone infertility treatments can tell you just how time-consuming and life-altering just ONE IVF cycle is...almost daily appointments, blood draws...and you can't exactly schedule the egg retrieval or embryo transfer...it's all dependent on how your body responds. Not to mention, there is no controling the outcome...you may not get pregnant with the first attempt, nor are you assured multiples.

She was obviously ignorant to the realities of IVF when she made that statement, not to mention being clueless as to what a multiple pregnancy entails, let alone raising them. I wonder how prolonged bedrest, or caring for 28 week triplets with multiple health issues would fit into her career plans?

[deleted account]

Terri I can understand what you went through in a way - after trying for 18 months for a baby I was 1 week away from starting fertility treatment when I found out I was pregnant. I have PCOS and have known since I was 13 years old when I was put on the pill for it that I may never have children. I'm so glad I didn't have to go through IVF because I had blamed myself for 18 months and that was quite enough! When I came off the pill to start trying for a baby my periods didn't return, but I needed a HSG test to check whether my tubes were blocked, so to do this they gave me drugs which induced a period. My tubes weren't blocked and the doctor thinks the drugs kinda kick started my ovulation as I fell pregnant after that period =] I think that's why I have such a strong opinion on people using IVF for convenience. IVF should be available to those who actually NEED it.

Terri - posted on 03/08/2010

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Why doesnt she just pay someone else to have the babies for her then if it is such an inconvenience for her?!

Im sorry but my first child was born through IVF and without this wonderful development we wouldnt have children! We tried for 4 long years to have a child after a miscarriage and thousands of dollars later we were lucky enough to have our beautiful boy.

IVF was one of the hardest things we have ever done. It was painful, demoralising and put a huge strain on our marriage at one point. It is not something to take lightly and it takes up A LOT of your time. But we wanted a child badly and sacrificed a lot to do it. And it took countless attempts.

But here in Australia there is no hope of multiple births, because when I had it done 8 years ago they only implanted 2 embyros at a time. Now they have changed that law to only one embryo implantation if you are under 40 and 2 over 40 years of age.

If you really want children then they should not be seen as an inconvenience to schedule in to your life! By God's good grace we were lucky enough to be able to conceive naturally after doing IVF and now have 4 wonderful children who take up all our time just as children should lol!

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29 Comments

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Lady - posted on 03/09/2010

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I think there is a difference between using birth control and trying to choose when is the right time to have a baby ie when you,re ready emotionally, financially ect, and using fertility treatment to try and fit having children into your career. Her priorities seem slightly scewed if you ask me!

Shelby - posted on 03/09/2010

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I say acceptable. I mean seriously...Whos business is it for her to do what she wants with HER money? Shes not taking anything from anyone else... Its no one's business what she does.
birth control...abortion... How is that not doing what is "convenient" I don't get it.
I say its up to her.

[deleted account]

Aww that's lovely! My mother-in-law had two boys then two girls! My husband's the eldest of the four =] I really feel for you - getting my husband's sperm test to see whether he also had a problem and having the HSG were bad enough especially since we knew it was me with the problem all along so I blamed myself!!!

Yes she'd be better off getting a goldfish - she probably couldn't be bothered to feed a cat, then again she'd probs forget to feed the fish lol!

Terri - posted on 03/08/2010

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We have 4 kids, 2 boys 2 girls and luckily after having my eldest thru IVF, while breastfeeding I fell pregnant with my next son when he was only 5 months old, hence why there is only a 14 month age gap between them lol! Then my 2 girls came without any real trying. The doctors say that sometime a pregnancy can actually heal the body. I had blocked tubes and endomitriosis.

We started trying at 24 years of age and it took us 4 years, with a lot of needles and testing. Not a fun experience, especially the cost. Medicare does cover some but not a lot. And talk about time consuming, the blood tests every day for weeks, the drugs which make you sick and hormonal. We did it for nearly 2 years.

