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Friday, 6 February 2009

Family Life?

Until a week or so ago, there were very few people who had ever heard of Nadya Suleman. Now, her name is known all around the world. She is, of course, the woman who recently made headline news when she gave birth to octuplets – eight babies – all of whom (and for this we may be thankful) appear to be healthy.

What has turned the event into a controversy is the subsequent revelation that Ms Suleman already had six children; that all fourteen children were conceived through the use of IVF treatment; and that this has all been done to satisfy her personal dream of having a “large” family! There are many who are saying that there is “large” and there is “LARGE”!!

Three things come to mind. The first is that this would appear to be the action of a selfish person, assisted by medical staff who were willing to ignore professional guidelines. According to those guidelines, issued by The American Society of Reproductive Medicine, a woman of Ms Suleman’s age should have a maximum of two embryos implanted. Indeed, it has been reported that The Medical Board of California has begun an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the whole affair, as they are concerned that there may have been a violation of the standard of care that should have been afforded.

However, one must also consider those fourteen children. I am the eldest of six, and my parents – together – managed to provide each one of us with all of the love and the care that we ever needed. But a “single” parent, coping with fourteen – eight of whom are going to be at the same stage in life?! Regardless of how determined she may be, I have serious doubts about Ms Suleman’s ability to give each of those children the individual love, affection, and care that each of them will need. In a televised interview with NBC, she stated that her own childhood left her feeling a lack of “self and identity”. I fear that, at least some of, her fourteen 'fatherless' children are going to have the same problem!

Of course, all of this comes back to man’s constant desire to “be like God” (see Gen.3:5), and to that self-centredness that has been one of the hallmarks of mankind since the fall. One does feel for couples who earnestly desire to have a child, without whom they feel incomplete. However, there are too many ethical, and practical, difficulties with this whole business of artificially creating life outwith the womb. And, of course, it isn’t even necessary! I am unaware of any serious study that may have been undertaken, but I would guess that there are more than enough orphaned children and, certainly, children whose abortion ensured that they never saw the light of day, to satisfy the demand for children by those unable to have one naturally.

God’s original plan for a couple – one male, one female – to commit themselves to one another in marriage, and to provide a safe, secure, loving environment for the raising of their children, has still to be bettered!!

2 comments:

CannuckCol said...

Think you hit the nail on the head when you said "this would appear to be the action of a selfish person".
Some women think it is their RIGHT to have children and go to any means possible.
There was another instance on the Canadian news on Wednesday (maybe didn't reach the U.K.) of a 60year old who gave birth to twin boys after going to her native India to get IVF treatment after being refused it in Canada.
But surely children are a 'gift from God' and not everyone is given that 'gift'

CannuckCol said...

http://news.therecord.com/Life/article/483140 is a link to the story I was referring to in my comment