Couple Fretting Over Last Frozen Embryo Highlights IVF Issues

Bioethics   |   Rebecca Taylor   |   Aug 31, 2012   |   1:53PM   |   Washington, DC

Why not? He or she is just a ball of cells, a blastocyst. Why would you even care?

Maybe because the lives of “spare” IVF embryos do matter. Let Australian Jen Vuk’s testimony to her growing anxiety over what to do with her last frozen offspring speak a warning to the practice of the mass production of embryos in IVF.

Jen writes:

And, in fact, each bill that arrives in the mail is a step closer to that foreboding 10-year mark when we’ll have to decide the blastocyst’s fate, as is the case under NSW and Victoria’s assisted reproduction laws. Strange, but it feels almost as if we’re being asked to choose a favourite child….

Of course, it breaks my heart. All I know is that, with each passing year, this trembling promise of a life becomes more and more a measure of my vacillation and despair.



Despair is what comes from creating multiple offspring in a dish, and then deciding there is no room in your life for the “left-overs.”