Life Without Baby

Filling the silence in the motherhood discussion

Empathy With a Killer December 16, 2010

Filed under: Childfree by Choice,Current Affairs,Infertility and Loss — Life Without Baby @ 6:00 am
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I read this very disturbing story in yesterday’s LA Times. Former Food Network Chef, Juan-Carlos Cruz was recently sentenced to nine years in state prison after being convicted of paying a homeless man $1,000 to murder Cruz’s wife. The details in the newspaper of how Cruz suggested the man strangle his victim to avoid “a mess,” and how he provided doggie treats to keep his dogs from barking, are truly sickening. Regardless I read on, wondering what possible motivation there could be for this heinous crime.

A few more paragraphs in, I found his motivation: infertility.

According to the article:

Cruz told detectives when he was arrested that his wife had been “going through a midlife crisis” after unsuccessfully trying fertility treatments for more than a decade, according to the report. The couple spent more than $200,000 on fertility treatments and Cruz said he believed that killing his wife was “a ‘merciful’ way to end her suffering.”

The article continues:

Cruz, who told detectives he had considered taking his own life, said that Mother’s Day was especially painful for his wife and that he could not bear seeing her. When investigators asked Cruz when he began looking for someone to kill his wife, he told them that he had been looking for several weeks and wanted the task completed by Mother’s Day.

And this is the point where I actually felt sorry for the guy who plotted to kill his wife.

We all know (especially those of us who are childless-not-by-choice—just how hard Mother’s Day can be. I could picture this poor woman, already at the end of her rope, facing another Mother’s Day without children of her own. And I could picture her husband, at a total loss as to how to help her get through this. I can see the expression on his face, because I’ve seen that same look on my husband’s face when facing another infertility land mine and being powerless to do anything about it. Maybe murder was the only proactive thing that Cruz could come up with to help his wife.

Granted (as far as I know) my husband never conspired to have me bumped off, and I’m not condoning Cruz’s decision, but I can empathize with his motivation, even if I can’t understand, or forgive, his actions.

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6 Responses to “Empathy With a Killer”

  1. WOW… I am with you on this one too.

  2. Colleen Says:

    I think this goes to show how hard infertility is on a couple. Because the husband came up with this plan, he obviously needs help too dealing with the infertility. The wife needs help. The husband needs help. In someways it is really hard to help each other. Our families are sometimes not in a place to help because they are suffering right along with us. Sometimes I think infertility clinics should require counseling….maybe not in the first year….but certainly in the later years, certainly after things don’t work out.

    I have to say a thank you to you. I think the different blogs from other woman that don’t have kids have helped me tremendously. 99% of the time I am just happy (is that the right word, at peace maybe more?) with our life as is! 🙂

  3. lmanterfield Says:

    I couldn’t agree more about the counseling. If you were heading into any other long-term medical treatment, you’d be offered support, counseling, adn access to all kinds of resources. When you head into fertility treatments, you really are on your own.

    I’m glad you’re find peace through the various blogs. It’s also helped me to know that I am not out here alone going through this.

  4. Elena Says:

    oh sh****t. What a scary story.
    though i have to say Lisa, i read the teaser of your e-book, and there it was, the “killing fantasy”…. the other way round….:-)
    Here in Switzerland, the law states that fertility clinics and gynaecologists who start fertility treatment on a couple, should “inform couples about the physical and psychological consequences and suggest counselling”. I saw three gynaecologists for just the one try we had, and NO ONE at all went with the law and EVER even MENTIONED psychological consequences. As a consequence of which, my relationship broke up, so the wish for a child has become even more hypothetical now…:-( AND we even DID go and see a marriage counsellor. Who went along with my ex discussing relationship issues not at one moment taking the fertility treatment into account.
    So it help nothing at all.
    There is a great danger that the counselling/Psychological help becomes just one more “measure” a couple thinks they “have to take” to have a baby. unfortunately, that’s not the case.

  5. Mali Says:

    Very nicely written post. I’m with you.

  6. happynenes Says:

    Awww. Hugs to that poor woman!


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