I guess what makes it extra hard is that we lost our third child in the 6th month of pregnancy to a rare congenital defect. It wasn’t genetic. It was just one of those strange instances where all of the doctors threw their hands up and said “we just don’t know why this happens”.
So, I have some familiarity with poor prenatal diagnosis and what it means. I also know that AFP results can be misleading and lead to more risky procedures.
I never mentioned it to DH, but I’ve *never* taken an AFP test and have consistently told my OBs that I would not consent to amnio. Ultrasound (especially level II if required) tends to catch anything you need to know about (including downs syndrome, neural tube defects and a myriad of other disorders). Our last child’s illness was confirmed by ultrasound.
I told my OB, (I switched to a Catholic OB, btw, after 3 pregnancies with the same OB–let’s just say I can’t claim “no hard feelings”, but that is a long story) that if anything is wrong, I don’t want to know about it unless there is something that can be done before or after birth to improve the outcome.
DH says I just want to put on blinders and not live in the real world. That’s not it at all. I just know that if there ever were a diagnosis incompatible with life, I’d rather spend my last days pregnant with this little one happy than “waiting for the end”. I also refuse to be pressured to abort and, as I told my OB, if fetal demise occurs, I will not be subjected to a D&E. They’d better induce labor and treat the remains with respect and dignity.
I don’t see how this isn’t “realistic”.
I’m so relieved to have an OB that understands, at least. Odds are, everything will be fine, but, it is important to have an understanding with my husband–having been there before. Besides that, DH just needs the exposure to a different idea. This “loved until useless” concept has GOT TO GO. It is garbage/lazy/cruel thinking. It’s just modern-day barbarism.