QUADS! Sister offers to be surrogate mother after younger sister can’t conceive and they BOTH end up pregnant with twins
- Annie Johnston, 33, and her husband Joby, of Lewis Centre, Ohio, tried for five years to conceive but were unsuccessful
- Older sister Chrissy Knott offered to be a surrogate to help the desperate couple
- They both had two embryos implanted to increase their chances of having at least one child
- Both sisters miraculously got pregnant, and both with twins
- Johnston carried the girls while Knott had the boys
- The four children were born on October 24
This is the second case of this happening I have read about in the past few weeks and for some reason I find it upsetting.
Studies have shown that multiple births due to IVFs are actually decreasing because more doctors are refusing to transfer higher numbers of embryos. After all, becoming pregnant with multiples, especially higher order ones can have severe complications. Or worse, the couple who have spent all their time and money to have a baby, now pregnant with four, have to consider selective reduction for health or financial reasons.
That doesn’t mean that there aren’t still a lot of multiples being born due to fertility treatments like Intrauterine insemination and the use of fertility medications, because in those cases the doctors have no control over how many viable eggs are produced.
Still, when I read about something like this, and think, “what was the doctor thinking?”. I suppose I can’t be the one to judge, as long as all the babies will be loved and cared for I suppose it’s not really my business.
The fertility industry is becoming big bucks. I read an article yesterday about a woman who has made over $12,500 dollars by selling her eggs. Then, there are all those poor women in India who sell their bodies as surrogates to infertile couples in the western world. They have to stay confined in a house with dozens of other pregnant women for nine months carrying a baby and they will never see the parents, let alone the child. Yes, I suppose they make the decisions themselves, I mean, one baby will give them enough money to buy a house, but I can’t imagine the physical and mental trauma that they must go through. One woman said she did it so that her children “would never have to”, and I can sympathize with that, but just thinking about it makes my heartache.
On the flip side, there are lots of great couples out there who want children and have fertility issues. Adoption is a long, complicated and expensive process and surrogacy in North America is extremely expensive, so the cheaper India option makes sense. Although just because its cheaper doesn’t mean you should be implanting multiple embryos in multiple women (again another set of “quads” with two surrogates).
Getting back to the first couple, I suppose you could argue that had they been fertile they could have conceivably (no pun intended) given birth to four children in the five years they were trying to get pregnant. But still, as this type of thing gets more common, and sensationalized by the media, I think that people are getting desensitized to the fertility industry and the problems with “playing god”.
So what do you think? Should people receive more counselling on their options when they are diagnosed with infertility? Should fertility doctors have better ethics? Should the government get involved? Is it nobody’s business?
- Sisters give birth to twin quadruplets (upi.com)
- Rising Popularity Of Egg Donation (epicahealth.com)
- ICSI vs. IVF Infertility Treatment (parentsoffertility.wordpress.com)