Australian Couple Abandons Down Syndrome Surrogate Baby And Destroys Everyone’s Faith In Humanity

surrogate-baby-abandonedThis is one of those news stories that will just make you hate everything. An Australian couple used a Thai surrogate because they could not conceive on their own. The surrogate gave birth to twins; a healthy girl and a boy with a congenital heart defect and Down syndrome. The couple took the girl home, and abandoned their male infant with the Thai surrogate.

Pattharamon Janbua, 21, does not have the means to care for the critically ill child. She and her husband decided on surrogacy to begin with to help them through a hard financial time. She was paid $11,700 for the surrogacy – with an extra $1673 when they found out she was pregnant with twins. When genetic tests came back and the couple realized one of the twins had Down syndrome, they tried to get Janbua to have an abortion – something she refused because it’s against her Buddhist beliefs. When the babies were born, the agent took the healthy girl and left the boy with her. As if all of this wasn’t terrible enough, they’ve separated twins.

The case has turned surrogacy laws in Thai upside down. On Wednesday, senior Thai health and legal officials declared that the only legal surrogacy cases were “those in which a married couple cannot conceive a child and engage a blood relative to carry their child in an altruistic surrogacy arrangement.” From The Sydney Morning Herald:

They declared as illegal any surrogacy arrangement commissioned by an unmarried couple or a couple whose marriage is not legal in Thailand, such as a same-sex couple.

Any arrangement in which money was provided to the surrogate to carry the child was also illegal, they said.

And any foreigner removing a child from its mother to another country permanently without permission from Thailand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs would be violating the country’s human trafficking laws.

Commercial surrogacy has been largely unregulated in Thailand, so these new developments are going to affect a lot of couples. Clearly, the regulation is needed. Sam Everingham, director of Families Through Surrogacy says: ”It’s a really sad story but not the first case we have seen in this area,” he said. “There have been recent tragic cases of foreign parents not accepting disabled children born through surrogacy.” He adds that “commercial surrogacy was not generally accepted” in Thai society and has been done discreetly for years.

A “Hope for Gammy” Go Fund Me page is raising money for a series of operations the boy desperately needs and to help his mother care for him. It’s unfathomable that parents could choose to abandon one of their twin children because of health problems. What are they going to tell his sister? Are thy just going to never mention that she had a twin? Do his congenital birth defects mean that he should just disappear? This is beyond horrible. Hopefully the child will get the medical help he needs and grow up loved.

(photo: Twitter)

You can reach this post's author, Maria Guido, on twitter.
Share This Post:
    • Ashie

      This makes me so angry. So very angry. I would give anything to be pregnant, to have a baby. These people are cruel to abandon a baby, especially a twin. Are they even going to tell their daughter that she has a twin?

      • Ezzy666

        It must suck not to be able to have a baby. But does that mean all of us should be forced carry every pregnancy to term. That won’t make it easier for you to have a baby.

      • Jessifer

        You’re using a surrogate in order to have a child. You’re not out shopping for furniture that you can return for a full refund if the product is “defective”.

      • Airbones

        You are imposing a position on the OP that she didn’t take.

      • keelhaulrose

        It’s a baby, not a car. You don’t get to pick what features you want. This couple knew they were paying someone from another country to carry their child, there’s a reason they went so far too get a surrogate, and they’re using a poor, desperate woman to essentially get a designer baby.

      • Spongeworthy

        Yea, that part totally squicks me out. They’re using this woman to get what they want for cheap, knowing she’s in a poor financial situation. And they tried to get her to have an abortion even though it’s against her beliefs? They are just viewing her as an incubator. It’s gross.

      • Bleu Cheese Bewbs

        Beyond the already awful baby abandoning, you are right – there is a huge element of expoitation that makes the entire scenario that much more disgusting.

      • Spongeworthy

        I don’t know the surrogacy laws in Australia, but it’s kind of telling that they went to Thailand for the surrogate. It makes it seem like they were shopping around to get the best price.

      • Bleu Cheese Bewbs

        Exactly. Maybe one of our Aussie readers knows more about surrogacy law there, but it definitely seems that they took the cheapest option available to them by selecting a woman who was desperate to earn money for her family. When things didn’t turn out the way they expected, they completely ignored her beliefs and attempted to force her into getting an abortion. They don’t seem to register either the baby or the woman as real, actual, human beings and they don’t seem to place any value on them beyond a $ sign.

      • lea

        Commercial surrogacy is illegal in Australia. Altruistic surrogacy laws are complicated, messy and vary by state.

      • Bleu Cheese Bewbs

        Thanks for the clarification. :)

      • Kelly

        Except you do get to pick, to a certain extent. That’s why we test for certain birth defects and disabilities, so people can choose not to have the child.

        I do think the rate they paid her was ridiculous though. That’s not fair at all.

      • keelhaulrose

        If you don’t want to care for a child with special needs you don’t find a surrogate in a country with extremely restrictive abortion laws whose religious background precludes her from getting an abortion.
        I sincerely pray that girl doesn’t have autism or something.

      • Spongeworthy

        She’s not saying that at all. These people sought out a surrogate so they could have a baby. If they had the baby themselves, and found out at birth that the child had Downs, would it be ok to just abandon him?

      • Nica

        I’m thinking in the case of these monsters, yes…

      • Andrea

        They most likely would have aborted him, wouldn’t they?

      • Spongeworthy

        Maybe. Probably, even. But when you enlist someone else to carry a child for you, you lose that choice. They should have done more research beforehand and found out that A) this woman’s beliefs would prevent her from aborting and B) she would have had a very difficult time getting a safe legal abortion in Thailand.

      • Andrea

        See I think that’s the issue here. You shouldn’t lose that choice. I mean, No you cannot FORCE anyone to have an abortion. But if I were to go the surogacy route, I think I would spell out in the contract things like that.

      • Spongeworthy

        Yes, they definitely should have found someone who would be willing to abort if that was an option they wanted.
        But ultimately, using a surrogate, you will lose that choice, and I do think you should. Just because they’re paying her, they shouldn’t get ultimate say over her body.
        I think this case creeps me out too because they used a woman they knew was poor and needed the money. Like they thought since she was desperate for money, she would do whatever they wanted.

      • Andrea

        Like I said, no one should be forced to have one. But there should have been contingencies in place. For me, personally, if I had gone that route, I would have specified in the contract that I would reserve the right to either (a) allow an abortion or (b) give up rights in certain cases.
        And no they didn’t do that, probably because the whole deal was not legal in either of the countries.

      • jo

        Like someone mentioned above, just because it’s in a contract doesn’t mean it will happen. People need to keep that mind when they go the surrogacy route

      • Andrea

        True. I don’t know the laws at all.

      • jo

        I just know for DNR/DNI, you can put that in youryour living will, but your estranged children who haven’t bothered to visit you in 20 can show up and decide they want heroic measures and keep you on a ventilator against your wishes. Happens all the time.

      • http://fakegeekmom.com Aimee

        No one said that. In fact, the couple you’re defending in this article tried to force an abortion on their surrogate, which in case you didn’t notice, is actually the opposite of “pro-choice”.

      • Korine

        What? She didn’t say anything about forcing anyone to carry a baby to term. She was talking about abandoning a baby that they went out of their way to have created. Not at all the same thing as an unwanted or accidental pregnancy.

      • Korine

        I’m replying as someone who’s had an abortion. I am obviously as firmly pro-choice as you can get. But this is completely wrong, to so purposefully create a child then abandon them.

      • Rachel Sea

        As someone who is also infertile, I’m going to assume that Ashie feels somewhat similar to me on this issue, which is that of course others shouldn’t have to carry every pregnancy, but that it is desperately, painfully unfair that awful people like these get to have children, and we don’t.

      • guest

        I have to say, it seems really weird to me how many people are saying it’s extra cruel because the baby had a twin. It seems to me like it would be just as cruel to abandon the child if it were an only child. Or had an older sibling. Or younger one. Or whatever. I’m really not getting what the twin part has to do with anything, ethically speaking.

