For several days in succession, the mass media vied with each other in spreading information about the birth, in Ukraine, of the first child genetically related, not with two, but with three parents. Many people perceive this piece of news with admiration and consider it as real progress for Ukrainian medicine. But is everything being said by the news outlets? The question is: how exactly did the conception and birth of this child occur, and doesn’t it contradict human moral law? We offer your some interesting facts from an expert.
Читай українською: «Дитина від трьох батьків» – а що за кулісами?
The method consists in the following. At first, two ova are fertilized, that of a woman striving to be a mother and that of a donor woman. Therefore, all the further manipulations are conducted, not with the ordinary female ova, as some journalists explicate it, but with the fertilized ones; that is with the embryos on their initial stage of life and development. After all, why should one be surprised with the words of journalists, if even the clinic director talks about the «reconstructed ova», hushing up the truth that in reality they are embryos?
How is everything going on? Out of the mother’s embryo, the nucleus is taken out, in which the main genetic information of both parents is contained, and then it is implanted into the donor woman’s embryo (or rather into that embryo’s remains, as the previous nucleus had been thrown out in order to make room for transplantation). This is how, approximately, this manipulation looks like, if we call things by their proper names and reject an equivocation which is so skillfully applied by both doctors themselves and the journalists reporting about this event.
I don’t believe that there are only two embryos involved here. Normally, in order to conduct one procedure of extracorporeal fertilization, over ten embryos are produced. But not all procedures bring a desirable pregnancy, since the embryos do not always transfer into the woman’s uterus and develop properly. Therefore, predominantly, the birth of one child by way of extracorporeal fertilization implies the production of tens of embryos which will be later simply eliminated.
Therefore, if there are such difficulties with the implanting and developing of the «non- manipulated» embryos, it will be quite logical to assume that the embryos produced as a result of this experimental method will still have more difficulties when implanting and developing in the woman’s womb. One can wonder how many attempts had been made, and how many embryos had been eliminated until finally this child was born. Doctors say nothing in this regard and conceal it. Thus, we will probably never know how high the price of this born baby’s life is…
When we call some people “parents,” we mean that they have the primacy in the process of conception and birth of a child, or we mean that these people themselves insistently searched and accepted a child into their life (in the case of adoptive families). In this experimental method, instead, a comparatively scanty role is reserved to those who are called parents, a role of being donors of sexual cells required for further manipulations. All the rest was done by our doctors. It is their decisions and actions that gave beginning to a new life. I am convinced that, in this case, there was no sexual act between a man and a woman, but a male sperm was given via masturbation.
It is difficult not to notice how, in the news, it is highlighted that, in most developed countries, such technology is forbidden due to the lack of relevant information about this method and its impact on people. I don’t want to idealize those countries, but still it is an attitude of respect to a human being and the unwillingness to do some harm to him/her by doing what is still uncertain among the scientists. We, instead, do not have such a fear. Our scientists are not alerted and stopped by the fact that anywhere in the world there is no evidence in favor of this method, that it is not harmful or dangerous. For decades, an idea that human life and dignity has no special value has been placed into our heads. As a result, it comes out that, in front of the value of human life and dignity, one doesn’t need to stop when the probation of «sensational, innovative reproductive methods» is concerned.
Let us summarize. This experimental method disdains and destroys human life at the early stage of its existence and denigrates human dignity, both that of parents and that of a child.
This method damages the image of a father and a mother. Since now, except for two parents, who will stay with a child, there is also the third person who is also called a mother. Therefore, this method washes out the margins of human identity. Fatherhood and motherhood become relative.
Such a procedure completely distorts conjugal relations. No sexual connection or mutual donation of two persons, in full love, gave this new life a beginning, as it was the manipulations of doctors. A man and a woman became parents, not thanks to each other, but to the professional actions of Ukrainian medics.
Consequently, this innovative method for infertility «treatment» devalues everything human in the event of bearing a new life. Only the biological material remains human, but it is exposed to any kind of manipulation…So that two (or even three) people could satisfy their desires.
Fr. Orest Demko,
Doctoral candidate at the Pontifical University, Ateneo Pontificio Regina Apostolorum (Rome, Italy)
Based on: bioethics.ucu.edu