So the hubby and I resubscribed to HBO so I could watch the third season of True Blood. My favorite show on TV. An added bonus to my love of campy, soap opera like vampire tales is we get all the amazing documentaries that HBO shares. The other night we were glued to the screen watching a documentary called 'Google Baby' here's the trailer:
I watched an Oprah a couple years back about a woman going to India to have a surrogate carry her embryos after several miscarriages. Basically this movie expands on that idea but shows the side of the clinic and the people who profit off of this procedure. The whole time I was watching this show I couldn't help but judge. I would catch myself judging the people but I had to always remember that I was apart of it as well. In a small way my husband and I participated in this culture of baby profiting.
I wasn't judging the women in India who were surrogates. The financial gain for these women is immeasurable. Many were able to help their own children attend school, raise their families out of poverty and for some gain financial freedom from their abusive husbands. The women also had a very spiritual connection to the process and a huge sense of pride.
I also don't judge the women who use surrogates. Just like myself, the desire to have your own child can't be measured. And sometimes the craziest methods to gain that child is what you have to do. There is and never have been any judgment there on my part.
My soul issue came from the men. The movie profiles a man in Israel who wants to start a company taking eggs from American donors, then using sperm from infertile or gay couples in Europe and making embryos. Then placing those embryos in the India surrogates. This crazy line of eggs, sperm and womb can have your head spinning if you haven't been knee deep in the infertility world. There is reason behind this globe trotting track to make babies. First, American egg donors are the most desired in the fertility race and second India surrogates are the cheapest. This man had pure dollar signs in his eyes. Not only did his eyes see green with this plan but the American donor company as well were all too willing to get there hands on that green.
A little back story: I know a girl who did egg donation. And it was a horror for her. The pay was miserable to what she had to do and learned quickly that she was just a uterus with eggs to profited on. They placed her on so much medication she didn't know which way was up or which way was down. In the end she provided the clinic with a mind blowing 15 plus eggs. So in my head when it was my turn to be shot up with infertility medication I thought I would have more eggs then I knew what to do with, right?!? I had 7 and only 2 survived. And in this movie they show a lady getting shot up with what I would say 4 times the amount of medication I took and she ended up with 30! 30 eggs!!! Why would I have only 7 and donors have triple that? One word: MONEY. The more eggs the clinic gets the more money it makes.
I guess what it boils down to for me and it always had since day one of starting my infertility journey that there is always someone who will try to profit off of desire and the people who are doing the most work or who are taking the greatest risk get the least out of the experience. There is always a middle man in this game. Someone making a lot of money off couples wanting a child. I don't think its just IVF patients or surrogates that get fleeced. You can look at adoption. It can be just as expensive to adopt as it can be to go though IVF. It's just heartbreaking to me.
But there was one more thing I learned from watching this documentary. NEVER, I repeat, NEVER have a C-section in this small India clinic. I nearly lost my dinner after those scenes. WOW!