Aborting half of twin pregnancy

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Prudence's picture
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Aborting half of twin pregnancy

Here is the article...

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/14/magazine/the-two-minus-one-pregnancy.html?_r=2&hpw=&pagewanted=all

For those who are pro-choice, do you feel as strongly pro-choice as before after reading this article or do you feel there is oftentimes a grey area in regard to having choice?

I'm pro-choice, but I have to admit- maybe because I do romanticize the thought of twins- that this article gave me pause.

Hopefully, this hasn't been discussed here yet Smile

Joined: 11/28/06
Posts: 848

I'm pro-choice and my beliefs remain the same after reading the article. While abortion isn't an option I'd consider for myself, I think the option should be available for other women.

Andy1784's picture
Joined: 09/18/08
Posts: 1372

I am also pro choice and this article doesn't change my mind at all. I find abortion to be wrong in my own moral code, but I don't think that it is up to the government to decide that for any woman.

As far as the twin thing goes, I get the "romanticized" thing but only for identical twins. Fraternal twins are no more romanticized in my mind than regular siblings. I don't know this for sure, but I don't think two babies sharing the same sack can be selectively reduced can they?

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

This does nothing to influence my pro choice stance for this reason:

“In a society where women can terminate a single pregnancy for any reason — financial, social, emotional — if we have a way to reduce a twin pregnancy with very little risk, isn’t it legitimate to offer that service to women with twins who want to reduce to a singleton?”

However, it does play into my opinion regarding IVF and the decision to implant more than one embryo. I believe that if parents choose to use reproductive technology to implant more than one embryo, they ought to sign a waiver that they agree to then carry the children that they paid to create. I don't believe that women would have the medical option to "reduce" identical twins.....though I could be wrong.

I find much about abortion disgusting. Of course this disgusts me, as I can't imagine personally choosing to abort a baby that I paid a lot of money to create. I find the alternative (no abortion options) more disgusting, hence my stance.

I also have never idealized twins, and was literally very afraid of finding out that we were carrying twins. I think that the idealization of twins in women who get pregnant via regular old sex to be strange ~ I never wanted the risk of more complications, a harder delivery, potential bedrest, greater discomfort, pre term babies, or the difficulty of nursing/caring for two infants at the same time. I tend to think that women who idealize twins are more into the attention than the reality of the situation, because it is so foreign to me. I also admit that I get pregnant too easily.....were it difficult for me and I was scared about the ability to conceive children, I can see why some women might long for a twin pregnancy as they feared their ability to either get pregnant again due to difficulty conceiving or maternal age.

At the end of the day (for me) it comes down to my feelings on abortion......if they can live with their choice, who am I not to? I don't have to see that child every day and wonder about their missing sibling, who I purportedly wanted so very much that I paid good money to create through expensive medical procedures. That is between them and their spouse/conscience and/or God. I don't have to answer for them.

Starryblue702's picture
Joined: 04/06/11
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I'm pro-life, but to me this is no different than a woman aborting a single child...

Rivergallery's picture
Joined: 05/23/03
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The mother admits it was her choice. I think she shouldn't be able to take the right to life away from another being (that if left alone would become a human, or IMO already is a human), even if she chose to create it. One reason as a pro-lifer I have a hard time with the way current fertility treatment is handled.

Starryblue702's picture
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I did want to add, however, that I would have a huge problem with this (I have a huge problem with this anyway, as I'm pro-life) if this pregnancy were the result of invitro, where she would have had more than one embryo placed within her that resulted in multiple pregnancies and then decided to abort all but one. If you only want one, then only have one implanted. Obviously this happened naturally on it's own, but still.

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

"Starryblue702" wrote:

Obviously this happened naturally on it's own, but still.

No it didn't.

“Things would have been different if we were 15 years younger or if we hadn’t had children already or if we were more financially secure,” she said later. “If I had conceived these twins naturally, I wouldn’t have reduced this pregnancy, because you feel like if there’s a natural order, then you don’t want to disturb it. But we created this child in such an artificial manner — in a test tube, choosing an egg donor, having the embryo placed in me — and somehow, making a decision about how many to carry seemed to be just another choice. The pregnancy was all so consumerish to begin with, and this became yet another thing we could control.”

Did you read the article or did I read it wrong? The quoted was in like the first and second paragraphs of the article.

Alissa_Sal's picture
Joined: 06/29/06
Posts: 6427

"Potter75" wrote:

This does nothing to influence my pro choice stance for this reason:

However, it does play into my opinion regarding IVF and the decision to implant more than one embryo. I believe that if parents choose to use reproductive technology to implant more than one embryo, they ought to sign a waiver that they agree to then carry the children that they paid to create. I don't believe that women would have the medical option to "reduce" identical twins.....though I could be wrong.

I find much about abortion disgusting. Of course this disgusts me, as I can't imagine personally choosing to abort a baby that I paid a lot of money to create. I find the alternative (no abortion options) more disgusting, hence my stance.

