At the age of two, Mackenzie Stephens is many years away from even thinking about starting a family of her own.|
But her mother already wants to take steps to make sure it can happen – even though her daughter will never be able to have children in the normal way.
Penny Jarvis wants to freeze her own eggs so that Mackenzie, who was born without ovaries, can use them to have babies by IVF.
If this happened, the ethical implications would be immense.
The test-tube baby would be a half-sibling of its birth mother as well as another child of its grandmother. The baby’s father would be fertilising his mother-in-law’s egg. In addition the baby’s aunts and uncles would also be its half-brothers and sisters.
Despite these factors Miss Jarvis, 25, who has four other children, is determined to give Mackenzie the chance of motherhood.
At the family home in Sheffield, she said: ‘You could look at it as her giving birth to her own brother or sister, but I choose not to see it like that. You do the best for your children and Mackenzie’s daughter or son would be her own.
‘It’s a comfort to know that if she did have a child they would still have part of her own genetic make-up as well, so it would still be a part of her. Hopefully, it won’t just be me doing it. I’d like to think her three sisters would offer their eggs too. But if they didn’t, at least the option would be there for her.
‘A few people have told me they think it’s a bit sick, but on the whole people have been supportive.’
Miss Jarvis and her partner Karl Stephens, 42, are both full-time carers for Mackenzie, who was born with Turner Syndrome, a potentially devastating chromosomal abnormality.
Sufferers often have a range of physical problems such as swollen limbs, a webbed neck, small stature and sterility.
They can also have heart disease, diabetes and hearing and sight difficulties.
Mackenzie, who requires a daily dose of growth hormone, is partially deaf and uses sign language to communicate as she suffers from speech problems.
Miss Jarvis said she ‘burst into tears’ when doctors told her Mackenzie was infertile.
‘I couldn’t imagine her growing up and watching all her sisters have children while she couldn’t have any of her own,’ she said.
Miss Jarvis, whose other children are Morgan, six, twins William and Abigail, three, and five-month-old Jaymie-Leigh, was referred by her hospital doctor to an IVF specialist to discuss options.
Owing to legal rules surrounding storage times, it is unlikely she will freeze any of her eggs for a number of years.
Critics argue that there is limited knowledge about the effects of freezing on eggs and the ethical questions such a case poses could result in future psychological problems for all involved. However, Miss Jarvis appears to have no qualms. ‘As soon as I found out that Mackenzie would be infertile, I discussed it with her dad and my family and friends and everyone has said they will support me.
‘I also run a Facebook group for other parents whose children have Turner Syndrome and the people that I speak to on there have all told me they think it’s a great idea. Most people realise that I just want to do what is best for my child.’
Josephine Quintavalle, of the pressure group Comment on Reproductive Ethics, said: ‘One can fully understand the sadness for a mother to discover that her little daughter suffers from Turner Syndrome, but I do not think putting her own eggs in the freezer is either a practical or an ethical solution.
‘One has to think of the implications for any hypothetical child born of such inter-generational donation. The complexities of these relationships are often impossible to unravel. Psychologists are already talking about the trauma of genealogical bewilderment, as egg and sperm donation and surrogacy create more and more artificial conceptions.’
We are high quality suppliers, our products such as China Art Deco Glass Vase , Home Decoration Pieces for oversee buyer. To know more, please visits Home Decoration Pieces.
Related Articles -
China Art Deco Glass Vase, Home Decoration Pieces,