‘My ex is trying to stop me using my embryos’


An ex-girlfriend uses "time like a weapon," says a New York City woman forty years fighting with her former beau over the use of their frozen embryos.

"I'm 42. I want to be a mother. I want to raise a child," said Ilissa Watnik in legal papers last week.

Witty fertility is ticking away when her ex-lover, Kevin Heldt, last month handed out the Manhattan Supreme Court to prevent her from using the fertilized eggs they created in 2015.

The couple dated from 2014 to 2016 , even living in Watniks Manhattan pillow.

In the "early and happy part of our relationship", the then 39-year-old Watnik and Heldt wanted the children together so badly they went to reproductive medicine associated in New York for in vitro fertilization.

The couple met with doctors, Heldt gave daily "estrogen-enhancing" injections, gave semen samples and were with Watnik when the doctors first tried to implant two embryos by 2015.

"He was fully aware that the procedure was designed to result in a pregnancy and a pregnancy is designed to result in birth, "said Watnik.

Heldt was so involved in the link e's attempt to conceive, he himself put Watnik on his health insurance because it had better IVF coverage than her, she claims.

The two repeatedly signed consent agreements with the fertility clinic chart what would happen if they split: Watnik would get the embryos, four of which now remain according to legal papers.

The couple's first shot at IVF failed.

Then Watnik had become 40 and "being very concerned about having only four remaining embryos gave me one or two more chances of getting pregnant."

When the relationship was over, Heldt lost interest in the pregnancy disturbed Watnik, who delayed another attempt on IVF, who feared the stress of their crumbling ties would make it harder to get pregnant.

The couple broke up in 2016, and Heldt, now 46, moved out of Watnik's home. He has since married his third wife, Watnik said in legal papers.

However, when Watnik moved to use embryos last year, Heldt did everything he could to slow down the process, as she did not know that time is not on Watnik's side.

When the clinic attempted to confirm the breach, Heldt ignored or refused to cooperate with their overtures, claiming that he had consented to Watnik to use the fertilized eggs.

When RMA said it would transfer the embryos to Watnik nevertheless, Heldt ran for trial to stop the transfer and claimed that he feared the financial burden that the children would bring.

"I never trust Kevin's money… I have a career and my own money," said Watnik, who made the mistake "financial burden" as a "ploy".

Going to a sperm bank would mean that Watnik now has to use her almost 43 years of egg, instead of the embryos created when she was younger, she notes. This would reduce the likelihood of becoming pregnant.

"Given enough time, Kevin will simply run out of my biological clock," she pointed out. "I ask the court to enforce what I thought was already settled contractual questions … I ask the court to allow my use of these embryos so I can try (for another time) to get pregnant."

This article originally appeared on New York Post and has been reissued with permission.



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