Using in-vitro fertilization or surrogacy to get pregnant has always been a source of controversy within the pro-life movement.
On one hand, there is the marvel of technology and the love of a newborn baby, especially for couples unable to conceive who desperately want to have children. On the other hand, there is the issue of “selective reduction,” the fancy euphemism given to the abortion of one or more unborn babies when couples find themselves lucky enough to have had more than one human embryo [read” unborn child] successfully implant and begin the growth process to birth.
Fiona Whyte and Sean Malone of Ireland did just that. Pregnant with triplets, they had their surrogate have an abortion of one of their unborn children to “improve the odds” the other two babies would survive. Instead, they’re left guilt-stricken about their decision to end the life of one of the babies they could have had.
The Irish Independent newspaper has the story:
AN IRISH couple who had twins using a commercial surrogacy clinic in India have spoken of their “dilemma” and regrets that a viable embryo with a heartbeat was aborted to allow the birth of their twins.
Fiona Whyte and her partner Sean Malone travelled to India last year to start a family via surrogacy after five years of failed IVF treatment that cost €30,000. Fiona (52), works as an Inspector Manager for the Health Information and Quality Authority, and Sean (53), does contract work for Eircom.
The couple, from west Clare, who both have children from previous relationships,paid €25,000 to a clinic in Mumbai to facilitate the birth of twins — a boy and a girl — through an impoverished young surrogate.
Ms Whyte and Mr Malone opted to implant three embryos fertilised with Mr Malone’s sperm — and eggs from a separate female donor in India — into the surrogate’s womb to boost their chances of a successful pregnancy.
As a result, the surrogate, who was paid just 20pc of the overall fee, was carrying triplets. But one of the embryos was subjected to “foetal reduction”, or termination, because the clinic does not allow surrogates to carry triplets.
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Ms Whyte and Mr Malone speak of the dilemma posed by the clinic’s strict ban against triplets.
“We took a gamble, but we really, really wanted it to work and we felt we were increasing our chances by going for three (embryos),” said Ms Whyte.
“It was really on that basis that we went for it. We felt this was our last shot.”