      • Rachel Sea

        To me it’s worse because they are hurting two kids. One who is medically fragile and may die for lack of care that he could be provided in what is supposed to be his home country, and languish in a Thai orphanage if he survives. The other who will find out about this story someday, and have to deal with the fact that her parents abandoned her brother, and would have abandoned her too if she was less than perfect, who might fear being abandoned if she doesn’t live up to expectations, and who will probably suffer survivors guilt for having had a home to come to when her brother didn’t.

      • Ashie

        I think why it bothers me with it being a twin is that that child will most likely find out one day that he was abandoned, and yet the sibling was kept. That would be very difficult to deal with. Either way, it is horrible and no one should do that to a child, twin or not.

    • https://twitter.com/perfctlyflawd1 JenH1986

      BRB flying to Australia for some throat punching.

      • Bleu Cheese Bewbs

        RIght behind you to hand out a healthy dose of crotch kicking.

      • Cat

        Australians are just as pissed off with the parents as the rest of the world.

      • keelhaulrose

        I’m hoping for the “booting” from the Simpson’s episode for these assholes.

      • rockmonster

        Boot to the head?

      • https://twitter.com/perfctlyflawd1 JenH1986

        I will assist them with the throat punching!

      • Rachel Sea

        I’ll switch hit with you.

      • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

        I’ll bring the cluebat.

    • Ursi

      This is heartbreaking. I cannot believe they would abandon her child. And how cruelly they used the surrogate; dumping the child on her after trying to get her to have an abortion. How could they not realize that a Thai Buddhist doesn’t have that option?

      These people don’t deserve any child.

      • Ezzy666

        I’m sure there was an abortion clause in the agreement that was signed by all parties. If someone knows they can’t handle a child with special needs should they be forced to care him/her?

      • https://twitter.com/perfctlyflawd1 JenH1986

        That’s not up for debate, the bio mother is Buddhist and doesn’t believe in abortion.

      • Ursi

        Obviously there wasn’t and if they’d done their research they’d know there was a conflict of interest. In the strictest Buddhist doctrine life begins at conception. Furthermore, abortion is illegal in Thailand except in extreme circumstances. I don’t see how that would have entered into the agreement at all.

      • http://wtfihaveakid.blogspot.ca/ jendra_berri

        Yes, you should never enter into a surrogacy aggreement with anyone who would refuse to terminate the pregnancy. If you were pregnant yourself and would terminate under certain health conditions, then you need to find a surrogate who will do the same. The couple did not do their due diligence and now this poor baby is paying the price :(

      • Jessifer

        If someone doesn’t want to have a child with special needs, then they shouldn’t have a child at all. Having a disabled child is a risk that ALL people face when they go through with a pregnancy or adoption. In some cases like Down syndrome, the disability can be discovered during the pregnancy, but in cases such as schitzophrenia, autism, etc… no one can know until the child is born and well after that. Should these children be abandoned too, once the disability is discovered? Do they not deserve to have parents?

      • Momma425

        Agreed.
        Further, I don’t think any parent wakes up in the morning and says, “hey, I want a child with autism,” or would really choose any disability. It’s hard. I get it.
        But it is a risk every single parent takes when deciding to have a child.

      • https://twitter.com/perfctlyflawd1 JenH1986

        Amen. Even if they have them on their own. A pregnancy does not guarantee a healthy, neuro-typical child. Hell it doesn’t even guarantee a child.

      • Loooooola

        That’s true; you could give birth to a raptor, and then what? #allbabiesarebeautiful #evenraptorbabies

      • Bleu Cheese Bewbs

        You’d be dead because the raptor would devour you immediately upon being born. Duh.

      • Andrea

        But when they are pregnant with their own, they CAN decide whether to bring the pregnancy to term or not if they find out there is the possibility of Down Syndrome.
        Seems this couple didn’t have that choice.

      • http://fakegeekmom.com Aimee

        Sorry, but making the choice to go with a surrogate because you cannot conceive does not revoke that surrogate’s bodily autonomy and human rights. If they really did not want a child with special needs, it was their responsibility to find a surrogate who would be willing to have an abortion in that eventuality, or to see that the child was placed into foster care.

        I’m as pro-choice as they come – but my rights end where another person’s begin, and this surrogate is no less deserving of reproductive rights for being a surrogate (or for making a different reproductive decision than the one you would have made in her place).

      • Andrea

        No I agree with you there. They SHOULD have been clearer from day 1. And they weren’t. They SHOULD have known that a Bhuddist wouldn’t have an abortion. But they didn’t or chose not to think about it.
        When I was pregnant, I made the decisions. I understand that you don’t have that when using a surrogate. However, they should have spelled it out better.

      • ted3553

        I think what the couple did (from only my reading of this article), is pretty horrible. Having a child with a disability was our biggest concern when I was pregnant and I really sympathize with the parents for not wanting a child with a disability. I also think that they needed to discuss this before surrogacy since it obviously involves a huge decision. If they had discussed it and it was written into a contract that if they found an issue, the surrogate would have an abortion, then I would understand. It seems like they didn’t and the idea of having an actual baby and leaving it-especially a twin is horrendous. Sometimes you get dealt cards you didn’t plan on and life can throw wrenches in even if you had a non-disabled child at birth. Kids can be in accidents or get a disease that makes them disabled in some capacity long after birth-what do you do then? You deal with it.

      • http://fakegeekmom.com Aimee

        Sorry, I misunderstood you! I seem to have a case of Fridaybrain.

      • LK

        I wouldn’t assume that at all. Judging by how all of this has unfolded, I’d say the only thing that would be fair to assume is that this couple and the surrogate for whatever reasons, did a poor job at outlining how any contingencies like this should be handled. And let’s not pretend that the poor, 21 year old girl is the power player in that relationship.

      • Lea

        You’re sure there was an abortion cause in the illegal and shady agreement between a relatively wealthy Australian couple and a desperately poor Thai woman? A Thai woman who’s religious beliefs prevent her from having an abortion? Ok then….

      • http://wtfihaveakid.blogspot.ca/ jendra_berri

        Most agreements do/should carry abortion agreements. If a mother will not do that, generally she is a bad candidate for surrogacy.
        But Thailand does not allow for abortion unless the pregnancy was a result of rape or incest, or if the mother’s health or life is at risk. I don’t think fetal health can play into that decision, legally.
        So, on two fronts the couple did not do their homework. They chose a surrogate who would not abort in a country where she would not be grated a legal (And thus safe) abortion.

      • Gina

        I don’t know what the laws are like in Australia or Thailand, but I took a reproductive medical ethics class in law school here in America, and basically, many clauses in surrogacy contracts are unenforceable. You can’t make someone have an abortion just because you have a contract for it, and if the surrogate has a change of heart and chooses to keep the kid herself, several states will allow her to do that. Basically, even if you “protect yourself” with a contract, there is a very real possibility a court will decline to enforce that contract for a whole host of reasons.

      • Maria Guido

        Agreed. I just wonder how or if they are going to explain this to their daughter? Can you imagine???

      • https://twitter.com/perfctlyflawd1 JenH1986

        Based on their actions, I’m going to make the leap and say their daughter will never know she had a twin brother.

      • Rachel Sea

        Someday she will google her family and the story will come up.

      • https://twitter.com/perfctlyflawd1 JenH1986

        I’m so torn on that. ON the one hand knowing how shitty her parents were? On the other knowing how shitty her parents were. I can’t imagine the kind of damage knowing my parents left my twin because s/he wasn’t “perfect”. Also makes me question what they are going to do if the daughter is delayed? Not neuro-typical, just a handful? Are they going to give her back too?

      • Ursi

        If I found out I had a twin brother that I never knew because my parents decided that he was “defective” so they dumped their problem on a surrogate in a foreign nation, obligating her to care for a child she labored to bring into this world but was not in a position to raise….

        …well lets just say we wouldn’t be seeing much of them ever again.

      • Alexandra

        There was a movie about this on Hallmark (the memory keepers daughter or something?) SO SAD but good in end.

      • Justme

        There was a book called The Memory Keeper’s Daughter before they made the movie.

      • Cruelty Cupcake

        The author of that book (Kim Edwards) has a really great book of short stories called Secrets of a Fire King, everyone should read it.

