Truth from an Unexpected Place.

I was just reading a BuzzFeed article about Remy Ma and Nicki Minaj and their feud and found this very interesting tidbit:

Remy also got real about her ectopic pregnancy, arguing that people who oppose abortion should care as much about helping women get pregnant as they do about keeping women pregnant.

“This was my second ectopic pregnancy, a complication of pregnancy in which the embryo attaches outside the uterus, so I’ve lost both of my fallopian tubes.

“While I was crying in the hospital bed the doctor told me, ‘It’s fine, you still have your uterus and your eggs are good, you can just do in vitro fertilization. We can put the baby where it needs to be, it’ll cost you anywhere between $10,000 to $20,000.’ I didn’t think about it because, not to brag, I have the $10,000 to $20,000 to pay for it. It wasn’t until I came out with [my story] that I learned a lot of women also have this issue.

“We have all these politicians that claim they’re pro-life and that say women should not be able to get abortions and all this other stuff…there’s nothing more pro-life than helping a woman who wants to have a child have a child. Then I realized that health insurance doesn’t cover IVF. I could use my health insurance to not have a child if I want to, but I can’t use my health insurance to conceive. That made me start paying attention to what’s really going on in this world when it comes to women.”

And you don’t, right? No one really knows until they go through it and are faced with the decision of coming up with $15k or not having a child. Or coming up with the $15k and STILL not having a child. It’s so easy to say “it’s only money” or something equally as frustrating but until you’re the one being told to pay up for a child…it’s impossible to understand. That’s likely why no one does speak up. This is an embarrassing, frustrating process, people.

As Shane and I sat in an office at RGI last week making appointments and getting instructions, he pointed at the amount of money on the check I was writing (a mere $3500 this time) and said “THIS is what people should be protesting. This is insane.” He’s 100% correct. No one mentions IVF or fertility care and treatments when talking about women’s health. We should be about ALL facets of women’s health and empowerment, including this taboo and swept under the carpet topic of infertility. It’s real, it’s terrible, and it’s expensive. What a slap in the face for a struggling couple.

Here’s a better one. Some states require some financial assistance for infertility. Ohio is one of them! Great news! Except there’s a loophole. Insurance plans do not have to cover anything fertility related if the plan is “self-funded.” Guess whose plan is self-funded?! You got it!! Our explanations of benefits literally say that nothing fertility related will be covered. Nothing like a few $2k+ bills for fertility testing to make you feel great about yourself!

So we’re writing to our senators (after I finish the paper I’m writing!) and expressing our concerns for this serious issue. And you know what? You should too. Because even if you haven’t experienced it, you’ve been touched by it, maybe even just by reading this. Or maybe we’re friends. Or family. Even more important that you write or call or find another way to support. This is ridiculous, insulting, and needs to stop. Today.

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