Catholic Sistas » perspective from the neck

Masthead header

Money Back Guarantee Babies: IVF Has Officially Reached the Bottom of the Barrel

When I read this article, I couldn’t shake the chills that went up my spine. I’m surethere is plenty of evil out in the world that I’ll never know about, but it doesn’t cease to amaze or shock me at man’s capacity and almost downright ingenuity — for lack of a better word — and inclination toward sin. This is just seeking profit from humanity, turning people into a disposable crop to be sold, like corn, or pork bellies.

I feel for people that have infertility problems. I have friends who are infertile or have difficulty having children, and it is painful process that can have a toll on your faith. But this type of preying people’s desperation and indiscriminate peddling of embryos has the moral stench of slavery.

A doctor whom I refuse to name to give him publicity, offers a “money back guarantee” on donor eggs and sperm that he mass produced into embryos  (read: human beings without the comfort of their mommas’ wombs and worse, no immediate womb to call home) and sells them as essentially adopted embryos by couples who are at the end of their emotional and financial rope with traditional IVF methods.

What’s worse?  Google “Money Back Guarantee IVF.”  Pages of results for companies offering lowballing guarantees.  I was informed by a friend and fellow contributor that this approach is actually not as uncommon as I had originally thought. What stood out to me in the article was not the idea that we as a society have truly commoditized (like corn or pork bellies) our children, as sad as that one particular aspect is, but rather that ethicists were gobsmacked by the lack of ethics that this doctor in question has.

Critics who are in favor of traditional IVF are horrified at this. But why should they be? This is only the next logical step in a series of steps that remove the unitive from the procreative act. If children are  a choice due to artificial birth control, then the slow slide through abortion, homosexuality as normal, gay adoption and surrogacy, IVF, and now open market peddling of embryos has become, if not moral, legal.

Many things here horrify me. Things that go back to the slippery slope of IVF to begin with. Secular doctors can’t honestly be surprised at the supposed horror of the doctor’s methods when the intrinsic reality of procreation left the bedroom decades ago.  Clearly this doctor feels he is doing a perceived good for his clients by saving them money and further heartache. He is so confident that his work will result in a child that he has guaranteed the baby or you get your $9800 back.

Our secular minds have been transformed to think we are owed life. If, when, how, where and with whom are all now “choices.”

This is painfully wrong.  We are no more owed the gift of children than we are to expect any other gift God sees fit to bless us with.  I know how painful that sounds, but you don’t have a right to do whatever you want to have children.  You just aren’t.  What’s happened over the years is that we have allowed what used to be moral minds to be twisted to a secular mentality with the perversion that encourages and embraces the turning of children into a commodity, like crude oil or soybeans.

We have become a society of entitlement, choice, and self-will.

We feel entitled to ignore our bodies capabilities.

We feel entitled to “choice” no matter what that means.

We feel entitled to kill children in the womb.

We feel entitled to force conception of human beings in ways that go beyond the marital act.

We feel entitled to remove the ultimate Author of life from the equation, as if we create life.

The ultimate horror of this doctor’s sin is that he does not view it as sin. Its a financial alternative.   And that is the essence of the Evil One’s work. He will woo you by encapsulating sin in a sugary coat that appears to look “good” or cloak it in false compassion. He will put a question mark where God has put a period.

“Did God really say, ‘You shall not eat from any of the trees in the garden’?”*

As Catholics, we recognize the dignity and value of all life, but we also realize that there are limits to man’s participation and cooperation in the creation of new life. This goes back to the understanding that the primary function of marriage is to bring new life — with God’s aide — into this world. This is the cornerstone of our existence on this earth and why we fight against the assault against marriage. We are not owed children. God entrusts them to our care, but as a wonderful priest put it at a meeting I recently attended for my daughter’s First Holy Communion, they aren’t ours. They were His first.

Am I being harsh?  No.  People cannot create children.  They can take what we have — eggs and sperm, or DNA — and put it together to possibly conceive a child, but we cannot create life from nothing, and we cannot create the soul.  God is the Author of life; not us.