I also have never idealized twins, and was literally very afraid of finding out that we were carrying twins. I think that the idealization of twins in women who get pregnant via regular old sex to be strange ~ I never wanted the risk of more complications, a harder delivery, potential bedrest, greater discomfort, pre term babies, or the difficulty of nursing/caring for two infants at the same time. I tend to think that women who idealize twins are more into the attention than the reality of the situation, because it is so foreign to me. I also admit that I get pregnant too easily.....were it difficult for me and I was scared about the ability to conceive children, I can see why some women might long for a twin pregnancy as they feared their ability to either get pregnant again due to difficulty conceiving or maternal age.

At the end of the day (for me) it comes down to my feelings on abortion......if they can live with their choice, who am I not to? I don't have to see that child every day and wonder about their missing sibling, who I purportedly wanted so very much that I paid good money to create through expensive medical procedures. That is between them and their spouse/conscience and/or God. I don't have to answer for them.

I agree with this, except I think that I do "idealize" twins to a certain extent. My mom is an identical twin and I have grown up seeing this incredibly close bond between her and her sister and I have to admit that I think it's pretty darn amazing and cool, although I'm sure my grandma may have felt differently about it at times. Smile But other than that, I agree.

Spacers's picture
Joined: 12/29/03
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Doesn't sway me one bit. I'd like to see fertility treatments (and the funding for them) changed somewhat so parents don't feel like all their eggs are in one basket. I'd love to see only one embryo implanted, perhaps two in an older mom, but at $20K a cycle or more, it's not realistic for most parents to do. I wouldn't have wanted twins, and would have strongly considered reducing if I found out I was carrying twins no matter how they were conceived. Twins just wouldn't work for us, not financially, not logistically.

RebeccaA'07's picture
Joined: 11/19/07
Posts: 1628

I feel that you are taking a risk of twins happening either naturally or artifically. I can't imagine "reducing" one of my children because I am not prepared for what could happen. Twin pregnancies happen all of the time, it's a chance in every pregnancy. I would live the rest of my life thinking about that child that I chose to get rid of.

As far as IVF, if the Mother doesn't want the chance of a higher-order pregnancy, then they should only chose to implant one egg at a time to reduce the possibility of that happening.

Joined: 02/22/10
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Could anyone imagine reducing one of a twin pregnancy if there is a chromosomal issue with one where complications in utero could jeopardize the other twin? If it is a not compatible with life outside of the womb? Or extremely compromised life?

Alissa_Sal's picture
Joined: 06/29/06
Posts: 6427

"OnePlusTwo" wrote:

Could anyone imagine reducing one of a twin pregnancy if there is a chromosomal issue with one where complications in utero could jeopardize the other twin? If it is a not compatible with life outside of the womb? Or extremely compromised life?

Good point - it would be heartbreaking, but I can imagine making the choice to reduce one twin if it was not compatible with life and jeopardizing the healthy twin. I can't imagine doing it with two healthy twins in a healthy pregnancy though.

Rivergallery's picture
Joined: 05/23/03
Posts: 1301

If the life of the other twin was in jeopardy or the life of the mother was in jeopardy, and c-section would not solve it.. those are the MEDICALLY necessary reasons for abortion. As far as I am concerned do not fall into the relm of pro-life vs pro-choice.

RebeccaA'07's picture
Joined: 11/19/07
Posts: 1628

"Rivergallery" wrote:

If the life of the other twin was in jeopardy or the life of the mother was in jeopardy, and c-section would not solve it.. those are the MEDICALLY necessary reasons for abortion. As far as I am concerned do not fall into the relm of pro-life vs pro-choice.

Exactly. That is a totally different scenario as it isn't aborting a perfectly healthy fetus 'just because'.

boilermaker's picture
Joined: 08/21/02
Posts: 1984

I will admit that this article makes me squirm. It falls far outside my personal code of ethics-- and this mother seems so flippant about it-- but that is between her and her spouse and her belief system.

I go round and round on my personal abortion view. I always come back to it being a mother's choice bc I can imagine some terrible situation where abortion seems to be a solution-- and yet articles like this make my skin crawl. I don't think anyone could read it and feel that this woman values life or the gift that pregnancy and newborns are-- she seems cold and callous and seems to live in a fantasy world where she gets to control everything. And life just isn't that way. I hope she finds peace in her decision, bc I know I never would.

But I wouldn't legislate for it to be banned-- it just makes me ill to think about.

Starryblue702's picture
Joined: 04/06/11
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"Potter75" wrote:

No it didn't.

Did you read the article or did I read it wrong? The quoted was in like the first and second paragraphs of the article.

When I said that this happened naturally on it's own I was referring to her getting pregnant with twins. She concieved those twins without the help of in-vitro, so it did in fact happen just by chance that she got pregnant with two babies.

AlyssaEimers's picture
Joined: 08/22/06
Posts: 6560

“If I had conceived these twins naturally, I wouldn’t have reduced this pregnancy, because you feel like if there’s a natural order, then you don’t want to disturb it. But we created this child in such an artificial manner — in a test tube, choosing an egg donor, having the embryo placed in me — and somehow, making a decision about how many to carry seemed to be just another choice."

Sorry, I don't know how to quote the article.

Joined: 05/31/06
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"Starryblue702" wrote:

When I said that this happened naturally on it's own I was referring to her getting pregnant with twins. She concieved those twins without the help of in-vitro, so it did in fact happen just by chance that she got pregnant with two babies.