      • Sup!

        My brother wasn’t told until he was older that he was a twin. He always talked about someone missing when we were kids… My mom wasn’t able to talk about his twin because she felt so guilty that she lost one.

        Then, we found out later that my mom was a twin, in the exact same situation as my brother. She didn’t find out until she was 60. She said that she also always felt like something was missing. She showed me some of her journals from when she was a kid when she was talking about it.

        Twins know when they were a twin.

    • Valerie

      This breaks my heart. :(

    • Momma425

      I’m so sad for everyone in this situation.
      He is adorable and I want him. I simply do not understand being in a mindset of looking at that adorable child and feeling anything but love towards him.

    • shm

      What unethical f-wads. I feel sorry for that baby girl going home to live with such scum of the earth. And that poor baby boy. Just because he physically does not meet their idea of perfect does not mean he is not capable of love, joy, laughter, and all the other things that make kids so wonderful. I am seething on the inside.

    • Justme

      On one hand, this makes me very angry at the parents for being judgmental jerks and not accepting him the way he was made. But on the other hand, if this is really the way they feel about kids with special needs, I’m glad they didn’t take him and hopefully he will go to a home filled with parents and people that have huge hearts and lots of love and kindness for him.

      • https://twitter.com/perfctlyflawd1 JenH1986

        On the plus side when I went to donate money for him, it’s reasonably close to what they need for his surgery so…it looks like he’ll be getting what he needs.

      • keelhaulrose

        I understand it’s overwhelming at times to have a special needs child, but I think “dumping it on a woman with no resources who we know is poor and desperate” is not exactly a good solution.

      • Justme

        No, you’re right on that one. It sounds like the surrogacy/adoption situation is really convoluted.

      • https://twitter.com/perfctlyflawd1 JenH1986

        It seems like it was done pretty hush-hush which could only add to the confusion. I doubt they had an international attorney draw up anything.

      • guest

        I understand it either. What if when bring their ‘perfect baby’ home they are in a car accident and their child suffers a traumatic brain injury that leaves them gorked out for life? Or the child develops autism? What are they going to do then, leave the kid on the curb?

      • Cat

        I am disappointed with this Australian couple because we in Australia have universal healthcare so even the poorest Australian could have given this child the healthcare he needed so badly. I could not have left him behind so disadvantaged. It is possible however that the Australian couple were not aware that the abortion had not taken place. The Thai woman never met the couple and the Australian couple could have been fed lies by the agency that was responsible .

      • whiteroses

        If they were aware their daughter had been born, I have a hard time buying that they weren’t aware of her twin.

    • rockmonster

      Today on…It’s a Sick Sad World.
      A pair of entitled bastards dump a newborn baby with Down syndrome on their surrogate and take only said baby’s twin sister. This comes after the couple pressured the surrogate, a devout Buddhist, to have an abortion.
      Can we have our licenses to kill yet?

    • LadyClodia the Modest Rat

      In the comments for the Go Fund Me page there is a link to an article posted today that says Gammy is now in the hospital battling a severe lung infection, and his mother doesn’t think he will make it. This is such a sad, terrible story, and the quotes from the mother about it really made me cry.
      http://www.9news.com.au/national/2014/08/01/20/08/sick-baby-ditched-by-australians#7GtTY3Mw7oR5HeSj.99

      • Bleu Cheese Bewbs

        “I love him like my own. Never think that you are not my child and I don’t care for you,” she said through tears, bouncing Gammy as he grasped at her fingers.

        Crying ALL THE TEARS right now.

      • Harriet Meadow

        Me too. I’m so heartbroken at this whole situation that I’m sick. But at least he does have someone who loves him taking care of him…

      • Kitsune

        Oh god I’m so glad I’m the only one in the office and my mascara is waterproof. ALL THE FEELS.

      • Elyne

        I hope he will make it, it’s really sad.

      • https://twitter.com/perfctlyflawd1 JenH1986

        Seriously? I’m just gonna go punch things until I feel better.

      • PAJane

        That poor baby. Such a rough life, from the very start. The world can be so unkind.

    • Elyne

      This is plain horrible,leaving that poor boy behind.

    • Empathetic

      Bring on the haters: I completely understand the parents point of view. Pregnant with my first child, my husband and I decided early on that we would not continue a pregnancy if tests showed defects, specifically DS. This is all about how the parents abandoned the boy, but they made their decision early on that they did not want/could not care for a special needs child. How about we focus on that part? They couldn’t force the surrogate to abort the boy, but you can’t force the parents to take the boy that they made clear they couldn’t care for.

      • Bleu Cheese Bewbs

        If the parents were overly concerned about having a baby with special needs, it would seem they should have done a bit more research about the woman they chose as a surrogate. They didn’t, though. I mean, if I knew that X was a deal-breaker for me, I would have made sure that those terms were written into the contract up front, and that all persons involved KNEW the terms of the deal – particularly when a real, living person is the ‘product’ (for lack of a better term).

      • Nica

        Totally agree – surrogacy agreements can be as general or specific as needed. If these parents were unwilling to take on a special needs child, one that could be diagnosed pre-birth, then it would have made a lot more sense to find someone willing and able to agree to an abortion clause. Looks like they were more concerned about dollars and cents here than anything else. Sickening.

      • Empathetic

        But was there even a contract?

      • Nica

        I would certainly hope so, but there’s no way of knowing. I’m familiar with only US surrogacy laws and, even then, a contract is not a requirement it is only “strongly recommended” to protect both parties… Fertility treatments are kind of the wild, wild west here in the US and in numerous other countries

      • jo

        Agree. Even if it comes out that there was an abortion clause (which is unlikely) the fact is that the baby is here, and deserves to be treated better than gum stuck on the bottom of your shoe.

      • Jessifer

        They had plenty of options. They could have adopted a child already born that was to their “satisfaction”. They could have tried harder to find a surrogate from their own country who would have been open to an abortion if it was found that the child had a defect. Instead, they decided to PAY a poor, desperate Thai Buddhist woman a rather cheap sum of $12,000 for her to go through with the pregnancy, try to force her to have an abortion, and later abandon the baby with her like a piece of trash, when they didn’t get the desired outcome. I’m such they were much more capable (at least financially and resource-wise), of caring for a special needs child in Australia than the Thai woman is.

      • Ursi

        Except THEIR choice directly affects the surrogate. It is incredibly irresponsible to have a condition that one will not accept a child with downs and yet make no provision for it happening. Because they were too short-sighted to take it into consideration a child has been discarded.

      • lea

        Focus on the part where they wanted to force a woman to undergo a medical procedure on HER body against her wishes? Yeh, lets focus on that for a bit. Let’s focus on how appalling that is!

      • Spongeworthy

        And that is your choice when carrying the baby yourself. When you enlist a surrogate, you lose some of that choice, because it’s not your body.
        And not all special needs reveal themselves at birth. If the couple took this kid home, and some delays were discovered a few months in, can they return the baby then, since they don’t want to care for a special needs child? Pregnancy is a crapshoot. You have to accept that when you have a child.

      • Kelly

        Forcing people to care for children they don’t want is a great way to end up with dead or abused children.

        If people can’t accept it, they really do need to do the right thing and give the kid up. Not just bite the bullet and take their “punishment.” That is not a favor to the child.

      • Spongeworthy

        I’d have no problem with them giving up the child if they made an effort to get him into an adoptable situation, and made arrangements for him to be cared for until he could be placed into adoption. They just left. They took the kid they wanted, and left the other.

      • whiteroses

        That’s the main issue I have with this. They opted to dump him on a woman who couldn’t care for him, which they knew damn well. Sorry, not sympathetic towards them at all.

      • Spongeworthy

        Exactly. If you can’t handle a kid with special needs, ok. But you need to make arrangements for him so that he can be placed with someone who can. They just dumped him like a piece of luggage.

      • whiteroses

        Not to mention the amount of fucks they didn’t give about her bodily autonomy. The reasoning doesn’t matter- you cannot force someone to have an abortion. As has been said elsewhere, they treated her like an incubator. That’s disgusting.

