Surrogacy is a pretty complex area to get your head around, and it’s especially challenging to explain surrogacy to children. How do you educate your children when you are acting as a surrogate, when you are the intended parents of a surrogate baby, or indeed when trying to explain the unique circumstances of your child’s birth story when they themselves were delivered by a surrogate mother? Continue reading “Surrogacy Book Review: The Kangaroo Pouch” »
We are feeling so happy as today we became our children’s parents. Sounds kind of strange, but until today my biological children, our little twins, were not considered legally our children because they were born with the help of a gestational surrogate. British law recognises the surrogate mother as the legal mother, and if she is married or co-habiting, her husband or partner as the legal father. No matter that we are the biological parents, or that when they were born in the USA we were issued US birth certificates for our babies which clearly name us as the only parents. Continue reading “Legal Parents! Our Surrogacy UK Parental Order Granted” »
In summary, a British couple paid Indian surrogates to give birth to their children and have just been granted parental orders in the British High Court.
Once in a while these stories appear in the national press, but interestingly parental orders are issued to UK parents of international surrogate babies much more often than is reported. At our first hearing in the High Court we were one of three couples appearing that day requesting parental orders!
However, this is the first time I am aware of where a surrogacy arrangement in India has been publicly granted a parental order. The Judge, in this case Sir Nicholas Wall, has to feel confident that the amount paid would not ’overbear the will of the surrogate’, and this can be more questionable in India due to the low average earnings.
Nonetheless, parental orders have been duly granted and above all, the welfare of the children was again considered paramount in an echo of similar cases where Justice Hedley has published similar outcomes. All good news for British couples looking in to international surrogacy to overcome infertility.
There was a Hague Conference at the end of August at the University of Aberdeen to debate international convention on surrogacy, not dissimilar to the Child Abduction and Adoption conventions. There were practitioners and academics attending…I wonder if any surrogates or Intended Parents were actually there? I suspect people who have been through it on a personal level would have much to add to the debate – at the end of the day it’s about creating families and it can be hard to remove the emotive element when considering what to do to create international understanding. Continue reading “International Surrogacy Conference in Aberdeen” »
BBC1 – I’m Pregnant with Their Baby (A surrogate story, aired August 2011)
Interesting look at 3 British surrogates, and it seemed to me to be quite a balanced view. Very brave of everyone to take part, showing the process warts and all. I know from our experience that we felt incredibly private throughout the process and would not have been comfortable being so public about our surrogacy experience at the time. I take my hat off to them. Ultimately this kind of program increases awareness of surrogacy and helps people understand what motivates people to do become surrogate mothers. It won’t be too many years from now that the UK is more desensitised to surrogacy as a way of creating longed-for families and it becomes more common, like IVF did some years ago (well, maybe not quite that common, but you get my drift).
And Then There Were Three: ‘The Exceptional Story of a Remarkable Family’ by Ian Mucklejohn (Gibson Square Books, 2005)
This sweet autobiography tells of a how a single man from the UK pursued surrogacy in the USA and had triplet boys. Continue reading “Surrogacy Book Review: And Then There Were Three” »
Becoming infertile at 29 years old, I worried that I’d never complete my family. I felt very alienated from my peers, all seemingly pregnant one after another. But here I am on my 37th birthday with the family I’ve always dreamed of. It’s been a long road, but I feel back on track and immensely proud of us all.
She’s currently on police bail due to phone hacking and is high up there as one of the most reviled women in the UK today. Newspapers, ironically, are respecting her privacy and not reporting on who the surrogate is.
Rebekah Brooks has said that she wants to ‘recognise their own good fortune by working in some way to help others facing similar challenges.’ I totally get that sentiment – it’s my philosophy exactly. I hope she isn’t purely paying lip service to it though. Surrogacy does deserve a higher – and more positive – profile in the UK. Ms Brooks…feel free to subscribe to my posts…
This case made me shudder. What a terrible story and one which would make any of us undertaking surrogacy abroad think twice. France has a zero tolerance approach to surrogacy and this couple, no different from us except nationality, resorted to such desperation to get their surrogate twins back to France from the Ukraine that they were caught smuggling them in hidden in a chest in the back of a van. I’m told that the twins are still stuck in nationality limbo with their parents living as exiles while they fight French immigration laws. Continue reading “Family held after trying to smuggle surrogate babies out of Ukraine” »
Surrogacy. Some people look at you strangely, not quite understanding the word’s meaning. And fair enough. It’s not every day you meet a woman who has a biological child carried through gestation by a surrogate mother and handed to her at birth. But then maybe you have never met someone who couldn’t carry their own baby and had the determination, drive and imagination to make the dream of having a biological child through surrogacy a reality. Or maybe you are that person too, with those same dreams? Continue reading “Surrogacy: going public…” »