Sometimes I feel like you must be joking around when you post here. This is one of those times. Do you actually read the debates before you post, or are you just being silly?

Joined: 05/31/06
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I also am curious how using donor eggs impacted her feelings. Like, is it easier to abort some else's baby or purchased genetic material than it is your own biological child? I would bet for many people that it might be. When embryos are things that are bought and sold, it must be a lot easier to think of them as commodities then when they are actually part of you and your husband.

Joined: 02/22/10
Posts: 22

"RebeccaA'07" wrote:

Exactly. That is a totally different scenario as it isn't aborting a perfectly healthy fetus 'just because'.

I feel like I should apologize asking the question because I didn't mean to offend or seem mean. I honestly wasn't sure if by your first post when this was said: "I can't imagine "reducing" one of my children because I am not prepared for what could happen." what was meant because there might be exceptions..ya know? So I do apologize. I was curious.

Also, re the idealization of twins...Potter and Spacers are completely on target with concerns and fears of being a parent to twins. There has been nothing worse IME (with my daughter's so far) than feeling stretched too thin between them and unable to pay due attention to them like I was able to with my singleton DS. In addition the stress and strain on a marriage, the strain of a complicated pregnancy, bedrest, early delivery complications (which even at 35 weeks can be life threatening)...it goes on an on. I could never imagine not having either one of my daughters, but honest and truly I so wish I could have had them one at a time. I don't feel bonded to them as I did to my son. I don't feel like I know their signs and signals as infants/toddlers as I did my son. I feel bad because they cry a loooot more than DS did because by the time in this hectic life I can get to them and figure out what they need sometimes they are past the point of no return hysterics. I love them with all of my heart but the sadness of being a lesser parent to them than I was to DS is a hard hard thing to live with.

RebeccaA'07's picture
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"OnePlusTwo" wrote:

I feel like I should apologize asking the question because I didn't mean to offend or seem mean. I honestly wasn't sure if by your first post when this was said: "I can't imagine "reducing" one of my children because I am not prepared for what could happen." what was meant because there might be exceptions..ya know? So I do apologize. I was curious.

Also, re the idealization of twins...Potter and Spacers are completely on target with concerns and fears of being a parent to twins. There has been nothing worse IME (with my daughter's so far) than feeling stretched too thin between them and unable to pay due attention to them like I was able to with my singleton DS. In addition the stress and strain on a marriage, the strain of a complicated pregnancy, bedrest, early delivery complications (which even at 35 weeks can be life threatening)...it goes on an on. I could never imagine not having either one of my daughters, but honest and truly I so wish I could have had them one at a time. I don't feel bonded to them as I did to my son. I don't feel like I know their signs and signals as infants/toddlers as I did my son. I feel bad because they cry a loooot more than DS did because by the time in this hectic life I can get to them and figure out what they need sometimes they are past the point of no return hysterics. I love them with all of my heart but the sadness of being a lesser parent to them than I was to DS is a hard hard thing to live with.

Eh, no apology needed - best part of the debate board is the different opinions/questions!

I agree in the fact that I would never wish for twins. Ever. But they are darling for other parents! And I can see why someone who is spending $$$ and going thru all of those procedures would prefer two over one. It was hard enough with one infant.

However, we also know it is a possibily as both sides of our families have many twins. We know that when we get pregnant the next time around, there could be a big surprise. But I think that is PART of the process, it happens...it's a risk of getting pregnant. I am also one of those people that believe life starts upon conception/fertilization of the egg. When I saw that tiny little heartbeat at 8 weeks, I was in love.

Prudence's picture
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"OnePlusTwo" wrote:

Also, re the idealization of twins...Potter and Spacers are completely on target with concerns and fears of being a parent to twins. There has been nothing worse IME (with my daughter's so far) than feeling stretched too thin between them and unable to pay due attention to them like I was able to with my singleton DS. In addition the stress and strain on a marriage, the strain of a complicated pregnancy, bedrest, early delivery complications (which even at 35 weeks can be life threatening)...it goes on an on. I could never imagine not having either one of my daughters, but honest and truly I so wish I could have had them one at a time. I don't feel bonded to them as I did to my son. I don't feel like I know their signs and signals as infants/toddlers as I did my son. I feel bad because they cry a loooot more than DS did because by the time in this hectic life I can get to them and figure out what they need sometimes they are past the point of no return hysterics. I love them with all of my heart but the sadness of being a lesser parent to them than I was to DS is a hard hard thing to live with.

See- when they mentioned the idealization of twins or whatnot in the article, I wasn't thinking about parents pining away to raise two children together from one birth, but the romanticizing of how twins are with one another... I don't know how old your twins are, but oftentimes, you will hear how close twins are... For example- even- you get those adoption stories where two twins are raised apart from one another, but they say they always knew they were missing a part of themselves. That's what I mean when I say I romanticize twins Smile

Alissa_Sal's picture
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"Prudence" wrote:

See- when they mentioned the idealization of twins or whatnot in the article, I wasn't thinking about parents pining away to raise two children together from one birth, but the romanticizing of how twins are with one another... I don't know how old your twins are, but oftentimes, you will hear how close twins are... For example- even- you get those adoption stories where two twins are raised apart from one another, but they say they always knew they were missing a part of themselves. That's what I mean when I say I romanticize twins Smile

Yes, me too. I'm not like pining away to have twins, and I'm sure that the reality for the parents is really really difficult for a long time. But I grew up watching the relationship between my mom and her identical twin sister, and just thinking that it was so cool. That's what I romanticize too.

