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Lay Off Chrissy Teigen and her Gender Selection!

When supermodel and now New York Times #1 best-selling cookbook author Chrissy Teigen told People magazine last month that she and her husband chose to have a girl through IVF, the Internet went wild.

"Not only am I having a girl, but I picked the girl from her little embryo. I picked her and was like, 'Let's put in the girl,'" Teigen told the magazine.

The Twitterverse erupted.

Others accused her of "playing God" and told her that because she's rich she should adopt or "maybe you weren't supposed to have kids since there is [sic] so many kids without parents."

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And in the total left-field category:

Now Teigen handled the kerfuffle with her usual aplomb, even joking about it:

And she also took down her trolls:

The Internet and the supermodel have moved on, but what the whole gender-selection incident shows is how little people understand about fertility treatment.

Firstly, it is very, very difficult to actually have gender selection done. You must commit to doing IVF, and as most people probably do know, the process of harvesting eggs by injecting yourself with hormones, then having them extracted and finally transferred back to the womb is an expensive, sometimes painful and often heartbreaking process. (Even Teigen confessed she doesn't have as many embryos as she would like.)

If you want to know the gender of the embryos, the embryos must be screened. PGS, or Pre-Implantation Genetic Screening, is a second procedure after IVF—another costly and often heartbreaking process—that can check whether embryos are chromosomally normal.

After suffering numerous miscarriages, I did PGS on my embryos to find normal ones that would not miscarry. Many women do. Couples who are carriers of a specific disease can also genetically test the embryos to create healthy babies.

Now it's true that some couples have their embryos tested just for gender and not health reasons, but so what? It's a non-invasive process that doesn't harm the embryos, which, by the way are not alive—only have the potential for life.

During my IVF I once met a woman who would only transfer female embryos because her husband would divorce her if she did not have a baby boy to be his heir. (And they weren't even royalty.)

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But Teigen has said she is planning on having many children, girls and boys. Since she had the choice, though, she just chose to have a girl first.

Which is really remarkable, because most Americans prefer boys to girls by a 40 percent to 28 percent margin, according to a Gallup poll.

So let's raise a glass to the feminist Teigen for choosing her own gender (you go, girl!) for being so public about her fertility struggles (hurrah!) to a very ignorant public (sorry), and lay off her as she gets ready to have her baby girl.

And in her own words, let's just be happy for her. "I so badly want you to be happy so I can be happy."

Photograph by: Rex / Rex USA

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