Francesca, 28 years old: «I had a bilateral salpingectomy operated on so as not to have children. I like children, but one of mine absolutely not”

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In life it takes a deep knowledge of yourself to be able to make courageous choices. Knowing who we are, what we want, where we are going. Only in this way can one be able to trace one’s path on solid and well-leveled ground. Francesca achieved this very early on awareness of motherhood. A very delicate topic, which is always difficult to talk about and on which – whatever the choice or vision or expectation – it is easy to attract criticism and accusations.

However, Francesca has always had one thing very clear about her life: does not want to have children. Since she was a child she has never seen herself in the role of parent and growing up has only served to confirm it even more. “Being a mother is something that I feel is completely foreign. I’ve always had a lot of consideration for what parenting is and I feel it’s not for me. I’ve never even been able to imagine myself with a belly or with a child by the hand… I mean a child “mine” from a biological point of view, because in reality I really like children, they make me very tender. A son of mine, however, absolutely not: I can’t even conceive the thought».

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Frances Guaccioriginally from Massanzago, in the province of Padua, is 28 years old and is a fitness influencer: she collaborates with individuals and companies using her social platforms to showcase products, services and in general all things inherent to her lifestyle based on well-being and to physical fitness.
Five years ago, when she was still 23 years old, she wanted to undergo an operation of bilateral salpingectomyi.e. the surgical removal of both fallopian tubes, integral part of female reproductive system, used to transport the ovules from the ovaries to the uterus where they will then be fertilized. This operation, in practice, prevented her from being able to become pregnant during sexual intercourse.

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Was it a difficult choice to carry through to the end?
«No, it wasn’t a difficult choice: I followed my nature, my essence. I have always felt this visceral awareness since I was little. During my adolescence and early youth I was able to reflect more deeply, it was a long but also pleasant introspective speech».

Is there an underlying motivation that fuels this belief of not wanting children?
«Actually no, I have never looked at the socio-economic condition, the environmental situation or other external factors. I considered them but they didn’t affect much. This choice came from within, it was simply an awareness, the awareness of a deep desire».

Wasn’t there ever a fear related to pregnancy?
«It will certainly have had an influence, but that wasn’t even the trigger. Also because I underwent other operations, even a particularly invasive and very painful one like mastoplasty. So I don’t think I’m someone who can’t stand cuts, blood or convalescence. Surely pregnancy is heavy as an experience but that wasn’t what stopped me ».

Is the surgery she underwent irreversible?
«Yes, but it is not sterilizing, this is something that is often misunderstood. The tubes are removed, so she can no longer get pregnant with intercourse, however the ovaries and uterus remain, the menstrual cycle continues and therefore one is potentially fertile. If a woman should unfortunately repent or change her mind there would be the possibility of attempting in vitro fertilization».

Why such a drastic choice compared to that of considering traditional contraceptives?
«The point is that I had taken the pill for 5 years but I didn’t like it, because it was a constraint to remember every day that didn’t even guarantee one hundred percent protection, because if you have gastrointestinal disorders, the pill can lose its effectiveness in the following weeks. Furthermore, I had noticed some psychophysical problems: it caused me swelling and also some mood problems. I used condoms, of course, protected myself in every possible way, though, for a personality like mine who knew she never wanted to become a mother it was a pain to have to rely on temporary means and not 100% sure. I couldn’t take it anymore. Now yes, I continue to use the condom to prevent disease, but I no longer have a set time for the pill or the hypothesis of other solutions such as the diaphragm or the spiral, all foreign bodies to introduce, to keep clean, in position and to be checked: a kind of job for life. If a woman wants to block her fertility for a certain period of time and then resume it, these are the optimal solutions, but in my case it was really a waste of time and also of health, since the pill itself was not good for me”.

Is the removal of the tubes an operation that can be easily requested and obtained?
«Not in my case: I would have done it even before the age of 23, but I was hindered. The doctors reacted very badly to my intention. I already struggled to get the first-access white prescription from my gynecologist and then, in the hospital to which I had turned, after a preliminary interview they refused my request, moreover denigrating me and calling me distorted. A psychiatric report was even warmly recommended to me… I remember that I went with my boyfriend at the time who decided to support me in this choice. They told us all kinds of things! Furthermore, for a long time, during my search for medical confirmation, the concept of illegality was always insisted on: many doctors maintained that it was not a legal choice, that mine was an excessive request, against nature and that in Italy they never would. Also for this reason I was already psychologically ready to go abroad».

And then, instead, what happened?
«I managed to have surgery in the Bussolengo hospital, in the province of Verona. I got there through the Facebook group Childfreewhere I had found testimonials from girls who had already done it. There were also the names of the very few public structures that it was possible to contact in Italy. I was even ready to pay for the operation, but it wasn’t necessary. I found that this kind of intervention is considered prevention against ovarian cancer. From the moment of the initial interview to the preliminary visit, to the subsequent operation, just a month has passed”.

How did your family, your parents react?
“I’m an only child and my parents have always supported me in this choice. I’ve often had conflicts with my mom in life, but in this case we agreed: she understood, encouraged, helped me. My dad took some time to digest it, he was sorry. But he never objected, he’s a very sensitive and respectful man, he was just afraid it was a bit hasty decision. Then we confronted each other and within a few days he understood. Both were close to me during the operation, I received a lot of support. I was lucky”.

Didn’t you think of keeping this choice hidden?
“In truth, I am very proud of my choice. I didn’t shy away when I was asked to talk about it and tell my experience, which I had already shared with others on social media in the past. I accepted partly for personal gratification, partly to help other women in my situation».

Don’t you worry about the idea that tomorrow there may be an afterthought? Maybe meeting a new partner with whom the desire to build a family can be born?
«I realize that from the outside it is difficult to understand it, but I am sure that I have chosen correctly for me. As for the hypothesis of a relationship with a man, I obviously want a stable relationship, I’d love to fall in love again, get married, however I don’t contemplate the presence of biological children in the couple. And then I’ve already experienced a similar situation: I’ve been deeply in love with a man and it is known that when you fall in love as deeply as it happened to me, it is inevitable to make life plans together. Well, I clearly remember wanting a life with him but no kids; in practice, the confirmation that not even a strong falling in love had shaken and questioned my decision. However, I realized that I don’t want biological children, but if the man I’m in love with already had children from a previous relationship, I wouldn’t throw everything away and I would also accept them in my life.

In any case, there was no shortage of criticism for this decision of his…
«My mother was initially concerned about this above all. She was afraid of the criticisms and insults that I would have to face externally, but we know that they usually come for much less ».

What effect do they have on her, how does she react?
“The truth is, they don’t touch me, they don’t irritate me or bother me. I answer very calmly and they almost amuse me because seeing this aggressive and rude reaction from strangers makes me realize how immature people are. I think that the actions of others shouldn’t touch us so deeply, shouldn’t interest us, especially if it’s about life choices, personal choices. I would invite these people to take a serious introspective journey because when you are serene not only do you not need to criticize others but there is really a lack of judgement. Those who accuse and launch criticisms poison themselves, I don’t know if they will ever understand. I have a clear and transparent conscience. And I invite others to develop more empathy if they are able to».

More stories from Vanity Fair that might interest you:

“I, a sperm donor, will explain how not to get fooled”

Marine Area: «Without children, but still human»

The children I don’t want and the ones I can’t

Source: Vanity Fair

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