Windy City Media Group Frontpage News

THE VOICE OF CHICAGO'S GAY, LESBIAN, BI, TRANS AND QUEER COMMUNITY SINCE 1985

home search facebook twitter join
Windy City Times 2023-12-13
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
Donate

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Building a family through surrogacy: One couple's story
Third part of a series on LGBT surrogacy
by Charlsie Dewey
2011-07-27

This article shared 17952 times since Wed Jul 27, 2011
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Ashley Hemphill has always known that she would have a family that included children. Once she realized she was not going to be in a heterosexual relationship, she said it never occurred to her that children might not be a part of that future.

Today, Hemphill and her partner Pam Netzky, who live in Chicago, have experienced two successful in vitro fertilization (IVF) procedures with the help of Fertility Centers of Illinois (FCI) and aParent IVF.

"We had a couple of straight friends who had used Dr. Brian Kaplan [physician at FCI] when they were having some fertility issues and highly recommended him," Ashley said. "From the moment we met him, it was truly love. He makes you feel comfortable and he is just the sweetest man. I can't say enough good things about him, truthfully."

Hemphill and Netzky decided that they would use Netzky's eggs, but that Hemphill would carry the baby.

"I guess I felt, having been adopted, I am very clear on the reality that it doesn't matter that you are biologically related to have this feeling of family and this is your parent, and love, but Netzky wasn't adopted. I felt like it would allow her to feel closer to the baby, because even though she wasn't giving birth, she would know that it was her's. I knew that for me that wouldn't be an issue."

Once they had made the decision to have a baby through IVF and had met with Kaplan, the couple had to face the issues of legal documents and insurance coverage.

"The first thing we needed to do, because we are not married, is we had to get our own lawyers and have legal documents drawn up to ensure that all of the parameters of how we were going to raise this child and allowing the child to be adopted would be handled as soon as the baby was born. This would ensure that if anything happened between Netzky and I, that because we did this together, the original intent would be there so we would both be able to raise the child. In Illinois, the birth mother is actually the legal parent. So even though biologically they were Netzky's children I was legally the mother so I had to let Netzky adopt her own children."

Hemphill also worked with her insurance company to get the approval for the procedures.

Kaplan explained that insurance can be a trickier issue for a same-sex couple, having to prove that they have been trying unsuccessfully to get pregnant for a certain period of time. Still, he said that his organization works with the couples to help them make their case for special approval from their insurance.

Just like any other IVF couple that might be using someone else's eggs or a carrier, Hemphill and Netzky also had to go through a list of required screenings, including medical history and psychological testing, to qualify for the procedure.

Several shots were necessary to prepare for the pregnancy, but the first cycle was a success. Hemphill found out that she was pregnant after the first IVF cycle. She then said she had another series of shots, 72 shots to be exact, for more than two months. The couple had their son Brody in 2006.

After a year had gone by Hemphill and Netzky began the process for a second pregnancy. During the initial IVF cycle they had chosen to freeze Netzky's eggs for a future pregnancy.

Hemphill said that after the first time had been so easy, getting pregnant so quickly, the couple hadn't really considered that the second time might not go as smoothly.

"They actually did testing at the lab for a number of genetic issues, and we are really happy that they did because with this second round there were a number that looked good on the surface, but after getting the genetic testing back would not have made it through the full pregnancy."

In the end, Hemphill did get pregnant during the following cycle and delivered the pair's second baby boy, Landon, in 2009.

Even with the challenges, Hemphill recommends IVF to other couples struggling to have a baby.

She noted, "When you think about all the people who are at FCI not for the reasons that we are, because we are a same-sex couple, but because they truly have tried for years to get pregnant and just haven't been able to and they've tried cycle after cycle. For us, you have to keep it in perspective, which is, we've been so lucky."


This article shared 17952 times since Wed Jul 27, 2011
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Out and Aging
Presented By

  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Ghana parliament passes harsh anti-LGBTQ+ bill
2024-02-29
On Feb. 28, Ghana's parliament unanimously passed a controversial anti-LGBTQ+ bill that has been condemned globally. The so-called Human Sexual Rights and Family Values Act, which was introduced in the parliament in 2021, not only criminalizes ...