Spacers's picture
Joined: 12/29/03
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"Potter75" wrote:

I also am curious how using donor eggs impacted her feelings. Like, is it easier to abort some else's baby or purchased genetic material than it is your own biological child? I would bet for many people that it might be. When embryos are things that are bought and sold, it must be a lot easier to think of them as commodities then when they are actually part of you and your husband.

I'm not sure about this, because the same thing could be said about surrogacy, and from my secondhand POV, it seems that when people make the decision to have their baby in those ways, they do feel that it's theirs from the start. My SIL has been a surrogate twice, once with her own egg & once with a donor egg, and both times the intended parents were very much feeling that it was their baby, and they were the ones who made the decisions about whether to have an amnio or whether to abort for chromosomal issues. My SIL said it was kind of weird to be talking with a woman who referred to "my baby" when my SIL saw it as nothing more than an ice cube; it was not the other woman's egg, not her womb, but it sure was her baby already. Blum 3

Starryblue702's picture
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"Potter75" wrote:

Sometimes I feel like you must be joking around when you post here. This is one of those times. Do you actually read the debates before you post, or are you just being silly?

First off, this was my mistake, as the article doesn't make it clear whether or not she had more than one embryo implanted inside of her. I guess I totally flew by the in-vitro part because I wanted to get through the article and post on it. I'm wondering if the split of the embryo happened on it's own, as is the case with identical twins, or if she had two implanted inside of her to better her chances of conceiving, and when they both resulted in pregnancy, she decided to terminate one? The first scenario sounds more likely to be the case, as again the article doesn't clearly state what happened.

Secondly, I resent your quoted post above. I have just as much a right to post on this board as you do, and I don't need your attitude simply because I made a mistake in reading one article. If you want to debate the topic, I'm fine. Maybe you need to go back and read the rules of this board, where you're supposed to debate the topic, not one another.

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"Potter75" wrote:

No it didn't.

Did you read the article or did I read it wrong? The quoted was in like the first and second paragraphs of the article.

I totally understand how one could miss a key part of the article. That is why I quoted it for you in the above post. You clearly didn't read that either. I thought maybe you were joking. Resent away, if you like. I DO want to debate the topic. A big part of debating the topic relies upon people reading the article and subsequent posts.

TyrantOfTheWeek's picture
Joined: 12/26/05
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I haven't read the whole thread, but the idea of aborting one and not both weirds me out. Like, who/how decides which one gets to be born and which one gets the needle through the heart? Do they flip a coin, or do eeny-meeny-miney-mo, or is it based on which one is smaller, a certain gender, which one is easier to get to?? I can see selectively reducing a pregnancy if it meant 2 or 3 healthy babies and a mom rather than 6 dead babies and a sick mom. This just doesn't sit well with me.

Prudence's picture
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I believe in this article, it stated that they would reduce the fetus that looked as though it might have an abnormality first and second, they would go for the fetus that was easiest to reach.

Joined: 11/07/06
Posts: 707

Yeah I have a problem with it.....that said I DO have twins and couldn't in a million yrs imagine having made the choice to get rid of one of them. From birth there was clearly a "connection" between them and I'm sure there was in utero aslo.

Joined: 06/04/07
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This article makes me nauseous. For those that have chosen to go through ART, I don't agree at all that there should be a reduction when they made a choice to go this route. They sign statements acknowledging that multiples is a possibility. If they feel they can't handle more than one child at at time, they should limit from the start the number of embryos or follicles they allow to be implanted or mature. To suddenly say that two is too much for them to handle for social reasons, it contradicts what RE's try to achieve - healthy pregnancies. And while there may be increased risks for the mother with multiples, the vast majority of the pregnancies end successfully.

As for the bonding with children, I can only speak from my experience as a mother of multiples. Yes, there are times I feel stretched too thin. But that feeling was sometimes there with my older singleton kids as well as my younger children. For me, it's very situational, especially when I'm by myself and under quite a bit of stress. I don't see me losing bonding time with the twins just because they came at the same time. The way I see it, time would be divided with subsequent singleton children as well. Yes, it's harder when they're infants and they're demanding time in a different way than it is now, but when they become more independent, it does get easier. Yes, the dynamics change within the family and finances take a huge hit creating more stress, and our house is not as orderly as I would like it to be. But our relationship with them as well as each other are very rewarding that I would never even think twice if I had the choice to do it over. The answer would be a hands down, absolutely yes. No regrets or wishes that it was different. They were brought together for a reason.

Spacers's picture
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"Beertje" wrote:

If they feel they can't handle more than one child at at time, they should limit from the start the number of embryos or follicles they allow to be implanted or mature.

