A boy or a girl?

A boy or a girl?German magazine «Tagesanzeiger» wrote that IVF clinics in USA make 4-6 thousand PGD to determine the sex of a child per year, earning $ 100 million.

PGD (Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis) it’s a study of the embryo before the transfer, during which a number of significant predictors of a child, including the gender, can be defined on chromosome set. In Russia, the procedure is allowed only for medical reasons - when the baby may inherit the genetic abnormality of a parent, transmitted to a child of a particular sex (male, for example). In other cases, the definition of sex in the PGD is prohibited.

However, this practice is not accepted everywhere - in the U.S., as a part of the IVF program (for a fee, of course), you can easily determine the sex of the embryos and decide who do you want – a boy or a girl. By the way, 80% of those, who took advantage of this service wanted a female child.

I honestly do not know how to relate to the fact, that one can choose the sex of the child . On the one hand, it can lead to catastrophic demographic distortions. In Muslim countries, for example, where a family is almost obliged to give birth to a heir, together with the traditional household units - a man is a breadwinner and a woman is a burden - this can lead to a significant predominance of males over women. That, coupled with the religious beliefs, allowing polygyny, can create enormous social (and demographic) problems. The greater part of men may simply remain without wives and mothers of their future children.

On the other hand, as the saying goes, "water will find a hole." Not long ago I had an opportunity to participate in a TV-program about so-called selective abortion in Azerbaijan. The essence of the phenomenon is in the following - a woman gets pregnant and goes to a clinic to determine the sex of the child, but from the outset the couple knows, that if they conceive a boy, they will leave him, but  if a girl - have an abortion and go on with a new attempt of pregnancy. By the way, according to an expert from Azerbaijan, it has already led to a noticeable  predominance of boys over girls that is visually perceptible even when attending classes in schools. So - if female infants are not destined to be born, would not it be more humanly both for a mother and for children not to do 5 abortions until the desired result is achieved, but to select a baby of desired sex once during an IVF program, and to leave the others in a cryobank?

However, it’s difficult to judge. Perhaps I’m quite satisfied with the current situation in Russia - the definition of sex is possible only for medical reasons. Birth of a child is always a joy. But a friend of mine, an Iranian by birth, who has 4 girls, thinks very differently...