Academic journal article The Hastings Center Report

Held to a Higher Standard

Academic journal article The Hastings Center Report

Held to a Higher Standard

Article excerpt

"No sex, please--we're British" may have become a creed outworn, at least in London fertility clinics. Two infertility counselors have recently written to The Lancet (2 & 30 March 1991) expressing reservations about assisting virgins to become pregnant through Artificial Insemination by Donor. The woman in question, aged 32, had no experience of sex and no intention of having a sexual relationship, nor did she see what, if anything, this had to do with her ability to be a good parent. She came to the fertility clinic because, as she explained, the treatment procedures were scientific and preferable to sexual relations.

"How," fumed one correspondent, "will the asexual mother handle adolescent sexuality, especially in a daughter?" And will not her "resolutely single status" threaten the normal psychosocial development of the child? The clinic's staff seems to have had similar reservations, and referred the woman for further counseling.

If assisted reproduction is withheld from virgins, shouls it also be withheld from couples whose marriage is in trouble? Mary Sue and Junior Lewis Davis enlisted the aid of a fertility clinic to produce seven frozen embryos, which then became a bone of contention when their marriage ended in divorce (Davis v. Davis). Did the fertility clinic act irresponsibly in permitting the Davises access to IVF?

A similar question has surfaced in California, where Cynthia and Robert Moschetta entered a "traditional" surrogacy contract with Elvira Jordan, a divorced mother of three with a seventh-grade education. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.