      • WhoremonalCrazyLotusSlugalo

        You’re talking about a human being, a little boy who didn’t ask to be born, didn’t ask to be born with downs and who deserves better than “…they did not want/could not care for a special needs child. How about we focus on that part?”

      • Empathetic

        This is actually my favorite argument about Mother’s Day/Father’s Day and all the parents who have great expectations from their kids to show extreme appreciation 2 days of the year for raising them. The children didn’t ask to be born (the parents decided to bring children into the world), so where exactly do those expectations come from? You decided to be a parent and do all the things parents do. If you feel unappreciated, that’s on you, not the kids. :)

      • WhoremonalCrazyLotusSlugalo

        OK. But I wasn’t talking about that. Like, at. all.

      • Am I?

        I agree with you, empathetic. Pro choice… They made theirs. They failed in not seeking out other solutions when Plan A was not acceptable. There are multiple facets to this.

      • Ursi

        I don’t understand how some people are making this some kind of pro-choice rallying point.

        Most people here are pro-choice and they still find this disgusting. This is not about a couple exercising the right to choose. This is about a couple of scumbags failing any expectation of human decency by dumping their living child on a poor surrogate after expecting her to forsake her beliefs to accommodate them.

      • Am I?

        Everything is series of choices. My reference isn’t about conception directly. If they were the carrying party they could have aborted and no harm done. Instead the surrogate chose not to abort. And then the family chose not to take the child. Ultimately there are two understandable choices here and one that’s impact is quite severe. And I agree, disgusting.

      • https://twitter.com/perfctlyflawd1 JenH1986

        The surrogate couldn’t have aborted even had she wanted to. As several people have mentioned, in Thailand abortion is illegal except in cases of assault or mother’s health. So what this couple did was choose a place based on money not laws, got themselves into a crap situation and then said “Screw it, I’m out, you take the ‘damaged’ one, we’ll keep the healthy one.” This particular instance has nothing to do with pro/anti choice. It demonstrates crap surrogacy laws, crap research done on both parties ends regarding the surrogacy and crap follow through.

      • Empathetic

        Alright, let’s stop making assumptions about what really happened based on this blogger’s biased view. BOTH parties messed up–the surrogate sold her body in a situation where the parents could have walked away from both babies (doesn’t sound like there was any sort of contract, but the article doesn’t address that)

      • Jessifer

        Nope. Sorry. You are assuming that this was an arrangement between “equals”. You are talking about first-world people approaching a young woman from a third world country who already has two children and many debts, the paltry sum of $11,700 (less than what you would pay for a car), to have their child for them. I myself am married to someone born and raised in a third world country, and unless you know what it’s like to live under those kind of conditions, you will never understand what desperate things people will do for their survival. It’s not right to exploit people living in poverty in this manner.

      • jo

        Yes. We can’t judge the surrogate for doing whatever she needs to to feed her kids.

      • whiteroses

        As I’ve said in another comment- I am married to an Australian, gave birth to one, and am intimately familiar with their healthcare system. The average Australian has access to universal healthcare. That puts them at a higher advantage than a lot of the rest of the civilized world. And the fact that this woman is so poor she was willing to carry a child just to feed the children she already had should tell you something.

        Also- surrogacy isn’t “selling your body”. Many surrogates receive compensation for what they do, while others don’t.

      • K.

        Really? I guess in the most shallow of interpretations (which is “could I take on a special needs child”?) maybe their “point of view” makes sense.

        But first of all, the hypothetical of what you *would* do had you been confronted with a birth defect is not always an easy decision in reality. There are many people out there who think they understand their own ethics (“I’d definitely abort a baby if it had DS”), until they have to actually make an ethical decision living in the real circumstances of their lives.

        Second, your hypothetical is not the same as this situation. Terminating your own pregnancy is not the same as abandoning a child–your own child’s brother.

        I cannot understand how anyone could share or condone these parents’ actions. If I did what these parents did, I don’t know how I could ever look at my daughter in the face for the rest of my life and not remember the faces of her mother and her brother. I don’t know how I would be able to live my life knowing she had a brother somewhere and (one presumes) withholding that information from her. I would be ashamed for the rest of my life.

        I don’t know how anyone could live with themselves if they did that. You would have to be a horrifically selfish individual to do this.

      • Jessifer

        I’m sure the papers are trying to protect the daughter’s identity, but I honestly think these people deserve to be named and shamed.

      • Empathetic

        As far as we know, there was no legal contract drawn up beforehand. Assuming the surrogate knew the risks of this, both parties are at fault for this little boy’s situation.

      • http://wtfihaveakid.blogspot.ca/ jendra_berri

        No, they are more at fault as it was their children. People from the first world are more advantageous than those who are not. It says a lot that the woman, admittedly in financial straights (which is different than being in financial straits in a first world country, let’s be serious) was willing to take on surrogacy for a sum far below market value.
        It’s exploitative. And the result is this poor, unwell baby with no home.

      • whiteroses

        This. I am classified as “poor”- and yet I have a car. And a place to live. And clothes, and it know where my next meal is coming from. That makes me better off than billions of others. We’re talking like the Thai definition of “dire financial straits” and the Australian definition are one and the same. speaking as someone who is married to an Australian and has lived there- they really, really aren’t.

      • jane

        I hear what you’re saying. But what I can’t figure out is this – why not take the baby home to Australia and place him up for adoption there? I truly don’t know the laws, but could they not have done some kind of safe haven thing, or turned him over to the state for adoption? At least then there’s a chance that this child would have the love and support that he deserves. There are other options besides “no thanks.”

        I agree with you that I also would have aborted a fetus with genetic abnormalities. In their case, I understand encouraging the surrogate to do the same. But a) they didn’t do their due diligence in finding out that was not an option for the surrogate and b) figure out a MUCH better way to handle an outcome that was not to their satisfaction.

      • https://twitter.com/perfctlyflawd1 JenH1986

        These people don’t sound altruistic enough to have thought of making that babies life any better. They got what they wanted and bounced.

      • Carolina

        You cannot force a surrogate to abort. This is part of the risk of surrogacy. If you don’t want to assume that risk, then surrogacy isn’t for you.

    • guest

      I am sick of people who think that having a child with a disability is the end of the world.

      I have two neurotypical children, but I work with special needs children (Autism, Downs, fragile X, cerebral palsy). My special needs clients have taught my own children more about what it means to be human than I could ever teach them.

      • Rachel Sea

        I was a caregiver in a group home for developmentally disabled adults, and as much as I loved the people I cared for, if I found out I was pregnant with a child who was going to have significant intellectual disabilities, I would abort. I’d rather my baby not be born than potentially suffer in a group home or institution when I died or was otherwise unable to care for them. I have seen some of the worst humanity has to offer in the way those places are run. The residents were, over the course of their lives, beaten, raped, poorly fed, under-dressed, deprived of medical care, deprived of basic comfort, and denied their humanity. In the county facility, the one with, supposedly, the most oversight, a staff member used a taser on the residents for his own amusement, for years. A doctor at the state facility who had worked there for over 30 years was caught in the act of raping a patient. He claimed it was the only time, but I’ve got a bridge to sell anyone who buys that story.

        If I had a baby who did turn out to be disabled, or who became so due to injury or illness, I would love them as much as any typical child, but I’d live in terror of them outliving me.

        I do not, for one second, excuse this couple from their evil act of abandoning their son, but I do know that there may be more than the desire for only a ‘perfect’ child behind the desire to not have a disabled one.

      • http://wtfihaveakid.blogspot.ca/ jendra_berri

        I feel the same way. If you have the means to create a lifelong nestegg for a child you know will be born with mental disabilities, where you can appoint someone you trust to see to their financial support throughout their lives, then that would be amazing. Most people don’t have that, I know I don’t, and I know I would be sick at the thought of outliving a child who would need me forever.
        I have no judgement for anyone who would abort such a pregnancy. It would be a painful choice for them as it is.