You or someone you know may be thinking, “You can’t just go around telling people what to do since you obviously have six children and have not struggled with infertility! How can you have such a strong opinion about this when you are ignoring the very raw emotions that folks who are infertile go through?”

I realize this may fall hard on the ears of those who have struggled with this issue. I hope that you will take what I’m saying for what it is. It’s not meant to be an emotional slap on the face. What I am saying has to do with something that goes beyond the understandable and palpable heartache of couples who are childless.  We know IVF now appears to create and astonishingly high rate of rare developmental and genetic disorders because of gene expression in vitro.  We have seen humanity turned into a cash crop with stem cells.  And now we see doctors peddling random embryos to the desperate and peddling their wares with money back guarantees.  It is a pervasive, objective evil, and people need to wake up.

The problem for many though is that they have committed themselves to IVF, and with it their minds are wedded to the sin.

In my years of discussing IVF online, I have found that the vast majority of those who were adamantly in support of their choice to use artificial means to conceive their children, quite literally could not separate out the sin from their children. The sin clouded their ability to see IVF as an objective evil. To admit they were wrong for using IVF, they reasoned, was to say their children were wrong. And no amount of persuasion on my part was ever successful in telling them otherwise. The impact of the emotional and financial investment ran so deep that there was almost no way to separate the sin from the precious, innocent children who were not at fault for the means by which they were conceived.

The Church has warned us about the danger of IVF since its advent in the 1950s. A friend has shown me moral theology texts from the 1950s condemning IVF as intrinsically immoral. The Church has warned about the consequences of artificial contraception. The Church has warned about the rise of homosexuality.  The Church has warned about abortion and the culture of death.  The Church has warned us all, and many have ignored the Church as “a bunch of celibate old men.”  Well, I think there is something do be said for those celibate little old men.  Their warnings were correct, and this Doctor’s street peddler attitude about human life only goes to show it.  Time for the sisters out there to wake up and realize we are the place that life begins.  That is the way God designed things, and that is the way we have to live, and insist that society live, because the alternative is a godless monstrosity.

Did you enjoy this article? Sign up now!

About Martina Kreitzer

Martina is a cradle Catholic, wife to Neil, and mother to seven kiddos here {and three in heaven}– 4/96-1/17. She decided to homeschool the kiddos in 2010 after many years in public schools and is currently transitioning out of homeschooling. She is the creator of Catholic Sistas which focuses on a feminine perspective of the Catholic Faith. The website was the result of an existing camaraderie by the contributors in a Catholic women’s group she created. She is also a Seal of Approval evaluator for the Catholic Writers Guild. Lest you think she spends all her time online, Martina has enjoyed getting out into the community by serving on the Pastoral Council from 2010-2013. She is constantly on the lookout to make her parish as welcoming as the small town she grew up in East Texas. This task is not easy given that St. William is the largest parish in the Austin diocese, serving well over twenty thousand parishioners. She loves Jesus, coffee, bacon, chocolate, photography, more bacon, evangelizing, and the company of those unafraid to use their sense of humor.

  • Cindy ~ The Veil of Chastity - “Our secular minds have been transformed to think we are owed life. If, when, how, where and with whom are all now “choices.”

    All part of our entitlement mentality that is only going to, unfortunately, get more fanatical.

    My movie review (linked) shares Pope Paul VI’s agonizing but prophetic decision in Humanae Vitae.

    God bless, CindyNovember 27, 2012 – 6:03 amReplyCancel

  • Martina - I really feel like the root of most sins is {ok, not just the fall because that is the crux of our human brokenness} our sense of entitlement. The moment we start looking inward and forget about the impact of our desires on others is when we cease to care for others with that unconditional love. 🙂

    I am grateful for having the help of our contributor Stacy D. on this post.November 27, 2012 – 8:01 amReplyCancel

  • Chrissy - I wonder about all this infertility, we have so many toxins in our environment now. It’s sad for the people who want children, but there are so many who need our love and support, we can pour our love into them.November 27, 2012 – 8:48 amReplyCancel

  • Alessandra - Chrissy, I thought the same. But I’m almost 39 and I remember my friends (when we were teenagers) getting on the pill to “regulate their periods” and then as adults not being able to conceive and having to jump through a million hoops to get one baby. I don’t think you are too far off on this assertion…and it’s only gotten worse with the toxins. I fear for our next generation, between abortion and the pill and toxins in our waters…I don’t think the overpopulation alarmists need to worry too much, sadly!

