A Texas nanny has been raising a Scottish couple’s child for the last 10 months in the United States, after biological parents were unable to secure travel documents after their surrogate gave birth. It highlights a deeply problematic aspect of surrogacy, which is in stark contrast to the glowing Hollywood headlines.

When it comes to surrogacy, the public first became aware of it through the case of Baby M, which erupted in controversy after the surrogate, who was also the biological mother, refused to give up the child to the couple who paid her to have a baby. At one point, she even kidnapped the baby girl. The entire situation raised a lot of questions and the case is still occasionally cited by the New Jersey court system.

But in recent years, surrogacy has often received glowing profiles due to its popular use among celebrities and the upper classes. From Kim Kardashian to Cameron Diaz, the Hollywood elite have used surrogacy to avoid pregnancy related complications or due to other infertility issues. The process is especially popular among gay men, who pay women to risk potentially pregnancy related death so they can fulfill their dreams of a family.

It’s a deeply problematic infertility option and treats women’s bodies and children’s lives as commodities that can bought and sold to the highest bidder.

The latest case in point is in Texas, where a nanny was called in to take a child from his Oklahoma surrogate post-birth after she said she didn’t want to care for the baby. Now, 10 months later, the child believes that his nanny is his mother and has almost fully integrated into her family, not the one that paid for his conception and birth, after legal complications prevented his return to Scotland.

Kristie Baysinger, the nanny, has been documenting the saga on TikTok.

She said in one clip, “My agency called me and said: ‘Hey, can you come pick up this new surrogate baby from this surrogate who does not want to take him home?’ So, we went to Oklahoma to pick him up.”

Now, the child, who is named Alexander, is stuck in limbo as Baysinger and his parents have been unable to secure his social security card so he can get a U.S. passport and travel out of the country to finally meet his biological parents.

“We’ve been getting no feedback. We’ve called social security administration and they say we’re in the loop just like everybody else is,” Baysinger said.

But while the adults in his life try to figure out how to move forward, little Alexander is bonding with his “mother” and his “family,” though they won’t be at some point.

This child, who has absolutely no power or voice in this situation, is simply getting shuffled around between his surrogate, nanny and eventually his parents. It’s unclear how this may affect him in the future, but there’s no doubt that it will.

And this is the problem with surrogacy.

Children are treated as objects and products, not individual lives. Babies bond with the woman carrying them, not the couple or individual paying them excessive fees for the privilege of being a parent. While an adoption decision is made in the best interest of a child and women who make that difficult decision deserve all the praise in the world, the surrogate only carries the child because someone is paying her to do so as part of a business arrangement, which sometimes has excessive stipulations on what she can eat and what activities she can engage in.

When all the legal red tape is finally resolved, Alexander will travel across the world to meet parents that he has only interacted with on screen and to a place with a new accent, which may be challenging for a child who is just beginning to talk and develop his speech. His biological parents may find that he struggles to adjust and connect with a family he barely knows, after bonding with his nanny and her three children these long months.

It’s deeply unfair to him.

This is why surrogacy is illegal in most of the rest of the world, or can only be done if it’s purely altruistic, which is why this Scottish couple had to go to the United States to find a surrogate for Alexander in the first place. It’s problematic and causes a variety of short-term and long-term issues.

For example, a woman was able to conceive her own child in a one-in-a-million situation and had to legally threaten the surrogacy agency she used to get custody of her own child. In the case of Sherri Shepherd, a former co-host on “The View,” she and her then-husband used a surrogate to conceive a child. After the couple separated while the carrier was pregnant, Shepherd wanted nothing to do with the child since she wasn’t the biological mother as the couple had used an egg donor. They then had a long custody dispute over child support payments. She has never even met the boy she helped pay a surrogate to conceive.

Tragically, a woman has also died while giving birth to a child she carried as a surrogate, leaving her own two children without a mother.

Children are an absolute blessing, but surrogacy is an ethically problematic option for couples who are looking to address infertility issues. There are just too many risks as the process can be physically dangerous to women and leave children with deep emotional and psychological scars.

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