The Mommy Chronicles – Gender Selection Clinics
This week I discovered some disturbing parenting information, have you heard about these "gender selection" clinics? For about $18,000 you get to choose whether you'll give birth to a son or to a daughter.
The slick marketing terminology being used by these clinics is: "family balancing". Here is a description of the services from one clinic's website:
The Genetics & IVF Institute has long been a leader in gender selection for Family Balancing and for sex-linked genetic disease prevention. Gender selection for Family Balancing can be accomplished using Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD), a form of prenatal diagnosis performed on early embryos prior to implantation in the uterus and initiation of pregnancy. Only embryos of the desired gender are returned to the uterus, which provides a nearly 100% accuracy rate if pregnancy is achieved.
So it seems as if these physicians have taken a procedure that was originally designed to prevent genetic diseases and turned it into a luxury purchase.
I have a couple BIG problems with this--problems that we really can't fully explore because there just isn't enough time.
This news reminds me of when I first announced my pregnancy, when I was frequently asked a question that I wish I could ban: "do you care what you are having?" My response was always "a healthy child". That's the politically correct answer. But, I really need to confess that I just always imagined God would make me the momma of a boy. Mainly because I am horrible at fixing hair and I also have a genuine deep rooted fear of teenage girls. Cute, sweet baby girls eventually become teenage girls. Lord. Help. Me. At least my little girl will probably have crazy looking hair that will chase the boys away for a while.
All it took was a week or two with that sweet baby an I knew that I was meant to be the momma of a girl.
God gives us what we need.
And yes, I said a week or two. No, it wasn't instantaneous. I spent at least the first week wondering why they'll just let any moron leave the hospital with a baby. They just watch you roll down the hall. . . did I look like I had a clue? Pretty sure the answer to that is: NO! That must be a fun job--being a postpartum nurse, getting to see the fear on all the first time parents faces. Knowing they are trying to wear their game faces as they secretly freak the heck out on the inside.
Back to the point--I have a problem with "family balancing", this increasingly popular upscale offering that is raking in at least $100 million yearly with somewhere between 4,000 and 6,000 procedures annually. By the way, the majority of the clients are seeking girls. They must have more faith in their ability to fix hair than I do.
Interested in hearing more? Read this story about gender selection where a couple actually considered aborting their third son because they were trying to have a girl.