It’s not often — on my blog — that I comment on something that has happened outside of my own little world.
My blog is personal. It’s written with love and passion ; mostly about my three boys, sometimes about things I’ve done or things that interest me. Generally speaking, I don’t want outside events to be spoken about here.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m really interested in current affairs; I watch the news, I have an opinion — and am not frightened to voice it — but there’s a time and a place for that and my little blog is not it.
There are occasional exceptions though.
I once wrote a response to an article I’d read by a TV doctor. She had said that motherhood at 40 was basically a nightmare. Given the fact my experiences were poles apart from hers — and I felt deeply unhappy that if any pregnant 40 year old was reading her article they’d have been scared witless — I wanted to redress the balance. Writing a response on my blog felt like the right thing to do. Plus it got any anger I felt out of my system and I felt immeasurably better afterwards.
And this week has presented another exception to the rule.
The fashion designers Dolce & Gabbana labelling children borne through IVF ‘synthetic’.
To say I’m outraged is an understatement.
I can’t quite put into words how I feel about it, to be honest.
I’ve just sat, at my computer, typing different words and none of them quite express exactly how I feel about such a comment.
For countless people — couples (gay and straight), single women, single men, entire families — the innovation that is IVF is a miraculous lifeline. Literally.
An incredible feat of science that has enabled endless people to experience the joy of parenthood.
And whilst an IVF baby is created in a lab — rather than a bedroom — nothing about the biological process is ‘synthetic’. Whilst the embryologists can harvest a woman’s eggs and fertilise one in a dish (where many sperm are placed near the egg) or even by using ICSI (where a single sperm is injected directly into an egg) try as they might, the scientists cannot guarantee a live birth at the end of a round of assisted conception.
The one magical step — the biological miracle of a fertilised egg successfully implanting into the mother’s womb — simply cannot be guaranteed or orchestrated by humans.
The long and extraordinary process of an embryo growing — and evolving — within a woman’s body, until it is ‘viable’ and able to live outside the womb, cannot be assured by any fertility expert.
These processes are 100% natural. No amount of current technology or scientific intervention can make it happen.
I know this.
A myriad of people who have experienced failed IVF cycles — who’ve pinned everything on it working and are devastated when it doesn’t — know this.
Incredible that two misinformed, narrow minded, people — who are sadly notorious and have a public, worldwide platform with which to air their views — could openly comment on an issue that is so sensitive and so personal for so many people.
IVF is not something you embark on lightly. It is incredibly invasive. It hurts. Emotionally and physically.
And if you’re lucky enough for it to work – for those incredible, miraculous processes — that cannot be dictated by any human — to work their magic, you will be given the gift of life.
The gift of parenthood.
The gift of a child.
And nothing about that is ‘synthetic’.