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Surrogacy

Surrogacy is a procedure in which a woman, known as a surrogate mother, agrees to bear a child for another woman or couple who is childless. Every family wishes to have a child of their own, but if the woman is infertile or has problems giving birth, it is difficult for them to do so, and therefore their wish remains unfulfilled. In order to satisfy this wish, the couple may continue to use other methods to conceive a child, one of which may be adoption. Adoption is good as far as it is concerned with the childless couples but in this era when the number of children for adoption is decreasing day by day and the procedures in the adoption process getting complicated, the best alternative, therefore, remains to be surrogacy, as discussed in this essay.

Surrogacy is categorized into two types, Traditional and Gestational depending on the method used. Traditional surrogacy is whereby the intended father’s sperm is used for insemination and the child born is partially genetically related to the father and partially related to the surrogate. This practice dates back to the old Biblical times, to Abraham and his wife Sarah who had no child even up to their old age, because God had closed her womb. In Genesis chapter 16, the couple agreed that Abraham should have intercourse with Hagar, Sarah’s handmaid, and raise a child unto them who could be called after them (Holy Bible). This practice would go on even to Abraham’s grandson Jacob, whose wives, Rachel and Leah, also did the same by giving their handmaids to Jacob so as to raise children unto themselves. In modern times, the practice has been modernised and even categorised to come up with gestational surrogacy where, either an embryo is formed from the egg of the intended mother and the sperm of the intended father to and artificially inseminated to the surrogate to produce an offspring that is genetically related to both the intended father and mother.

Surrogacy might be the only hope for some couples to fulfill their desire of having any children who are genetically identified to them. Women who are infertile and cannot ovulate, those who have no uterus because of hysterectomy or one that is functional, those with severe medical conditions like heart attack, breast cancer or chronic diabetes or kidney disease and those who have had miscarriages in the past, all have hopeless cases of having children genetically identical to them. The same-sex couples like gays or lesbians and even the unmarried people due to various reasons all have no chance of having children. For continuity of generations of people such as these, the considerable option will be surrogacy. As much as adoption provides an option for them, yet when considering the baseline intentions for these cases, the surrogacy would be more preferable. For adoption, for example, the intention for a person who wants to sell his or her child would be that the child might have been born out of an unwanted pregnancy. While on the other hand surrogacy will only be as a result of one desiring so much to have a child but could not. The unwanted pregnancy as a factor in the case of adoption is replaced by a strong desire to get pregnant in surrogacy as said by Faith Merino (Merino). She also said that the contracting or intended parents have the privilege of deciding the heritage of the child in surrogacy, one that the adoptive parents do not have were they to have the child.

Surrogacy is not a myth, or a theory that some may think is something so had to accomplish. It has been done in the past since the first girl child was formed in a test-tube by Dr. Anand Kumar from India in the year 1986 (Brick). Since then research has been done the number of people who have embraced and adopted surrogacy as a means of fulfilling their desire to have a child. From research conducted by Margaret Brazier et al., they found out that in the recent times the number cases of people who have turned to surrogacy to have children have been rising, and from the findings, they suggested that the numbers were expected to rise (Margaret Brazier). A similarly supporting finding was also suggested by Vasanti Jadva et al. in their research. They found out through a surrogacy agency; more people had opted to get children through surrogacy due to various reasons as discussed above (Vasanti Jadva). From their findings, they found out that the women who had decided to become surrogates did so for various reasons. A higher percentage were motivated by a desire to help childless couples to have a child; some became surrogates because they enjoyed being pregnant while some became surrogates because of financial needs. Regardless of these motivations of the surrogates, the driving force remained that a childless couple desired to have a child. While some may make the assumption that the process of surrogacy prove to be difficult to go through, such that, during the pregnancy the child and surrogate mother may develop a bond, which after birth may be a stumbling block for the surrogate to hand over the child to the intended parents, this will only be an assumption as far as it goes. This is because, from the research, the findings indicated as the fact that all the surrogate women interviewed had a positive experience and that they would hand over the children to their intended parents without any doubt.

In conclusion, considering the options at hand for couples that do not have children but who wish to have, surrogacy is a better option. By finding a suitable surrogate or sperm donor, they can raise a child who is identical to them all or at least to one of them. This can avoid social problems that the child may face when growing up, for example, he or she may not fully feel part of the part if he was adopted when not within the infant stage. Furthermore, it is more pleasant and satisfying having a child of your own genetic composition born through surrogacy other than one whose genetic composition is not identical to either of the parents. Couples can get a surrogate in good health condition, willing to gestate the child for them, follow the legal and ethical procedures put aside by the authorities and get their child within a year, a satisfaction to their desire of having a child.

Works Cited

Brick, Mary Lane. Surrogate Motherhood: History and Concept. 1994.

Holy Bible. New King James Version. n.d.

Margaret Brazier, Alastair Campbell, Susan Golombok. "Surrogacy: Review For Health Ministers of Current Arrangements for Payments and Regulation." 1998.

Merino, Faith. Adoption and Surrogate Pregnancy. New York: Infobase Publishing, 2010.

Vasanti Jadva, Clare Murray, Emma Lycet, Fiona MacCallum, Susan Golombok. "Surrogacy: the experiences of surrogate mothers." Human Production 18.10 (2003): 2196-2204.

August 09, 2021

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