    Martina, very good post…I love that it is very factual. It’s a hard pill to swallow for those that cannot have a child. I would love more children and haven’t been able to conceive in two years! I actually have checked out the domestic adoption sites because there are so many children in need of love. Also, I found out that a lot of children whom are foster children (adoptable) have funds to cover the fees so they aren’t as astronomically expensive as I was told by others. Anyway, great post!November 27, 2012 – 9:29 amReplyCancel

  • melissa - my feelings have changed so much ofer the last few years. I used to think it wasn’t up to the “old men” to tell me when I should or should have a baby. I knew what was right for me. I was on the pill for ages and most recently had an IUD. The last year or so I’ve had a whisper in the back of my head that I would ignore OVER AND OVER AND OVER. I told myself it didn’t matter if I had the IUD I was doing what was right for the child I already had. I had just about convinced myself again when I was talking with my 7 year old, we were talking about a large family we knew and how I was amazed their mom wasn’t always exhausted. My 7 year old said, “well mom God only gives you the babies you can handle” those were NOT words she’d heard from me. I’m pretty sure they aren’t words my husband or her grandparents ever said. Talk about a loud whisper from God, that was one I couldn’t ignore.

    I am open to what God wants for me at this point. If we have a baby we have a baby, if we don’t, he gave me all the babies I could handle.

    This post isn’t exactly about birth control, but thank you for such a clear message. I forget that with IVF or other things there can be so many more things involved and I have to really look inside myself for the real answers.November 27, 2012 – 11:51 amReplyCancel

  • CA Rhoades - It’s so, so hard for couples in the secular mindset who are struggling to conceive to understand the concept of “children aren’t owed to us.” Not when there are so many “solutions” offered to them by the fertility industry. I remember reading one couples IVF conception story and after four rounds, the wife was done – emotionally, physically, she just couldn’t handle it anymore. And her husband looked at her and said “We not stopping till we get a baby out of this.” ANd she hails that moment as him being ultimate champion of hope for her when she had begun to despair. I heard that phrase and wanted to cry for her. For him. For humanity.
    You are so right… once a couple goes down the IVF path, it becomes a nearly impossible feat to divorce them from the entitlement mentality. Which makes it just as difficult for a concerned friend to reason with them otherwise, no matter how compassionate, empathetic, or brilliant our approach… they cannot see past their “right” to a baby of their “own”. I really don’t even try anymore. I will talk to them about the many different types of adoption, but as soon as they bring up the “baby of our own” IVF language, I gently end the conversation. And I pray very, very hard for them to see the beauty of adoption and choose to pursue that route instead.November 27, 2012 – 1:48 pmReplyCancel

  • Valerie - As a practicing Catholic who did choose to go down the road of extreme infertility measures, including, IVF, I would like to offer some alternative reasonings besides “it’s our right” to have a baby.

    Honestly, I don’t think my husband and I ever considered it our “right” to have a baby…but it was definitely our deepest hearts’ desire. That being said, we weren’t truly faithful practicing Catholics at that time in our marriage. Instead we were “secular” Catholics…picking and choosing from the cafeteria of Catholic “rules”.

    My husband and I are now in our 40s. Both of us were teenagers raised in the excess of the 80s. And although I did attend a private Catholic all-girls high school, classes on health and wellness, including different forms of contraception, were taught to us. In addition, neither of us came from homes that were faithfully Catholic. My husband was raised in a Protestant/Catholic household and I was raised in a home of cradle Catholics, both of whom were one of multiple siblings. My own mother actually condoned the use of birth control so that I did not “end up like her mother” having multiple babies.

