The other day I received a bizarre message on Facebook. The person who sent this message is someone I added as a friend over a year ago, but we have not spoken for close to six years, either on social networking sites or in person. I’ve often thought of deleting this contact as his only hobby seems to be spamming my newsfeed with advertising for his business which is in no way applicable to me.
The message consisted out of a one liner enquiring about me and several paragraphs of how he and his boyfriend are getting married early next year and if I would be willing to carry their child. I was shocked in many ways. Yes, this man was serious. But I feel he could have at least taken me out to dinner before popping the question. I admit, I may have set myself up for that a bit, since when we did spend time together we often joked about doing it. But I was 18 and we were meant to be goofing around.
The rest of the message went on about how it’s so difficult to adopt a white baby and they want the mother to be someone they can trust. I was even more shocked. Surely, if you really want a child, the colour of the child should not be an issue (but this is for an entirely different post)? And they haven’t spoken to me in six years, so for all they know I could have turned out to be someone they can’t trust. I replied. I thought of just saying no and leaving it at that, but the message pissed me off a little. One of the first things I had to ask was if it was a joke and have they thought it through properly.
Then I mentioned that I felt a bit insulted that they ask over a message, I’m not an effing broodmare, I don’t even want to have children of my own, and it’s even worse to hear from someone when they only want something from you. Especially if it is this huge. I wasn’t even flattered, I just said no.
I felt it was important to explain to this man what happens to a woman when she falls pregnant. For nine months she has to carry and grow a little person inside her. Women are not like ATM machines that you put something in and out comes what you asked for. In fact, you have to put a LOT into a woman, especially if you want a healthy baby to be born. And it’s hormones, and emotions and many other things that I don’t know much about. And I know that IF (which in this case means never) I were to carry a child, I would want to keep it. I’ve seen mothers-to-be love their bellies, and it moves me and it would happen to me no matter how much I don’t want to reproduce. As far as I know, the surrogacy/adoption laws say that for up to four months after the birth of a baby, the mother can claim the child. This is even if none of her own genetic material has been used. In this situation, I think mine would have been part of the bargain. So even surrogacy is a very risky option. And what would be in it for me? Financial compensation for my time and figure? Would they cover the medical expenses and find me smoked eel at 2AM to satisfy a bizarre craving? Would I be allowed to see the child once it had been born? Would I be expected to breastfeed? There were just so many questions surrounding the whole thing. I advised them to think it through a whole lot more, because they clearly hadn’t.
And I haven’t heard from him since.