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Jan. 1st, 2011 | 04:47 pm
posted by: jane_elliot in epic_rants

Several years ago now, when I first re-entered fandom using the Jane Elliot handle, I wrote an mpreg story.  Because it's one of the very, very few mpreg fics out there where the pregnancy is terminated by an abortion, it gets mentioned fairly regularly whenever mpreg and abortion are brought up.  And, nearly every time it's brought up, someone will comment that the story is about the "side effects of the abortion".  Which is 100% untrue.  The story is all about side effects (hence its name), but they are the side effects of male pregnancy.

Fact is, pregnancy has an effect on the body, even everyday, real life, female pregnancy.  Which is why I drives me so nuts that in most mpreg stories, the man comes out of the pregnancy and childbirth with no more changes than a baby and maybe a few stretch marks.  Is this because women who write mpreg have never been pregnant themselves (and don't know anyone else who has been)?  Or is mpreg really fantasy pregnancy in more ways than the obvious, the same way bad kid!fic is fantasy parenting?

Whatever the reason for these perfect pregnancies, marred by nothing more than a few bouts of discretely mentioned morning sickness, I find them (and their aftermath) to be pretty boring.  To me they'd be vastly more interesting if there were acknowledgment of swollen ankles (and not in a pretty way), of heartburn (that doesn't necessarily go away after childbirth), of changed taste buds, of aching breasts.  Even more interesting would be if there was some sort of acknowledgment male bodies aren't designed to carry and bear children (other than the infamous ass!baby cliche).  In short, I think mpregs would be more interesting (and probably more respected as a genre) if they were more realistic.

/flu-induced rambling

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Comments {11}

Atalanta

(no subject)

from: lothy
date: Jan. 2nd, 2011 12:07 am (UTC)
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No use expecting mpreg writers to be realistic, I'm afraid ;) Or fanfic writers in general, actually...

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jane_elliot

(no subject)

from: jane_elliot
date: Jan. 2nd, 2011 12:11 am (UTC)
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Sadly true:) Though there are some fanfic writers who do make attempts at realism (and those are my favorite:)

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Fiona Pickles

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from: theficklepickle
date: Jan. 2nd, 2011 08:04 am (UTC)
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Or fanfic writers in general, actually...

I think that's rather an unfair generalisation; I know plenty of fanfic writers who knock themselves out in the name of authenticity, whatever the premise. Many don't, I agree, but it's unkind to dismiss the whole species at a stroke.

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Atalanta

(no subject)

from: lothy
date: Jan. 2nd, 2011 12:52 pm (UTC)
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Lol, I wasn't trying to imply that there weren't people who do try to make their fics realistic. I was being facetious.

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hele

(no subject)

from: hlbr
date: Jan. 2nd, 2011 12:55 am (UTC)
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Heh, my mother, if she wrote at all and wrote ff may write one of those 'unrealistic' stories. And she bore to term five children (and had one spontaneous abortion). Pregnancy and childbirth just weren't very hard on her at all.

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jane_elliot

(no subject)

from: jane_elliot
date: Jan. 2nd, 2011 09:02 am (UTC)
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Dude, on behalf of all of my family members, I envy your mom:) Not that any of my family members (most of whom are Mormon and thus have 3-4 kids each) regret the pregnancies, but not one of them actually liked being pregnant (except for the second trimester, which is apparently quite nice) and all of them had post-pregnancy issues that made their lives more difficult.

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Atalanta

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from: lothy
date: Jan. 2nd, 2011 12:56 pm (UTC)
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Strong history of pregnancy problems in my family too. There's a lot of history of miscarriage (which frightens me a little, though tbh I'm more inclined to adopt really anyhow, and not babies) and plenty of history of complications of various types. I tried to be born premature until they managed to stop it. I have no idea about the smaller effects of pregnancy though as I've never asked.

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Fiona Pickles

(no subject)

from: theficklepickle
date: Jan. 2nd, 2011 08:08 am (UTC)
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I did at one time have an mpreg story in mind where the early euphoria was followed by miscarriage and the slow rebuilding of the relationship. In the end I left the fandom before I could start on it, but it's something I have yet to see tackled with any intelligence.

Do you think that's because a lot of people just don't want realism in their fanfic? A great many have said to me that fandom is their escape and they don't want it to bear any relationship to the real world - which is often a very good excuse for not doing their research.

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jane_elliot

(no subject)

from: jane_elliot
date: Jan. 2nd, 2011 09:03 am (UTC)
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Maybe? Though fanfic is definitely escapism for me and I very much prefer it to be as realistic as possible and still allow for a happy ending. It just has so much more weight and depth to it when the author makes an attempt at realism.

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tingel

realistic mpreg

from: tingel
date: May. 19th, 2011 10:53 pm (UTC)
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Do you know "Chimaera" by ShenLong? It's a Gundam Wing mega-epic mpreg story. The premise (Duo's is a hermaphrodite, unknown to himself) might not be realistic. But then, is there a story with a realistic twist to get a guy pregnant anyways? The description of the pregnancy, on the other hand, is quite realistic. ShenLong put a lot of research into it and I seem to remember that she has a medical background of some kind... If you're interested, be prepared for a long ride! As I said it's a mega-epic, some 400k words and she spends quite a few chapters getting Duo and Heero together before she even starts with the mpreg. It's a nice read with a mixture of fluff, angst, humor and smut.
BTW, it's here: http://www.gundam-wing-diaries.150m.com/gw/ShenLong/Chimaera/prologue.htm

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jane_elliot

Re: realistic mpreg

from: jane_elliot
date: May. 20th, 2011 02:43 am (UTC)
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This fic sounds great, but suffers from the one-two shot of me knowing nothing about the fandom and of being in a zillion parts without a single file option. The first might have been overcome, but not the second (I download fic to read later and carpal tunnel has made downloading a lot of parts for a single fic physically painful). Still, I'm thrilled to see that there's a realistic mpreg fic out there!

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