Wednesday, November 4, 2009

A sperm allergy and no option for in vitro

You may have seen this story making its way around the Internet today: A recently married couple wants to have a baby, but it turns out the wife is allergic to her husband's sperm (a condition called seminal plasma hypersensitivity), so they can't conceive naturally. The woman tried an allergy treatment to try to desensitize her to the sperm, but it didn't work. They are now looking into adoption.

I really feel for this couple and wish them the best with the adoption process. I can't imagine how heartbreaking this situation would be for a couple who wants to have children. But this part of the story really caught my eye:

Due to an agreement with the Catholic school she worked for, in vitro fertilization was not an option for the Boydes.

Yep. Because in the Catholic Church, in vitro fertilization is a "mortal sin."

There are a few reasons given by the Church for its stance on this procedure. According to this site,
No person and no couple has a right to a child. A child is a person with rights; it is not merely an object, a possession. A doctor treats disease; he should not do what is over and above the goal of health. He is allowed to treat a woman for a condition causing infertility, but not to "manufacture" her child.OK, so the Church doesn't want doctors playing God and "creating" people. But the Church seems to be OK with live-saving medications and treatments, no? Isn't that an awful lot like playing God, too?

And then there's this:
imperfect or supernumerary fetuses are often killedOften during IVF, more than one embryo is fertilized and implanted, to increase the chances of the woman getting pregnant. And what happens to all the embryos that aren't used or don't become fetuses? They are "killed." And God can't have that, because people never kill anything, I suppose.

Just for fun, here's another reason:
The whole process is a degradation of parenthood, which should begin with an intimate and profoundly personal expression of love.Which is exactly what this couple would like to do, but cannot get pregnant by doing.

I'm not a religious/God person, and I have many disagreements with the Catholic Church, this being just one of them. What I've never received a good explanation for is this: Isn't it possible God had a hand in making something like IVF possible, so that a couple like this one could conceive? Why is that so hard to believe (especially compared to some of the absurdities in the Bible)?

Reminds me of this little story, which I reference as often as possible:
As a town was flooding, the Red Cross came to save an older man. The man refused help, saying God would save him. As the flood waters rose, more help came and, again, he refused it because God would save him. Finally, as he was on the roof of his home, a helicopter came to save him and he again refused it because he believed God would save him. The flood waters rose above his roof and he drowned. As he came before God, he asked "God, why didn't you save me?" And God answered, "I sent you all that help, and even a helicopter at the end!"

1 comment:

Razor said...

I love how people can look at Scientology and all their crazy ass views on medicine, and say "lol, Scientology," but then the Catholic Church has been doing shit like this for hundreds of years and people actually listen. The shit that comes out of this religion is just as insane as anything coming from Scientologists, Mormons, or people who think they're Jedis. The sooner people disassociate themselves with this archaic institution, the better off society will be.

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