Random header image... Refresh for more!

No IVF For You: Cutting Off Infertility Treatment Coverage for LGBT and Single Women

I am somewhat stunned when ethicists propose policies that discriminate against groups of people.  The job of an ethicist is to hold society to a standard; to ensure that we’re comporting ourselves in a way that is just and humane.  So I question when any ethicist, such as Cristina Richie, asks society to create policy that would target removing services from certain segments of the population.  Such as… oh… I don’t know… proposing that fertility treatment coverage be denied to those in the LGBT community or single mothers by choice.

Richie published a paper in the Journal of Medical Ethics this week and in the abstract stated, “Second, I will recommend that policymakers eliminate funded ARTs for those who are not biologically infertile.”  Why does she believe that only those who have a documented medical reason for not being able to conceive should receive the state mandated coverage (she lives in Massachusetts) of their infertility treatments?

Because she wants to create an incentive for those in the LGBT community and single women to adopt.

Since, you know, adoption is easy-peasy when you’re a lesbian or a single woman.  And it costs the same amount as insurance-covered fertility treatments.  And… oh… wait.  I guess it’s opposite day.

I’m not sure how ethical it is for ethicists to propose that the way to tackle environmental problems is to choose two historically oppressed groups and deny them the services that other people in their state are able to utilize.  Where does it stop?  Is the next step for Richie to propose that only those who are able to conceive without assistance be able to build their family?  And really, why should those who can have sex and create a child be allowed to have sex and create a child?  Wouldn’t the world be better and the overall carbon footprint reduced if humans stopped reproducing altogether and we allowed people to die off within the next hundred years or so?

And yes, I know that there is a whole movement of people proposing that brilliant idea.

But why stop at fertility treatments?  I mean, you have to allow non-smokers access to cancer treatments, but smokers?  Think of the dent we could make in our carbon footprint if we told smokers that their cancer treatments weren’t covered.  And why should obese men have their insurance shell out money when they have a heart attack?  I mean, it would be cruel to not treat lean vegetarians, but beer-drinking, meat-eaters?  They brought it upon themselves.  Maybe if they knew that we weren’t going to cover their medical treatment, it would encourage people to stop smoking — which contributes to the destruction of the environment — or eat meat — which certainly affects the earth.

But that isn’t how humans treat other humans.

I guess I’m just disappointed that Richie’s proposed solution to our environmental crisis is discrimination.  I expect a little more creativity and a little more humanity from those aiming to change the world.

July 26, 2014   16 Comments

504th Friday Blog Roundup

Ooooh, this is so trippy, but it totally worked for me. By this point, I get how he did it, but without touching the pause button or doing anything other than watch and play along (it’s only a minute video), tell me if it worked for you.  Make sure you watch all the way to the end!

Did it work for you?


Yes, this is your weekly reminder to back up your blog, social media accounts, and email.

Seriously.  Stop what you’re doing for a moment.  It will take you fifteen minutes, tops.  But you will have peace of mind for days and days.  It’s the gift to yourself that keeps on giving.

As always, add any new thoughts to the Friday Backup post and peruse new comments in order to find out about methods, plug-ins, and devices that help you quickly back up your data and accounts.


And now the blogs…

But first, second helpings of the posts that appeared in the open comment thread last week.  In order to read the description before clicking over, please return to the open thread:

Okay, now my choices this week.

Better Full Than Empty popped up with a post recently.  (I’m late with this, and strangely, I read it and commented BEFORE I wrote the last Roundup.  But I missed my bookmark until now.  And since it’s my blog and I write the rules, I’m including it.  So there.)  She imagines the-child-that-should-have-been as a two-year-old.  She writes, “On days like today the giant pile of what isn’t weighs me down. I have hit a wall.”  It’s a beautiful, brief post about mourning.

Birds, Bees, and Medicine has a post about baby showers: why she doesn’t want one and why she is having one.  And I just liked the idea of a clambake/non-babyish baby shower.  It’s fun to see people thinking outside the box.

Lastly, The Road Not Travelled is reeling after being laid off from her job.  She compares the sensation of disbelief over hearing the news to the astonishment she felt after her daughter died.  She brings us right into the moment with “sitting on an almost-empty homebound train, staring out the window…”  As she says, she survived 16 years ago, and she will survive this too.

