Will teary-eyed, face-holding, baby-making sex become obsolete?

According to a new report in the journal Reproductive BioMedicine (what, you’re not a subscriber?), IVF conception could become routine for thirty-somethings within a decade. Buh-bye, baby-making sex, hello doctor! The report claims that IVF technology is advancing so quickly that soon it will be possible to produce embryos with almost a 100% success rate — and even horny 16-year-olds who are being stupid about birth control don’t have that kind of outcome. “Natural human reproduction is at best a fairly inefficient process,” says John Yovich, a co-author of the report. “Within the next five to ten years, couples approaching forty will access the IVF industry first when they want to have a baby.”

Hmm… well, unless the technology somehow becomes a lot cheaper, we don’t quite see why that would happen. Sure, we’re thrilled to hear that assisted reproduction is making leaps and bounds — this is excellent news for women who’d like to postpone motherhood until they’ve made some headway in their career, or women who don’t want to be treated like crazy baby-hungry fiends just because they’re over thirty and still on the dating scene. But still, wouldn’t you at least give it the ol’ college try before checking out IVF? The report’s argument is that IVF can be combined with other scientific research to produce an ideal nutrient solution to grow human embryos.

How very Aldous Huxley of them! Back in 1932, Huxley predicted, in his novel Brave New World, that sex and procreation would become completely distinct, with babies conceived and grown in Hatcheries and Conditioning Centres, then finally “decanted” into this world, instead of being birthed. Still, if science can intervene early to, for example, prevent couples from having to make that awful decision after an amnio at 20 weeks — to abort or to commit to raising a Down syndrome child — then consider us in Camp Huxley. Those couples who conceive easily — and who, perhaps, are less at risk for birth defects, etc., because of their age — can still enjoy teary-eyed, face-holding, baby-making sex if they want. But those couples who don’t conceive easily will no longer be subjected to years of soul-deadening, temperature-taking, honey-I’m-ovulating-NOW sex. We don’t think anyone will mourn the loss of that kind of boot-knocking.


photo by Blyzz