A court in the Netherlands ordered a gay couple to return their newborn back to their surrogate after DNA tests showed that neither of the men was the baby’s biological father. Instead, the surrogate’s husband was proven to be the father.
“We love her very much, and we will never forget her,” Arnout Janssen and Stefano Franke shared with AD, a Dutch media outlet. “To us, she is our first child, and we are blessed to have had her with us for 13 days.”
Dutch law requires a DNA test in adoption proceedings. According to Janssen, the surrogacy and adoption processes are dictated by Dutch law as well as a surrogate’s intentions.
The couple found their surrogate online, and during their communication, they learned she was married with three children.
“In September of last year, she [surrogate] underwent artificial insemination and became pregnant,” Stefanie Gerdes of Gay Star News reported. “She also agreed to only use protection with her husband, so he would not get her pregnant.”
The surrogate gave birth to baby Hayley on May 8, and nearly ten days later, the DNA test results arrived.
An amicable meeting was scheduled for May 18 and the men thought their surrogate was going to agree to the adoption. However, that meeting was canceled and instead a court hearing was scheduled for May 19.
“We already knew it was not good and we were going to lose Hayley,” the couple wrote. The hearing did not really stand for much. Childcare told us Y & U [the surrogate and her husband] had decided to take care of Hayley themselves.”
“We are completely devastated and do not really know what to do. Somewhere I totally get that she is going to live with her biological parents and brothers and sister, but we are so sad,” Franke wrote.
It’s uncertain as to whether or not the surrogate has any intention to refund monies to her intended parents. That could help finance a future surrogacy if the couple so chooses. Not only are Janssen and Franke heartbroken, but they feel as if there is no equality.
“As gay parents, you actually have no rights,” Janssen shared with AD. “Everything depends on the [surrogate] mother’s willingness and good faith. Apart from an internet checklist, we had nothing on paper.”