Carshalton’s surrogate for two strangers reveals she gave birth to TRIPLETS

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A woman who gave birth to triplets after becoming one of the UK’s youngest surrogates at 21 is now campaigning for the law to be changed to make the process easier.

Shaniece Sturdy, now 24 from Carshalton, Surrey, first became interested in teenage surrogacy after watching a documentary on TV.

After the birth of her now four-year-old son Rylee, she contacted a surrogacy center and met up with hopeful parents Joanna and Steve.

Shaniece Sturdy, now 24, of Carshalton, on top of triplets pregnancy, is UK’s youngest surrogate

She desperately wanted to help them start their families and flew to Los Angeles to a specialist clinic to have their embryos inserted.

However, Shaniece, who has since started her own cleaning business, was shocked when midwives found not one but three heartbeats.

Joanna and Steve, who live in the UK, were thrilled to expect triplets and Shaniece now visits them every year on their birthdays.

Shaniece said, “Even though I was only 21 and it was a huge responsibility to carry their babies, it was one of the best experiences of my life.

“I had no morning sickness or food cravings, the whole pregnancy went really fast and with the support of Joanna and Steve it was amazing and I would recommend it to anyone.

At 21, Shaniece gave birth to Willow, Harrison and Daisy, above, for hopeful parents Joanna and Steve

At 21, Shaniece gave birth to Willow, Harrison and Daisy, above, for hopeful parents Joanna and Steve

Shaniece contacted a surrogacy center and ran into Joanna and Steve.  She desperately wanted to help them have a child - but gave them three.  Above, a scan showing two of the triplets

Shaniece contacted a surrogacy center and ran into Joanna and Steve. She desperately wanted to help them have a child, but gave them three. Above, a scan showing two of the triplets

At just a few months pregnant, Shaniece was already fatter than she had been with Rylee at eight months.  She said:

At just a few months pregnant, Shaniece was already fatter than she had been with Rylee at eight months. She said, “I looked huge.” Above, a scan showing the third triplet

“I was only supposed to help the family have a sibling for their baby girl, but ended up giving them three babies at a time.

“During our first scan just a few weeks pregnant we were all told I was carrying twins, Joanna and Steve had already chosen their twin stroller.

“During the 10 week scan, I joked, ‘I wonder if they’ll find another heartbeat,’ and a few minutes later they did.

“I was now expecting triplets and just a few months pregnant I was already bigger than I had been with Rylee at eight months, looked huge.

“We all went for a planned caesarean at 33 weeks, but my waters broke on Halloween.

“Joanna came to the theater with me and although I was nervous all I cared about was making sure the babies were delivered safe and sound.

Shaniece, above, with her own son Rylee, four, first became interested in surrogacy as a teenager after watching a documentary on TV

Shaniece, above, with her own son Rylee, four, first became interested in surrogacy as a teenager after watching a documentary on TV

Shaniece flew to Los Angeles to a specialized clinic to insert the embryos.  During the first scan she was told she was carrying twins, but during the 10 week scan it was revealed that she had triplets.

Shaniece flew to Los Angeles to a specialized clinic to insert the embryos. During the first scan she was told she was carrying twins, but during the 10 week scan it was revealed that she had triplets.

“The triplets were taken to intensive care, but Willow, Daisy and Harrison were doing perfectly fine, weighing 4 lbs 2 ounces, 3 lbs 7 ounces and 3 lbs 11 ounces.

“I have advised anyone considering a surrogate to do so, I can’t wait to do it again.”

The triplets, now three, were home with parents Joanna and Steve after just two weeks in the hospital – now Shaniece visits them every year on their birthday to catch up.

She added: “I am always so moved when I see them, not because I miss them or want more children, but because I am so happy to have been a part of their journey.

“I think a lot of people assume you have to use your own eggs when you’re a surrogate, but that’s not the case at all.

“I had Joanna and Steve’s embryo inserted in Los Angeles, so it’s biologically their child not mine, I was just the host uterus.

The triplets were home with their parents Joanna and Steve after just two weeks in the hospital.  Above, Shaniece at the start of her pregnancy with the triplets

The triplets were home with their parents Joanna and Steve after just two weeks in the hospital. Above, Shaniece at the start of her pregnancy with the triplets

Shaniece visits triplets every year on their birthday to catch up

Shaniece visits triplets every year on their birthday to catch up

“Seeing them both with the triplets for the first time in the hospital was such a special moment, I’ll never forget it.”

Shaniece believes laws surrounding surrogacy need to be changed in the UK so that parents hope they have more control.

Current UK law on surrogacy means that the surrogate is treated as the legal parent of the child, and the transfer can take months from parenthood.

This means that the parents who care for the child do not have the opportunity to make important legal decisions regarding the well-being of the child, while surrogate mothers are still financially and legally responsible.

She added, “Throughout the pregnancy I had all the questions about babies that came to me, for example, birth plans, vaccinations, scan dates.

“I would just turn to Joanna and Steve and say, ‘What do you want to do? It was my body but they weren’t my babies.

Shaniece believes laws surrounding surrogacy need to be changed here in the UK

Shaniece believes hopeful parents have more legal control over their children.  Above, detailed scans of the triplets

Shaniece believes the laws surrounding surrogacy need to be changed here in the UK so that parents hope they have more control. Above, detailed scans of the triplets

Current UK law on surrogacy means that the surrogate is treated as the legal parent of the child, and the transfer can take months from parenthood.  Above, a detailed scan of one of the triplets

Current UK law on surrogacy means that the surrogate is treated as the legal parent of the child, and the transfer can take months from parenthood. Above, a detailed scan of one of the triplets

“If the law could change so that parents could make the decisions, it would make it easier for both sides.”

Shaniece didn’t immediately let her family know about her surrogacy plans in case they didn’t approve.

She added, “I decided to do all of my own research ahead of time and it wasn’t until I met the hopeful parents that I told anyone about it.

“I was only 21 at the time, but I wasn’t interested in partying and drinking, I wanted to help another couple achieve their family dream and raise Rylee properly.

“It doesn’t matter how old you are, as long as you are ready and understand the importance of what you are doing. “

A Surrogacy UK spokesperson said: “Surrogacy UK is a non-profit organization providing information and support to surrogates and future parents.

“Our philosophy is ‘friendship first’ and we believe that trust and honesty between surrogates and parents-to-be is the key to the success of surrogacy trips.”


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