A few years ago, Andrea Fischer told her friend Kerry Greenley that she wanted to have a child. The B.C. native is 40 and single and had suffered from cervical cancer and a hysterectomy at the age of 25. Although the cancer was gone, so was her chance of getting pregnant. After a year and a half of thinking about it and prompted by meeting another surrogate mother, Greenley told her friend that she would carry her baby.
In a report from Canada's CTV news, Fischer is quoted as saying she was speechless, "This is a dream. How do you ask someone to borrow their body for nine months?"
The in-vitro fertilization treatment took place at the Genesis Fertility Centre in Vancouver with Fischer's eggs and an American sperm donor. Greenley, who has a 14-year-old son, says she was motivated by wanting her friend to experience the joy of motherhood. Although people have told her she's selfless, she says she is definitely getting something out of it.
Surrogacy has been legal in Canada since 2004 but it's against the law to pay the surrogate. The intended parent can only cover expenses. Surrogacy remains largely unregulated and Fischer and Greenley signed a 23-page surrogacy agreement to protect both parties rights and avoid any conflict down the road.
Greenley is expecting Fischer's daughter on February 13. Her name is Isabella.
Baby Mama took the idea mainstream but the surrogate business has been booming for a while, especially in India where surrogacy costs about $12,000, including all medical expenses and the surrogate's fee, compared to up to $70,000 in the US. Would you hire a surrogate? Under what circumstances? Why or why not?