Research Article
No access
Published Online: 25 April 2009

Genes or Gestation? Attitudes of Women and Men about Biologic Ties to Children

Publication: Journal of Women's Health
Volume 6, Issue Number 6


In light of the different reproductive roles of men and women, our objective was to ascertain whether men and women attach different significance to genetic, as distinct from gestational, ties to offspring. Surveys returned by 106 men and women of reproductive age in the general clinic waiting area of the University of Chicago Health Service showed that 71.1% of women and 62.9% of men would seek medical assistance if necessary to have a biologically related child. When women were asked whether they would choose the genetic tie or the gestational tie if both were not possible, 48.6% chose the genetic tie, and 51.4% chose the gestational tie. When men were asked which relationship they preferred for their partner, 73.5% chose the genetic tie, and 26.5% chose the gestational tie. Neither marital status nor experience of childbirth (for oneself or one's partner) were predictive of preferences. Our data suggest that gender differences as well as individual differences need to be addressed in counseling individuals and couples.

Get full access to this article

View all available purchase options and get full access to this article.

Information & Authors


Published In

cover image Journal of Women's Health
Journal of Women's Health
Volume 6Issue Number 6December 1997
Pages: 639 - 647
PubMed: 9437638


Published online: 25 April 2009
Published in print: December 1997


Request permissions for this article.




    Metrics & Citations



    Export citation

    Select the format you want to export the citations of this publication.

    View Options

    Get Access

    Access content

    To read the fulltext, please use one of the options below to sign in or purchase access.

    Society Access

    If you are a member of a society that has access to this content please log in via your society website and then return to this publication.

    Restore your content access

    Enter your email address to restore your content access:

    Note: This functionality works only for purchases done as a guest. If you already have an account, log in to access the content to which you are entitled.

    View options


    View PDF/ePub







    Copy the content Link

    Share on social media

    Back to Top