A man has given birth in England. It is the first confirmed case in Europe of a circumstance that has only been known for a couple of years: that people who are born female and undergo a sex change operation can have their own babies, creating the confusing image of a male, for practical and legal purposes, giving birth. This is only possible if the uterus remains intact during the many operations required for a sex change.
Little else is known of the story. If she’s made it to the media, it’s only because she’s a member of the Beaumont Society, a charity that offers support to those who have changed their gender or seek to do so. This woman, Joanna Darrell, has given neither her name nor her age (it is known only that she is not yet forty) nor the location of her father.
He only said that a while ago, he called his organization, which gave him contact from another institution, and they only heard from him again six months ago when he called to thank him for his help after the birth.
It is possible that it is not the first case that has happened either in England or in Europe. Not all reach the media. In 2008, Thomas Beatie, a transsexual from Orgeon (USA), became famous for being the world’s first pregnant man. He had protected his uterus from all the operations he had undergone for years, and with donor sperm, he inseminated himself at home.
This is just one of the ways in which this type of pregnancy can occur: the uterus can be reserved and conceived naturally, sexually, or a more clinical form can be used with donated uteruses, donated sperm, hormones, and cesarean delivery.
If these types of cases are treated with such a low profile, it is because the controversy derived from the lack of precedents still accompanies them. The English Conservative politician, Ann Widdecombe, commented, “It’s a terrible disorder.”
What will the child think? The key is the baby, in case anyone forgets. Trevor Stammers, a (conservative) popularizer of medical ethics, positioned himself along the same lines, opining that ” the strange beginning of the child’s life will mark him for the rest of his existence . I doubt that a child with a happy, productive and optimal childhood”.