How Many IVFs are Too Many?

Posted in the Infertility Forum

“In Vitro Fertility Goddess ”

Since: Jul 07

Brisbane, Australia

#1 Jul 22, 2007
And while we’re there, how long is a piece of string? Or maybe you’d best ask our federal Health Minister, Tony Abbott. He thinks the answer is ‘more than three’ if you’re 42 or over, and ‘more than three a year’ if you’re under 42.

How a man who’s never experienced a follicle-stimulating cycle came up with these figures is unclear. Still I’d like to see his political career limited to no more than three cycles and I’ve never been a parliamentarian.

The point is, it’s our fertility he’s talking about and governments should not have a right to meddle with it.

Nobody from the government tells a woman on a sole parent pension who’s had, say, six children to different fathers that she’s reached her tax payer funded limit because it’s clear any future ones will be no-hopers, therefore their prison bills will provide a budget blow-out. They wouldn’t dare, yet they want to limit the ability of a fertility challenged woman to reproduce due to the resultant blowout of health costs and a small chance that a healthy child and therefore functional member of society will result.

I know a woman who finally gave birth to a son after twenty IVF treatments. Can we look back and say, that was too many, given that it took that many for a child to be born?

Incidentally, as far as this woman was concerned, it was her last try.

After I had my first child with the help of IVF I undertook three more attempts before I gave up. It was a personal choice, which I only arrived at after the third try. At that point I decided that I could no longer ride the rollercoaster and would just concentrate on the child I have.

The point is, for everyone it’s an individual thing. You just know when you can’t give it another try, when you make a decision to focus on the child/ren you’ve got or search another avenue like adoption.

Yet perhaps there is such a thing as too much IVF. Perhaps it can be defined as the point
when you’ve had to sell your house, your spouse has left and you’re wandering the streets
wearing ten hats, pushing a full shopping trolley and shouting randomly at passersby.

In which case maybe Tony Abbott is really just trying to look after us after all. It’s what caring politicians do, don’t they?

by Jodi Panayotov author of In Vitro Fertility Goddess.

To read a free excerpt of the book go to

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