Infertility, IVF and ‘How to Buy a Baby’

I don’t normally binge-watch anything, but last weekend, I watched the ENTIRE FIRST SEASON of How to Buy a Baby, a Canadian comedy web series on infertility available on cbc.ca.  This wasn’t a “hopping on the bandwagon” kind of thing for me – fertility and having kids has been an ongoing issue I’ve been dealing with – sort of – for a very long time.  Unlike most people, however, it isn’t because we tried and it didn’t work.  It’s because, well, I’M NOT SUPPOSED TO GET PREGNANT THE NORMAL WAY.  Or, at least, it’s risky for me, due to numerous health-related issues I don’t want to get into.

The show not only focuses on the IVF treatment a Toronto couple goes through, but also criticizes how the so-called “baby industry” is centred around “traditional parenthood” – leaving out MANY families, including same-sex couples and those who adopt.  I suppose it’s easier for same-sex couples, since it is pretty obvious that they’ll need “help” to start a family, but heterosexual couples have to suffer in silence.  And until recently, being open about it was a big no-no.  It’s still considered a bad thing in some cultures – especially my ancestral culture.  So to people in the Chinese community who think I’m airing dirty laundry:  I’m sorry, but this is something which NEEDS TO BE OUT IN THE OPEN.  Infertility isn’t something we should be ashamed of and keeping it to ourselves just makes things worse.  So yes, this is a BIG F-YOU TO THE COMMUNITY.  I know not everyone feels this way, but more do than in other communities.

Anyway, regardless of  culture, it’s still more shameful to have fertility issues than not.  And we have to deal with people giving us unwanted advice on what to do in order to GET pregnant.  Well, maybe the couple has tried everything?  Or maybe there’s a situation like ours, where we’ve known for a LONG TIME that there are health-related issues regarding pregnancy.  And don’t even get started about adoption.  That usually comes from older people who adopted before the mid-90s when adoption was a little easier (I don’t really want to get either, other than to say that it’s something we’re no longer considering.  Otherwise, it’s a WHOLE OTHER POST).

Anyway, I really enjoyed every single episode.  They’re short – no longer than eight minutes – so it’s easy to binge watch.  Anyone who has experienced fertility issue or has gone through IVF or know people who have can completely relate.  I hope they make more episodes (I’m not sure if there’ll be a second season, but they’ve announced that there will be “bonus footage” coming soon) as I’d love to find out more about the couple including other options Jane and Charlie might consider.  Perhaps even surrogacy (since Jane has uterine lining issues), which is what we’re now hoping would give us a family.

Stay tuned for updates on OUR family…..

Cynthia Cheng Mintz

Cynthia Cheng Mintz, previously known for her sites, DelectablyChic! (still “live” and still active on social media) and Shorty Stories, was born and raised in Toronto. In addition to writing, Cynthia enjoys cooking and is an avid supporter of the Canadian fashion industry. She is involved with various philanthropic projects, including music, arts, culture and mental health awareness.

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