Thursday, September 09, 2004

Fairness is a myth

My friend's friend (not my friend) whom we'll call Keller is pregnant. She just found out. She is surprised, despite the fact that she wasn't using any reliable form of birth control for years now. Her boyfriend, Mullet guy, has 4 kids ranging from 8 years to 6 months with 4 different ex-girlfriends. He hasn't worked as long as she's dated him (a year), has never paid child support, and has spent time in jail during this short period for domestic abuse and other crimes. He keeps all the money she makes, and will not allow her cash or a credit card. Keller is also not allowed to chat on the internet, which is how they met. He checks the computer to make sure she hasn't been on. My friend had him over once, and believes he stole from her during that brief visit. Keller has a low paying job and could not possibly afford day care so she could return to work after having a baby.

During this year, Keller and Mullet have broken up at least once after he became violent with her. She took him back of course. Keller drinks heavily daily and uses many different drugs regularly including crack. Her face looks constantly swollen, looking almost 20 years older than she should from how badly she abuses her own body. She cannot count the number of men she has been with in her life. Keller is the one who recommended that I "do what the lesbians do and use a turkey baster" after finding out from my friend that I was having trouble conceiving.

So now they're going to have a baby, Keller and Mullet. Actually, that's not been totally decided yet, but I have a feeling they will. About 2 years ago, after Keller's last breakup with her last loser guy, she cried about how she was getting older (still in her 20s) and wanted to have kids. Considering this guy's 4 other kids with 4 other women, I guess she found someone with proven fertility who could make this happen for her. Despite the fact that he will probably steal her money, have a violent episode then dump her as soon as she has the baby, and despite the fact that he has no plans to work or pay child support for any of his other kids so he won't support this one either, and despite the fact that she must know she cannot solely support this child so she will probably end up on welfare, I'm certain she will have this baby.

So this begs the question. Why? Why can Mullet guy have an abundant supply of his ignorant mullet sperm, yet other good men do not? Why does it seem more likely that a baby will be born into a bad situation than to an infertile stable family who will provide love and security? Why would someone choose to bring a baby into such a bad situation, closing their eyes to the truth? Actually, why would anyone ever have sex with a mullet-wearing, abusive, unemployed, controlling, deadbeat prick like Mullet? I don't get it.

Although this story seems unusual, I don't think it is. There are a lot of people in bad relationships and situations having babies. For the life of me, I can't figure out why. Why are they fertile and not me or others? Why do they think a child is appropriate and would be happy in that situation? Why do they go ahead with birth and keeping the baby not knowing how they will be able to support or protect the child?

It's not about money. There are plenty of stable loving families who don't have much money. Sadly, they can't afford IVF if they need it. They stand very little chance of adopting because of the cost. I wonder what happens to them and how they deal with it. They deserve babies if they can provide a stable loving home for that's all a child really needs. Loving, committed parents.

Yet babies are not conceived out of love. That's a fantasy. You can have all the love in the world and no babies. Or, you can have no love and conceive. Babies can be conceived through one night stands, abusive relationships, and rape. Fertile women are not more loving, they are just more fertile. With that fertility comes responsibility not to make babies indiscriminately. With infertility, making babies is an exaggerated deliberate act. It involves multiple commitments - with each trip to the drug store, forms signed, donation given, injection, scan... and so on. It cannot be an accident, it is as purposeful as they come. Having a baby and all that it entails is what we dream about. We want to have a child. We want to give them a home, loving parents, the world. Yet... that is not enough.

We do not get pregnant because we deserve it or we really want it or we have followed all our instructions perfectly. We may get them only if we find the perfect combination of all of the essential elements (sperm, egg, tube, uterus, drug protocol, number of follicles, quality of embryos, progesterone level, etc) and still get very, very lucky. It is the basketball shot not from the center line but from the farthest end of the court. One, two, maybe three tries, should we keep going? Each attempt costing more of our soul, more of our savings, more of our lives, more of our precious time. No one outside our infertile circle understanding our unending desire and drive. Somehow we sometimes get lucky and it works anyways. Despite the odds. Despite the past. Despite our mistakes.

