IN the old days, it was who gets the house, or maybe the dog. These days, it’s who gets the embryos?
Earlier this month it was revealed that Nick Loeb, who is the ex-boyfriend of Modern Family star Sofia Vergara, had filed a law suit to prevent the destruction of two female embryos he made with her, back when they were thinking of getting wed. The agreement was made in 2013, when Vergara and Loeb agreed to use in vitro fertilisation and a surrogate to have children. Now they have split up and Nick wants control over the embryos so he can become a father, "offering to pay for all expenses to carry our girls to term and raise them." Vergara, however, wants to keep them "frozen indefinitely."
Today Loeb has penned an op-ed in the New York Times that says, "keeping them [embryos] frozen forever is tantamount to killing them."
The piece has raised a lot of questions about life, religion and parenthood.
The couple's original agreement explicitly stated that any embroyos created through the process could be brought to term only with both parties' consent. It did not specify what would happen if the couple separated, which has created a legal minefield. Loeb is now asking for this agreement to be void so he can have embryonic custody.
He asks: "When we create embryos for the purpose of life, should we not define them as life, rather than as property? Does one person’s desire to avoid biological parenthood (free of any legal obligations) outweigh another’s religious beliefs in the sanctity of life and desire to be a parent? A woman is entitled to bring a pregnancy to term even if the man objects. Shouldn’t a man who is willing to take on all parental responsibilities be similarly entitled to bring his embryos to term even if the woman objects?"
Loeb has said he hopes to have a new family and have children with another woman one day, but that he cannot bear the thought of "the two lives I have created be destoryed or sit in a freezer until the end of time."
He says the woman who raised him recently passed away before she could play with his children. He hopes his father, who is 85, gets the chance to play with the two unborn embryo girls he wants to bring into the world.
"I take the responsibility and obligation of being a parent very seriously. This is not just about saving lives; it is also about being pro-parent," Loeb says.
The question remains: Do frozen embryos have the right to live?
You can read his full opinion piece, here.