Gay couple become parents for second time after sister offers to act as their surrogate – again

Rhiannon Stevens says helping her brother have children is a 'dream come true'

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Indy Lifestyle Online

A gay couple have spoken of their pride after becoming parents for the second time – with the help of a sister who has twice acted as their surrogate.

Rhiannon Stevens said helping her brother have children was a “dream come true” and she would do it again “in a heartbeat”.

The 35-year-old from Melbourne in Australia told news.com.au she first offered to carry her brother Clinton’s children 14 years ago when he told her he was gay.

“When Clinton came out to our family, the first thing I said was that I’d help him to have a baby when the time was right,” said Ms Stevens, according to the news website.

While her brother may not have thought she was serious at the time, she "never forgot about my promise," she added.

In 2014 she gave birth to Clinton and his partner Callum’s first child Zara, conceived using the couple’s sperm and a donor egg.

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Rhiannon Stevens with her brother Clinton Bryan-Mathieson (Facebook / Clinton Bryan-Mathieson)

And three weeks ago Ms Stevens, who also has three children of her own, gave birth to the pair’s second daughter Aiden.

She said she loved being an aunt to Zara and “couldn’t wait to help give her a sibling.”

Clinton and Callum had looked into adoption and international surrogacy to have children but both proved difficult.

Ms Stevens undertook a year of counselling and dealing with legal formalities before she could begin IVF treatment to become pregnant the first time.

And just three months after Zara was born, she said she was ready to go through the process again.

Clinton Bryan-Matthieson told the website he could never repay his sister for her kind deed and that the couple were looking forward to explaining to their daughters how they came into the world in due course.

In the UK, surrogacy arrangements such as Rhiannon and Clinton’s are legal as long as they are not arranged on a commercial basis.

The law makes it illegal to advertise for a surrogate mother and imposes a six-week period immediately after a baby is born before parties can apply to the courts for a formal transfer of parental rights.

Advocates say confusion over surrogacy legislation is growing as the number of babies born this way rises, due to improvements in fertility technology and lowering stigma about non-traditional families.

Some 214 surrogate babies were registered with UK courts in 2014-15, up from 138 in 2011-12.

World's first IVF puppies born

An exclusive investigation by The Independent revealed that NHS hospitals were forcing surrogate families to hand over newborn babies in car parks because of staff fears of legal disputes.

Another pair of Australian siblings, Samuel and Bronte Leighton-Dore, are working together to allow Samuel to have a child with his long-term boyfriend Bradley Tennant.

Ms Leighton-Dore said she is “hugely proud” to donate her eggs to her brother, which will be implanted with Bradley’s sperm and transferred to a surrogate mother.

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