So how is it fair that someone else who did not have to go through that deliberate journey can conceive easily? It happens every day. Actually, they outnumber us. Science does not discriminate. I wish it would. I wish there was a resume that had to be produced in order to conceive. It wouldn't be of jobs, but about how much we wanted a child, how much we had prepared to have one, and of our lifelong commitment to the care, protection, support and love of a child.

For Keller and Mullet's future baby, I worry. All I can see in this baby's future is suffering. At some point the child will grow up and wonder why they are the one paying the price for their parents' mistakes. The odds were stacked against him/her from the start. It's so sad when there are other avenues that could prevent or could have prevented all this. Unfortunately, because of all I have witnessed of Keller and Mullet, they will not wise enough to make a responsible decision now.

The whole thing makes my blood boil, and at the same time makes me very, very weary. There is no such thing as fairness.


Blogger Christy said...

I have just spent the last 2 days reading your blog & I can't believe how much we have in common. We have also gone through years of infertility treatments (3 IUI's, varicocele repair-what a waste, 2 lap's-1 with right tube removal from hydrocele, 2 hospitalizations-1 from hyperstim on CLOMID and 1 from a pelvic infection after an HSG, 3 IVF'S with horrendous embryo quality-the final which led to our 2 &1/2 yr old daughter-an absolute miracle.). Not to mention I am also 33 and married my high school sweetheart. It has been inspiring to read you blog because in the next few months we will be embarking on another IVF to try to give our daughter a sibling. I too have had a hard time in the last year with the Mommy groups because everyone is on their second child and people have been asking "when's the next?!". So annoying...We also have kept our struggles fairly private (just a few select people know). I think it's easier that way and I don't want people to look at our daughter as different...even though she's absolutely PERFECT! (Sorry, couldn't help myself). I'm hesitant to call myself a "secondary infertile" because we went through so much & I guess the scars still have not totally healed. Infertility is HELL and I don't know if I'll ever get over the lump in my throat when I think about what we all go through to have what most others don't even have to think about. I'm so happy your IVF was successful & I wish you an uneventful pregnancy. I will definitely continue reading your story, especially over the next few months as we embark on another IVF (UGH).
I do wish I had read your blog when you were stressing about embryo quality because with each of our IVF's we transferred 4, 5-6 cell grade C (III). They all had so much fragmentation that at our last tranfer the RE suggested we "save our money" and not go through the transfer. Hard to believe! So glad we didn't listen...Thanks for sharing your inspiring story.

5:36 AM  
Blogger amanda said...

You hit the nail on the head with this one. None of this is fair, and it sucks so much. Reading this and thinking about this makes me cry. It makes my blood boil, too, but ultimately it justs makes me sad.

5:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That is it! This has decided it...i am having an affair, I am going to stop brushing my hair, find my local crack dealer, and ask my husband to beat me for good measure.

This just pissed me off...I am not saying anymore as know I am in a worse mood....well actually I am in the same mood...but now I am just justified to have it.

-alexhere from the kitchens of the infertile gourmet

6:55 AM  
Blogger chris said...

Would it be wrong of me to say that Keller and Mullet should be thrown off the nearest bridge?

10:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Sitting in the courtroom waiting for my brother's turn, I lost count of how many parents were there. How many parents who had been in and out of jail, on and off (mostly on) various forms of drugs and thinking only about themselves.

There is no method to the madness, no reason that I can find, no resemblance of fair.

10:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Beyond pissed over here, especially since I'm at the end of my road.

Well fuck them, I'm going to be buying me a plasam t.v. soon and I know they'd rather have that than a baby, so there, we don't always get what we want, now do we?


1:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is so common. Everybody knows multiple stories like this one. So why do people keep telling us to relax and go on vacation and stop thinking about it, when clearly so many people that are stressed and can't afford to ever go on vacation are getting pregnant right this very second.

It makes me so sad. I am sad for the kid. Kellet?Muller?

great post.


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