Monday, October 13, 2014

My Catholic Family + IVF

WARNING:  This post has religion (Catholic) and politics and reproductive ethics, and it's kind of bitchy, unfair, and mean.  If you think you might be offended with these topics or by how mean I am today, please feel free to skip this post.  :)  Or argue with me.  I dished it out, I can take it.

I knew this would eventually be a problem.  My husband's entire family is Catholic.  I wouldn't say any of them are particularly good Catholics.  Practically no one attends and has cohabitated/used birth control/had babies out of wedlock, like everyone else.  But if there's one thing they are good at, it's guilt.  This whole process has been shitty and unfair to me, plus I've felt like a total bitch lately, so this felt like a fight I was ready to have.  They're also gossipy, so I knew this would come out eventually.

At a family wedding this weekend, an in-law cousin decided that would be an appropriate time to lecture me about the Catholic Church's views on IVF.  At a wedding.  The bitch was probably on birth control right that moment (already has four kids), certainly wasn't forgiving my trespasses, and probably had to google what the Catholic position was on IVF.  I already know the Catholic position on IVF, thanks.  I was pretty impressed with my reaction. I let her finish, and I didn't even correct her minor technical inaccuracies in a very precise doctrine, which was hard for me.

When she was done, I backed up to my ectopic, which she didn't know about about.  You know, my dead baby that almost took me with it, an awesome discussion at a wedding.  See, the Catholic Church has an equally well-defined doctrine on ectopic pregnancies, or "abortion" as it calls this fun condition. I ended up having a complete disfiguring tube removal (salpingectomy) that took my fertility, so I'm completely in line with the Catholic Church, whew. But if I had caught my life-threatening, non-viable ectopic pregnancy in a less dire circumstance, it would be against Catholic doctrine to remove a tiny part of the tube (partial salpingectomy) or take pills to force dissolving (Methotrexate). I would be having an abortion.

That's right. The Catholic Church thinks I should have to lose an entire tube (and not part!) to skirt the clear black and white line of an "abortion." Or I could bleed out and die, I guess.  This is actually an issue in ERs in Catholic hospitals where women are choosing between their fertility and their lives.  Sickening.  With a position like that, your organization has no credibility to me on this entire issue.  It's indefensible, and it just makes no sense.  Any idiot would see that, including this cousin on her fourth drink.

The cousin shut down and realized she was out of her league. Since she was clearly over talking theology, I told her this. "Look. I didn't tell you any of this. I don't know why you think this is any of your business. But if you can't support me, then do me a favor and just don't say anything at all. The last thing I need is people judging me and gossiping about me when I've been through so much." And that was that. Overall, I've been pretty impressed at how supportive everyone has been. I've really been blown away by so much love; one meddling idiot living in the middle ages isn't going to get me down.

1 comment:

  1. Bitch. (Her not you). But you handled it really well. I would have said the wrong thing and got all emotional, or gone all quiet and offended and then beat myself up afterwards for not saying what I really felt. So well done. More conclusive proof that people who have no trouble conceiving really are not worth discussing one word of infertility with, religious or not.