I respect that not everyone is going to agree with me on this one, but I wanted to write on my feelings in regards to the recent birth of the Octuplets in the US.
As someone who has struggled with fertility issues and multiple miscarriages, I know that my feelings are in part related to the jealousy I feel about not likely having the large family that I dreamed of, but I do believe that some of my feelings are at least warranted in this case.
As many of you know, the set of octuplets were born through IVF to a single mom who was already raising 6 children, 3 of whom according to the press have disabilities. I understand that the purpose behind having multiple embryos implanted is so to give the carrier the best odds at conceiving even a single pregnancy. Even with IVF treatments, there is still great odds at not having any of the pregnancies take. IVF is also to be known to be responsible in a lot of cases for the birth of multiples. Any birth of multiples places the mom at greater risks of pregnancy complications and the children at a greater risk of being born with disabilities. This was clearly explained to me by my RE at my last visit.
IVF is a huge moneymaker for doctors, especially those practising in the US. On average, the doctor will implant 3-4 embryos in hopes that one will take. In this case, the doctor implanted 8. At least. If we consider that the chances of all 4 implanted embryos actually taking are very very low, then the chances of all 8 taking hold are even slimmer. Why would a doctor implant 8, knowing that the risk of having at least 2 would likely be higher? Especially in the face of the potential risks involved?
I just get this feeling in the pit of my stomach that this was a publicity stunt. If the outcome of the implantation was successful, it would highlight the "success" of the fertility doctor involved, likely increasing his caseload (and thus his revenue). If the outcome was successful for the mother, then it would increase her to celebrity status and likely lead to book deals, reality show offers, and a whole heck of a lot of publicity in general. This family has already created a website to gather monetary and gift donations from others who would like to send them in. This is a free world and you can ask for whatever you want, but it all just seems a little unethical to me. Nevermind the fact that this family lives in a state of poverty. How is it financially ethical to have this number of children when you have difficulty feeding the family members you already have? How is this acting responsibly when you already have 6 children and likely not a large support system in place (her mother has stated to media sources that she objected to the whole implantation in the first place)?
Again, these are just my thoughts on the subject and I know that a lot will disagree with what I have had to say.