Choose Your Baby's Gender – For a Price

While most parents-to-be will say they just want a healthy child and don’t have a gender preference, at least one large survey of prospective parents says otherwise.  Nearly 80% of the more than 10,000 parents surveyed worldwide said they did have a gender preference going in and throughout their pregnancies.  And while their reasons for desiring a boy or a girl may have varied, their options did not. Other than some completely unscientific methods that are supposed to help you conceive a boy or a girl, having a child of either gender is a 50/50 proposition.

But what if there was a way to ensure you got the boy or girl you always wanted?  In Thailand, there is.

According to a report on CNN, if you’ve got about $9,000 and a willingness to travel, there’s a doctor in Thailand who will perform a specialized in vitro fertilization treatment that will ensure the baby you have is of the gender you prefer.  And while most of his patients are Chinese, the service has drawn parents from as far away as Australia, where such gender selection techniques are illegal.

This so-called designer baby IVF treatment is actually illegal just about everywhere and the doctor says he only performs the procedure if there’s a compelling reason to do so.  But what other reason could there be other than preference? Surely the Australian mother of three boys feels her “really strong wish” to have a daughter is as compelling a reason as the Chinese couple who, after several girls, desperately wants a boy.

I know several large families who got that way attempting to have a child of a particular gender.  They just kept trying until they either got what they wanted or gave up.  While I am sure they love each and every one of those kids, I can’t help but wonder if they would have availed themselves of such a treatment had it been an option.  Would you?

Image:  sarahemcc/Flickr

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