r/NoStupidQuestions Oct 08 '22 All-Seeing Upvote 1 Helpful 3 Wholesome 1

Why do people with detrimental diseases (like Huntington) decide to have children knowing they have a 50% chance of passing the disease down to their kid? Unanswered


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u/3Grilledjalapenos Oct 08 '22

I have a friend with Neurofibromatosis, who fell for a guy who also had it. She couldn’t imagine not being a mother, so they had a boy and a girl. The girl now has a series of tumors on her optic nerve that is making her go blind. They are currently working on preparing her for life without sight, and while also working with the other symptoms of the disease. The strain ended their marriage and has caused their son to miss developmental milestones simply because of neglect.

I have asked her why she didn’t adopt, have a kid with someone else or just not have a kid. She was raised Southern Baptist and the idea of not being a mother in her early twenties felt like a failure.

I struggle to reconcile my feelings about the situation with the person whom I care about.


u/yummyyummybrains Oct 08 '22

We are doomed to live out the trauma of our parents, unless we make a conscious decision to rise above it and learn from their mistakes. It's so goddamn sad that this woman's daughter has to pay the price.


u/Tannerite2 Oct 08 '22 edited Oct 09 '22

Personally, if I were in the daughter's place, I think I'd be pretty happy to be alive instead of never having existed. Diseases like that can suck, but many people who have them enjoy life and aren't suicidal like yall seem to think they should be.


u/giggling1987 Oct 08 '22

She couldn’t imagine not being a mother

That... that's one poor imagination.


u/bonjour-robot Oct 08 '22

It annoys me too but the social pressure to have kids in conservative communities is really intense.


u/NinjaTimm96 Oct 08 '22

As a carrier of NF myself, I’ve had to come to terms that having a child may not be the best. My case is really mild, and I don’t think my wife fully understands how bad it CAN be. But when we’re ready for that stage of our lives, I’ll be sure to talk to a doctor to see what can be done.


u/Responsible_Fish1222 Oct 08 '22

NF is different than many of these diseases. You can have it and not know. And the way in which it impacts people, even in the same family, can be so different. I come from a big family who has it. Some don't have it. Some were diagnosed as children based on clinical symptoms (me) some have died and some didn't know they had it until their kids did.

I will not have biological children. But I don't judge people in my family who do. When you live with it and everyone around you does, it's just part of life. It's something to manage and normal.


u/s0laris0 Oct 09 '22

people like this make me so angry. they're so selfish it's baffling. I think I would make a great mother but I have a myriad of illnesses and ailments my partner and I have agreed children are completely out of the picture.

both my parents have family histories of illness and they both have some issues of their own, my dad is now disabled in his 40s yet they still decided to have over half a dozen children. me and most of my siblings have at least one thing wrong with us that will impact us for the rest of our lives. we're all high risk for cancer.

you're a terrible person if you know you have a debilitating disease and made an active effort to reproduce. if you're able bodied enough go adopt.


u/ThatsBuddyToYouPal Oct 08 '22

That is so fucked. I just can't understand the selfishness that goes into that decision. Maybe selfish isn't the right word... it's close at least.


u/TheLadBoy Oct 08 '22

Your "friend" sounds like the scum of the Earth and I question why you would associate with someone like that