Children are precious, rare commodities in the world of The Handmaid's Tale. The production of children has become the Republic of Gilead's overarching goal, governing nearly every aspect of life. Yet while the goal of creating the next generation is overwhelming and seemingly necessary, traditional ideas about parenting and family are turned inside out. Birth mothers must produce babies or they essentially get a death sentence, but they don't get to keep their children. Chances for fertility are parceled out to men (and their "households") according to how much power or status they have.
Ultimately, the Republic of Gilead's whole focus on Handmaids as vessels for childbearing is fruitless, because it undermines ideas of parenting and creating real families.