And thats why I cant understand how someone would even want children if they are already thinking of them as an inconvenience. Get a cat! A lot less work and responsibility!! Because it sounds like it to me that I bet some other woman would be raising her child in the form of a nanny anyway!!

[deleted account]

I'm so glad that the IVF was successful for you =] How many children do you have now and did you need fertility treatment for them all? Some people are just so self-centred, self-concerned - yes this woman can afford it but there are so many women out there who never have children! I live in the UK and most people here are lucky - they can get 1 or 2 cycles of IVF free on the NHS but it is a postcode lottery - in some areas people under 25 can't have IVF, some places you can only have 1 cycle and others 2. I was lucky because I'm only 19 years old but they knew exactly what was wrong with me and therefore knew that I'd most likely require help concieving.x

Brandi - posted on 03/08/2010

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Honestly, people...we all have children when it's convenient for us. Some of us wait until we get married, some wait until they buy a house or they finish college....

[deleted account]

I agree with Gillian - if her career is so important to her what sort of life is the child/children going to have? You can't schedule things because they're convenient for you - god help if she goes overdue she'll probably pay for a c-section so the baby comes on the "right" day for her. It is selfish, she's thinking of herself.

Heather - posted on 03/08/2010

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I dont get why people judge other womens parenting choices. If thats what she wants and thats what she thinks will work for her family, and she can afford it...who are any of us to judge? Even if its the worst decision she ever made...its her decision to make. I wish twins ran on either side of our family...I have always wanted twins :)

Kate CP - posted on 03/06/2010

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If she's so selfish that all she's thinking about is HER career and HER lifestyle then she has no business having kids anyway.

Lyndsay - posted on 03/06/2010

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Well, personally... I think if they let people like the Duggars ("19 Kids and Counting") keep having children, I don't know how they can have a problem with someone wanting lots of children at once. That woman is like a production line, she just spits out a kid every 11 months or so and has been doing this for the last 20 years. She even has a grandchild that is older than her youngest child. Imagine that one in the playground... "See that little baby over there? Thats my aunt Jolene!"

It makes sense that in today's world where career and lifestyle are the emphasis, where we want more, faster, stronger, all the time, that this would happen. They should have thought of this when they decided to make IVF publicly accessible. If you want to let people play God, then you have to be willing to let everyone have a hand in that.... it's not okay to say that IVF is acceptable for some people but not others. There is a possibility that an infertile mother will produce 8 babies at a time with IVF, just like there is the possibility of it happening to a fertile mother. In the end it is all the same.

Gina - posted on 03/06/2010

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When for medical reasons i couldnt have more kids the nature way we thought of IVF but after looking into it ,we changed our minds deciding to leave it up to God to do what He saw fit.It makes me angry when poeple abuse things that are there in what should be a last chance thing,IVF is for couples who cant have children not because its 'convenient'AND she wants multiply kids is she kidding?what if god forbid the multiply babies were sick,would she still want them? Children are a blessing and not all poeple should have them,will they be the most important thing in her life? Maybe only when its 'convenient'.

[deleted account]

Honestly after having 4 kids I can say that you can't just make them "fit" into your lifestyle. As a parent you have to be prepared to change your lifestyle not just "fit" the kids in there. Being a parent is the least "convenient" thing you'll ever do in your life. LOL And after having a preemie I can not imagine having more than 1 at once. Their level of care that they require is much higher than a normal full term babies is. But that's my opinion, honestly if another woman wants to have IVF then that's her business but I just don't think it's worth the risk. What happens when a whole bunch more "octomoms" pop up? How convenient will it be then!

Alison - posted on 02/26/2010

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Let's not forget that there are parts of the world where it is common to schedule c-sections for the sake of convenience for the patient and the doctor. And also as I mentioned earlier, birth control allows us a certain level of control as well. With technological/medical advances, come new practices. At first it seems shocking, but once enough people start doing it, it becomes entirely uninteresting.

