The International Writers Magazine:21st Century Designer Babies
would she have been like, this other me? I often sit and wonder.
Would she have been athletic like me, musical like me, would she
have loved reading and writing like me? Would she have looked
like me, had a high IQ like me, had a fetish for pink shoes like
me? And would my parents have loved her - even if she wasnt
any of those things?
I wish I could say yes, an unequivocal yes - but I cant.
Because Im just not sure they would.
never knew when I was younger that I was special. Ive
played piano since age four. I used to get my spellings right every
week. I won all the races on sports day. Mum and Dad were there, cheering
me on. I had no reason to think anything was strange - I was just a
normal girl leading a normal life. I thought I was a good student because
I worked hard, I played the piano well because I practised every day,
I was good at sports because I trained hard and kept myself fit. Not
because my parents had chosen me to be that way.
Designer babies are becoming more and more popular - but its still not
easy for us, the first generation, the experiments. People rarely ask
for our opinion. Perhaps they know what wed say. Designing babies
is very expensive - that means somewhere people are making money, and
nobody whos making a hefty profit wants the voice of rebellion
poisoning peoples minds. But people should know what its like,
maybe then they wouldnt think about putting their child through
this. They dont know what its like to feel like a robot, a machine,
programmed to be the way you are by people who supposedly brought you
into the world to love you, and yet felt the need to make you how they
wanted you to be. Not given any choice in the matter. Birth and life
used to be about nature. Now its about science. People used to conceive
naturally, didnt know what their child would be like, but loved
Would my parents love the other me, the natural me, the real
me? They didnt want to know me as I would have been. Would they
have loved me if I hadnt been so athletic, so musical, had such
a high IQ? Would they have loved me if Id been a brunette instead
of a blonde, had brown eyes instead of blue? Its horrible to feel
this way - its like you dont even know yourself.
All my life I thought this was just the way I was because thats
how nature created me - now I know differently. I look in the mirror
and stare at my reflection - the face of a girl who wouldnt exist
if it werent for science - that thing were supposed
to worship, the thing that is our future. To me, it is an
ugly word, which means the destruction of nature, of basic human rights.
People shouldnt have to grow up knowing their parents designed
them. Were not a bag of sweets from Pick n Mix, Ooh,
I think Ill have a tennis player with a knack for algebra and
a passion for Wagner or I fancy a pretty girl this time,
curly blonde hair, loves horseback riding, with an IQ of 136.
It just doesnt work that way. I feel lost inside my own body,
feel like I dont even know who I am anymore, dont even know
if I exist. I cant talk to my parents, I just dont see them
in the same way anymore. I dont see anything the same way anymore.
I feel rejected, fake,unreal, inhuman. And they call this progress?
© Gemma Ayres Dec 6th 2024
Gemma Ayres is a
Creative Arts student at Portsmouth University
all rights reserved