    Fast forward 15 years…we were newlyweds who wished to have everything in place (education, finances, etc.) before we lovingly brought a child into the world. Little did we know that all those years we “waited” to have children, we were actually wasting precious fertile years…and God’s will for our lives.

    At 29, I just expected to become pregnant. My grandmother was fertile, my mother was fertile, my sister was fertile, so why shouldn’t I be fertile, too? And I was.

    But my husband wasn’t.

    See, we just don’t know the plan that God has in store for us. And while I never saw childbearing as a right…I guess I did just assume it would happen. I was a healthy, young woman, right?!

    In addition, I never was taught the church’s position on IVF. Sure I new contraception was wrong…sure I knew abortion was wrong..but this was MAKING a life…not taking one.

    Today, I know and believe differently. And after I discovered how very wrong my thinking was…I stayed away from church. It is a dark part of my past, but a very real one.

    Our story does have a happy ending though…

    We did conceive our daughter thru IVF…and she is healthy (no genetic issues). She was to be our one and only child…

    And then God surprised us with a bonus baby…a boy when I was 37.

    And then God surprised us with a 2nd bonus baby…another boy when I was 40.

    And between the birth of those baby boys…I made my way back to our Catholic faith…I returned to the Sacraments…especially Reconciliation and am the mother of 3 beautiful children here on earth and 5 more in heaven.

    But not only that…my husband and I have completely changed our outlook on life. We no longer “expect” things to go according to our will…we value our Faith and believe that raising our children to live and love simply and to know and understand the tenets and truths behind Mother Church are more valuable any fast-paced career or high dollar education.

    And so while our daughter was conceived in a sinful and immoral manner…she is one of the most intrinsically beautiful children of God. She is currently a 2nd grader at a tiny, traditional Catholic school and is the shining star (per her teachers, K-2!) in Religion class.

    God has used our daughter to help my husband, me and those closest to us that know our story to come back to the Catholic faith.

    I know this was long-winded and I don’t disagree with what you have posted. The Church definitely understood all those decades back what a slippery slope IVF was. I just hoped to share with you one Catholic’s experience with infertility and IVF. To let you know that there are those of us that can acknowledge and separate out the intrinsicly evil act of IVF conception from that of the child conceived.November 27, 2012 – 6:54 pmReplyCancel

  • diana hall - Very well written…a despicable, deception, seduction and preying upon those who so want family; but at what price?

    I had a brief experience with trying to discern our infertility, of course it didn’t help that I decided to try and conceive at 40 and the problem I had was very small and easily repaired, still fertile then like a Guernsey Cow!

    I had to go to the Jones Institute in Norfolk and they have a basket of vials on the front desk and when you go in to sign in they ask first thing if you are there for IVF. I told the technician that I wasn’t and proceeded to get the testing and volunteered to allow several tests that were performed as they were studying “women my age” and fertility.

    To make a long story short, difficult for me, brevity is not my strong suit; I chatted easily with all who were taking care of me and most it seemed were Catholic, asking me about IVF. I finally told one young nurse that as a Catholic I was going to do everything I could to conceive a child the way it was intended, within the Laws of God and the Church and not Man…she was quite taken aback, I wasn’t rude, just matter of fact and matter of Faith.

    The small blocking intruder that had attached to my uterine wall was removed and after several more attempts with no success, I prayed some more, cried some more and then accepted that this was not meant to be and moved on. That was 18 years ago…God said, “No.” And I wasn’t about to go against him.

    This Doctor is preying on sad, desperate, weary couples and are intrinsically evil. The number of aborted attempts, tantamount to abortion or miscarriage is not rare in IVF. I hope I don’t sound callous or unsympathetic because it is the last thing I hope but IVF is wrong on so many levels and during the consecration at Mass I pray against “abortion, euthanasia, capital death, assisted suicide and All Forms of Artificial Creation”. That is my prayer at every Mass when the host is raised.

