I am in several groups on facebook, which regularly throw up articles that people have come across on the whole topic of adoption. This one is on the topic of adopting embryos, and tells the story of a baby boy who has been born in Florida after 15 years, yes FIFTEEN YEARS, in the deep freeze! This has so many repercussions for this baby, and I wonder if anyone has given the remotest thought about how he may feel growing up with that history.
Before I go on I feel I should just say that I know that infertility is a big issue for those concerned, but is making another human being to fix someone else’s fertility situation really the thing to do? How is that baby going to feel as he grows up knowing the history around his conception and subsequent suspension for 15 years before his subsequent gestation and birth? How will he feel, wondering whatever happened to all the other embryos that were “conceived” at the same time. They are his siblings 100%. Did anyone stop and think that maybe in 20 years time, this man might fall for an older woman, who turns out to be his sister. Or falls for his brother, yes that’s an option too.
How much of his genetics is he going to know? Because he willl want to know. Despite Amanda and Jeremy insisiting that they are his parents,they will never be his genetics. Love him as much as they say, he will want to know his genetics at some point, and whether or not he has siblings? A few weeks ago I wrote a post about sperm donors, and discovered that there is now a registry in the UK, for people who were conceived via sperm donation to put their name on, and connect with other people, their half-siblings. Is this a thing in embryo adoption? I somehow doubt it. It will take someone like Noah to fight for his rights to know his siblings.
Now let’s look at the words that have been used in the article. Let’s start with the heading shall we?
Hand-Picked Bundle of Joy.
The parents wanted a baby that could pass off as theirs. I wonder who that was for? Themselves or for the child? Fair play for wanting the child to be able to pass off as their own, and not be standing out like a sore thumb in the family, something that trans-country adoptees know only too well. But I can envisage conversations in the future about whose eyes or facial features Noah has, knowing that he has neither of his parents, to lead to angst in Noah. The wanting to pass him off as their own seems to have been swallowed up by going public with his birth and existence. He will be forever known as the child who spent fifteen years in the freezer. You know how cruel children can be.
“He’s just a very easy-going baby”, Jeremy said. Hmm the word “chilled” comes to mind. I hope for his own sake Noah warms to Amanda and Jeremy.
Quote “The embryo adoption program consists of roughly 50 donor couples. The donors have gone through in vitro fertilization (IVF) themselves, and they then give leftover cryopreserved embryos to be used by other couples who are struggling with IVF.”
I seriously have an issue with referring to the embryo that was used as a “leftover”. How is poor Noah going to feel that the most suitable embryos were used by his biological parents to conceive his siblings, but he was leftover, on the side of the palte after they’d finished their meal, sorry family planning, and he was left for the next family to take their scraps. As one commenter on facebook put it “See you in therapy Noah”. They meant that in the most honest of way, as I too see the early years of Noah’s life being problematic for this individual human being. As an adoptee I struggled with being told that I was “chosen”. How much more difficult will it be to know that you were called leftovers?
The penultimate sentence in the article is : “We need to celebrate his anniversary in the freezer, definitely!” Amanda says.
Really!? I wonder what Noah will have to say on the matter? I wonder if Amanda and Jeremy will want to see the funny side and serve ice-cream at this celebration? What sort of thing would you do to celebrate someone having been in a freezer for 15 years? Take them to see the film Frozen perhaps? Ice Age?
I can see this little boy having nightmares over the contents of their freezer. Wondering if there were any other embryos in there, that he is in danger of defrosting at Thanksgiving. Noah if you ever get to read this, then know that there is a whole support group who have your well-being in their thoughts. They will give you a warm welcome when you need it.
What are your thoughts? Have we taken adoption too far? Do you think these parents have considered how this child may feel once he has reached adulthood? I would love to hear your thoughts.
Blessings and Joy, Joy