Gender selection: Australian couple spent $50,000 and travelled to US to have baby girl


With non-medical gender selection illegal in Australia, Jayne and Jon Cornwill of South Australia went to the United States earlier this year to undergo preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD), a procedure that allowed them to find out their embryos’ gender.

In May of this year their daughter was born.

“Obviously we wanted a little girl after having three boys,” Jayne Cornwill told Channel Nine on Monday. “We tried all the natural things, all the diets, all the positions, all the old wives’ tales but none of them worked. That’s when it struck me the hardest, and that’s when we decided we were going to seek medical intervention.”

Of not having a daughter:

“It’s like mourning the death of a child you never had,” she said. “My husband wanted a little girl that one day he could walk down the aisle, I wanted a daughter so I could have that relationship … and our sons wanted a little sister.”


“It’s like mourning the death of a child you never had,” she said. “My husband wanted a little girl that one day he could walk down the aisle, I wanted a daughter so I could have that relationship … and our sons wanted a little sister.”

Me, me, and me. Oh yeah, don’t forget about me! :rolleyes:

So how do they do this? Fertilize a bunch of eggs, test them, and toss out the losers? I didn’t even know that this was possible!


I can’t imagine trying to play God in such a way…
Have mercy on us and on the whole world.


I believe that you are correct.

If they had acted sooner, then they could have used a quite different approach. They could have had sperm sorted to increase the odds of getting a girl, without guaranteeing a girl. With sperm sorting, they would have used artificial insemination rather than in vitro fertilization.

Thus, we arrive at a dilemma: to avoid the killing of fertilized eggs, would it be a good idea to encourage sperm sorting? Opposing both of two options does not mean that the options are equally bad.


I wonder what will happen if their daughter ends up being a tomboy and doesn’t have that girly relationship with her mom? Or if she never gets married and her dad never gets to walk her down the aisle? Are they going to want a refund?

Children are people, not products that we get to customize.


That is true, but if conception had occurred naturally, then is there any reason to believe that the mother would not be anticipating a girly relationship with her daughter and that the father would not be anticipating walking his daughter down the aisle?

Maybe there is simply a tendency to think in terms of detailed scenarios rather than abstract generalizations. Consider a dystopian novel. The novelist probably does not want there to be an unpleasant future, but if the novel is dystopian then it does provide one customized, unpleasant future to contemplate.


“Gender disappointment”?


Brave New World
written in 1931 by Aldous Huxley and published in 1932. Set in London of AD 2540 (632 A.F.—“After Ford”—in the book), the novel anticipates developments in reproductive technology, sleep-learning, psychological manipulation, and classical conditioning that combine profoundly to change society. Huxley answered this book with a reassessment in an essay, Brave New World Revisited (1958), and with Island (1962), his final novel.


In the future “humans” will be a market commodity you will be able to buy among other investments in manufacturing.





nice to join here with fellow Catholics…

is the idea of gender selection wrong from a catholic view point? what my question is, that if god has equipped with us with technology to be able to carry out these procedures then that is not the same as us playing god right? otherwise we would not have been allowed to develop this technology?


Since it involves In Vitro Fertilization it isn’t allowed. It would certainly involve abortion since they need to test fertilized eggs to see if it’s male or female and the unwanted eggs get tossed or donated for science type stuff.

Just because we can doesn’t mean that we should. Being equiped with a hammer to drive nails into wood doesn’t give us permission to use that hammer to kill a man.


I wonder how the child will feel if she doesn’t live up to the custom ordered expectations.


My mom REALLY wanted a girl. A tomboy in particular, just like her. I was/am very much a girly girl. My mom and I dealt with it. She made fun of me for being a “poodle”, and I tried her tomboy stuff every now and then.

Don’t you think you’re being a little hyperbolic? “Custom ordered expectations”? All they ordered, and expected, was a female. This isn’t exactly a “designer baby”.


Your parents didn’t “custom-order” you, though, via laboratory preparation, right? I understand what you’re saying, but the comparison isn’t the same. Gender would probably be less an issue down the road when couples (or whatever marriage will be by then) seek a baby with characteristics X, Y, Z and don’t get that.


Yes. The male and other female embryos are frozen or discarded. Sometimes other people adopt them.

And this is a good (profitable) business too, considering it’s $50K.


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