That's an easy statement to make when you're not the one struggling with infertility. When you've spent two years trying to get pregnant, and you've finally resorted to fertility drugs, and you go in for the ultrasound to see how your follicles are developing, and you have six or eight of them, you never think more than one of them will make it. They *do* tell you to not have sex if you have "too many" eggs. I didn't listen, and I'm guessing most women don't listen, because it was a risk we're willing to take to get the baby we wanted. And with the cost of the drugs & the toll they take on your body, the thought of skipping a cycle just feels like a ridiculous waste.

Spacers's picture
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"mommy2four" wrote:

From birth there was clearly a "connection" between them and I'm sure there was in utero aslo.

But is that connection there from the start, or does it develop from always knowing that their space is shared with this other person? If the second baby is gone before the first one becomes aware of anything, would there still be a connection? I don't think so, I think it's something that develops because they're sharing such close quarters for their entire existence.

Joined: 06/04/07
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"Spacers" wrote:

That's an easy statement to make when you're not the one struggling with infertility. When you've spent two years trying to get pregnant, and you've finally resorted to fertility drugs, and you go in for the ultrasound to see how your follicles are developing, and you have six or eight of them, you never think more than one of them will make it. They *do* tell you to not have sex if you have "too many" eggs. I didn't listen, and I'm guessing most women don't listen, because it was a risk we're willing to take to get the baby we wanted. And with the cost of the drugs & the toll they take on your body, the thought of skipping a cycle just feels like a ridiculous waste.

Please don't assume that I have not struggled with infertility. I've spent three years dealing with infertility. I've been there. RE's in our area do not allow more than 4 follicles to begin with and less even depending on age for injections. The RE has a bit more control with injections than they do with Clomid or Femara. They let them dissipate or call the cycle a bust if it's not just right, which they don't allow ovulation. Of course, if the women have the HCG shot, they can force ovulation at home, but if many of those did that and multiples were achieved, they could mandate the HCG be given only in an office setting. IVF's here are no more than 3 or less, depending on age. They make everyone in our area take class that lasts four hours before even starting down this path to ensure they fully understand what to expect and what may happen. If women don't listen (which I think majority actually do), that doesn't justify in my mind selective abortion because they were "surprised" by the outcome.

abbyblack's picture
Joined: 06/18/09
Posts: 146

I prefer not to get drawn into debates like this. To terminate a pregnancy as the result of rape or medical reason should be up to the woman, but to terminate one fetus because it is just not convenient makes me question why she opted to have IVF if she didn't want to be grown up and deal with the outcome. This particular part of the article makes me nauseous:

"She was 45 and pregnant after six years of fertility bills, ovulation injections, donor eggs and disappointment — and yet here she was, 14 weeks into her pregnancy, choosing to extinguish one of two healthy fetuses, almost as if having half an abortion. As the doctor inserted the needle into Jenny’s abdomen, aiming at one of the fetuses, Jenny tried not to flinch..."

In my own family one of twins have been lost late in pregnancy. My mom lost one of her twins during her second trimester and my niece (from my SIL's first marriage) had problems conceiving. She had IVF multiple times. In her THIRD trimester she lost one of the twins. This article sickens me (I have lost a baby myself). What will this woman do if in her third trimester if the one who didn't get killed dies before birth? How on earth can you choose to have IVF multiple times and then say "I don't want twins so I am going to abort one?" For the love of God, if you don't want to risk having more than one baby DO NOT HAVE IVF. She made the CHOICE to have IVF and it sickens me that her doctor would even allow this at 14 WEEKS!

At 14 weeks, your baby has fully developed sex organs, although they will be difficult to see on your pregnancy ultrasound. In boys, the prostate gland is developing. In girls, the ovaries have formed and have moved down into the pelvis. Your baby is 3 ½ inches long, crown to rump (head to butt) and weighs about 1 ½ ounces. Her skin is very translucent, although she is beginning to develop a downy, very fine hair called lanugo over her body for insulation. She will have this hair until she develops enough fat deposits to regulate her temperature, usually shortly before she’s born. This week, your baby is strengthening her muscles by moving and kicking a little more. She is becoming more flexible and stronger every day. She is even practicing moving her facial muscles, as she frowns, grimaces, and squints. Your baby is in the midst of an impressive growth spurt. Within the next month or two, she will triple in length and grow to reach the one-pound mark....

Joined: 05/31/06
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"Spacers" wrote:

That's an easy statement to make when you're not the one struggling with infertility. When you've spent two years trying to get pregnant, and you've finally resorted to fertility drugs, and you go in for the ultrasound to see how your follicles are developing, and you have six or eight of them, you never think more than one of them will make it. They *do* tell you to not have sex if you have "too many" eggs. I didn't listen, and I'm guessing most women don't listen, because it was a risk we're willing to take to get the baby we wanted. And with the cost of the drugs & the toll they take on your body, the thought of skipping a cycle just feels like a ridiculous waste.