Erin - posted on 02/25/2010

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This is just bizarre to me. What planet does this woman live on that she thinks she can 'schedule' a multiple pregnancy in between meetings and manicures?

That being said, it's none of my business what she does with her money or her uterus.

Brandi - posted on 02/25/2010

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My feeling is that it isn't MY place to say whether or not it's immoral, irresponsible, etc. If she can provide for her children and will love them and take care of them I personally don't see the harm in what she is doing. That is, if we are talking about a woman who wants twins or triplets. If we're talking about another Octomom, that's a different story. But my first statement still stands-it isn't my business what another woman does with her uterus.

Carolee - posted on 02/25/2010

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If she wants to do it that way, she shouldn't be stopped. BUT, does she realize that even one kid will take up 18 years (at least) of her life? And multiples tend to come with health problems that could potentially "interfere" with her "career and lifestyle". I don't think she should be banned from having treatments, but I don't think she's thought it out fully, either.

Amy - posted on 02/25/2010

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going through any form of trying to get pregnant can be hard and time consuming. The harder it is to get pregnant the more time your going to spend. Just by doing the fertility treatments doesn't mean that it will be quicker and easier.

I prefer the natural way, but if that just can't happen, then I'm glad people at least have the option. It's sad that some abuse it, like the Octo-Mom lady.

Amy - posted on 02/25/2010

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If you're selfish enough to want them around YOUR schedule, you kinda have parenting a bit backwards, yeah? I mean, is she going to try and put them to bed at a certain time because it's when SHE wants? If it had been put differently, say "I want to give my children the best and want many, but life circumstance, health, etc impede that from happening if i don't do this" then it may be a different story for me. All the IVF of people who don't NEED it though, ticks me off. Let's flash our money around and get what we want because we can buy it. That's not what having a family is about to me. They are a blessing, not something to purchase to set on your perfect life shelf. If she is so busy working though, I have a hard time thinking she'll have enough time to really raise a child, let alone multiples. I think you should see a doctor and have tried for many years before doing IVF. I know a girl who went on fertilization pills because she tried two months with no results. please. people. stop feeding the medical nation and get off the instant gratification. selfish selfish.

Sharon - posted on 02/25/2010

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If she can afford it, let her do it.

People do all sorts of things for convenience. Pay crazy stupid prices at the 24 hour convenience store. Use their friends & family as free babysitters rather than schuck out for a real one.

I think people are bitter because she is going to get something handed to her - easy. Its like being pissed off at Bill Gates for being rich and not sharing his money with you.

I honestly believe this happens all the time. Crazy women who feign infertility to gain access to the drugs that increase their chances of multiple births.

I can't control what others do. Most of the time I don't care. What she does will not negatively impact infertility treatment - unlike octobitch - so let her do it.

Sarah - posted on 02/25/2010

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How ridiculous!
Krista, i'd hazard a guess that she would manage twins with nursery, nannies and anything else she could afford to "fit in" with her life.
She sounds like the type of woman who likes the IDEA of kids, but wouldn't last 5 minutes with kids without a LOT of help!

Lady - posted on 02/25/2010

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I think if her career is that important to her then she shouldn't be having children in the first place.

Krista - posted on 02/24/2010

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Multiples tend to have a higher risk for health complications, and are also at a higher risk of low birth weight. Obviously most twins are perfectly healthy babies, but there IS that slightly higher risk there, and to deliberately put your children through that risk, for no other reason than convenience? That just doesn't seem right.

Plus, part of me cannot help but think that if her lifestyle and career are so demanding that she can't deal with more than one pregnancy, how the HELL is she going to manage to care for twins???

[deleted account]

I think it is highly irresponsible (at least I think that's my word of choice). I have personal objections to IVF (I think that's the one) anyway... though I'd never make that call for anyone else...., but to do it for 'convenience' or to intentionally have multiples? Not cool, IMO. Multiples are certainly a blessing though. ;)

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