What Do Abortion Laws Do To Our Fertility Treatment Options?

This wasn’t what I thought would be my first blog post, but it is what it is!

Unless you live in a cave, you know that women’s reproductive rights are a hot button issue right now. With the passing of “heartbeat” and “personhood” laws in multiple states, the country is becoming divided on abortion. What’s not being talked about is the implications for fertility treatments.

What’s going to happen in terms of allowing fertilization outside of the womb? Those are embryos, too. Embryos that are not used in an IVF treatment are discarded. Some of these bills (not all) are classifying personhood at conception, therefore making that discarding process on par with abortion.

Scary thing for the entire infertility community, to say the least. If discarding the IVF embryos not chosen for implantation becomes illegal…what does that mean? Less chances for the families who want children to be able to have them. And the abortion laws? More women having babies that they don’t want.

“But then there will be more babies to adopt for those that can’t have children”

Have you ever tried adopting? It’s not like walking into Home Depot and buying a shovel.

It takes months and months and it costs a lot of money. And do you know what often happens to infants waiting to be adopted? Broken attachment that FOREVER affects their ability to relate to others on an attached level.

Let me say that again….FOREVER.

An infant’s brain grows rapidly in the early month of life, and continues into toddlerhood. Incomplete attachment strengthens the pathways of fear, neglect, and struggling to feel safe.

That lasts a lifetime because it’s the brain, guys.

This effect is achieved with multiple caregivers in that period of time and neglect (which, to an infant, can be as simple as crying too long without response and not being fed when hungry). This most often happens when adoption doesn’t happen at birth but can happen to any baby, and that’s why research is lacking on this phenomenon. No one is about strapping brain gear on infants to measure how their brain is growing or what parts are atrophying.

Infants who have their needs met feel safe, know that their needs will be always be met and experience trust with their primary caregiver that allows them to form attachments to others later in life. Children with incomplete or broken attachment lack empathy, totally, (because they don’t learn feeling for others through early parental bond) and that is a dangerous thing. All you have to do is a quick Google search on attachment disorders to find out what that can mean.

Trust me on this one, parenting a child with attachment issues is infinitely more difficult than a child you’ve carried, birthed, and raised from day one. I’ve done both and have spent years in support groups with thousands of other women who will tell you the same.

This is not to discourage anyone from adopting or fostering children. For every one child with severe issues, there are many with light or no trauma who can attach, feel empathy for others, and whose issues are more easily treatable. Adoption and fostering are a gift to both the children and parents who want to give good homes to kids who need them.

My point in this is to show the benefits of focusing on fertility rather than abortion, so don’t come at me with your adoption arguments, okay?

Is a woman who doesn’t want to be pregnant going to take care of her health the way that a woman who does want children will? Not as likely as you’d hope. There are so many health factors that can affect the way a fetus grows and unless you’re emotionally invested, chances are health won’t be at the top of the list of lifestyle changes.

A woman who has worked hard to get pregnant is much more likely to pay attention to their health. In fact, we are hypersensitive about it because of our fear of miscarriage throughout the entire pregnancy. You don’t go through the hell of fertility drugs to compromise your pregnancy being lazy about your health.

What can we do to fight these personhood laws that may take away your IVF rights? Get involved on the state level. Look up what your Congressmen and Congresswomen support. If you are working with a fertility center, ask them what they think or if there are any organizations that are rallying for the fertility side of personhood laws.

It’s up to us to fight back, especially if we are heading toward IVF as an option for pregnancy. Let’s get loud, ladies! Fight for our future babies!

Love and Baby Dust,

Vanessa