Sunday, July 6, 2008

what you see

in the mirrorWhen you examine the mirrored lines and silvered curves, consider the speculative shapings in the depths of the mercury glass, what emerges most clearly is something that isn't there. The slivers of vision collide, cascade, nest like matryoshka dolls. But there's no answering glance, no eyes raised to meet your own. What's missing is your own reflection.

"Naive" isn't one of the adjectives that I'd generally use to describe myself, but I've been, well, a little taken aback by the general hostility towards surrogacy among the ob practices I've contacted. Not a single one has been enthusiastic or welcoming. What I hear over and over again is "I'll have to get back to you in a few weeks" and "I'll need to speak to our legal department." And this in a state notorious for its liberal politics and favorable surrogacy laws. I'm not even quite sure what to think.

29 comments:

yummysushipajamas said...

It's really odd to me that they would fight surrogacy like that. I don't see how it should make a difference for them...

Anyway, I wish you all the best in this. I know it can't be easy, and I hope it is at least positive in the end.

The picture is absolutely beautiful.

wheelsonthebus said...

Is surrogacy known to have a lot of legal problems? That's the only reason I can think of for that reaction.

the dragonfly said...

That is so...weird. I mean, I've never had to deal with it, so I don't have any knowledge base, but it seems quite odd to me that the ob offices would even care. Isn't a pregnant woman...well, pregnant, and in need of care?

Ugh. I hope you can find something soon.

Tash said...

Wow, I'm rather surprised too, color me naive. I'd think the general set of assumed legal problems would be very discrete from the medical problems that the OB's deal with. Don't they have nothing to do with one another? Any chance you could call the RE for a recommendation? I'm just thinking they might get references from doctors who suggest surrogacy, and those doctors might be more open to treating the patients once they're pregnant.

I'm so sorry you're running into this. I'm now half wondering if it isn't legal at all, but they don't want their waiting room filled with something that doesn't resemble a Normal Rockwell painting, which is why many of us find ourselves being walked out the door after our experiences.

niobe said...

Wheels on the Bus: Well, there's the famous Baby M case from about 20 years ago, where a surrogate (who was also the baby's genetic mother) went to court because she changed her mind and wanted to keep the baby.

But, aside from the fact that the law in this state makes clear that the custody of the baby goes to the intended parents, I don't see why an ob practice would possibly care. It doesn't seem all that different from a pregnant woman who decides to make an adoption plan. And even in a non-surrogacy situation, the parents could end up in a legal battle over the child.

Aurelia said...

They can't normally refuse a patient unless they are technically unable to help, so I'm not sure what the hell they are thinking?

My idea-first go to the surrogacy people you hired and ask them for some names, tell them you are having problems and why. They may be able to tell you some friendly Docs.

Another idea?-ask your RE directly after explaining the problem. They have Doctor friends who they are very close to, including OBs and maybe you can get some help there. Like a special backdoor request?

As for why the hostility? I think some of these twits have been watching too many movies of the week. Surrogacy used to be a lot more controversial, especially when the surrogates used their own eggs, and therefore were similar to birthmothers getting paid for giving a child up for adoption, something illegal in most places. (Which is why that type of surrogacy has been barred in Canada. They do allow the kind that you are doing, using your own embryos. I assume it is similar in your state?)

Anyway, I expect the general public to be ignorant, but I figured that an OBs office would get the risk to your health and the reason for the surrogacy.

Worst comes to worst, call the state medical board and ask for advice. When they hear that their own members are refusing to treat a pregnant woman, maybe they'll have an idea of what you should do?

Erin said...

I'm embarking on a gestational carrier cycle myself (with my sister as the carrier). We are still a few months out from transfer (plus this is my 5th IVF cycle, so I can't really allow myself to think that it will work anyway).

My thought is that it is all about the money. Is your carrier being reimbursed by her insurance company as if this were a "typical" pregnancy? (That is our plan). I am wondering if some insurance companies balk when they find out the carrier is not the mother and try to get out of paying for the OB services (or at least slow the payment process) and some practices just don't want to mess with that possiblity (even though remote, maybe... actually I don't even know). I have been busy thinking about the surrogacy contract, paying for the cycle, insurance and dreading my always pathetic stim (not to mention caring for my 1.5 year old with significant disabilities due to a very early birth owing to pre-eclampsia/HELLP, the whole reason for this GC cycle) that it hadn't even crossed my mind that the OB might be a problem!

Kathy McC said...

I find the behavior of these OB's to be offensive and downright appauling. What the hell right do they have to turn down a surrogate? Like the pp said, a pregnant woman is a pregnant woman. Period.

It makes no sense unless they are as ignorant as I suspect they are.

I am sorry you're having problems with this.

STE said...

Are you talking with receptionists or people who have some actual information about who they can and can't (will or won't) serve?

It just occurs to me that in the past, I've needed to get a few levels in to get real information and/or service, not because the first line was unwilling to help but because they just didn't know what the deal was.

