Happy New Year! Because New Year’s Day falls on Sunday this year, many will have a three day weekend, so I wanted to gather some resources you might want to read or watch, if you haven’t already.
First, though, here is a quick update on our year-end fundraising efforts: we need to raise $25,000 by the end of 2016, and so far we’ve received $18,000. In the video below, Jennifer gives a fuller update. Please help us close the final $7,000 gap today.
Here are a number of information sheets and ebooks that might be of interest. We’ve recently updated all of the documents in our “3 Things You Should Know About . . .” series:
– 3 Things You Should Know About Physician Assisted Suicide
– 3 Things You Should Know About Third Party Reproduction
– 3 Things You Should Know About Egg Donation
– 3 Things You Should Know About Sperm Donation
– 3 Things You Should Know About Surrogacy
Film has been an essential part of our work over the past several years (more on that below). As we traveled the world screening our films, we had numerous requests for study guide materials to accompany our documentaries and to expand on the issues presented. As part of our #ThinkAgain campaign, we developed Think Again: A Study Guide on the Legal, Medical, and Ethical Questions of Third Party Reproduction. This study guide is intended for a wide audience as we aim to meet the needs of high school groups, university students, law groups, church groups, and any other group interested in the issues of third party reproduction. Most importantly, the study guide is available for FREE in order to maximize distribution and use. You can download it here.
We also have several ebooks available, also FREE of charge. What women don’t know about their eggs can sometimes lead to infertility or even grave illness. Every day, women in America make choices about what to do with their bodies and their futures—and many of them suffer tragedies as a result of the wrong choices. To protect our children, we need to make sure they know the health factors involved in their decisions. Here are Five Things Moms Should Tell Their Daughters about their eggs.
Since we released Breeders: A Subclass of Women?, we’ve been contacted by many women who have served as surrogates. This ebook, My Experience as a Surrogate, contains one woman’s first-person account of her surrogacy experience. While it’s a short read, it’s a powerful and important one. I encourage you to read it.
In 2013, Jennifer interviewed an Egg Donor Recruiter. She contacted us after researching our film Eggsploitation, and agreed to talk about her experience working for 18 years with a leading fertility center in the United States. Click here for An Exclusive Interview with An Egg Donor Recruiter.
After a screening of Breeders: A Subclass of Women?, Jennifer had the opportunity to speak with a surrogate. She gave permission to share her story. It’s a powerful story, and she has something to say to people who are considering surrogacy (either being a surrogate or getting one). It’s a short read, but an important one. An Exclusive Interview with a Surrogate Mother.
Since we first released Eggsploitation, seeking to expose the truth about egg ‘donation,’ we have been contacted by many women who want to share the story of their experience. We gathered these stories together in one place for you to read and share: Egg Donor Stories.
All six of our films are available to watch online. Anyone up for a binge-watch?
Compassion and Choice DENIED
Compassion and Choice DENIED explores the effects efforts to legalize physician assisted suicide have on those who are living with terminal illness but who do not want “aid in dying.” The film features Stephanie, a wife and mother living with a terminal diagnosis. She has experienced first-hand the dangerous effects of California’s recent legalization of physician assisted suicide.
As she deals with insurance denials of treatment her doctor ordered and changes in the tone of conversations in various support groups, her story highlights the ways in which the difficulty of living with a terminal diagnosis is compounded by the growing cultural acceptance of the notion of assisted suicide. This negatively changes the ways in which people with terminal illnesses are thought of, and the ways in which they think about themselves.
But hers is also a story of hope. Her hope is that if we can change our way of thinking about the process of dying and those who are dying, we will be able to provide the resources people truly need to be supported and well cared for at the end of their lives.
For more information visit Compassion and Choice DENIED
Maggie’s Story is an all new documentary short (22 min) that follows one woman’s journey of learning about “helping” others have a child they desperately want, what she discovered in becoming an egg donor, and the consequences that followed. Maggie was told how special she was, but she was never informed of the risks egg donation posed to her own health and well being. She was used repeatedly for others’ gain, but when things turned bad, she was left on her own to navigate tests, treatments, surgeries, and an unknown prognosis.
Watch online at https://vimeo.com/ondemand/maggie
For more information visit https://www.cbc-network.org/maggie/
Breeders: A Subclass of Women?
Surrogacy is fast becoming one of the major issues of the 21st century—celebrities and everyday people are increasingly using surrogates to build their families. But the practice is fraught with complex implications for women, children, and families. What is the impact on the women who serve as surrogates and on the children who are born from surrogacy? In what ways might money complicate things? What about altruistic surrogacy done for a family member or close friend? Is surrogacy a beautiful, loving act or does it simply degrade pregnancy to a service and a baby to a product? Can we find a middle ground? Should we even look for one?
Watch online at https://vimeo.com/ondemand/breeders
For more information visit http://breeders.cbc-network.org/
Anonymous Father’s Day
Thousands of donor-conceived people have a deep longing to know who they belong to, where they come from, and who they look like. What is it like to grow up not knowing who your biological father is or if you have any siblings? What is it like to find out that the man you thought was your dad is not your biological father, that your true biological father donated his sperm and is known only by a number? How does it impact your self-perception, the choices you make, and your view of life and the world? Donor-conceived people are demanding answers to these basic questions about their origins, their lives, and their identities.
Watch online at https://vimeo.com/ondemand/anonfathersday
For more information visit http://www.anonymousfathersday.com/
The infertility industry in the United States has grown to a multi-billion dollar business. What is its main commodity? Human eggs. Young women all over the world are solicited by ads—via college campus bulletin boards, social media, online classifieds—offering up to $100,000 for their “donated” eggs, to “help make someone’s dream come true.” But who is this egg donor? Is she treated justly? What are the short- and long-term risks to her health? The answers to these questions will disturb you.
For more information visit http://www.eggsploitation.com/
Lines That Divide
Stem cell research: A potential miracle cure for diseases or a form of biological colonialism? The debate still rages over this controversial science. Supporters argue that it is our moral duty to pursue scientific progress that provides healing hope for humanity. Detractors argue that the ends don’t justify the means in harvesting some human life to save others. This documentary seeks to educate the public on the scientific basics of stem cell research and the moral issues surrounding it as we enter the 21st century.
Watch online at https://vimeo.com/ondemand/ltd
For more information visit http://www.linesthatdivide.com/
All of these resources were developed because of your generosity. As I write, we need to close a $7,000 end-of-year funding gap. Please give today! Help us start 2017 strong. Help us keep making resources like these. Thank you!!
The Center for Bioethics and Culture is a non-profit 501(c)(3) public benefit educational organization. All gifts are tax-deductible.