Woman Sets Out to Ban Surrogacy

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Lahl says there should be an outright federal ban on surrogacy. In her film, she cites several examples of arrangements gone wrong.

Heather, an Arizona mother of two who agreed to be a surrogate, said she was asked by the intended parents to abort when the fetus was diagnosed with open lip schizencephaly. She says in the film that she did not want to “play god,” and found a family willing to adopt the boy. In the end, according to the film, the parents kept the baby, but the father was hesitant to even hold the boy at the birth.

One surrogate from New Jersey carried twins for her gay brother and his partner then ended up in a custody battle, according to the film. Another from Minnesota who carried a child for a same-sex couple and fought successfully to get visitation rights, said she was asked by the little girl years later, “Why did you give me away, when we look alike, but you kept the other children?”

But advocates for infertile and same-sex couples say with the right laws, deserving parents should be able to enjoy the families they can’t have biologically.

“Everyone wants gestational carrier surrogacy to be ethical and to follow all legal standards,” said RESOLVE’s Collura. “No one wants a bad outcome. I truly believe that if all parties are following the best medical, legal and mental health guidelines the best outcomes will occur.”

She also asks how gay men will be able to have families if they do not have the right to parent a biological child.

“Medical advances now allow people to see who were blind; people to walk who lost legs; and people to live lives that a few years ago no one thought was possible,” said Collura. “We have the medical technology to allow people to become parents and why should we simply ban it?”

“Banning gestational carrier surrogacy is a way of saying that certain people shouldn’t have children,” Collura added. “I am not sure that is what our country wants to tell people.”

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