Question:

Should couples who have sickler children be condemned for being selfish in their love by marrying despite medical warning about genotype incompatibility? How can a sickler be convinced of God's love?


Answer:

A "sickler" is a person who has sickle-cell anemia or carries the trait for sickle-cell anemia. Sickle-cell anemia is a genetic disorder that is inherited from both parents. A carrier is someone who inherited sickle-cell anemia from one parent, but normal genes from the other.

  • Two people who have sickle-cell anemia will have children with sickle-cell anemia.
  • A person with sickle-cell anemia who marries a person who is a carrier will have a 50% chance of having a child with sickle-cell anemia or a child who is a carrier.
  • Two people who are carriers will have a 25% chance of having child who has sickel-cell anemia, a 50% chance of having a child who is a carrier, or a 25% chance the child is not a carrier.
  • A person who is a carrier who marries someone who is not a carrier will have a 50% chance of having a child who is a carrier and a 50% chance of having a child who is not a carrier.

The reason genetic diseases, like sickle-cell anemia exist is because the world began decaying with the sin of Adam and Eve. It is man who strayed from God. To blame God for man's sin is not reasonable.

Sickle-cell anemia is a painful disease that shortens a person's life. If a couple knows they are likely to children with sickle-cell anemia, one would hope they would avoid having children and adopt some of the many children in this world who need loving parents. It would not be proper for parents to knowingly inflict pain on their own children just to be able to say they had children from their own DNA.

God's love is no less for a person suffering from a disease. "The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance" (II Peter 3:9). Heaven, and a body free of all defects, still awaits all people if they are faithful to God. "For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens" (II Corinthians 5:1).

Sir,

Can I safely infer that they can marry but should not procreate for that would amount to knowingly inflicting pain on those children since they have adoption as an option? Please, help my assumption.

Even if adoption wasn't available, I would not recommend someone having children when they know there is a strong probability they will be causing suffering to their own child. The availability of adoption satisfies the desire to raise children.