I think I discovered a cure to infertility...become a celebrity.
Infertility has been in the media quite a bit in the last couple years, primarily because several celebs are suddenly popping out twins in their late 30's and even later, prompting the usual knee-jerk response any time this happens..."Are they natural?"
Now, realistically...hell, statistically, the chances of all these twins popping up without intervention, is slim. While women over 35 have a greater chance of having twins (as you near menopause - and yes, it the process starts that early and goes on for years - your body produces more FSH which in turn can make you release 2 or more mature eggs in one cycle, hence resulting in a greater chance of twins than she would have had in her 20's), it's still statistically about 1% without infertility treatments. So chances are quite good many of the celebs have sought treatment.
Really. I'm not trying to dismiss the magnitude of going through In-Vitro Fertilization. It is a big deal to us that have done it. I'm not dismissing the magnitude of dealing with infertility, it is, to be frank, the shits. But we all have our crosses to bear. I'm just saying, using fertility treatments to conceive really isn't that big of a deal in the grand scheme of things. When I watch my daughter run around the playground, how she got here isn't going to matter much. We are very open about IVF, and our daughter will know all about it. But, I won't watch her and think of her early beginnings as an 8-cell embryo in a petri dish. Do fertiles sit and watch their children and think of the night they conceived with their partner? If they do, that's weird and gross. But I digress.
I have no issues with fertility treatments and I do have a hard time grasping why people do, but to each his own. Then again, I'm not religious, I don't care too much what people think, and my morals and ethics, at best, are questionable. So basically I don't relate to any of the usual reasons people cite for fertility treatments to be something to be ashamed of.
Plenty of non-celebs choose to keep their infertility and treatments private. Very private. Some because of the before noted religious/moral stuff that I just don't get, others feel like talking about infertility or fertility treatments is like talking about their sex life (uh, not to dismiss that feeling but I don't know what kind of embryo transfer these people had), others just feel it ain't nobody's business, and it truly isn't. I know when we discussed IVF with our friends and family there were more than a few people who couldn't get past the fact that Chris had to provide a "sample". This was the focus. Not the emotional roller coaster we were on, not the physical pain of the shots and the meds, not the money, not the worry...it was the masturbation. For Christ's Sakes. Seriously, children.
So celebs and non-celebs alike, everyone has the right to keep it private if they choose. I don't begrudge the celebrities that. And I don't want or expect them to become spokespeople for all us infertiles. Because plenty of them have "come out" with their problems, and honestly, no one really cared. Nothing changed. Brooke Sheilds has been very open, it didn't hurt her career and it didn't help our cause. The infertile community's expectation that an infertile celebrity will somehow help us is confusing. And we should not condemn those that choose not to reveal that aspect of their personal life to the media.
But let's condemn those that make it clear they did not use that fertility treatment crap. That they didn't need to...ick. That icky in-vitro, no thanks. Nothing wrong with us! Totally natural. We can condemn them. Because regardless if they used fertility treatments or not, hey, don't make them out to be this horrible thing that you wouldn't consider. I'm totally okay with them not answering or acknowledging the question to protect their privacy. I'd even be okay with lying by saying a simple "no" if they were really pressed in an interview. But to crinkle your nose and look confused when someone mentions in-vitro fertilization, or to throw out the preemptive denial like Rebecca Romijn and Jerry O'Connell recently did when they announced she was pregnant with twins. They felt the need to issue the statement that they were not conceived using the fertility drug Clomid or In-Vitro Fertilization.
Well. Clearly, they used IUI's (intra-uterine insemination) then. Clomid to IVF is a big leap and they left out a huge chunk of other options. But the whole fertility question was more of a focus than anything, because, let's be honest, who cares about Rebecca Romijn and Jerry O'Connell? Anyone?