The roundup to the Roundup: Did the magic trick work for you?  Your weekly backup nudge.  And lots of great posts to read.  So what did you find this week?  Please use a permalink to the blog post (written between July 18th and July 25th) and not the blog’s main url. Not understanding why I’m asking you what you found this week?  Read the original open thread post here.

July 25, 2014   11 Comments

The Weirdness of Not Going to BlogHer

This is the first year since 2008 that I’m not going to BlogHer.  It feels very weird to be reading about everyone else getting ready to go and not packing myself.  I mean, I know the vast majority of people reading this blog experience that yearly.  But consider how odd you would feel if you were reading about all of your classmates returning to school, and you were staying home for some reason.  Wouldn’t you feel out-of-sorts?

The best way I can describe what it is like to be at BlogHer is to compare it to Alice’s foray into Wonderland.  You feel as if you’ve fallen through the computer screen, into a world with interesting people and good food and clean sheets (with maybe a little bit of fretting about home at the same time).  You’ll be talking to someone, and then their name tag will flip around and you’ll realize that this is the author of a blog you read, or you’ll strike up a conversation with the person behind you as you wait for an open stall in the bathroom, and you’ll end up finding a new favourite blogger.

There is an energy there, an energy that you can pocket and take with you out of the conference, which is a rarity these days.  Everything moves so quickly online that just when you think you’ve found your groove, everything shifts and you’re looking for it again.  But I walk out of that conference with blog ideas and project ideas and new things to add to my space or try out or people to partner with or book topics.  And that buzzing doesn’t die down the moment I step onto the plane; it’s a soft denouement that stays with me through the fall and into the winter.

So it’s weird to not be in San Jose this week.

I will be following along from home.  Reading the tweets and looking at pictures.  And joining the at-home Skype group (and you can too).  I’ll be celebrating some family birthdays and glad that I’m here to experience that.  And I’ll be planning to be back at BlogHer next summer.

But for everyone who is going this year, you’re so lucky.  It’s a wonderful experience.  Enjoy every second of it.


July 24, 2014   16 Comments

The Glym.ph

I put the period in the middle of the name because I live in fear of my childrens’ Googling savviness.

It began with needing to cut the ChickieNob’s nails. She was not in the mood to have her nails cut. She wanted to read more Harry Potter.

“I have to cut your nails in case the Glym.ph comes tonight.”

Why did I say it?  Why didn’t I just let her grow out her nails like that woman with the long curling fingernails in Ripley’s Believe it or Not!  Why didn’t I tell her that she needed to cut her nails because I said so?  Because, of course, this begs the question: what is the Glym.ph?

“The Glym.ph.  My G-d.  I don’t know if I’m ready to tell you about that.  Come over here and let me cut your nails.”

“Tell me first about the Glym.ph,” she challenged.

“No, come here first and let me cut them because you’ll have deep regrets when you rake your fingers over your face in your sleep if the Glym.ph comes.”

She held her hand out, and I started clipping.  “Why would I rake my fingers over my face?”

“It’s not as if you could help it.  You see, when the Glym.ph comes, you’ll have the most amazing dream.  It is literally awesome, as in, full of awe.  And you will lose your mind over the excitement of it, and you will likely scratch up your face in the process.  Unless your nails are cut.  I always cut your nails for this reason.  To protect your face.”

“I don’t believe you,” she said, evenly.

“So don’t believe me.  See what happens to you when the Glym.ph comes.”

“How do you spell Glym.ph?” she questioned.

“I’m not telling you that.  There are many spellings for the Glym.ph.”

“I don’t believe you,” she repeated.

“Again, you don’t have to believe me.  Though you’ll regret it when the Glym.ph comes.  And you’ll know the Glym.ph has been here because you’ll have had an amazing dream.  And then… there is the note.”

“What note?” she asked.

“The Glym.ph always leaves behind a note.  It just says, ‘The Glym.ph was here.’  But that note brings with it two things: good luck for a full year and tremendous responsibility.”

“What do you mean by tremendous responsibility?”

