Ukraine and America: corona babies from surrogate mothers

Recently, many articles and reports about an American surrogate mother and a Chinese child born to her have been published on the Internet:

https://www.goodmorningamerica.com/family/story/surrogate-cares-familys-baby-year-due-coronavirus-pandemic-76700690
(original reportage)

In May 2020, 25-year-old Emily Chrislip from Idaho (USA) gave birth to a baby of Chinese parents. In the United States a couple chooses a surrogate mother and negotiates with her separately about everything. Emily comments about her choice to become a surrogate mother: “I felt that I needed to do this. You have to be willing to become a surrogate mother because it’s not easy.” But she did not imagine that almost a year after the birth of the baby she would have to look after her.

“It was damn hard to find a balance between the closeness that the child needs and the distance that I need.” Because of the coronavirus, the baby’s parents still cannot come for her. They, of course, pay for the maintenance of the baby and communicate with her via video.

Emily says about her experience of caring for the baby: “I view her as my cousin’s child. I care about her, I love her, but I know that this is not my child and she belongs to her parents.” Emily hopes that her parents will arrive in time for her birthday in May and will finally be able to see her and pick her up.

In mid-March 2020, Ukraine, a country of surrogate children, closed its borders. Fertility centers and clinics had to solve the problem of children being born. The most famous Biotexcom clinic equipped two children’s rooms in its hotel, where babysitters and doctors looked after children, but by no means surrogate mothers.

The children couldn’t temporarily be picked up by their parents, but a lot depended on the country’s embassy. Many countries went on helping and the parents were given special permits which speeded up their arrival. According to the owner of the clinic, Albert Tochilovski, among those countries were the USA, Ireland, Sweden, Austria. Many parents were able to enter on special diplomatic notes, even before the opening of the borders.

The owner of the Ukrainian clinic reports that there were about 40 Chinese children born by surrogate mothers at the Biotexcom clinic during the lockdown. But all of them were picked up by Chinese parents with the help of the clinic’s lawyers and the ombudsman. The longest waiting period for the arrival of Chinese parents was 4 months. This was a couple from China who could not leave the country as they hold government posts.

The coronavirus is gaining new momentum again and sooner or later a situation where many newborns will be waiting for their parents and celebrating their little anniversaries not in their parents’ houses, but somewhere else may repeat.

The parents of the baby are puzzled about how to pick her up and avoid the danger of infection because they will have to do many layovers to get to their homeland. It is also reported that it will take them about 3 months to come to the United States and take the baby to China.

As soon as this becomes possible, the parents will fly to the United States and spend some time there in order to get used to each other gradually and as stress-free as possible. Emily Chrislip says: “I picture all the time in my head all the different scenarios, and it just makes me emotional thinking about it. I can only imagine the feeling that they’re going to have seeing their child for the first time. It must be as if I could see my child for the first time only a year after their birth.”