Couple Spends $50,000 to Conceive a Girl Through Sex-Selection IVF

Bioethics   |   Sarah Zagorski   |   Nov 19, 2014   |   4:26PM   |   Washington, DC

Thankfully, many countries around the world ban sex-selection abortion and the practice of using IVF and then preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) to determine the sex of embryos.

However, the United States does not, which is why some women travel to our country to ensure they get their “perfect family.”

As LifeNews previously reported, when doctors use IVF for sex-selection, unwanted embryos are discarded. Rebecca Taylor,a clinical laboratory specialist in molecular biology, described the process this way: “They are not just making embryos of one sex. They are making a batch of embryos of both sexes and choosing to transfer only the ones of the desired sex. The others are likely discarded, donated to research to be ripped apart, or abandoned to wait for another couple to adopt them.”

sexselectionivfNow a couple from Australia has traveled to the United States and spent $50,000 to have a daughter. Jayne Cornwill and her husband Jonathan have three healthy sons but have always wanted a girl. Jayne shared her story with The Sydney Morning Herald.

She said, “I’ll never forget the moment the nurse holding the ultrasound wand to my belly said the three words I’d waited my entire life to hear: “Meet your daughter.” I burst into tears of happiness, although I’d known I was having a girl ever since two lines appeared on the pregnancy test.”

She continued, “You see, I’d been in this ultrasound office before, when I’d sobbed with disappointment to discover I was having a second son … and then a third. This time my husband and I weren’t taking any chances. We had paid $50,000 and travelled 13,000 kilometres to make sure the baby growing inside me was female.”

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The Cornwills consulted with Dr. Daniel Potter, a US fertility specialist who has “helped” more than 1000 Australian couples conceive their desired sex. Jayne said many of her friends judged her for “playing God” and not being thankful for her three healthy children. But she explained that unless a couple has faced “gender disappointment,” they can never understand.

Jayne wrote the following about her disappointment:

“Ever since I was little, my only goal in life was to have a daughter, and as an adult that desire only grew stronger. I come from a mixed-gender family with two older brothers and an older sister, and I saw the benefits of growing up with both perspectives. I also think society pushes the idea of the “perfect” family being two parents, with two children – one boy and one girl. I certainly thought so. I’m also close to my mother and always dreamed of having my own little mummy’s girl.

When I had my first son, Nathan, seven years ago, I wasn’t immediately disappointed because I just assumed – somewhat naively – that our next child would be a girl. But three years later, when I fell pregnant for the second time, I was in for a nasty reality check at the ultrasound. I know that every mother is meant to say, “I don’t care what the sex is as long as they’re healthy”, but I couldn’t hide my disappointment from my husband when the nurse said, “It’s a boy.” I’m sure she assumed my tears were caused by joy.

It’s hard to explain the heartbreak of “gender disappointment” and how it can consume you. Every gift – every blue babygrow and toy car – was a reminder of the fact my life wasn’t going the way I planned.”

Then she said that she tried to conceive a girl naturally by changing her diet and researching old wives tales; nonetheless, at her 16-week ultrasound she found out that her third child was a boy. She said, “I fell pregnant again when Jordan was 14 months old. Then came the 16-week ultrasound and the words I’d been dreading, “It’s a boy.” During the pregnancy I became so depressed I considered having an abortion. That’s when I heard about Potter.”

In August 2013, the couple traveled to California for a round of IVF and conceived a daughter later that year. Although there is nothing wrong with desiring a certain gender, it is tragic that our society throws away what we don’t want. And in the case of gender selection, we are discarding human beings. It is also tragic that Jayne was so set on having a girl, that she considered killing her third child through abortion simply because he was a boy.