“Well, you have to do something incredible with that luck.  Change the world.  You find that note and you get all the luck, BUT you also have to something incredible that leaves your mark on the world.  Really, the Glym.ph comes to remind us that we are alive and we need to do amazing things.  So… yeah… a lot of luck but also a lot of responsibility.  I’ve found the note before.  It’s never where you think it will be.  Once, it was in the pocket of the jeans I was going to wear that day.  How did the Glym.ph know what I was going to wear?  I have no clue.  One time, when Daddy was little, he decided to wear a pair of brown shoes…”

“They were tan,” Josh called out from the next room.

“Tan shoes,” I corrected.  “He never wore these shoes.  One day, he had an amazing dream and then a desire to wear those shoes.  And when he put them on, there was the note.”

The ChickieNob was staring at me, open-mouthed.  I nodded and continued to cut her nails.

“What if I find it and the Wolvog doesn’t?  What if I have great luck and my brother doesn’t?”

“But it’s 2014.  The Year of the Double Glym.ph.  This is why I need to cut his nails tonight too.  If it comes, then… there is a chance two notes will be left.  Double the luck.”

She looked at me doubtfully and left the bathroom, but decided the existence of the Glym.ph was possible enough that it was worth asking her brother if he had ever heard of the Glym.ph.  He asked me how to spell it because he wanted to Google it.

“Oh, you’ll never see anything about it online.  People don’t… talk about it.”

After they went to bed, I left two notes under the muffins on the muffin plate.  They found them the next morning.  I have never encountered two more disbelieving faces.

“You left it under there,” the Wolvog accused.

“Me?  I didn’t do that!  It was the Glym.ph,” I insisted.

“Really?  Well, I didn’t have a dream,” the ChickieNob pointed out.

“You probably had the dream, but you don’t remember the dream,” I told them.

“I still think it was you,” the Wolvog muttered.  “Actually, I know it was you.”

Was it?  Well, was it?

I’m sensing that the two of them are not going to accept the mantle of tremendous responsibility that comes with the year of luck…


July 23, 2014   15 Comments

Going Rate for the Tooth Fairy

The Tooth Fairy allowed the ChickieNob to keep the tooth she lost at the White House.  You know, because it’s special.  Normally the Tooth Fairy snatches those suckers up: if you want the cash, you need to relinquish the tooth.  But the Tooth Fairy understood that this one had sentimental value.

The ChickieNob has no clue what she is going to do with said tooth.  It is currently in my drawer.

I hope she doesn’t open the drawer and see the rest of her teeth.

[Fine; I'm the Tooth Fairy.  You got me to admit it.  Are you happy now?  Now that all the magic is sucked out of the universe?  I'm the Tooth Fairy.]


Image: Dave Haygarth via Flickr

I have no clue what to do with the teeth.  I don’t want to throw them out.  I also don’t want to keep a jar of human teeth.

I told her I would get her a small box to store the tooth.  Can you imagine that horror show when she’s older?  A friend is poking around her drawers and happens upon this cute box.  And she opens it up and finds BODY PARTS!!!  Because that’s all it is: a body part.  We wouldn’t think it’s okay to save our severed thumb in a box if we lost it, but I bet every single one of us either has one of our own or someone else’s tooth.

It makes me feel weak and woozy; similar to how I felt staring at the reliquaries in a Spanish cathedral.


People seemed stunned every time the ChickieNob answered that the Tooth Fairy would bring her a dollar.  I thought that was on the low end, but people pulled me aside and said that it was very high.  We used to get a quarter, but I assumed the Tooth Fairy would adjust for inflation.  A dollar seemed like a good, solid amount.  Not too much — the average human child will only lose 20 teeth; meaning, the most we’re out is $40 with twins.  But not such a small amount that the child wonders why the Tooth Fairy expects them to lose four teeth just to have enough money to purchase a pack of gum.

Oh, and that’s the other thing that popped up in conversation: some people don’t give money at all.  They give toys.  Or candy.  Or special trips to favourite spots.  Is that common?  I mean, I could see doing that with the last tooth (wish I had kept better track so I would know how close we are to the final tooth), or the first tooth.  But… yeah… we’ve always gone with the dollar.

What did you get from the tooth fairy as a kid?  And if you have kids (especially those losing teeth), what are you doing now?

July 22, 2014   31 Comments

(c) 2006 Melissa S. Ford
The contents of this website are protected by applicable copyright laws. All rights are reserved by the author