And I think that that is grossly irresponsible and frankly very selfish if you would do such a thing yet state that you would selectively reduce twins or higher multiples. I'm personally pretty grossed out at the thought of my insurance premiums going up because someone wants to have a baby, does NOT want to be medically responsible, gets pregnant with multiples, and then "reduces" one. I don't think that your right to disregard medical wisdom then makes your outcome anyone else's problem. I hope that selective reductions are paid for out of pocket and not covered by insurance ~ It is sickeningly wasteful to think of the cost of making those babies in the first place, to then pay to kill one is really over the top.

KathyH24's picture
Joined: 10/05/02
Posts: 28

I am completly pro-choice and have been for years. This article however really did make me stop and think. I do believe a women has the right to a selective reduction if she so desires. I actually think in some cases it's the only logical choice when your talking about a high risk pregnancy.

Reading the article, however, I have to admit that I personally have some ethical problems with some of the cases that were presented. I'll admit it the idea that someone would have themselves implanted with two embryos when they weren't willing to carry two babies is really disturbing to me.

It actually gave me a little hope when the article said the woman had to go to several different doctors before she could find a provider that would be willing to do what she was asking.

Kathy

fudd8963's picture
Joined: 12/27/07
Posts: 1630

WOW, I can't imagine after finding out we were having twins saying "Hey doc, can you get rid of one of them?" It actually makes my stomach sick to even think about it. After our first u/s, they told me I had a good chance of having "disappearing twin syndrom" because Baby B didn't look so good. I was worried SICK and got no restfull sleep until I saw them both again with beating hearts 2 weeks later and she was looking much better. It still never left my mind that I could lose one. So to CHOSE to eliminate, I just can't fathom that idea.

As far as idealizing twins, I have wanted twins for as long as I can remember. And it has NOTHING to do with the attention you get from others. (that can actually get really old really quickly). A few months ago my mother got out a bunch of my toys from when I was younger for my girls to play with. I was shocked to see how many toys I had asked for growing up that had to do with twins. I highly doubt that at that age I was thinking about attention. I honestly wonder if I was originally a twin and my mother lost the other one. She had many complications with my pregnancy in the beginning with bleeding, and twins run in her family. There have been studies that show that the living twin from disappear twin syndrom often shows signs of seperation anxiety. And that it happens a lot more often then people think.

Our twins are our only children, but I don't see how I give them any less attention because they are twins then would be the case with anyone with more then one child. What about the people that have 19 kids? How do they give each enough attention?

Joined: 02/22/10
Posts: 22

"fudd8963" wrote:

Our twins are our only children, but I don't see how I give them any less attention because they are twins then would be the case with anyone with more then one child. What about the people that have 19 kids? How do they give each enough attention?

A good example for me is that with my son, when he was an infant, we had a ton of cuddle time just sitting in a rocker...not playing, not sleeping, just cuddling. Which when my twins were born when he was two, I still could've had time like that with a singleton. Just rocking with an infant but still interacting with my two year old while he played on the floor, or sat with me too, or I read a book to him. But because my infant wasn't just one but two infants completely dependent on me for everything while I tried to rock with one or both even, somebody inevitably was hungry, or pooping, or spitting up, etc. Something that needed immediate attention, ya know? So that simple quiet time was always jostled around by me needing to get up and continually run and do. Does that make sense?

Joined: 06/04/07
Posts: 1368

"OnePlusTwo" wrote:

A good example for me is that with my son, when he was an infant, we had a ton of cuddle time just sitting in a rocker...not playing, not sleeping, just cuddling. Which when my twins were born when he was two, I still could've had time like that with a singleton. Just rocking with an infant but still interacting with my two year old while he played on the floor, or sat with me too, or I read a book to him. But because my infant wasn't just one but two infants completely dependent on me for everything while I tried to rock with one or both even, somebody inevitably was hungry, or pooping, or spitting up, etc. Something that needed immediate attention, ya know? So that simple quiet time was always jostled around by me needing to get up and continually run and do. Does that make sense?

How much quiet time really is there with kids plus an infant? What if your son wanted to be held at the time an infant needed to eat or be changed? Would you not need to divide up your time regardless? Would that not equate to the same situation as twins? I have a DD that's 12 mths older than the twins, so our situations seem similar. There are times I hold all three at the same time and there are times I hold only one, depending on the situation and everyone's needs. The newborn stage really was the hardest in trying to figure out a balance in meeting everyone's needs, but as they started becoming mobile, self feeding, and more independent it became easier. My youngest kids just turned 2 & 3. Yes, they are constantly on the go and keep us on our toes. But I really see very little differences between this and my oldest three who are two years apart or less in age growing up as singletons. They also kept me on my toes with no quiet time until they were in bed at that age.

Joined: 02/22/10
Posts: 22

"Beertje" wrote:

How much quiet time really is there with kids plus an infant? What if your son wanted to be held at the time an infant needed to eat or be changed? Would you not need to divide up your time regardless? Would that not equate to the same situation as twins? I have a DD that's 12 mths older than the twins, so our situations seem similar. There are times I hold all three at the same time and there are times I hold only one, depending on the situation and everyone's needs. The newborn stage really was the hardest in trying to figure out a balance in meeting everyone's needs, but as they started becoming mobile, self feeding, and more independent it became easier. My youngest kids just turned 2 & 3. Yes, they are constantly on the go and keep us on our toes. But I really see very little differences between this and my oldest three who are two years apart or less in age growing up as singletons. They also kept me on my toes with no quiet time until they were in bed at that age.

