If I had never learned about the trauma of separating a mother from the baby she has carried in her womb, I would have more support for surrogacy. Because I have learned about this (as part of my own journey coming to terms with all of the adoptions that are part of my immediate family’s experiences) I cannot condone it.
A woman recently posted a very compelling op-ed to The Washington Post about why surrogacy became necessary for her. First of all, she does have a child. She writes that she is a genetic carrier of HY-restricting HLA class II alleles and goes on to explain that this means her son’s Y chromosome lingers and attacks all subsequent pregnancies. In essence, she had this small genetic component and she gave birth to a boy. From then on, her odds of successfully carrying another child became slim to none. Her husband and she found they could create an embryo, but her body could not carry it. So the couple started down the rabbit hole of surrogacy.
My own sister-in-law did eventually become a parent by surrogacy. I am happy for my brother-in-law that he has a son. I also know there is a deep subconscious issue that they are unlikely aware of. In our family, we were not supportive of this couple becoming parents because the woman always was a basketcase full of all kinds of psychotropic drugs. They also acted as though creating a child was simply creating another possession and intended to have a nanny after the baby was born. And they did but she didn’t last long and my brother-in-law has ended up the primary caregiver for this young boy.
A developing fetus is constantly bonding with the mother in who’s womb the infant is growing. That bonding process continues after birth for months/years into the young child’s life. The case described in this op-ed is of a surrogate who is carrying twins for this couple. There is a definite bond between twins and multiples. Maybe that will help but will not entirely remove the wounds of losing their gestational mother.
One can argue that genes matter and I know this. I assume the soon to be parents do have a genetic connection to these twins based on other details in the op-ed. However, there is more to this situation than genes alone.
I do not wish any child to be stigmatized because of the details of their conception. I have a lot of personal compassion for that issue. This woman admits that surrogacy is more political than she realized but I know she still doesn’t realize the full import of their choice. She admits to knowing that there is an array of advocates trying to end surrogacy on a national level. I understand why.