I am a woman. I have all the biological requirements to have a child. Yet, I do not have the instincts or rational desire to do so. Does that make me less of a woman to not want to have a child either by using my body, my eggs, or my money to adopt?
You and me and baby makes three, or four in the case of the celeb super-star family headed up by Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner. But it's not enough for Ben, whom In Touch Weekly reports (via celebitchy.com) is suffering from "estrogen overload." A lesser man might settle for a cat, but not Ben: desperate for a son to call his own, he and Jen are now apparently consulting fertility doctors to produce a male heir. While Ben's longing is completely understandable, to some it might seem that employing the kind of high-tech sex-selection techniques that fertility doctors offer might border on extreme.
According to science, part of the answer to male infertility is so simple and brilliant that you may have glossed right over it: have more sex. Per science, increased ejaculation can increase fertility (by reducing sperm damage) and generally increasing motility. It's a brave, new world, gang.
We had been married for eight years. We had been trying to get pregnant for six of those years and between IVF and ICSI had gone through five fertility cycles. We knew we could get pregnant but we didn't know if we could stay pregnant. We had spent over $200,000, and all we had to show for it was a glossy photo of four egg cells. That photo still sits in the drawer of the night table besides out bed, buried there. We're unable to look at it—or dispose of it. Other friends who were on the IVF merry-go-round and got pregnant, had their children. Some had their second child while we waited and tried again. Every couple who had a child swore by their doctor, their method, their technique—success was its own affirmation.
Amy had been referred to a Beverly Hills fertility doctor, who was so reassuring that I took him to calling him Dr. Mellow. His office had a wall of photos of smiling babies, as if to say, "This will be you." We sat in his waiting room holding hands. We believed. We didn't know we had just taken our seats inside the Hope Factory. Once inside, the possibility of getting pregnant never ended. If one technique failed, you tried another, and kept trying. There seemed to be an infinite supply of hope.
From the time we enter adolescence, we're told how not to get pregnant. When we get a bit older, we're told what not to do if we are pregnant. But what should couples be doing if they aren't yet pregnant, but want to be? For starters, take cough medicine. So says Heidi Murkoff, author of What to Expect Before You're Expecting (and the entire series of What to Expect books). During an appearance on the CBS Early Show this week, Murkoff explained that there are a variety of unorthodox ways that couples can make baby-making easier.
Let's first make something clear. We don't think everyone should procreate. In some cases, we really wish they wouldn't. In fact, if we had our druthers, we might actually sit down with a few of them and ask: "Are you really sure you want to do this, Mrs. Hitler?" That being said, we also aren't in favor of arbitrarily picking and choosing who should be allowed to receive fertility treatments. For example, if you're a 27-year-old woman who's been trying for over three years to get knocked up, we wouldn't deny you fertility treatments just because your husband fathered two kids in a previous relationship. A nationally funded clinic in the UK, however, seems to see things differently.
Just when we thought it was fine for a woman to marry at any age she damn-well pleased, some guy in Texas has come along to correct us. And sadly, the guy is not just any guy, but a sociologist who teaches at a legitimate university (University of Texas-Austin) and publishes books that are considered academic (the latest is titled Forbidden Fruit: Sex and Religion in the Lives of American Teenagers). His name is Mark Regnerus. And in a new piece for the Washington Post, he says that — while he sees no issue with the fact that men are marrying later these days (28 years old for the first marriage now, as opposed to 23 years old in 1970) — he is disheartened to learn that women are now also choosing to marry later as well — around the spinsterly age 26.
The past 25 years have left women's plates increasingly—some might argue, precariously—overloaded, as they try to keep healthy portions of career, love and family. In her upcoming new book, "In Her Own Sweet Time: Unexpected Adventures In Finding Love, Commitment, And Motherhood," New York City journalist Rachel Lehmann-Haupt explores the expanding buffet of choices that exist for women hoping to "have it all" today.
Nadya Suleman, newly made mother of 14 children, is a news story that won't quit. The Associated Press reports "Suleman has been supporting her six other children with $490 a month in food stamps and receives Social Security disability payments for three of the youngsters that could total $2,379 a month." Her octuplets, who were born prematurely on January 26 and remain in the hospital, are racking up further expenses. The AP says the cost of raising 14 children as a single mother in California lies somewhere between $1.3 to $2.7 million. Taxpayers—perhaps those struggling to pay their own family's expenses in a recession—are angry.
We like our standard booty calls to be our hottest, most talented ex-boyfriend. But The Booty Caller, text messages from babycenter.com to alert us when we're ovulating and likeliest to get pregnant, is a close second! The Booty Caller will text you 18 times, 3 times per menstrual cycle, and let you know when you're ovulating. It's a free service but you must register with the site to get the goods. You'll receive messages like "Your fertile window opens today and lasts 5 more days" or "Today is your last fertile day! If you get pregnant during this cycle, your due date will be on or around 6.25.2009." If you're trying to get pregnant, you now know when to attack your partner when he or she gets home. But if you're NOT trying to get pregnant, it's still brilliant. For those of us with no intentions of making beh-behs anytime soon, The Booty Caller could be a organizational godsend. Who has the time or good sense to keep track of your fertile days in your daily planner, anyway?Then you can triple-bag it (kidding) or perhaps try the backdoor instead. Especially if we're going to play Russian roulette by having condomless sex (which may or may not be the new engagement ring!), we want to know precisely when we're going to get shot.
So, erectile dysfunction. Ever been with a guy who can't get it up? How do you feel? Embarrassed? Frustrated? Guilty? Or maybe just miffed? Today on Nerve's Date Machine Airheadgenius posts about how as she gets older she encounters more and more men whose penises aren't getting hard, and she wonders why.
Making babies met two very different forms of Kryptonite this week: the state of Louisiana and the antidepressant, Paxil. New Orleans' Times-Picayune reported this week that state representative John LaBruzzo, a Republican, is studying a plan that would pay women $1,000 to have their tubes tied in an effort to curb welfare costs.
If you can't fathom how your husband forgot to empty the dishwasher after asking him a fifth time, perhaps a $99 Learning & Memory DNA test will help. Qtrait offers customers a pick-and-choose menu of traits and tendencies for which a DNA test will tell you if you're prone to have or do, thereby offering a more reasonable option to existing companies like23andme, which offers a complete genetic rundown for $1,000. Qtrait can screen your genes to evaluate a higher risk of certain fertility and pregnancy issues, such as preeclampsia. Tests for genetic diseases, which many cultural groups like Sephardic and Ashkenazi Jews undergo before marrying or having kids, aren't currently available.