    I have been Marching for Life and fighting against Roe v. Wade for nearly 40 years…I will never stop; the law most likely will not be changed in my lifetime…but we continue to pray and to campaign against it as well as all intrinsic evils we face every day.

    Of course Valerie has a wonderful story and all’s well that ends well, but…what if…and so glad to see she is strong in her faith and family.

    We try to be exemplary to our friends, family and the young ones we have in our lives. I will always wonder and still think about that little voice that seemed to be calling me so long ago but never came to stay…God knows what He is doing…Man need not give Him instructions…

    Our faith will sustain us in EVERYTHING in our lives…even in infertility…thanks be to God.

    Wonderful article…

    Peace & Hope

    XOXONovember 27, 2012 – 9:38 pmReplyCancel

  • Molly - Thanks for a great post! I just have to add my little blurb that I like to yell from the rooftops. 🙂

    For those reading who are struggling with infertility or miscarriage or know someone who is, consider finding a NaPro Technology doctor. They are a Church-approved, natural route to achieving and sustaining pregnancy, and their success rate is 1-3 times higher than IVF depending on the cause of infertility: http://www.fertilitycare.org/infertility-ivf-alternative/

    They can also help sustain pregnancies for those with a history of miscarriage. The general public has a miscarriage rate of almost 20%, but it is only 3% among NaPro users.November 28, 2012 – 8:18 amReplyCancel

  • Susan - I wanted to express my appreciation for your post, and also to add a couple of comments.
    First of all, I am one of those “fertility-challenged” people, but together with my husband we chose not to engage in IVF because of the strong sense we had that we were called to create our family through adoption. It is problematic, I think, to place embryonic adoption into the same category as child adoption, or even surrogacy, because as you have pointed out, these are people that are created with commercial intent. Child Adoption, of course, must not be viewed as a remedy for deficiencies in fertility, but it is a process that can attain to an apostolate if it seeks to heal wounding in the human family from broken unity; i.e., broken attachment, abandonment, birth trauma, abuse, et.c. When families earnestly seek to do adoption in this way, it affirms and strengthens the bond between unitive and procreative act. However, we should also take care in dismissing IVF as being devoid of these characteristics, since there are many families who faithfully seek to fulfill their edenic vocations as mothers and fathers through this process. While it is disheartening to see a fertility technology abused in this way, we should no more allow a few criminal practitioners to pollute our view of this technology than we should allow questionable practices in adoption to corrupt what is obviously a gift from God.
    I would agree that ours is a society that commodifies children in an almost unprecedented fashion. Your list of “We” statements in your article reminded me also of the need for all of us to acknowledge our own participation in the culture of entitlement even as we are working-and especially when we are working–to end abortion and promote life.November 29, 2012 – 3:57 pmReplyCancel

  • Misty - Valerie,
    Thank you so much for sharing your story. It proves (again) that God can bring great good out of even our biggest mistakes–the wonderful thing is that you understood that your daughter was not the mistake, but your choices were. I like to tell my kids that a baby born under less-than-ideal or moral circumstances is a reflection of the Cross: God taking something sinful/broken and bringing glorious new life out of it. It’s his specialty. 🙂 I’m so glad you found your way home!November 29, 2012 – 4:57 pmReplyCancel

  • Allison - In my world are other moms of kids with cystic fibrosis, some of whom have made subsequent babies via IVF, which means that once they had a child with CF, they made sure it wouldn’t happen again. They pay doctors to pick through their tiny offspring, throwing away any with 2 mutated genes that would result in CF. As this author has written, it seems to be impossible for them to separate the sin from the child (and in this type of case, the worth of the first child).

    We must live our Holy Faith, “always ready to give an answer for the hope that lies within us” (Don’t remember chapter and verse and it’s too late for me to check!), changing lives one at a time.

    Glad you wrote this, Martina!November 30, 2012 – 1:53 amReplyCancel

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *

*

*

CommentLuv badge