      • Cruelty Cupcake

        I really, really agree. My boyfriend’s brother has a very rare genetic disorder that is WAY more severe than autism or Down syndrome…we screened my pregnancies and definitely would have aborted if the syndrome was detected. I’ve seen his group homes and that’s not an existence I would wish on anyone, frankly. It’s easy to say you would just keep the child at home with your family…but would you? If the child was a danger to himself, to you, to your other children? It’s just not as simple as some people make it out to be.

      • Rachel Sea

        Even if you do keep them at home (and I would, having enough experience to handle even someone who becomes extremely violent), at some point you may become too ill or infirm to care for them. You could get hit by a bus or struck by lightning or just get old and die, and then they’d be at the mercy of state agencies, and for-profit residential and day programs. The parents who murder-suicide with their disabled kids? It breaks my damn heart, but I understand.

      • Jezebeelzebub

        Me too- I got screened for Tay Sachs because of my Ashkenazi heritage. I would have aborted had my daughter had it.

      • Ursi

        Ashkenazim really get screwed on the genetic disorders. I hope you got screened for BRCA1 and BRCA2 as well. Cancer runs in both our families but my spouse’s is at especially high risk due to his heritage.

      • Jezebeelzebub

        No, I sure haven’t. Was that a Thing 12 years ago?

      • Ursi

        dunno, I just know they run in our family.

      • Guest

        I was not thinking about abortion, though I am for myself pro-life. I also respect that people can make different decisions about their families. I can’t condone abortion but I get that not everyone feels the same way I do and that having a special needs child is a lot of work and also can be expensive.

        I guess that I just hate the fact that they decided this boy was less worthy of living because he is special needs. He is a person too, even if he is different. A lot of people think of people with special needs as burdens or problems and not people. What I was trying to say was that people with special needs bring a lot of wonderful things to my life and not a lot of people think of what a person with special needs can do for them, they only think of what they can do for a person with special needs, or like the parents in this story what they will have to do for a person with special needs. I find it sad that a lot of people do not think of people with special needs as givers and are more inclined to only see them as takers. I am probably not explaining this very well. The story hit a nerve for me, that’s all.

      • whiteroses

        My uncle is brain damaged. My son has autistic features. We are extremely fortunate in that my uncle is able to lead a normal life (live on his own, with a job and a car and whatnot) but my grandmother is in her eighties and is worried sick about what’s going to happen when she dies. I can’t imagine how she’d react if he was even more disabled than he is. When she goes, he’ll be geographically alone, and he will have to work for the rest of his life at the same job he’s had for nearly four decades in order to keep his health insurance, because nobody else in my family can afford his cares.

        My sons diagnosis (admittedly, he is extremely high functioning- at worst he’ll be considered odd as he grows up) has lead me to come to the following conclusion: unless you have a child who is neuro-atypical, you really can’t say what you’d do. Unless you are charged with their care 24/7, 365? My son is two and is so strong he can give you a bloody nose when all he’s doing is trying to play. I can’t imagine the damage he could wreak if he was three feet taller and 100 pounds heavier.

        I’m not defending what these people did. They’re shitty people, frankly, and I sincerely hope this comes back to bite them in the ass. But at the same time- raising special needs kids doesn’t get you a medal. It’s hard as hell, and some people just aren’t cut out for it, the same way they aren’t cut out for adopting.

    • WhoremonalCrazyLotusSlugalo

      Wjfajksng;a kehgv ali;djg /adrihg /ldrkjAIH ES:gj

      I CAN’T EVEN!!!!! I… I … AARRRGGGJEHKJEF”:ELJ”ELRV “Ijrv “!!!!!

    • LK

      Surrogacy laws are woefully behind the times all over the world. Throw in the ethically dubious practice of using desperate, poor people from another country to cheaply service your medical needs, and I…special needs baby…yeah I’m out. Everything about this story is awful. And let’s not forget how completely mind-blowingly horrifying it will be for this girl twin to learn the circumstances surrounding her birth. Just completely awful. I need sugar.

    • WhoremonalCrazyLotusSlugalo

      We’ll take him! We always said we would be fine if one of our’s had downs or some other condition. No problem. My other kids would be over the moon and would be exposed to a whole new aspect of life, love, family and parenting.

      • https://twitter.com/perfctlyflawd1 JenH1986

        It appears this situation will likely make it difficult for anyone outside of Thailand to adopt for a while as they sort through the crap laws. :(

      • WhoremonalCrazyLotusSlugalo

        Honestly, this is one area of humanity that is starting to grate — like a cheese grater on the back of my thighs and then sprayed with alcohol — the idea that we are a species divided by imaginary lines and “moral”, philosophical, or just plain entitled attitudes that allow — encourage — us to remain divided. He’s just a little boy. He doesn’t deserve this.

    • T.F.

      Everyone has already covered how horrible these parents are, so I’m going to skip over that part. For me, this case really highlights the need for better laws and better counseling for people who are entering into surrogacy situation. It’s easy to be in the thick of it and believe things will work out perfectly, but no matter which side you’re on (prospective parents or the surrogate and her family), you have to go into it with your eyes open and full understanding of the laws in your area. If you personally would abort in specific circumstances, you need to have a conversation with the surrogate to make sure she’s on the same page. You can write contracts for this sort of thing, but if you’re thinking that’s your protection, you better make sure the contract is binding, because it’s not everywhere. My fertility clinic required everyone involved in my situation to sign a contract, but our state doesn’t consider the contracts binding. The surrogate and her family also have to be very clear on their legal standing if something were to happen, like the prospective parents walking away. If the surrogate is married, in many places her husband would legally be the father of the child, with all the legal obligations that entails. Surrogacy is not going away. Laws need to be clearer and more consistent (things can vary by judge and by county), and people need to be legally held to their agreements.

      • LK

        SO SO agree with this. Lawmakers and medical ethicists should be taking on these issues and constructing the best possible legal frameworks. Surrogacy can be an absolutely wonderful thing, but putting our heads in the sand and pretenting it’s not fraught with all kinds of potential issues will just lead to more of these types of circumstances.

      • http://www.twitter.com/ohladyjayne allisonjayne

        That’s what I was going to say. Surrogacy contracts needs to outline EVERY SINGLE possible situation that could arise, and how each party intends to handle it. There are so many things that can happen when you’re talking about pregnancy/labour/birthing.

      • https://twitter.com/perfctlyflawd1 JenH1986

        My guess is given the shadiness of the whole situation that they maybe weren’t exactly on the up and up. They likely didn’t employ an international adoption attorney, because the abortion clause would have come into play. That and I would imagine the surrogacy contract would have had to have been changed/modified re: twins (if they didn’t include that in the original contract). This whole thing stinks.

      • Andrea

        Out of curiosity, did you run into any legal issues when you were pregnant/trying to get pregnant with your daughter?

      • http://www.twitter.com/ohladyjayne allisonjayne

        Nope. I’m in Canada, so because we used an anonymous donor, we were able to put both our names on the birth certificate.

        One nurse at our fertility clinic who didn’t understand our situation tried to make us sign some paperwork that would’ve had my wife signing away her parental rights (the paperwork was for egg donation situations), but once we explained more, she understood and they revised the paperwork.

      • Andrea

        That’s great.

      • Canuck

        Also in Canada you can have more than two parents on the birth certificate. :D

      • http://www.twitter.com/ohladyjayne allisonjayne

        I should mention that we did speak with a lawyer at one point, who advised us that if we were concerned, we could consider having my wife adopt our daughter (yes, adopt her own biological child), but that would really only be necessary if, say, I died and my family contests my wife’s custody. But even in that situation, the lawyer said it would be pretty unlikely that a judge would side with my family.

        I guess the reverse could happen as well – if my wife died, and her family tried to get custody. But again, very unlikely that a judge would side against me in that situation. And I wouldn’t be able to adopt anyway, because I’m named as the birth mother on her birth certificate.

      • Andrea

        Right, cuz same sex marriage is legal in Canada, correct? So there shouldn’t be any issues?
        I am thinking here in the US, if it were a man/woman marriage, the child is theirs regardless. But I wonder if it is different (again here in the US) with same sex couples (since gay marriage is not legal everywhere)

      • http://www.twitter.com/ohladyjayne allisonjayne

        Yes, it’s legal here with zero legal differences between same-sex marriage and hetero-people-marriage.

