Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Embryo Culture

Sorry once again for my late post. I just can't seem to get it together enough to post anything - still just very very tired all the time.
I thought this was a great book. An easy read that only took me a few days time to read the entire book. I related a lot to what the author explained about questioning faith, and questioning treatments.

The author describes her journey through infertility both in terms of a faith journey and a process of scientific discovery. How has infertility impacted your faith journey and your views of science/technology?
Infertility really did not affect my views of science and technology much. I've always been fascinated by science and its abilities. My faith journey however was much more impacted by my struggle with infertility. Growing up Catholic I started out believing that IF must have been some sort of punishment for something I'd done wrong, then it became hard to realize that no matter how much I prayed it wasn't going to change anything. I became angry with God or anything that had to do with religion at all. It also angered me to think that the church would not recognize any children I had conceived through ART - but this was less of an issue for me because I have always viewed the church and God as separate, if that's at all possible. Then the loss of our first pregnancy really changed my views. I just could not believe that my God would want my baby to have died, that it was some grand plan. Working through my grief after the loss, I came to believe that I could no longer pray for what I wanted or needed, that just wasn't how my God works. He doesn't make bad things happen, nor does he make good things happen. Things just happen. I couldn't pray for a pregnancy, otherwise everyone who hoped for that would be pregnant. I can't pray for a healthy baby - otherwise all babies would be born healthy. I can't pray for tangible things. All I can pray for are things like strength to get through the grief after the loss, courage to face every day of this pregnancy, and hope for a better tomorrow. What really changed my religious views the most? - The book When bad things happen to good people.

The author also talks about how many embryos should be transferred at any given cycle. Should there be a limit?
I think there should be a limit based on things such as age, previous ART failures, and embryo quality. I think it is a responsibility of the physician to place the limit, not on some group of people who may never have met the patient though. I think we need to remember that reproductive endocrinology is a business as much as it is a medical specialty and there are people who are in it to make money. Without limits physicians could transfer any number of embryos to help pad their clinic's figures with the CDC, not keeping patient care as their top priority. It would be irresponsible of a physician to transfer a high number of embryos to a young patient with no previous failed cycles. I think RE's who would do this are simply looking to increase their success rates and make more money.

The author mentions that going through infertility and IVF made her think differently with abortion? Has this changed anyone's position on abortion or did IVF change the way you thought about it?
It has not changed my views on abortion at all. I still believe in a women's right to choose and I also choose to believe that the majority of people who have an abortion have struggled in some way with their decision. I don't think most people have an abortion without some serious decision making. I will never understand another person's circumstance unless I am that person so I feel I have no place to judge them for making a certain decision.

Hop along to another stop on this blog tour by visiting the main list at http://stirrup-queens.blogspot.com/. You can also sign up for the next book on this online book club: The Mistress's Daughter by A.M. Homes (with author participation!)


loribeth said...

Glad to see you post -- I enjoyed reading your thoughts. I too found "When Bad Things Happen to Good People" was a great comfort to me after my daughter's stillbirth.

Pamela Jeanne said...

I'm a recovering Catholic for a few reasons. I, too, thought my infertility was punishment and I couldn't understand why as I've always tried to be a good person. I also found the church's condemnation of ART hard to stomach.

Like you, through all of my trials and tribulations, I also remain firmly pro-choice. Every woman is entitled to have a say over her own body. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, here.

seattlegal said...

I agree if there is going to be a limit, that should be based on the RE's thoughts, not on someone who hasn't met the couple.

I had those same feelings - what did I do wrong to deserve this? I went through everything I could remember in my life to try to determine what it was that I had did to deserve such pain.