Oh good, the year nine debating team has arrived, complete with their inexplicable viewpoint that infertility is not, in fact, a medical condition worthy of the same attention, funding, and level of treatment as any other medical condition.

Probably they will point out that infertility is not life-threatening (the role of pregnancy in significantly reducing the risks of breast and other reproductive cancers notwithstanding), whilst rather inconsistently giving the nod to treatment for a whole host of medical conditions which are merely debilitating, or in some cases inconvenient.

Those who cite overpopulation will no doubt balk at the idea of imposing restrictions on fertile couples, including forced sterilisation and termination/redistribution of extra children. Moreover they will not want to give up modern medicine, which saves and prolongs an astounding - nay, detrimental - number of lives each day. And most of them will see no problem with jetting off to Spain for their next holiday, or binning leftover food.

I can almost hear speaker number two warming up an appeal to natural selection which completely overlooks the fact that a society committed to this idea should be shutting down whole wings of the local children's hospital (for starters) before it touches a single fertility clinic, given the (relative lack of) heritability of fertility disorders (especially those aquired secondarily, possibly by accident, long after birth). Let's also not forget the forty percent of ART patients who have no fertility problems at all, heritable or otherwise (whose partners are infertile).

Sooner or later someone will wonder aloud why people don't "just adopt", revealing a deep-seated ignorance about adoption. Hint: "Annie" is pretty outdated now. And was fictional to start with.

But you needn't listen to me. After all, I'm dangerously obsessed, highly impatient, entirely selfish and/or just plain evil. I'm probably also career-driven and old. Or else childishly young, in dire need of a focus in life, and petulant. Or am I describing a perfectly fertile person? It's so hard to tell the difference.

Through the magic of cut and paste, I'm looking forward to never having to expend energy on this argument again. Think it'll work?


Aurelia said...

Where is the flamewar? Point me to it!

Bea said...

Sadly, I know of no active flamewars just at the moment. But every time one flares up the same arguments get trotted out - thought it would be good to have a cut-and-paste reply in store.

If I find one I'll let you know.


Anonymous said...

Think it would be ok if I borrowed a few lines in my battle with my boss this week?

Lut C. said...

It's easy to brush away other people's problems as being insignificant.

Thanks for the model reply, it might come in handy.

Serenity said...

Love this reply. I intend on using it whenever I need to... :)

Rachel Inbar said...

Maybe I should have my my daughter write an essay about this (she has to write a persuasive essay for school anyway) She was born through IVF & would never have gotten here otherwise... It might be interesting to hear the point of view of children born via ART. I never really asked my kids what they think about it (well, I did when they were little & my twins said that it was cruel that I left them in the freezer and that it was awfully cold there :-)).

BigP's Heather said...

Is there ever a proper reply to someone who is ignorant and self-righteous? They aren't going to listen to your logic, Bea.

TeamWinks said...

Standing ovation from me!

Kir said...

It is so sad to me that in this day and age, IF is still not treated with the dignity and knowledge it could be. For a world that truly loves to spout it's intellect and feelings of superiority, I am always in awe that of all things, this decision of mine to have a child (and not go broke or remain ashamed during that process) is not seen as a right for me. I think you said it well, but it seems lately that very few people(fertiles) want to hear it.


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