I would agree. I used the word "wishes" in my previous post, because in almost all cases, sterilization is considered elective or not medically necessary, on a par with elective plastic surgery. I'm not well versed enough in physiology to know if there are cases in which sterilization would be medically necessary, though there could be certain circumstances in which this is the case. But it certainly would not be the norm.
I wouldn't call it dumb. It's a fundamental right to privacy to control our own bodies, including when, where, how and if we choose to reproduce.
A tubal itself isn't usually medically necessary. However
some doctors will recommend them to patients who have had multiple c-sections and whose uterus is no longer healing well enough to withstand the pressures of being pregnant. If they have what is called a "window" (a section of the uterus that has healed so thinly you can actually see the child inside through it) the many physicians will let them know that some form of permanent bc (whether sterilization, or being on the pill or other method indefinitely) is a good idea because another pregnancy, when no longer healing well, would have a vastly higher chance of rupturing; possibly killing both mom and any other baby conceived in the process. Most people have stopped having kids before they get to that point, but there are a few who are there after their first c-section.
It is WAY eerie to be assisting the Doc and be able to look down at an organ we haven't cut into yet, and be able to seethe baby's head, or a hand drifting by in the amniotic fluid!
I don't know that society, as a whole, being concerned with reproduction is dumb - it's a basic human drive generally speaking - but I do think being obsessed with whether someone else
is reproducing or not is dumb! People should worry about passing on their own genes and not worry so much about other peoples decision to, or not, do so.
It's a sticky issue. Doctors have a responsibility to act towards their patients interests rather than their patients wishes. Now a majority of the time these are in alignment, but occasionally there is a discrepancy. There are some medical choices that it is irresponsible for a patient to make and equally irresponsible for a doctor to honor (a classic example here is the patient who wants antibiotics for a viral disease, or a patient that wants their amateur self-diagnosis respected). That said, I really don't think sterilization is one of those issues.
Our society has an understandable, yet dumb, obsession with an individual's right and ability to reproduce. Taking that ability away, even at the individual's request, is seen as a huge thing. I had to go through a string of doctors before I found someone willing to sterilize a 24 year old with no children. My advice: find an older, single doctor with no kids of their own, he was the only one who seemed to understand when I explained to him. This reproduction fetish not only makes life difficult for those of us who firmly don't want kids and want that medical decision respected, it also contributes to the difficulty in finding adoptive and foster homes (Yet another argument I found useful: "Ummm...if I change my mind in 10 years and want kids there are a ton of pre-manufactured kids available to good homes. I know. I was one.")
Another consideration is that, because of this societal obsession, doctors who do perform sterilizations on younger patients with no kids might face legal repercussion. I am not sure of the exact situation when it is performed in a patient care context, but I do know that when doing medical research if you damage a female volunteer's ability to reproduce (and for some reason this only applies to females) it is treated uniquely so that there is no degree of informed consent, liability waivers, or supposed legal protection you can have in place that prevents them from demanding vast amounts of compensation. Which is actually really really bad for women's health as it means that novel procedures and medications are likely to be tested predominantly to exclusively on males (unless they are specifically gynecological) before receiving wide release. And in that environment I can totally see someone being able to come back at age 30, sue a doctor for "taking advantage of them when they were a naive 20 year old and denying them their right to childbirth", and have the legal system support them even if it were a voluntary procedure.
It's weird how you find the Docs that will do what you need/want for you. My own GYN is a younger, married woman, with two kids of her own and has no problem with taking her patients at their word when they say they don't want more (or any) children. She makes sure they understand that it's a permanent decision and will ask, repeatedly, before she does it if the patient is sure...but she does it because she views her patients as adults able to make their own decisions about their lives. I think there is an arrogance in a lot of doctors that because they have a certain level of education, they must know more about how to make decisions for peoples lives than the people living them...that irritates me to NO end!
As for being sued, there is a vast difference between making an informed decision about an elective procedure and having something go bad because of an experimental procedure/research. In the one, all the side effects and the fact that a permanent change
is being made is totally laid out for you, in the other you are just sort of stuck with what may happen. I don't think you can sue a doctor for performing a tubal when you had to sign off that you were duly informed of the repercussions and risks in it, but can see being able to sue for an unforseen consequence to some experimental treatment.