Jennifer Lahl Presents a Completely Biased View on Surrogacy

Victoria Ferrara


Jennifer Lahl is a 56-year-old activist against assisted reproductive technologies, who has expressed her belief that surrogacy conflicts with Christian morals. She has just released a new documentary called "Breeders: A Sub-Class of Women" about why surrogacy should be banned.

In viewing the trailer for this film, it is obvious that Ms. Lahl has chosen to populate her film with propaganda and twisted facts. Of course there are stories out there related to surrogacy that are problematic but they are few and far between, and not the norm.

Surrogacy involves a group of people who mutually respect each other and agree to bring a wanted and loved baby into the world. At its best, surrogacy incorporates a team of knowledgeable professionals who manage and supervise the surrogacy journey, making sure that high quality medical treatment is provided, and legal and psychological issues are addressed to provide protections for all parties involved.

In her film, Lahl makes reference to an article, Families Created by Reproductive Donation: Issues and Research by Susan Golombok (Centre for Family Research, University of Cambridge) published in Volume 7, Issue 1, pages 61�??65, March 2013 of Child Development Perspectives (The Society for Research in Child Development). Lahl asserts that the article indicates that children of surrogacy have psychological problems when they reach the age of seven. Lahl fails to point out that the article goes on to cite that these issues are resolved by age ten.

In fact, the abstract of the article says: "A growing number of children are being born through the donation of gametes (sperm or eggs) or embryos, or the hosting of a pregnancy for another woman (surrogacy), thus creating families in which children lack a gestational and/or genetic relationship with one or both parents. Research on these families suggests that concerns about adverse outcomes for parenting and child development are largely unfounded. Although less is known about nontraditional families formed through reproductive donation than about traditional families, these new family types likely are not at risk for parenting or child-adjustment problems. Overall, findings suggest that the absence of a genetic or gestational connection between parents and children does not have an adverse effect on the quality of parent�??child relationships or children's adjustment."

It would more helpful if Lahl did not play on fear and prejudice in presenting her opinions, but instead provided balanced views and opinions so that people considering surrogacy, either to become parents or to help others become parents, could make informed decisions.

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