Gay News

APA adopts policy supporting transgender, gender diverse and non-binary individuals
2024-02-28
From a press release: WASHINGTON—The American Psychological Association (APA) has adopted a landmark policy affirming evidence-based care for transgender, gender diverse and nonbinary children, adolescents and adults, noting that recent ...


Gay News

ELECTIONS 2024 Mike Simmons discusses LGBTQ+ health disparities, child tax credit
2024-02-27
State Senator Mike Simmons is running unopposed in the March 19 election. Simmons began representing the 7th District after the former state senator, Heather Steans, retired. He's lived in the area his entire life. ...


Gay News

Advocates call for increased HIV funding amid state's 'disappointing' pattern of flat funding
2024-02-27
Governor JB Pritzker's proposed 2025 budget has no increase in HIV funding, continuing a years-long pattern of flat spending toward tackling the epidemic in Illinois. Pritzker outlined his $52.7 billion budget for the 2025 fiscal year ...


Gay News

PASSAGES Trailblazing judge and attorney Patricia M. Logue passes away
2024-02-26
The Honorable Patricia Logue ("Pat" to her friends, Trish" to her family) was a brilliant lawyer, a trailblazing jurist and a hero to the LGBTQ community. Pat's legacy includes numerous landmark cases she litigated over her ...


Gay News

ELECTIONS 2024 Kelly Cassidy discusses reproductive health, LGBTQ+ rights ahead of March primary
2024-02-26
By Kayleigh Padar State Rep. Kelly Cassidy, running unopposed in the March 19 primary election so as to continue representing the 14th District, was first elected in 2011. During her tenure in Springfield, she has ...


Gay News

Howard Brown Health Names Robin Gay, DMD as Interim President and CEO
2024-02-23
--From a press release - Howard Brown Health's Board of Directors announced today the appointment of Robin Gay, DMD as Interim President and CEO. Dr. Gay, who most recently served as Chief Dental Officer, assumes the role formerly held by outgoing ...


Gay News

Unprecedented Alabama Supreme Court ruling undermins access to family-building healthcare, GLAD responds
2024-02-23
--From a press release - Feb. 23, 2024 (Boston) — Today, GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders (GLAD) issued the following statement from Polly Crozier, GLAD's Director of Family Advocacy, on the Alabama Supreme Court decision ...


Gay News

Center on Halsted to host trans youth & family summit
2024-02-19
Center on Halsted, 3656 N. Halsted St., has announced that its Trans Youth & Family Summit 2024 will take place March 16. This year marks the sixth annual event, which partners between Youth Services' Pride Youth ...


Gay News

As Chicago prepares to host DNC, former delegates reflect on LGBTQ+ inclusion at previous conventions
2024-02-19
When Mark Ishaug, now the CEO of the mental health advocacy Thresholds, was a delegate at the 1996 Democratic National Convention (DNC) in Chicago, representing the larger LGBTQ+ community was "critical," he said. The convention, where ...


Gay News

'West Side Story' gets a sex-positive spin with new burlesque show
2024-02-19
In partial observance of National Condom Day, which was Feb. 14, Los Angeles-based AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) presented A West Side Story Burlesque at the Harris Theater for two hour-long performances on Feb. 17. The show, ...


Gay News

Connections for the Homeless purchases Evanston hotel
2024-02-18
Connections for the Homeless in Evanston hosted an open house at the Margarita Inn, formerly a boutique hotel, February 13, to celebrate its purchase for use as a hotel-based interim shelter. The Margarita Inn will give ...


Gay News

Lakeside Pride Wilde Cabaret Valentine's Day Feb. 17
2024-02-16
--From a press release - Lakeside Pride Wilde Cabaret puts their own spin on Valentine's Day with a show celebrating things done and sacrificed for love - not just romantic love, but love for pets, friends, family and art. Join the ...


Gay News

NATIONAL Utah board member, Baths founder dies, Fla. protests, DoJ equity plan
2024-02-16
Utah's Republican governor and lieutenant governor urged the State Board of Education to take action against a conservative board member whose social-media post questioning the gender of a high school basketball player incited threats against the ...


Gay News

Illinois Poor People's Campaign: National call for moral revival demands action against poverty
2024-02-15
--From a press release - Springfield, IL — The Illinois chapter of the Poor People's Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival (ILPPC) will convene a critical press conference at the state capitol, alongside 32 other states across the nation on ...


 


Copyright © 2024 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.

All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 
 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS






Donate


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam     
Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.