        I don’t know how it would go in the US. I am guessing it would be pretty different. I’d probably be a lot more cautious.

      • T.F.

        In the US you’re not necessarily protected even with a detailed contract (it may be different in Canada, you’re often more enlightened up there :-) ). There are no federal laws that I know of, and most state lawmakers have their heads buried in the sand and often won’t do more than say surrogate contracts are not valid contracts. So you can sign one, as we did, but if legal issues came up, it would have been worthless. People really need to be aware of what the laws are in their area. There are so many ways people can have kids now (a subject I find fascinating), but laws aren’t keeping up.

      • http://wtfihaveakid.blogspot.ca/ jendra_berri

        Yes, exactly. If they only discovered the surrogate’s position on abortion after she became pregnant then WTF? That is only one of many issues that must be hammered out prior to entering into this kind of agreement.
        Also, Thailand does not allow for abortions except for the health/life of the mother, or if the pregnancy was a result of a sex crime. So she would not have been granted an abortion legally anyway, at least not without A. flying her out of her country, B. putting her up in another country that allows safe and legal abortion under these circumstances, C. paying for the procedure and D. covering the other costs that go along with missing work and travelling.
        But E, they were foolish enough to select a woman who would not abort anyway and didn’t discuss this ahead of time (?!) so that’s all moot anyway.
        I have no idea why they chose this woman in this country for their surrogate. There are other avenues. 11 grand is cheap as hell for this. Was it because they were trying to get a deal…? Was all this oversight in pursuit of getting a baby on the cheap, never mind the possible consequences?
        Ugh…

      • N.

        From what I’ve read, the surrogate did not understand much about the process at all. The linked SMH article quotes her as saying she didn’t understand what was meant by a glass tube baby and that she asked if she would have to have sex with the man. It also says she never met the parents, which makes me wonder about the role of the agent in all of this and their communication between the parties.

    • Frannie

      I really don’t have much money right now, but I’m going to find it in my budget to donate a little to this family. I hope they are able to help give him the quality of life he deserves. It makes me so upset to think his biological parents possibly could afford to help him and are just choosing not to.

    • Loooooola

      This is a baby, not a toy or an iPad or a a purse. A baby is never ‘defective’, even if that baby has challenges. I’m glad there’s a gofundme for the little guy’s heart surgery; I hope his life is full of love.

    • Lpag

      While I think what they did to the mother was heinous, I don’t think it’s so bad that they opted not to keep the child. They just should have made arrangements for a loving family with the resources to properly care for him. I had a teacher in high school who adopted a child with Downs from a family that did not believe in abortion and felt they could not handle a disabled child. I remember when we heard the story of her son’s adoption, we all thought what terrible people, and she told us we must never judge. Raising kids is hard, with extensive special needs its 10 times harder. At least they were honest with themselves that they couldn’t withstand that challenge and made sure to make arrangements for their child to e raised by someone who could. That’s what this Australian couple should have done. The fact that they couldn’t be bothered to at least make proper arrangements belies an extremely disturbing attitude toward those with special needs.

      • WhoremonalCrazyLotusSlugalo

        “While I think what they did to the mother was heinous, I don’t think it’s so bad that they opted not to keep the child. They just should have made arrangements for a loving family with the resources to properly care for him.”

        You’re right. What makes them horrible human beings isn’t that they didn’t want the responsibility of caring for a child with special needs, it’s that they didn’t lift a finger to help this innocent little boy.

      • SarahJesness

        Agreed. I could understand if they really felt they couldn’t care for a child with special needs, but leaving him with an impoverished woman who probably has even fewer resources to care for him?

    • Spiderpigmom
    • Lindsey

      In Australia, only altruistic surrogacy is legal.

      I have a couple of problems with the viewpoint in the article. First, 12,000 dollars US or Australian is a lot of money in Thailand. It’s about 1.5 times the average salary Thai salary. If you look at what US surrogates are commonly paid, it’s about .5 to .75 the average US salary. So, in absolute terms, it is not that much, but some surrogates in the US can be paid as little as 12,000 dollars and that money doesn’t nearly cover the same amount.

      Also, the couple gave up the rights to the boy fetus long before he was born. The surrogate, after refusing an abortion, was now responsible. This is fairly standard for surrogate contracts, which they may not have had, but still.

      That said, the fact that they did nothing to help the child or the mother does not make them good people, but instead people who treated this transaction like a business deal instead of like babies and people.

      • lea

        “Also, the couple gave up the rights to the boy fetus long before he was born.”

        Do you have a source for this piece of information? I’ve not read anything that suggests any such agreement was reached?

      • Lindsey

        That’s what an abortion signifies in surrogacy, generally.

      • LK

        Yes, this couple has all responsibility for those children. The end. If you didn’t discuss potential birth defects, complications, whatever, with that person, you don’t get to call freaking hot potato and abdicate all responsibility (at least not without being an incredibly horrifying human being). And I’m super confused on your money argument — are you arguing it’s way a lot in Thailand, so this is all good? So she was paid what they agreed to to carry the babies and give birth to them (NOT raise either of them), but since it’s a lot of money in Thailand, she should totally be prepared to also take and raise the special needs child the surrogate parents abandoned? Cause, wha???

      • Lindsey

        About the money, in the article, it was called a pathetic sum, which comparatively, it is not. That’s it. Not that she should be able to pay for the baby.
        For all we know, they did talk about what would happen if the fetus had developmental disabilities and she said she would have an abortion if they wanted, but when faced with actually having an abortion, she couldn’t do it. If they had a contract and that was discussed, then she was responsible for the breach of contract, not them.

        If they had no contract, then this is a prime example why surrogacy should have contracts. The custody of the fetuses and infants is suspect at best in any case, let alone one where the biological parents abandon the child.

      • Rumaikiyya

        Why does the couple have all the responsibility? Per the article, the surrogate is the one who ultimately made the decision to bring the baby to term. Why doesn’t she assume responsibility then? The article is unclear about what kind of conversations were had between the surrogate and the couple (and thus we don’t know unless you’ve seen more detailed one).

    • Alexandra

      Just thinking of how many people in this (or any other affluent) country would have taken this baby makes me rage vomit. Also, I’m not Thai but have lived there and it’s not the best environment for someone w/ special needs.

      • Pzonks

        At the VERY least they should have taken the child and placed him for adoption in Australia where he’s more likely to get adopted and get the care he needs. It saddens me that this child might be treated like a total outcast in Thailand.

    • Kelly

      I can’t entirely blame the couple. They paid a surrogate to carry their childen. One of the children had an issue that would have prompted them to abort. The surrogate refused so I guess that child is her problem now. His parents would have just aborted him.

      This is something that really should have been covered before the pregnancy ever happened.

      • whiteroses

        Maybe. But all this could have been avoided had they simply asked her what her views on abortion were prior to her pregnancy. Either way- the responsibility for the baby they created is on them.

    • guest

      Well good luck sleeping at night Aussie monsters… while your little boy, your flesh and blood, is dying in another country with this poor woman. Sadly, I doubt that this will actually bother them but I hope it gnaws on their conscience for the rest of their lives.
      If you are wanting to potentially terminate a pregnancy based on these things you need to get that squared away before the pregnancy begins. It sounds like they were just taking advantage and trying to get the cheapest option. Watch they’ll prob decide they want more kids and do it again. Scum.

      • Guest

        Can we lay off the ‘Aussie’ monsters thing and perhaps just call them monsters?

    • Jallun-Keatres

      My sister has Down’s. That should help you feel how ragey this makes me.

    • Jenna

      I know it’s not the same, but people get abortions all the time when they find out their child has Down’s or other birth defect.

    • Iwill Findu

      I feel so bad for the both babies, I mean this “perfect” little girl is going to be raised by two total assholes, and the best we can hope for for her is that she by some dumb luck ends up growing up into a decent person. If she does we all know it will be no thanks to her parents, worst case she also grows up into an asshole because she wasn’t taught better.

