One surrogate mama’s ordeal has gone viral after Jessica Allen spoke up about the heartbreak of being separated from her own son after a confusing surrogacy situation.
The US surrogate was believed to be carrying twins belonging to another couple. In fact, one of the babies was biologically hers, thanks to a rare medical condition.
Jessica Allen became a surrogate for a Chinese couple who were hoping to have a baby. As part of the agreement, Allen underwent IVF to have a frozen embryo implanted into her uterus.
Surrogate Mum Unknowingly Gave Away Her Own Baby
When the mama of two discovered she was carrying twins, doctors assumed the implanted embryo had split in half, resulting in identical twins. It wasn’t until the babies were born the mistake was realised.
After the birth, the babies were quickly taken to meet their biological parents, so the misunderstanding wasn’t immediately picked up.
The biological parents of the babies soon realised something was wrong when their supposedly identical twins looked completely different. A DNA test revealed the second baby was in fact the biological child of the surrogate mother, Allen, and her fiancé, Wardell Jasper.
Though incredibly rare, it is possible for women to continue to ovulate after they become pregnant.
Very rarely, a second conception occurs during a pregnancy.The phenomenon is known as superfetation, and it is so rare only a handful of cases have previously been recorded.
Superfetation is more common among animals such as badgers, buffalo and panthers. Only about 10 cases of human superfetation have been documented in medical literature, showing just how rare this phenomenon is.
Jessica Allen’s case is likely to go down as the most memorable example.
Despite not having sex with her fiancé until doctors gave her the green light, Allen became naturally pregnant with her own child shortly after she conceived through IVF.
The two babies in her womb were not related, and because they were conceived during different cycles, they were not exactly the same age.
Somewhat surprisingly, the mistake was not easy to rectify. Allen and Jasper had to enter into a lengthy legal battle to gain custody of their child. Their baby son, whom they named Malachi, was two months old before his biological parents were awarded custody and could bring him home to live with them.
You can read Jessica Allen’s full account of the experience here.