How much quiet time? Well my experience is that when my kids were hungry (still happens now) and I am unable to meet their need for food, or need for an immediate diaper change, or need for quick comfort after a rough tumble they get rather loud rather quick. Mid explosive diaper with an infant crying for a bottle and my son with a bleeding lip, two always had to wait and things escalated for my kids to a rather out of control level.

I dunno. It's hard to debate my everyday because sure...other multiple moms have similar experiences but only I've had mine. And honestly I can say for sure with immediate needs and only 2 hands, 3 for ME, with two of those being infants, is out of my realm to manage wihtout sacrificing one kid all the time.

And honestly I do find that there is a huge manageable age difference within the two years. Even every month for the girls it seems like. They grow, mature, and become so much more capable as little independants it's crazy.

I dunno. Maybe I'm a terrible manager of my time or multi tasker. Heck...a million other moms can do it waaay better than me I bet. I just find twins to be an incredibly hard task and see that with my girls born together they do get a lesser mother simply because I've got two arms, three kids, and as completely dependant infants (and even now while still heavily dependant) I just could not meet their needs as I would have with even only 9 month spacing between.

Joined: 06/04/07
Posts: 1368

I'm really confused how kids born 9 months apart would be so much more manageable than twins, especially if they're not sleeping through the night, walking, or fully self feeding.

Joined: 02/22/10
Posts: 22

"Beertje" wrote:

I'm really confused how kids born 9 months apart would be so much more manageable than twins, especially if they're not sleeping through the night, walking, or fully self feeding.

Welp...my son started STTN at 2 months and the girls at 4 months. Up until then it was basically all night long. As one would wake, eat, then go down, and then the other would wake eat, and go down. So yeah, for ME and MY KIDS they would have been STTN 9 months apart.

And really, I don't know what to say other than 9 months apart, a year, whatever at this early stage of life (based on my experience with MY KIDS developmentally) makes a huge difference as far as independence. At 9 months my son was completely disinterested in food and loved formula in his sippy. At 9 months DD1 was all finger foods and I pumped for her, she did not drop the bottles as she hated sippies until 3 weeks ago. At 9 months DD2 was all spoon fed, table food but refused to actually touch it and was drinking on her own out of the bottles.

So like I said all of what I posted was based on my own family life. Which honestly is very hard. Rewarding absolutely! And I love my kids so much that a simple hug from the little nutballs brings tears of happiness to my eyes. And I could not possibly imagine my life without them! AND I so immensely wish I could have devoted more time to each as newborns. But as a human I could only do so much having 2 newborns at once.

I'm sorry, my brain has some serious holes in it right now (just tired mainly Smile ) and I'm not sure I can contribute anything more useful to this debate...in general, ya know?

Joined: 02/22/10
Posts: 22

Actually there's a pretty good thread on the Parents of Multiples board about the very difficulties of having twins where several folks explain it much better than I, titled "Before you were pregnant..." That having their kiddos as singletons would've been easier (to paraphrase).

Joined: 06/04/07
Posts: 1368

"OnePlusTwo" wrote:

Welp...my son started STTN at 2 months and the girls at 4 months. Up until then it was basically all night long. As one would wake, eat, then go down, and then the other would wake eat, and go down. So yeah, for ME and MY KIDS they would have been STTN 9 months apart.

And really, I don't know what to say other than 9 months apart, a year, whatever at this early stage of life (based on my experience with MY KIDS developmentally) makes a huge difference as far as independence. At 9 months my son was completely disinterested in food and loved formula in his sippy. At 9 months DD1 was all finger foods and I pumped for her, she did not drop the bottles as she hated sippies until 3 weeks ago. At 9 months DD2 was all spoon fed, table food but refused to actually touch it and was drinking on her own out of the bottles.

So like I said all of what I posted was based on my own family life. Which honestly is very hard. Rewarding absolutely! And I love my kids so much that a simple hug from the little nutballs brings tears of happiness to my eyes. And I could not possibly imagine my life without them! AND I so immensely wish I could have devoted more time to each as newborns. But as a human I could only do so much having 2 newborns at once.

I'm sorry, my brain has some serious holes in it right now (just tired mainly Smile ) and I'm not sure I can contribute anything more useful to this debate...in general, ya know?

Twins sleeping through the night at 4 months?!??!?! Man, I'm totally envious! I can relate very well with what you're saying as all of my girls prior to the twins were quick sleepers, eaters, and motor skills. While the twins were not quick sleepers, they were quick to try to be like their older sisters with meals (most of the time and both with very different preferences) and motor skills. I consider myself very lucky in that aspect. I also know many parents who's kids sleep, eating, and motor skills to be very different from my experience, some of them not walking until they were 16 months or later even. The realm of normal is so variable at this age that the 9 month marker I found confusing.

