Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Baby 13 years in the making / Family's fertility ordeal ends with birth of girl conceived in same test tube as teenage twins

But unlike most couples, there was little question about whether the Beasleys would use their frozen embryos to produce more children. Because of their strong religious convictions, Debbie Beasley says they never considered discarding the embryos or donating them to research

This is just bullshit. This couple had 12 extra embryos. They ended up with four of them misplaced in some sort of weird scandal, two used in a failed attempt to have another child, two did not thaw out properly, and they used the other four to have their latest child. That seems like some pretty unusual circumstances. And if all that had not happened, particularly the ones that were misplaced, they would still have more extra embryos to deal with. The woman is 45 and her husband is 55, so their strong religous convictions would have been tested pretty good if they had to face having another child. And anyway, aren't the ones that were misplaced and the ones that didn't thaw just as gone as if they had been discarded, and more useless than if they had been donated to use in research? How does that sit with thier strong religous convictions?

Now I'm not saying what I think they should or shouldn't have doen with these embryos. When my wife and I did IVF, we didn't have any leftover, and I'm glad because I'm sure it's a tough thing to decide how to deal with them. But my problem is the attitude that they were always going to use these to produce more children. What if they had not had the ones misplaced, and had had two more children with the two in the failed attempt? Then still had 10 more, with 5 children already? Would they have kept trying to produce more children, as guided by their strong religous convictions? Most likely, they would have discarded some, at least by default through inaction, and if that is the case, isn't that just as bad as deciding to discard them, religiously speaking? It's really easy to take the moral high ground when you already know all the circumstances. Hell, what if they had died with these 12 frozen embryos still waiting? Isn't that just as bad as discarding them? Seems to me for people with such strong religous convictions, they didn't really think this through very much. But I guess they're just lucky that they didn't have to make those tough decisions.

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1 comment:

Ol Cranky said...

it took them 13 years to go through enough cycles to use 8 embryos? You're right, this is total BS. Even after success, if a family really plans to use all their embryos, they start cycles within a couple of years of their first success and continue until they use the embryos up. I highly doubt they only implanted two at a time, but giving them the benefit that's all they did, they shoudl have used up the original embryos in much less than 13 years.