International Surrogacy Ripening in Texas

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    NEWSLETTERS

    NBCDFW.com
    Tanya and Darren Doyle are the proud parents of Sophie and Julian, who were born to an American surrogate mother who agreed to carry the couple's biological children.

    Tanya and Darren Doyle are the proud parents of new twins. But the path that brought them to that moment was a winding one that took them more than 8,000 miles from Australia to Plano. 

    The Doyles' twins, Sophie and Julian, were born to an American surrogate mother who agreed to carry the couple's biological children. Texas was a prime destination for the Doyles because changes in state law have made the Lone Star State more surrogate friendly.

    The Plano-Born Australian Babies

    [DFW] The Plano-Born Australian Babies
    Australian couple will leave Texas with twins after born in the Lone Star State in an international surrogacy. (Published Thursday, May 13, 2010)

    Their journey started with dozens of unsuccessful infertility treatments in their home country. Doctors finally told the Doyles that their best hope was a surrogate, or gestational carrier, who would carry the couple's embryos to birth. But they faced an additional hurdle -- surrogacy is banned in Australia.

    The Doyles traveled to Los Angeles, where an agency helped them find the Texas woman who would help make their dream come true, times two.

    Two weeks ago, their surrogate mother gave birth to the twins at Texas Health Plano Presbyterian hospital. 

    "We will never be able to thank her enough," Darren Doyle said.

    "For me, it's just a dream come true," his wife said. "Honestly, it's been a long, hard journey."

    The American Society for Reproductive Medicine said there are no statistics available to show how many couples travel to foreign countries to find a surrogate. In Texas, doctors suspect there are just a handful of cases each year, but the practice may grow as more become aware of the option and the state's laws.  

    Plano fertility specialist Dr. Al Rodriguez said changes the Legislature made in the last decade have put Texas on the list of surrogacy-friendly states. 

    "This enables the couple to have their name on the birth certificate -- the intended parents, that is, and not the gestational mother who delivers the baby," Rodriquez said.

    The Doyles said they believe their case is proof that even if some countries frown upon surrogacy, the desire to have a family will always push people to find another way. 

    "We haven't done anything illegal. We haven't broken the law. We've just gone to another country to fulfill our dream," Tanya Doyle said.

    The Doyles hope to take the twins to Australia next month, the place they will call home, even though it is not the country of their birth.

    "It's funny -- there are a couple of streets near the hospital called Royal Melbourne and Royal Sydney, so it's not that far from home," Darren Doyle said.