September 25, 2005

"What? She's having sex? Bloody Luddite.'"

According to this article, lots of women who could get pregnant the old-fashioned way, are going to doctors for in vitro fertilization:
Many fertility experts believe that IVF offers women the best chance of pregnancy - a one in three chance of success or better in one cycle if the woman is under 35, whereas natural conception has no better than a one in four chance for a woman of the same age even if a couple have an active sex life.

An active sex life aimed at pregnancy is considered to be unprotected sex at least once every three days....

Michael Dooley, a gynaecologist, obstetrician and fertility expert, said that in the past five years he has seen a 20 per cent increase in the number of patients seeking "inappropriate or premature" IVF treatment.

"Many of these couples are simply not having sex or not having enough sex," he said. "Conception has become medicalised. It's too clinical. There has been a trend away from having sex and loving relationships towards medicalised conception."...

Emma Cannon, who runs the fertility programme at Westover House, said: "I have patients who diary sex in. When the they don't fall pregnant they panic and think they need IVF.

"People want everything now. If they can't have a baby now, they want IVF. They think it's no different from putting your name down for a handbag. Some people are horrified by the idea that they have to have sex two to three times a week. About 10 per cent of people I see don't have time to have sex. It's usually when you have two professionals who are based in the city and are very busy.

"Mothers might be working or their children sleep in their bed. I told one of my patients who is going through IVF that another IVF patient had just conceived naturally. She said: 'What? She's having sex? Bloody Luddite'."
As you can tell from the spelling (or if you went to the link), the news comes from England. Though the article plays up weird-sounding anti-sex attitudes, I think the phenomenon has more to do with anticipating fertility problems and worrying about confirming the problem after it is too late to get the government to pay for the treatment (which costs at least £2,500):
Government guidelines on when women should receive treatment (on the NHS) say IVF should be given only to those aged between 23 and 39 who have an identified cause for the fertility problem or who have suffered unexplained fertility problems for at least three years."
So I tend to think the quote I put in the title is entirely a joke, and it's really all about money.

13 comments:

Sloanasaurus said...
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Sloanasaurus said...

Don't you think underlying this is the disinformation that women have been receiving about getting pregnant? Today, the media sensationalizes things such as IVF causing women in their 20s to wait to have children. Then when you get in your thirties, you discover that IVF isn't a magical answer. What a crock.

lindsey said...

IVF is also not as magical as it is protrayed. Children conceived that way have double the chance of being born premature which has lots of nasty side effects, particularly for boys in terms of mental and emotional problems. They shouldn't help these women who don't want to have sex and are candidates for "inappropriate or premature" treatment. If they're too busy to have sex, then how can they fit kids into their lives? If they're not having sex, then how's that marriage doing anway?

Sloanasaurus said...

There is, however, a benefit to all these women doing IVF. It should lead to more people doing IVF and possibly lower prices and better technology for the people that actually need it. If it doesn't lead to lower prices and better technology, then ...

Bruce Hayden said...

Don't think this is going to be a problem for much longer. Artificial wombs are on their way - and I would think that a lot of the people who didn't want to be bothered by sex really wouldn't want to be bothered with pregnancy.

Simon said...

I would think tht the old fashioned way would also be considerably more fun than the medical approach, but y;know, to each their own. I suppose what it lacks for in enjoyment, it makes up for in efficiency....Oh, wait, the article points out that the medical way is less efficient! Bizarre.

Gerry said...

"About 10 per cent of people I see don't have time to have sex."

No time for sex, but they think they'll have proper time for a child?

Strange times.

XWL said...

Brings a new meaning to the phrase, "no sex please....we're British" (it was a play and a 1973 movie)

michael a litscher said...

No time for sex, but they think they'll have proper time for a child?

My thoughts, exactly. There's a very good reason why God doesn't grace a couple too busy for sex with a child - they're too busy to raise one.

Diane said...

We had a couple of these busy professional's children in our daycare. I remember one, in particular, who told his father to "go away. Miss (Diane's Mom) is my mommy now." whenever he came to pick him up. His father thought this was funny. The kid wasn't joking.

The worse ones were where the kid wanted to go with the parents, but the parents were constantly "forgetting." One child stayed overnight at our house two or three times a month when his parents forgot him.

I can see these IVF couple's futures. If you can't pencil in three hours a week for sex, then how can you find time for children?

(Note: Not all daycare parents were like this. But a surprisingly large number were.)

Cat said...

Probably a little late here...I agree, you can't find time for sex, but you find time to make and take an appt for IVF?

Besides the worry over NHS coverage that I think fuels this in Britain, it SEEMS to me that there is this idea that you have to "work" at getting pregnant. People these days annouce that they are "trying" (which I don't need to know!), and then it seems assumed by many in my wide circle that you will need "help" of some kind to get pregnant. It is weird that it has become so "hard."

All my mother needed to conceive me at 36 back in 1969 was some Harvey's Bristol Creme...

My Boaz's Ruth said...

Maybe because so many have now discovered that getting pregnant isn't as easy as it seems? We've got quite a few couples in our Newly Married class of about 40 couples that are trying to conceive -- and unable to. When you see that heartache, you begin to understand why this is such a big deal to people.

wayne said...

I thought (as I haven't seen anyone mention it here, yet) I'd drop a note that this is just one more step on acheiving the goal of certain really radical feminists I have encountered in my travels: the final eradication of the need for men and the necessity of their removal from existance so femanity can finally acheive utopia.