In Spain for surrogacy seminars, a surrogate mother and her husband explain to El Pais why they decided to carry children for others.
A Circle surrogate and her husband, alongside the gay dads for whom she carried a child, were interviewed in June by El Pais, the largest newspaper in Spain. Myriam Spoke about how surrogacy is a "family affair" and de-mystified some of the misconceptions in Spain surrounding the matter. Myriam's husband Robert and their girls were involved and supportive of her carrying a baby for a Spanish gay couple. The story of this remarkable woman embodies Circles philosophy that surrogacy is a process in which families help create other families. Myriam demystifies misconceptions presently held by many Spaniards about surrogacy and explains that most women who are surrogates working at Circle are professionals, in their mid-thirties, who already have children and are raising a family. They do not carry a baby for just money but rather wish to contribute towards society and be able to help others fulfill their dreams. Furthermore, being a surrogate has enable Myriam to teach her daughters that love and family come in many shapes and forms.
See below for translated excerpts from the article and a link to the original on ElPais.com.
"I didn't carry the children for money"
A surrogate mother and her husband explain why they decided to carry children for others; the practice is illegal in Spain, but legal in the United States.
Excerpt from El País, June 2010
Reporter: Emilio de Benito
"I would not do it for free, but neither did I do it for the money." Myriam, 39, U.S. (though born in Mexico), speaks with energy and sympathy of her decision to be a surrogate mother twice... The story began four years ago, when she learned that her friend, desperate because she could not be a mother, was looking for help. "I had a personal connection with her; so I spoke with Robert about it and he told me that he had no objections with me becoming a surrogate for her."
The United States (but not all states), is among the few countries where they could have this done... In most Western European countries, including Spain, the practice is prohibited.
Because she found the experience helping her friend so gratifying she decided to become a surrogate through the agency Circle Surrogacy, which is why she and her husband were in Spain to speak at a seminar (in Madrid today, tomorrow in Barcelona), organized by the agency, on surrogate pregnancy. She has since been counseling a group of women interested in becoming surrogate mothers. Which enables her to give the following generalizations...
Reynolds is having fun breaking down prejudices that people might have about her. "I'm very normal" she says, looking at her husband, Robert Wright... "Most are woman like me, professional or even hold a masters degree, who are in their thirties, who already have children and are raising a family." In fact, one of the conditions to be hired by the agency is that they must already be earning an income and not become a surrogate only for the money.
The couple-she, a psychologist, he, a nurse, are parents of two girls, five and six years... The babies Myriam carried for other couples "are not my children, they do not have my eggs nor my husband's sperm," she says convincingly, totally contradicting Spanish law, which states that the mother is the person carrying out the pregnancy, regardless of the origin of the embryos.
"The money helps. It gives clarity to the relationship with intended parents... "Do you not get paid for your work, however much you like it? Isn't it the case for doctors, teachers, nurses? Although their work involves saving lives and is very fulfilling and gratifying, don't they also earn money? For me its the same. Besides, the steps involved in surrogacy are time-consuming and annoying, you have to give yourself shots for two weeks, you lose days of work during the pregnancy and after the childbirth. It is fair to get paid for the service," she insists.
The woman offers a different perspective to what she has done: "Our family is multiracial, and, in some ways by helping this gay couple, which wanted so badly to have a son, is a way for us to contribute towards society. We have friends who really had a hard time because they weren't able to have children. If we can help someone become happy and enable gays to become fathers and lesbians, mothers, then we will be happy. "
For this reason we are so proud of our daughters who understood during the last pregnancy that they were not going to be getting a little brother. "They knew, as well as everyone around us." By getting to know George and Vincent, our girls have learned that two men or two women can fall in love and marry."
Link to the full article in Spanish published in El País