Can the Treatment of Infertility be Considered Moral?

The brief answer to this question is yes, fertility treatment is absolutely moral and ethical. In fact, many people, myself included, would consider it gravely immoral to withhold fertility treatment for men, women and couples who are desperately trying to conceive and eventually deliver a healthy live born baby. In Judaism, there is a concept known as “Tikkun Olam” which means “to repair the world”. It states that it is the mandate of every person to perform acts to fix what is wrong with the world. Thus, the treatment of infertility, a disease affecting one in six couples, is not only moral, it is a requirement.

Some people, however, would say the answer to this question is  “no”. Their argument is that the treatment of infertility is immoral because in counteracts God’s “will” for a couple to be childless. But does this make sense? If this is true, then we would need to reject any medical intervention as going against God’s will. For example, if a person develops diabetes and needs insulin to survive, is it morally wrong to give that person insulin because it goes against God’s will? Most people would not accept that argument.morality_of_fertility.jpg

Or to take it one step further, it would be wrong to make preparations for a hurricane because that also may thwart God’s will?

Still others maintain a view that some types of fertility treatment may be acceptable but others may not. The morality “test” must be applied to each type of treatment. Most people are comfortable with the notion of infertility treatments that address problems that may prevent the body from successful conception. A common example would be surgery to open blocked fallopian tubes.

Other types of infertility treatments are addressed individually in other articles in this section.