Modern Surrogacy: Choosing between Traditional or Gestational Essay

Modern Surrogacy: Choosing between Traditional or Gestational Essay

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The concept of having children for other people is not a new idea, in fact it happens in the Bible. In Genesis 16, Abraham and Sarah have a child by Sarah’s maidservant Hagar (NIV Genesis 16:1-4). So surrogacy in its most basic form—a woman birthing a child for another person of couple—is not a new concept. However, it is prohibited or void and unenforceable in five states. What is it about modern surrogacy that do people not like? What even is modern surrogacy? There are two types of surrogacy: traditional and gestational. Traditional surrogacy is a contractual situation in which a woman becomes impregnated, by artificial insemination, using her own egg and the sperm of a man. Gestational surrogacy refers to a contractual situation where a woman agrees to have an in vitro fertilized (IVF) embryo implanted in her uterus (Gugucheva 6). In both types the gestational mother—woman carrying a developing fetus in her uterus—agrees to relinquish her parental rights to the child. In traditional surrogacy the gestational mother is also the biological mother of the child while in gestational, the gametes of the intended parents or donors are used. The subject and morality of surrogacy has been debated for years for many reasons, but surrogacy, both traditional, and gestational, is moral.
One of the most common reasons people object to surrogacy is the idea that it treats children like property. In an article about the moral problems with surrogacy, Jacqueline Laing argues that through surrogacy “Children are being treated as if they were mere commodities to which commissioning parties have a right” (Laing 117). She suggests that because people are paying to have children brought into the world, they are looked at as manufactured entities an...


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...d for it. If a person is infertile, or a couple cannot have children, surrogacy is not the only option. Charles Dougherty asks “Why shouldn't infertile couples turn to adoption as the solution? Only because they desire a genetically-related son or daughter--and isn't this a morally defective desire? Isn't it self-indulgent to demand a "copy" of oneself and one's partner when so many other children stand in need of loving homes?”(par. 6) and Faith Merino points out in her book Adoption and Surrogacy Pregnancy that, when dealing with surrogacy “little mention is made of the fact that more than 100,000 children in the United States are awaiting adoption” (22). Dougherty says it is selfish, and it is, in some senses, but it is also a natural desire. Merino maintains that “for many people, the need to have a child of one’s own is a powerful biological drive.” (Merino 23)

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