      As for the brother it sucks for him that his parents (term used loosely) are such assholes and ditched him, but at lest now he has a chance to have parents that will love him for who he is and his internet fame will help him on both fronts of finding a loving family, and paying for his medical care in the mean time. Because it would seem the decent people out number the assholes today.

      • WhoremonalCrazyLotusSlugalo

        Because it would seem the decent people out number the assholes today.

        I

    • Tisa Berry

      The title of this didn’t sit well with me. I’m a big disability advocate and a major fan of “people first” lingo, such as baby with Down syndrome, instead of Down syndrome baby.

    • Tisa Berry

      This story upset me. As someone who works with kiddos with various SNs, I can sympathize with both the parents and the surrogate. Raising a child with special needs is hard and terrifying and scary and upsetting. Because, goddammit your child is regressing and there’s nothing you can do about it. And sometimes getting an SN diagnosis can destroy a family, and I don’t know. I love all the little ones I work with to piece and I do anything for them. I just can’t find it in my heard to judge these people. I truly wish they wouldn’t have done what they did. I wish they didn’t abandon their son, but I cannot find it in my heart to judge them. And I truly feel for the surrogate and what she now has to deal with, but I don’t know. I’m gonna go hug all my little ones a little tighter.

    • WhoremonalCrazyLotusSlugalo

      What the fuck are they going to do if the little girl is autistic, give her back?

    • Liberty

      How sad. What’s even worse is that most people who get a diagnosis of Down syndrome abort their babies. How many of you are in favor of abortion & are now talking trash about these parents? Abortion is horrible, evil murder. Don’t be hypocrites.

      • Carolina

        I’m in favor of bodily autonomy and reproductive choice. But thanks for parachuting in to lecture.

      • Coffee&Cats

        It’s technically the surrogate’s fault. If she would’ve listened to the parents this would not be an issue. I’m pro choice. It’s not murder (learn how to science). I’m not judging these parents bc I’d do the same. They explicitly stated they did not have the means to care for a special needs kid. Now it’s the surrogate’s problem.

      • jo

        Yeah but the abortion didn’t happen, and the couple should have known it couldn’t since it’s illegal in Thailand, and now there’s a BABY that deserves so much more than this

      • Coffee&Cats

        I agree with that. I don’t think they made the right decision abandoning him after birth. I just noticed that there was a lot of shaming towards abortion due to special needs throughout the thread. So I was focusing on that aspect of it.

      • jo

        My point is, doesn’t matter what was supposed to have happened any more. If they are that cavalier about a little baby, they have no business being parents.

      • Coffee&Cats

        I wouldn’t go that far. They stated that they didn’t want that particular child. They aren’t monsters for not keeping a child they didn’t want.

      • jo

        That abandoned a helpless baby with medical problems in a third world country. They could have put him up for adoption in Australia. IMO they don’t deserve to be parents

      • Coffee&Cats

        Well that’s your opinion. Isn’t it great that we’re ALL allowed to have one?

      • jo

        Scanning the comments here and on other news sources, looks like 95% of people agree that these people are not qualified to be parents, which renews my faith in humanity. The other 5% should stick to cats.

      • Coffee&Cats

        If that’s a jab at me that I shouldn’t have kids, then the jokes on you because I don’t want any! Get more creative with your insults…

      • jo

        It wasn’t initially a jab, I only said cats because mine was sitting on my lap. I should have gone with houseplants, or ant farms.

        “Jokes on you I don’t want kids. BRB gotta go read Mommyish”

      • Coffee&Cats

        I read it because I like the articles. I didn’t realize I needed to have spawn to enjoy this site.

      • jo

        They’re essentially leaving him there to die

      • Rumaikiyya

        Yeah, but I don’t think the couple who paid for the surrogacy are obligated to be the ones to care for the baby. They made their choice when they got the results of the prenatal testing. IMHO, it’s no different than giving up a child for adoption. We don’t know anything about the parent’s material or emotional circumstances or why they felt unprepared to parent a child with Down Syndrome.

        I think this does point to the need for strong regulations. People always hate them until they need them. No surrogacy contract should exist without explicit, detailed discussion of the conditions under which the parents will not take the baby and what will happen to the baby in that case.

      • jo

        Sounds like there wasn’t due diligence in finding a compatible surrogate, they tried to save a buck. You can’t hire a surrogate whose religion is against abortion AND go to a country in which abortion is illegal. If that’s the case, the are to some extent still responsible for this baby, whether they want him or not. It would still be their responsibility to find accommodations for him that don’t include dumping on the surrogate. And as far as their state of mind, their ‘perfect’ baby could still and up with autism or any number of things, doesn’t mean they get to freak out and dump it

      • Tisa Berry

        Have you been through the trials and tribulations of raising a child with special needs? It’s hard work, it’s tiring and saddening, and upsetting and in some cases physically painful. While, I would never abort a child with special needs, I can’t, can’t think I’ll of those who do.

    • tk88

      This story pisses me off, really really pisses me off. But the reason it pisses me off is that the parents are NOT horrible. They did not just “abandon” their child. A child they didn’t want is being forced upon them. They told this surrogate to get an ABORTION. Clearly, they did not want this child, and as the legal parents of the child, they had that right. The surrogate decided she wasn’t going to get an abortion because it was against HER beliefs. I’m sorry, but that means this kid is her problem now. She is the one who chose to bring him into this world, regardless if she is the one who conceived or is genetically linked to him. I don’t care how cold that is, but it’s true. Had this been the other way around (parents wanting a disabled child and surrogate aborting it because of her beliefs) people would be outraged at what a monster she was. All the stories I have heard of, in which parents refuse disabled children from surrogates it always involves these sorts of stories. If you are against abortion, you shouldn’t be a surrogate. There are so many situations in which the child could become disabled or the parents might even change their mind. If anything I feel bad for this Thai woman because she is so poor she feels she must resort to surrogacy for money. But that does not change the fact that this woman made a life changing decision for someone else’s family and is now crying because of it. I mean really, what did she think would happen when the kid was born? It’s presumptuous and stupid to assume they would want him when he was born when they wanted him aborted. These laws and surrogacy things do need to be regulated, because we need to make sure women who rent out their uterus know what they’re in for, AND that they are not allowed to make life changing decisions for the kid they are carrying.

      • jo

        When you enter into surrogacy you have to be realistic, these things can happen, doesn’t give you a free pass to treat a baby like garbage. And for the fucking millionth time, don’t get a surrogate from a country in which abortion is illegal if abortion if on the table.

      • Come on, kiddo

        You’re missing the fact that abortion is illegal in Thailand except in cases where the mother’s life is in danger.
        They didn’t just ask her to go against her beliefs, they asked her to break the law and risk heavy punishment.

      • tk88

        I did not see the article say that. If I was, I would add that I think that is entirely wrong and unethical. It definitely changes things. However, I think that in similar situations I’ve heard of (where the surrogate wasn’t from an impoverished country) I think that it’s wrong for someone to force a special needs baby on someone that doesn’t want to parent him/her.

      • whiteroses

        Then they can put the baby up for adoption. They don’t get to abandon him in a third world country. Gammy was their responsibility. Running away doesn’t change that.

      • jo

        You know why they ran away? Because if they took him home, where there’s universal healthcare BTW, and put him up for adoption there, they know they would be exposed for the sorry human beings that they are. They probably thought they could hide this

      • whiteroses

        Oh, I know. I’m married to an Australian, my son is a citizen, and I am intimately familiar with their health care system. Which is part of the reason why I find this so incomprehensible. I’d argue that they essentially condemned their child to death, because while universal healthcare has it’s problems it’s a damn sight better than abandoning a child with severe medical issues in a third world country in the care of someone (with all her good intentions) who can’t provide him the care he needs.

      • Coffee&Cats

        I feel like that is a moot point because even if they had flew her out to Australia she still wouldn’t have gotten the abortion. I just think its effed up that a surrogate who gets money for the pregnancy and isn’t keeping the kid gets to call the shots like that.

      • whiteroses

        She gets to dictate what happens to her body. Sorry.

      • Coffee&Cats

        Not if she’s being paid for the pregnancy. Then I feel she relinquishes some control over her body.

