Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Reproductive Rights?

So, the so-called "pregnant man" apparently gave birth to a baby girl. I don't know why this story pokes at my infertility like it does. I was particularly struck by the following paragraphs from an article in Slate Magazine

From Slate Magazine:
Beatie's transformation began a decade ago. "Sterilization is not a requirement for sex reassignment, so I decided to have chest reconstruction and testosterone therapy but kept my reproductive rights," he explained recently in the Advocate. "Reproductive rights" was a euphemism for his uterus and ovaries. "I actually opted not to do anything to my reproductive organs because I wanted to have a child one day," he told Oprah Winfrey in April.

For eight years, Beatie didn't menstruate. Then, two years ago, "I stopped taking my bimonthly testosterone injections," he recalls. "My body regulated itself after about four months, and I didn't have to take any exogenous estrogen, progesterone, or fertility drugs to aid my pregnancy." Meanwhile, his beard kept growing.

First of all, "he" had been taking testosterone for 8 years and it only took him 4 months for his cycles to return to normal after he stopped!!!! I'm working on 2 years off of bcp and I still don't feel like my cycles are back to "normal." And then he didn't even need any hormones or drugs to help him get pregnant or maintain his pregnancy? AND got pregnant with one try?

Secondly, what the hell are "reproductive rights." Do all women have the RIGHT to reproduce? What about those of us who can't? Does that mean nature or whatever, took our "rights" away for some reason?

I don't know, this story is obviously complicated, but I kinda think that if you don't want to be a woman any more and are trying to physically change your body so you have an enlarged clitoris that acts like a penis and your breasts are gone, that you have sort of decided to give up your "right" to have a child naturally. I mean, part of being a man means that you cannot bear children right?

What do you think? Does this bother anyone else?


Nic said...

So many of these things are so complicated....what strikes me about this one though is, surely if you still want to bear ababy, actually give birth to one, then part of you still wants to be a woman?

Katie said...

hey kim, this thing totally boggles my mind, as well. i have absolutely nothing to contribute to the debate other than one thing: i saw this guy on oprah w/his wife. he was *really* worried that the neighbors were going to find out about their situation and become assholes about the entire thing (as if his neighbors wouldn't notice the pregnant man mowing the lawn, come on!)

so why the hell do you go on oprah and write a book about it if you dont want your neighbors to find out? MONEY MONEY MONEY! this dude is an opportunist, that's my two cents.

MamaSoon said...

Commenting early from ICLW.

Clearly this person has unfinished business. It must be awfully confusing to be in this situation. Bringing a child into this world when it isn't resolved seems very unfair to the kid. Althought I often wish my hubby could deliver a kid. would make it easier for us. ha ha ha.

Bugged said...

Uuuurrgghh...it's not only you. Freaks me out completely!

I would like some rights too, damit!

Dreams Come True said...

This whole entire things makes me stop and wonder.

I just hope that the baby girl that they've now had doesn't have to spend her life being made fun of for her parent's decisions.


alicia said...

this is definatly a confusing situation, but i agree with the reproductive right, its kinda an unfair statment to make.

here from ICLW

Phoebe said...

Other than being a really weird situation, I don't have a problem with this guy having a baby. I do admit that I'm jealous though. My reaction was, "a guy can have a baby, but not me. WTF?!"

Lisa said...

Hi from icomleavwe!

I have to agree that there must have been some unfinished business somewhere. I find extremely frustrating and even more so that it was "flaunted" all over national television.


seriously? said...

Here from ICLM. I agree that this is a really weird situation. I don't think that someone that wants sex reassignment to man should still have the "right" to have children. Bearing children is what women do, not wanting to be a woman excludes him.

sara said...

It does bother me that for those of us who have not done anything to our bodies - we struggle for them to do the simplest things like ovulate, or get pregnant, or stay pregnant and carry a child. I'm usually pretty open minded, but I have to admit - it made me feel sad when I read certain stories about this man. I felt sad because I felt like such a failure our whole infertility journey that I couldn't get pregnant even with the most advanced treatments out there. And for him it just seemed so easy. But that's just my crazy mind at work I guess. Thanks for stopping by with ICLW :-)

Cece said...

I don't know.... my normal theory is 'to each his/her own' - so if this guy wanted to have a child... more power to him. But seriously!? It's also just too werid - and pisses off my IF self that he was able to get pregnant so easily. Grrr.

Jill said...

I'm pretty much with you on that, word for word. I also have to add: if he/she decided to have a child, that's fine, but why the whole fanfare and publicity about it? Why not just keep your busines to yourself? Why make such a big deal and make the whole world watch it?

I'm normally a VERY tolerant person, but this really pushed all of my wrong buttons :) HI from iclw