Brave new world: making babies to make ends meet

From the New York Times comes this sad saga of young women effectively selling their wombs to support themselves:

I’ve seen neighbors come and go, and I hope C stays forever. She was married at 16 years old, and she had two daughters before her husband was murdered. She married again, had three more children, and then that husband was convicted of a crime she can barely bring herself to mention to me. He’s in prison “forever, I hope.”

Now she’s married to F, who came to California 20 years ago from El Salvador. He works at an oil refinery, she works hourly assignments as a surgical tech, and last summer he had to sell his beloved motorcycle from my front yard for $600 so they could pay the utilities bill that went so high because of August heat.

Until last summer, I hadn’t realized the way she pulls through is surrogacy. I’d wondered why she filled out her scrubs, and then got thin, even though I never heard a crying baby.

C told me the first was for a married couple: white husband, Middle Eastern wife, sperm from him, eggs from a Hispanic woman. A boy — bald, she added. Her own had always come out with a good head of hair.

The second was for a gay couple: sperm from a Korean father, eggs from a Hispanic woman. A girl — again, bald.

This last time, the couple were in their late 50s, with four teenage sons already, who wanted a girl. She told me they were blond and very wealthy, with a huge home and nannies. “I don’t know why they want a girl, but they do,” she said. “And there are three girls in here.”…

…She made $30,000 for the first baby and $50,000 for the second one; if she delivered this girl, she would get $35,000.

Read it all.

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