      • whiteroses

        It doesn’t matter how much money she’s being paid. You can’t force someone to have an abortion. That’s one hell of a slippery slope.

      • Coffee&Cats

        Well then I guess the surrogate should’ve been prepared to care for him since she wouldn’t/couldn’t abort.

      • whiteroses

        You’re telling me that she should be ready to care for a special needs child (which is difficult in the best of circumstances)…despite the fact that she is clearly desperately poor and became a surrogate to care for the children she already has?

        And that despite the fact that these “parents” (and I use that term loosely) required her to do something that is not only illegal in her home country but is also against her religious beliefs (which they would have known by using their big people words and talking to her), she should just be ready to step in and do something they’re not willing to do, even though they live in a far better situation than she does and could have ensured his future by putting him up for adoption in Australia instead of abandoning him in a third world country?

        And just to be clear, your reasoning for this seems to be that because she’s a surrogate who was compensated, she’s responsible for their child because they changed their mind.

        Yes. That makes total sense.

      • Coffee&Cats

        Yes, that’s my reasoning. The amount they paid her goes a long way in Thailand. She can care for this child now.

      • whiteroses

        Does it go far enough to care for him for the rest of his life, however long that is? Because considering how bad group homes can be in the US (which is a first world nation) I’m guessing they’re not that great in Thailand. And what if he outlives her? Does that 16,000 stretch far enough to cover at least 18 years and multiple heart surgeries?

        More to the point, why is it her responsibility? Since she has no genetic link to this child and didn’t expect to raise him, why is this burden on her? And why do you find it acceptable that they used this woman as an incubator for a procedure that’s illegal in their home country? Why is it okay to you that they took advantage of a desperately poor woman and left her with a lifelong responsibility?

      • Coffee&Cats

        Listen, I don’t have the answers here. I suppose the woman can surrender the baby to the Thai government. Don’t lecture me about medical costs. I have a rare condition that requires many er trips (49 times last year!) along with medication that costs 20,000 a dose. I am often bedridden from my condition too. I am basically disabled now that I’m in my 20′s. I’m telling you this because I want to make it clear that I understand disability and all the hardship that comes with it. I can totally understand why this couple left the boy behind and wanted him aborted.

      • whiteroses

        I’m not lecturing you about anything. As I have said in other comments, I have a brain damaged uncle who suffers from regular seizures and a son with autistic features. 16,000 wouldn’t begin to cover my uncles lifelong expenses, as he requires special medication to control his seizures, and he doesn’t have a congenital heart defect. Also, he wasn’t born in a third world country. Without insurance and quality medical care, my uncle would never have made it past the age of six. That makes a difference.

        Because abortion is illegal in Thailand, this woman would have faced jail time. What would have happened to her other children? (Because in every way that truly matters- and I’m not talking biology- at this point, she is Gammy’s mother, since she is willing to raise him as her own).

        These people shit on a woman’s bodily autonomy, which she has every right to expect. Then they ran out on their responsibilities. If you don’t want your kid, you don’t peace out and abandon him. You put him up for adoption.

      • Coffee&Cats

        In a perfect world they would have done that. I still feel like fault is on both parties. Ideally, they should have flown her out to Australia and she should have aborted the boy twin, carried the girl twin to term and then this wouldn’t be an issue. I know she’s pro life, but in this case carrying the boy twin to term was a stupid choice. It’s not her kid and she’s getting paid to carry out a pregnancy. So this is a business transaction. A job.

      • whiteroses

        And in Australia, commercial surrogacy is illegal. This woman is not just pro- life, she believes with every fiber of her being that abortion is a sin and she would have been endangering her soul (if my Buddhist SIL is any example).

        If my employer told me I needed to, say, cut off my foot as a condition of my employment, I wouldn’t do it, business transaction or not, even if it was in my contract. You can say it’s not the same thing, but to a devout Buddhist, it is. It’s my body and I get to say what happens to it, I don’t care what anyone else says. I don’t see how surrogacy is different.

      • Coffee&Cats

        I think it’s different because she is essentially renting out her uterus. The comparison you gave doesn’t really apply because surrogacy is so different than other jobs. When people are paying you to carry and deliver their offspring, they should have a say in whether or not an abortion should take place. Sorry, that’s just how I feel. The surrogate shouldn’t have offered to be one if she knew that she was against abortion because pregnancy is so unpredictable.

      • whiteroses

        It doesn’t matter which part of your body you’re dealing with, it’s still yours. Abortion wouldn’t be the right choice for me, but I don’t have the right to impose how I feel about it on anyone else irrespective of circumstance. Nobody does.

      • Coffee&Cats

        I’m pro choice. I think you lose some desicion making power when you act as a surrogate. I can tell we’ll never agree on this.

      • whiteroses

        You are correct- we won’t agree on this. Because to me, pro choice means that you get to decide what you do with your body no matter what. I also believe that surrogates are entitled to make reproductive choices, especially when a medical procedure that could kill you is involved.

        And part of the reason, for the record, why I find this couples actions so reprehensible is the fact that they essentially condemned their child to death. I am married to an Australian and my son is a citizen. I am intimately familiar with their healthcare system. Universal healthcare has its problems but it’s a damn sight better than abandoning a child in a third world country with a woman who, no matter her intentions, didn’t have the resources to care for him. Once a child is brought into the world, either through birth or conception, it is it’s parents responsibility to care for him. They could have opted for so many other things here- taking him home and immediately putting him up for adoption springs to mind. They had a world of options, and the one they chose indicates to me that they deserve to be publicly shamed.

      • Coffee&Cats

        I agree with you! Lol I think our opinion is in the minority though…

      • Ursi

        You’re wrong. People who wouldn’t chose to abort have as much right to be surrogates as anyone else. I would gladly surrogate but I would never abort. The couple should always know that going in so it would be their choice. This woman was probably shocked that the couple didn’t want the child. Do you understand what it’s like to have this be a part of the beliefs you were raised with? Here come a western couple from a first world nation with different beliefs and values and they want you to just destroy what you believe in your heart to be a living child?

        This couple didn’t do right by her. They don’t care about her personal ethics or they would have figured out a way to solve this problem that didn’t involve dumping the child.

        This woman is a victim of their carelessness. Abortion is not a choice for her. These westerners with cash to burn went to a poorer nation where abortion is not legal and found a woman to carry their child without taking her personal ethics into account and then dropped a special needs child on her lap because they couldn’t be bothered to deal with the consequences. That is vile.

      • tk88

        I agree that they were totally and completely wrong to take advantage of someone in poverty. I agree it’s even worse they told her to abort when she could have faced jail time for doing so. But if you are so against abortion, you should not be renting out your body for someone else’s child because your beliefs should not be impacting another person’s family. However, if you put in a surrogate contract that you won’t abort at all, that is perfectly reasonable. The problem is people (both surrogates and parents) don’t consider these things beforehand. I think a surrogate is foolish if she thinks there’s no chance the couple will want an abortion if the child isn’t healthy or even to reduce a multiple birth. And I think it’s presumptuous for her to think they will want a disabled child just because that’s ‘how they were made’. People want healthy children, and not everyone can afford a child like that emotionally or financially. Hopefully stories like this will make people who seek out surrogates make very specific contracts and not exploit poor women overseas.

    • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

      NOPE.

      I pretty much loathe kids, especially babies, but holy shit, who the fuck just leaves their kid behind with someone who doesn’t want it and can’t take care of it because, “oh, it’s not absolutely perfect, we don’t want it now”?!

      EDIT: Clarity.

    • Courtney Lynn

      I just gotta say, looking at that pic, I’m in love with that baby. Give him to me!

    • Pingback: Parents Claim They Never Knew Of Abandoned Surrogate Baby In Thailand()

    • LCC

      The authorities should take the baby girl away from them because they are not nor will they ever be good parents as can be seen from their actions. What if the girl somewhere in the future has an accident or something and there is brain damage or she is crippled for life. Will they dump her somewhere so that they don’t have to have the bother of caring for her or return her to the surrogate which I feel that they are quite capable of doing. My prayers go out to the little boy.