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20 Seconds on the Clock

You know how Tosh puts 20 seconds on the clock and rattles off as many responses as he can to a video?  I’d like to try that with a quote from the recent Jezebel article about fundraising for IVF.

For most of us (devout Catholics aside), it doesn’t have anything to do with the actual procedure, since undergoing IVF has become a very common practice. It’s more that being asked to fund someone else’s fertility treatment feels a little bit, well, annoying—like being asked to give money instead of gifts at a wedding. I think it’s because IVF seems so entirely optional and personal. While chipping in to someone’s adoption can be seen as an altruistic act, paying for a friend’s IVF seems closer on the spectrum to being asked to help pay for a chin implant to help make their dream of not hating their face a reality.

And… go.

Aside: my feeling is that we walk a very slippery slope when we deem some personal fundraising as altruistic or admirable (or understandable) and others as gauche because the worth is always in the eye of the asker.  All receivers of the message can choose to ignore.  I’m all for the author pointing out that all money requests make her uncomfortable, but think it just makes her look heartless to write about how this request like… gags her with a spoon.


1 a { 05.22.12 at 10:16 am }

That right there is the reason IVF should be covered by insurance.

Also, AAAAAAHHHHHH!!!!! That woman!!!

2 Jen { 05.22.12 at 10:27 am }

I had the same thought…maybe if more people ask for help funding their IVF treatments, it will raise awareness that this is actually an insurance issue that can easily be fixed. On the topic of helping to fund an adoption somehow being easier to take, it is so clear that people have no concept that even though IVF is not a guarantee, it does actually cost significantly less than adoption in most cases, and also allows the parents to have control of the health of their child from the womb, which can potentially eliminate unexpected and costly health issues down the road. Oh, the ignorance!

3 ANDMom { 05.22.12 at 10:46 am }

Unless the person is adopting an older child or one with special needs, adoption is hardly altruistic. If there’s a waiting list for parents, you’re not “saving a child” – the kid will be adopted. Or else there’d not be a LIST of people WAITING .

The worth is in the eye of the asker, but also the giver. I can’t say she’s wrong for feeling more comfortable saying she’d more like to give to adoption than IVF – its her feeling and she’s entitled to it. It only bothers me if she’d judge me for giving to my friend’s chin implant surgery if I so chose. Which it feels like she would.

4 Gail { 05.22.12 at 10:53 am }

I don’t have a problem with people asking for money to help pay for medical treatments and I also don’t have a problem telling them “no” most of the time. I do have a problem using Kickstarter to raise funds for medical treatment. The purpose of Kickstarter is to raise funds to start a business or market a product. A medical procedure (regardless of what it is) does not produce a product that will be put on the shelves of my local Tar*get or Wa*lmart one day. Therefore, I would have to judge this person’s choice of fundraising, but I would also judge someone for raising funds for cancer or any other medical procedure using Kickstarter.

5 Alexicographer { 05.22.12 at 12:47 pm }

Every child a wanted child; those who want to adopt should do so (and have access to resources to make that possible) and those who want to bear children genetically related to them (or not) should do so (and ditto). It saddens me that some people see adopting a child as doing that child a favor rather than being blessed with a gift. The end.

6 loribeth { 05.22.12 at 2:15 pm }

Ummmm…. who is Tosh??

On the one hand, I do see her point. Seems like everyone has their hand out for some reason these days.

On the other hand, I agree with Jen that maybe if people received or heard about more such requests, they’d realize the costs involved with ARTs (& how common infertility is).

Also — family & friends are always pestering couples about when they are going to have kids. If they’re really that anxious to see the family expand, maybe they should put their money where their mouth is. There was a recent article in the NY Times about prospective grandparents giving money to help their daughters freeze their eggs; is this much different? You want grandchildren — fine, but we’re going to need some help…

7 Tiara { 05.22.12 at 2:19 pm }

“paying for a friend’s IVF seems closer on the spectrum to being asked to help pay for a chin implant to help make their dream of not hating their face a reality.” Are you kidding me? That line made me gasp with the insensitivity of it!

8 Heather { 05.22.12 at 2:39 pm }

I was so happy when my insurance covered all my fertility treatments but the co-pays. I do think Kickstarter is for business funding; however, it is true that family and friends do seem to make it their business to ask about when people will have children, so why not help answer that question, LOL!

9 EC { 05.22.12 at 3:16 pm }

I don’t know why the comparison between adoption and IVF is necessary, although to be honest, I wouldn’t feel comfortable asking for help with either. I know a lot of people are comfortable with it (more with adoption than IVF, it seems?), and it doesn’t bother me at all when other people are – it just wouldn’t sit well for me, personally. I also don’t know anyone who would be able to give me thousands of dollars for adoption/IVF, so maybe that goes into it, too.

I think it’s hard to choose comparisons for infertility. Sometimes I think – not of the chin implant example – but of my mother’s knee replacement surgeries. She wouldn’t have died without new knees (and honestly, I’ll live if I don’t have children), but her quality of life was absolutely suffering. She couldn’t go to the store, unload the dishwasher, or walk down a flight of stairs. She was in almost constant pain.

It’s not the same as infertility, but if the author had chosen knee replacement surgery, or something along those lines, instead of something like a chin implant, it would have given me more to consider. Comparing it to a chin implant is just silly.

10 KH99 { 05.22.12 at 3:55 pm }

Thank you, Jezebel writer, for comparing our attempt to have children with something as frivolous as a cosmetic procedure. I wish in my case that IVF had been optional. Sorry I didn’t choose to live up to the obvious stereotype that adopting a child is noble and saving the child. Let me out on my cape of American privilege and sanctimony

11 It Is What It Is { 05.22.12 at 4:26 pm }


I don’t even know how to respond to Jezebel. The comparison of fund raising for adoption vs IVF as if they were somehow different (the former altruistic and the latter akin to an elective cosmetic procedure) make me want to gag. Really? It’s just an ignorant, inane, and gag-reflex inducing premise.

I wish I were in a better mood to respond more thoughtfully but I just can’t.

12 Josh { 05.23.12 at 10:27 am }

You may recall, that it was an Ask Amy advice column about someone’s discomfort about being asked to contribute to an adoption fund and her boneheaded response that prompted you to start this blog in the first place. A reminder of how much work remains to be done… Get back to work and stop watching Tosh.0 all day — I don’t understand why you like that show. He’s SO mean!

13 Lollipopgoldstein { 05.23.12 at 10:30 am }

Nice try, Josh. It would probably be more believable if I knew which channel was Comedy Central (or how to work the remote). YOU are the one who watches Tosh, and I am the one who points out that he is mean. Because, dude, he is mean. And we should be asleep instead of being the dumbest people alive.

14 Trisha { 05.23.12 at 3:23 pm }

“paying for a friend’s IVF seems closer on the spectrum to being asked to help pay for a chin implant to help make their dream of not hating their face a reality.”

Obviously said by someone who has NEVER gone through an ounce of infertility. What I dislike about this quote is how condescending it seems to me. Comparing someone’s need and desire for a child to a cosmetic procedure? Seriously?!?! That infuriates me. The whole thing about adoption fundraising being altruistic act is even worse. It is an ignorant statement and is pretty much saying “Why don’t you just adopt?” as if it was a simple procedure and those who choose to do IVF instead are selfish.

GRR. My blood is obviously boiling.

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