Indian Fertility Clinics to Come Under Government Scrutiny

In India, a new government panel has been created to rein in unscrupulous fertility clinics  that exploit women for the purposes of surrogacy.  The new panel will create guidelines to bring IVF centers under the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PC-PNDT) Act.

The 10-member committee will study all issues related to the surrogacy practice in India, and will have some oversight over all Indian fertility clinics that help conduct surrogacy.

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24-Year Old Stock Clerk Wants to be a Single Dad

Teen Father via SurrogacyIt’s early Saturday morning.  The sun is just coming up in Barcelona.  On the street there are still some sorry stragglers making their way home from the bars.  I can hear an occasional drunken shout, and maybe a breaking beer bottle.

My oldest boy (Noah) is up and fussing, so I am up also.  Noah was also up at 1:00 am and 4:00 am.  At four months he is supposed to be sleeping five or six hours — someone should explain that to him.

Noah woke up his brother (Owen), who is now rolling in and out of sleep.  Owen ate at 4:30 — and so I’m hoping if I keep Noah quiet, Owen will give me another hour of peace.  But the post-natal fates are rarely so generous.

I’m reading about Kyle Casson in the Daily Mail.  Kyle is a 24-year old supermarket worker who wants to be a single father because he believes he may never find love.

That is a story worth writing about…

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Chinese Crackdown on Illegal Ovum Donation Mills

The Shenzhen health inspection bureau in China raided two “fertility agencies” in late October.  The two underground clinics were located in Shenzhen province, and provided illegal egg donation and in-vitro services. The news is reported in the China Daily online addition.

One of the make-shift clinics, called Shenzhen Ande Yiyangtang, was in an abandoned nursing home in Longhua district. The officers also found drugs to promote ovulation as well as massive case-history materials.

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Surrogacy Story: Chapter 4, The Hard Way

Surrogacy-BabyOur friends (call them Robert and Daniel) had returned from California with two beautiful boys… and a horror story.

The couple had paid a small fortune for the surrogacy procedure.  Initially they spent $150,000 for the surrogacy.  But the children had been born prematurely and required time in the NICU.

That’s a harrowing experience to see your infant in an incubator, baked under sunlamps, drinking saline through a tube, and having air forced into his shriveled lungs.  I went through this with Owen, and it was heart wrenching.

There are no baby cries in the NICU, because none have the capacity to make noise.  How can a room filled with new life be so similar to a tomb?  The only noises are the electronic pings of the heart and lung monitors, and an occasional high-pitched alarm when one of the machines detects a stalled heartbeat or faltering breathing.  At that point you prey again for the silence. Read the rest of this entry »

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The World’s Most Prolific Surrogate: 13 Babies for 9 Couples

Most Prolific SurrogateUnbelievably, Carole loves being pregnant.

That’s why she’s carried 15 babies, including 13 as a surrogate for childless couples worldwide.

Carole Horlock is the world’s most prolific surrogate mother.  She has volunteered her service for childless couples in Australia since 1995, when she read about surrogacy in a local newspaper.  She never accepts compensation, beyond her out-of-pocket expenses.  Her remarkable story of charity and sacrifice is detailed on the online news site

“I’ve never had any regrets,” she says.  “The parents are all lovely people who have been through so much heartache, and I know I’ve given people who can’t conceive the most precious gift of all.”

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Surrogate or ‘Just Friends’?

A woman in Houston is claiming parental rights over the twin boys she gave birth two on behalf of a friend, using in-vitro fertilization and a donor egg.  The woman, Cindy Close, claims that she was promised by the genetic father, Marvin McMurrey, to raise the father together as “partners”, but that after the children were born, the man and his boyfriend claimed custody of the twins.

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Chinese Surrogacy Dreams: Starting a Family in the Land of Traditions

Chinese Surrogacy“Every morning when I am washing myself, my son holds on to my legs while calling me Dad. And I feel that a beautiful day has just begun…” — ‘Qin’ Chinese Father via Surrogacy

The Global Times reports on the story of a Beijing man (called Qin, although that’s not his real name) who realized his dreams of family life in 2011.  The fascinating story describes their path to surrogacy, issues nationalizing their new son, and the social stigmas attached to same-sex parents.

Surrogacy is actually forbidden in China, but it is becoming increasingly popular among gay couples, as well as heterosexual couples frustrated by infertility.

Chinese society is very family-centric, and having a family is a central component of many long-term relationships.   According to Qin, “children are the third leg of a family and vital to maintaining a relationship.”

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NYT Article: Making Babies to Make Ends Meet

The New York Times Review offers a story of an American Surrogate in its opinion pages this week. The article, “Making Babies to Make Ends Meet,” describes the situation of a chronic American surrogate, on her third child for cash, and contemplating her fourth.

This story is the contrasting point-of-view of the Mitt Romney’s grandchild, born of gestational surrogacy to his son Tagg.  The Romneys apparently have a good relationship with their surrogate, who also delivered a previous child to Tagg.

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Australians Choose Surrogacy in India over Domestic Options

Surrogacy AustraliaA record number of Australian couples are pursuing surrogacy in India in 2012, and even taking extreme measures to pay for the service.

According to a survey, there have been 200 recorded surrogacy births in India to Australian couples so far in 2012, compared to 179 in 2011, just 86 in 2010 and 47 in 2009. The increase on popularity is attributed to the ease of the process in India compared to the complex regulation of surrogacy in Australia.

The research also found that the average cost of surrogacy for an Australian couple was $176,000 in the United States, and $77,000 in India.

Note that that figure still far exceeds the $29,000 offered by Sensible Surrogacy, which provides Surrogacy services in India for couples in Europe and the UK.

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Surrogacy Story: Chapter 3, The Old Fashioned Way

Soup Kitchen

Waiting in line…

Adoption in Spain is a government-controlled industry.  There are no private adoption agencies where a young girl goes online and chooses a handsome gay couple to hand her baby over to, with the promise that they’ll provide it with a life of fabulous designer clothing and first-class travel.

In Spain, adoption is like going to the soup kitchen.  You fill out the appropriate paperwork and stand in line.  There is no alternative.   The wait is long – and we were advised it would take about 3 years.  But the Spanish government fills your time by requiring special parenting courses, psychological evaluations, marriage counseling, and more parenting classes.

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