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[IP] type 1 and children

Hi all,

Some thoughts on this question of children and T1 genes.

I have chosen not to have children for reasons independent of my diabetes.
However, I think it is perfectly rational to decide not to reproduce because
of an increased risk of the child developing diabetes. We as type 1s ourselves
are very aware of the ramifications of this disease- it is perfectly rational
to make a decision not to pass this on to another person. It is also perfectly
rational to decide that the increased stress of caring for a diabetic child
could compromise one's ability to care for one's self. Self-preservation is
perfectly rational. Even if I hadn't decided not to reproduce before getting
diabetes, I would seriously include the possibility that a child might develop
T1 in the factors contributing to my decision. While I appreciate that the
medical establishment would like me to feel "normal" and they assume this
necessarily means reproducing, I also think that the decision not to reproduce
due to diabetic/ genetic issues should be honored as one that reflects a great
deal of thought and personal responsibility.


Ruth Jennison
Assistant Professor
Department of English
170 Bartlett Hall
University of Massachusetts
Amherst, MA 01003-0515
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