Friday, April 6, 2012

More thoughts

After some excellent comments on my last post, I wanted to clarify something- I most certainly understand why people do testing, even if they wouldn't terminate the pregnancy. Testing gives you more time to process. It give you time to prepare, mentally and emotionally. There's definitely nothing wrong with wanting to know ahead of time. In fact, before Daniel was born I wondered if people who were surprised by babies with Down syndrome (or some other diagnosis) wished they had done the tests.

I was serious when I said that I'd thought about it a lot. I considered how things would have been different if we'd known before he was born. I thought about how I might have felt about a prenatal diagnosis (obviously I thought about that, since that's what I wrote about last time.) And it's only now, on the other side of things, that I'm completely sure not testing was the right choice for us.

And now I'll stop talking about this.


  1. I also thought a LOT about this after Pacey was born. I actually did the standard screening at the time (I was 25 years old and had an HMO so it was just the notoriously unreliable triple screen). As it stands today, I am so, so, SO glad I didn't know ahead of time. Although we had never talked about it, I don't believe my husband and I would have made the decision to terminate but I would hate to know now that I ever considered it. I also feel really strongly that it's important not to look too far ahead into the now I try not to stress about the prospect of having an adult son with disabilities. I don't know what issues he will or won't have, and it won't be the unfamiliar adult I imagine at this point. It will be my Pacey, as it has been from day 1. I think it would have been the same had I known that my baby, who I hadn't yet met, had Ds. I'd be imagining this nameless, faceless baby that, quite frankly, I would probably have been afraid of. As it turned out, I just met my son, who I learned five days later had Down syndrome. It was far less intimidating to learn it that way.

    All that said, I don't judge anyone for wanting to do the testing. I had CVS done with my second child because I did feel so blindsided by Pacey's diagnosis. I know this is in direct contradiction to what I said above, but I have learned sooooo much since then :)

    I will say, it does smart a bit when I read about people who have testing that shows an increased risk for Ds and they talk about it like it's a tragedy. I get it, but it does hurt.

  2. I don't think I got to comment on your last post (company and all) but that is exactly how I feel about it. I wouldn't terminate for Downs but I'd like to be prepared. And the prenatal tests I did test for other things as well, many with less survivability. I can't say for sure, as I haven't been faced with it, but I have several friends who have had pregnancies where the baby was incompatible with life. Two of my friends terminated and one carried to term. And I absolutely think all of them made the right decision for their situations and probably the same choice I would have made in their situations.

    Another thing that kind of influences my decision to YES DO ALL THE TESTS YOU HAVE is that I've been on the bad side of the statistics a number of times. It definitely influences my opinion of a one in whatever chance. Plus, my personality has always been to Know All The Things, regardless of subject.

    I definitely think that it is a personal decision and I don't judge anyone for testing or not testing. (And obviously you don't either.)

  3. Whatever people's opinions on this subject and others...I think you're amazing and I love that you can share your thoughts and feelings so candidly with us. :)

  4. I've thought about this a lot since your last post. We didn't test with either baby, because we figured we wouldn't terminate, but ALSO because we weren't really worried about it. And I definitely see how being presented with an actual baby who has a disability is very different than being presented with just a diagnosis. But man, I am a planner. I don't know. I don't think we're having anymore, so it's moot, obviously. If the internet breaks me and I decide to go for three I will have to consider this extensively.


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