If they're not walking, eating independently, or sleeping through the night before another sibling is born, the parent would still need to carry both kids to the car to run errands, still need to physically feed both kids, wake up in the middle of the night when either of them wakes up, still need to change both diapers on demand, etc, because that slightly older sibling is still so dependent. And that's only talking about two kids. To me, that is no different in time spent or difficulty than what parents with twins also deal with. It actually can be a bit more straining on the back because with twins, at least they're around the same weight so it's more balanced when carrying both of them at the same time. Now if it were triplets (or more) or three kids as dependent as I just described, I could see totally see how different the first couple (or more) years would be compared to singletons close in age.

In some ways it was a bit harder with twins (trying to get them on the same schedule especially), but I also knew that it was short-term. Knowing how short-term it is, I could never justify or understand how a person (especially one who elected ART) to knowingly choose to abort one healthy twin because of how much harder it could be (compared to singletons close in age, etc) for a very small duration of their life. That, to me, is unimaginably selfish.

Btw, I hope you sleep well tonight! Smile

Joined: 06/04/07
Posts: 1368

"OnePlusTwo" wrote:

Actually there's a pretty good thread on the Parents of Multiples board about the very difficulties of having twins where several folks explain it much better than I, titled "Before you were pregnant..." That having their kiddos as singletons would've been easier (to paraphrase).

Yep, I frequent that forum as well. Smile It's a good thread. From what I read, they're talking about spacing them out by a few years, not two and under. That makes a huge difference in what we were discussing. Of course it would be initially be easier having each kid a few years apart. They're much more independent. But is that justification to abort one child? I personally don't believe so.

Joined: 02/22/10
Posts: 22

"Beertje" wrote:

Yep, I frequent that forum as well. Smile It's a good thread. From what I read, they're talking about spacing them out by a few years, not two and under. That makes a huge difference in what we were discussing. Of course it would be initially be easier having each kid a few years apart. They're much more independent. But is that justification to abort one child? I personally don't believe so.

Oh no...not justification at all! Personally I do completely agree with you there. I think I just went off on a tangent in this debate about how sometimes the work of twins is underestimated...ya know? That it can be a novelty, a desireable thing for some moms, but that the reality of raising multiples is different. Does that make sense? Sorry bout that!

fudd8963's picture
Joined: 12/27/07
Posts: 1630

I've really enjoyed reading what you both have to post. I only have our twins, so I have NO idea what it would be like to just have one baby at a time. I think I may be blessed because of that! LOL, I always thought it would be easiest to have twins first, that way you don't know any better and you aren't trying to take care of another one at the same time.

As far as when they get older and giving them each enough attention, I almost think that twins will make it easier. I spent a few days camping with our girls and my 8 yo niece and 3.5 yo nephew. I was able to play with my girls and nephew together because they are close in age and the same things interest them. But that was too "easy" for my 8 yo niece. But when I was playing with her, it was too advanced for the younger ones. Just what I noticed this weekend.

Joined: 06/04/07
Posts: 1368

This topic certainly did create great dialogue! I think there's advantages and disadvantages regardless of raising a singleton vs a multiple. They'd just be different. I agree about playing with them at the same age is a bit easier because they (at the moment along with my 3 yo) share the same interests for playtime and games. They're incredibly close right now and also entertain each other well (along with the trail of toys that ensues.) It's awesome to see them play, praise, console, and communicate with each other. But what if that changes? With three so close in age, it would be very easy for one to feel excluded or left out from the other two who team together. That's one of my biggest fears with three girls this close, especially when they enter school or in their teens. My other one is all three of them being hormonal drama queens at the same time when they reach puberty. If they're anything like their older sisters, it's bound to happen. I just hope that it is spaced out where they alternate their episodes so they can help keep each other in check or else DH and I may end up being completely bald by the time that phase passes. Smile

Starryblue702's picture
Joined: 04/06/11
Posts: 5454

"Beertje" wrote:

This topic certainly did create great dialogue! I think there's advantages and disadvantages regardless of raising a singleton vs a multiple. They'd just be different. I agree about playing with them at the same age is a bit easier because they (at the moment along with my 3 yo) share the same interests for playtime and games. They're incredibly close right now and also entertain each other well (along with the trail of toys that ensues.) It's awesome to see them play, praise, console, and communicate with each other. But what if that changes? With three so close in age, it would be very easy for one to feel excluded or left out from the other two who team together. That's one of my biggest fears with three girls this close, especially when they enter school or in their teens. My other one is all three of them being hormonal drama queens at the same time when they reach puberty. If they're anything like their older sisters, it's bound to happen. I just hope that it is spaced out where they alternate their episodes so they can help keep each other in check or else DH and I may end up being completely bald by the time that phase passes. Smile

I've already posted on this thread way back, but I wanted to chime in on this. I agree wholeheartedly with the bolden, and I've never had twins. Having one baby is hard enough, I applaud you ladies that have multiples!! I also believe that it's much easier to have one child than it is to have two, three, or four (which will be my number come December!) regardless of the age differences. This is not aimed at you Beertje, just the statement in general, but it nonetheless makes me sick to my stomach that someone would abort a twin (especially someone who's been trying to get pregnant for so long and using medical interventions like this woman did) in pregnancy. I'm pro-life to begin with, but this somehow seems 10x worse to me than someone getting accidentally pregnant and having an abortion.