Of course, if it's the actual OBs/people in charge you're talking to, just completely ignore me. I am constantly amazed and disappointed b ignorance and/or narrow-mindedness.

Sorry you're having to deal with this. I second the idea of talking to your RE. Hope you're able to make positive progress soon.

niobe said...

Erin: Kyrie's pregnancy is covered by her insurance. Some insurers do have a surrogacy exclusion and will not cover a surro-pregnancy. However, we had a lawyer review Kyrie's policy long before we entered into a surrogacy agreement, so that can't be the reason....

I'm not sure if you're still updating your blog -- or maybe you've started another one -- but I'd love to hear more of your story.

luna said...

I don't see why they should care at all. Did your RE recommend any particular ob?

that photo is super cool.

thirtysomething said...

leave it up to the medical profession to create a problem where there shouldn't be one. our city is very liberal also, so I can't imagine any reason for this resistance.
g'luck!

Caro said...

I'm sorry you're having hassles.

calliope said...

sheesh! What an effing lame bunch of ob a-holes. Seriously.
I got a lot of shit from some of the local clinics for being single. I actually overheard a nurse say she wouldn't treat me because it was "against her morals". WTF people!

Why is getting healthcare so effing HARD in this country.

I am so sorry for both of you that you even have to deal with idiots.

sigh

And THANK YOU for the blog plug. That was awesome!

Aunt Becky said...

Like everyone else, that seems like the most insignificant thing. I just don't understand why OB's would care about that.

*sighs*

It's ALWAYS the stupid details, isn't it?

Magpie said...

Besides talking to the RE, is it worth talking to people at Inciid or Resolve?

christina(apronstrings) said...

i am curious-what's it to them? how would this effect them in any way? surely they must have some stupid excuse? and why do they need to talk to legal? i imagine a 16 year olds who give birth are much more legally complicated. in fact, since you have attorneys involved, i bet this is legally simple.
nonetheless-this is such b.s. i guess calling your re wouldn't help?
i hope this is fixed soon. i hate doctors sometimes.

janis said...

You know, this just made me realize that motherhood made me realize what a whole load of crap this world can be, in every sense.
I am sorry for the troubles. I hope it gets resolved soon.

Amelie said...

I'm sorry. I must be naive, too. Doesn't the practice that did the transfer have any recommendations? Or is there a surrogacy related mailinglist or forum in your area that could give advice?

Julia said...

Can I just say how awesome that shot is?
And how stupid those practices? Urgh...

Maggie said...

That's terrible that you are having such a hard time. But I will say, from the point of having done the delivery for more than one set of surrogate/intended parents that it is sort of a tough spot to be in for the care providers. Not because most of us don't think that it's wonderful, but because it adds a very different spin to a situation that is already sometimes complicated. Which isn't to say that it is right for them to give you such a hard time, but the medical person in me can see why they are cautious.

My fingers will be crossed that you find the perfect OB soon -- and that from then on are smooth sailing.

Lisa b said...

I don't even know what to say. I cannot believe they want to contact their legal department. It seems farcical but I am sure it is not funny to deal with.

Azaera said...

My gods, the shit you have to go through. First you can't have a baby on your own and then you find a way to have your baby and the people who have supposedly sworn an oath to help people want to turn their backs on you. Lovely. I hope you can find a GOOD understanding OB soon.

Two Hands said...

Total, absolute and utter BS.
I can't believe the crap you have to go through.
Come up to the land of the maple leaf and we will give you the good stuff, the Cadillac care. It's what you and Kyrie deserve.
Poo on them. What crawled up their butts anyway?

flutter said...

I wish I knew what to say. I only have experience with adoption.

I'm just here, and listening

Monica said...

uggh. Sorry for their behavior. I don't get it either, especially if K. has insurance. It might be an extra step and you know how people hate doing extra work. They may.. gasp.. have to fill out an extra copy of a form and that puts them out.

I love the photo and the companion description.

Elizabeth said...

I'm sorry you have encountered those responses to surrogacy when and from where you least expect it. It makes me glad that our surrogate has an OB she likes who is supportive. Who knows what reactions I would encounter in good ol' NC otherwise.

Furrow said...

I'm rather disenchanted with physicians in general, anymore. They are so often concerned with litigation (and I can't really even conceive of what the legal implications would be of caring for a surrogate pregnancy) that they tend to lose sight of the patients' needs. This is why I prefer to work with nurse practitioners whenever possible. They just don't think that way. Is there a nurse midwife group nearby? They do usually have affiliations with OBs, in case things get complicated.

I really hope you find the right provider.

Pamela Jeanne said...

Not sure if it was the wine or the jet lag but I could have sworn I read "speculum" instead of "speculative" shapings, which had me looking at the photo to see if it was indeed an artistic rendering of that thing with which we are far too familiar ...

Must be time for bed 'cause I'm clearly drunk or delirious.