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The Elusive EmbryoHow Women and Men Approach New Reproductive Technologies$
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Gay Becker

Print publication date: 2000

Print ISBN-13: 9780520224308

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520224308.001.0001

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Women Rethinking Parenthood

Women Rethinking Parenthood

Chapter:
(p.205) Chapter 12 Women Rethinking Parenthood
Source:
The Elusive Embryo
Author(s):

Gay Becker

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520224308.003.0013

Redefining normalcy is the prelude to redesigning one's life. When women do not conceive, they begin to turn their lives in new directions. Reworking their gender identity continues while they are rethinking the cultural ideologies to which they previously subscribed. Infertility treatment may go on for years, sooner or later people start to rethink the overall direction of their lives. During this process, which may also last for years, people may face questions about gender identity, age, and relationships with a partner and the extended family. The process may be more profound for women than for men because of cultural ideals that equate womanhood with motherhood. But no woman, even one who has succeeded in having children, is exempt from this life transition. Infertility is a life-changing experience because it challenges so many cultural assumptions about how life should be. Women's experience with medical technology is part of the catalyst for this subsequent reworking of life.

Keywords:   redesigning, cultural ideologies, infertility treatment, cultural assumptions, medical technology

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