This post may come off dramatically, but I think the title actually grossly under-emphasises the very real, very painful and emotionally distressing disposition of societal and cultural divisions imposed on everyone who isn’t heterosexual.  This happens from day-to-day.  Then sometimes, from out of nowhere.

Have you ever been to the doctors for a pap-smear (ladies) to be asked how many sexual partners you’ve had, and whether you’re sure you’re not pregnant?  How about having a general sexual check-up, and the doctor asks if you ‘use protection’?  How many times has hetero-normative existence been assumed of you?

How about this.  Your partner’s mother has just watched a segment on the news about IVF now being bulk-billed to Medicare.  She calls your partner and you both email the clinic, who tell you all the procedures they do, about their range of brilliant doctors and how they can even reverse vasectomies. You excitedly discuss how much this will change your lives.  That the reality of having a baby and sharing a family together is so within reach you could breathe it.  No more twenty-thousand dollar costs for your partner to carry your child and bring it into this world.  Your mum calls and you tell her the news.  You tell her to get ready to be a first-time grandmother, because with such affordable costs (near nothing, as advertised), you’re finally and very soon about to be able to bring her home the grandchild she’s been dreaming about since you were a little tomboy.  You’re all so collectively happy you could burst with joy.

Fast forward to the moment your life freeze-frames and you can pinpoint the precise crux of that millisecond your bright reality cracked into a dark well of deep despair you didn’t even know existed, over the overwhelming feeling of loss over something you never even had.  You type the words ‘Gay Couple.’  The next email you receive reads very differently.  Suddenly the tone changes. You find out that these services don’t apply to you or your ‘situation’, with no explanation other than it’s protocol.  It’s a ‘one-size-fits-all cycle.’  That you should be speaking to medicare.  That ‘IVF for everyone’ never applied to you.

‘Treatment For Everyone’ chants Bulk Bill IVF of Queensland, Australia.

The call that followed was bounced around to the entire administrative staff, not sure where to send us for a safe answer, where we had to repeatedly explain our situation and were given the same scripted clinical response.  Finally we were able to speak to a doctor.  Instead of relaying the same information, we simply asked about IVF treatment and were given some answers about it’s procedure.  This time, when the dreaded ‘gay couple’ phrase was omitted, we were hit with a straight (p-unintended) ‘no.’  

The ironic residue still settles somewhere around the doctor’s utterance that if we could get past the councilors’ gaydar with a gay male counterpart, we might actually qualify for reasonably-priced treatment.   Try explaining this to two expectant grandmothers who keep calling, when all you want to do is sit in a dark room, spoon your dog, and hope for your second-class day to end.

I thought I’d be angry.  Outraged.  Enraged.  But the only adjective I can summon together to tell you is that I feel crushed. I feel betrayed.  I feel hopeless.  Okay, so maybe their are several words.  My girlfriend and I are in our thirties.  Time isn’t waiting for us, for any policy change or for anybody else.  The funny part is, I wasn’t even sure that I wanted a child.  Now I want one more than anything.  I want the nappies and late nights and the school meetings and homework.  All I want, all we want, is a family to call our own.  

So we did what any other red-blooded Australian lesbian couple would do; started an online campaign and blasted it out on our social media pages.  See here.

Even if you don’t want a child yourself, what if you weren’t able to have one? What if someone you knew wasn’t afforded the same cost-saving treatment as somebody else?  We appeal to you. our readers, as a citizen of the nation that has prided itself on giving everyone a fair-go, and as a citizen of the world, to sign this petition and make change happen.  Make the people in control of dividing us as people take notice, that how dare they  and be aware that it isn’t something we condone and won’t be something we allow.

Please share this here, and thank you for reading.