Japan's oldest surrogate carried her own grandchild

Filed under: Babies, Your Pregnancy, In The News

A gloved hand holding a brown eggAt sixty-one years old, she wasn't the world's oldest woman to give birth, but she was, apparently, the oldest surrogate mother in a country where surrogacy is banned by the Japan Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology, the group that oversees such matters. The clinic where she gave birth refused to provide details such as the baby's gender or exact date of birth, but the clinic's spokeswoman, Chihiro Netsu, did say that "both surrogate mother and baby were fine."

As if her age weren't notable enough, it turns out that the surrogate mother is also the child's real grandmother. According to the clinic, they agreed to the procedure because the woman's daughter has no uterus. The grandmother was implanted with one of her daughter's fertilized eggs and, well, the rest is history, as they say.

I have to say that I was surprised to learn, when I did some research on this, that surrogacy is not universally accepted. There are even six states here in the US where it is illegal and four more where contracts for surrogacy are unenforceable. It seems to me that, for those who are otherwise unable to carry a baby to term, it is a perfectly acceptable path to parenthood. For this Japanese family, it sounds like it worked out famously.

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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.