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Fertility expert encourages surrogacy for women facing challenges

Fertility counsellor Olaronke Thaddeus, founder of Meet Surrogate Mothers Agency in Lagos, has urged women facing challenges conceiving to explore surrogacy and other assisted reproductive technologies (ART) to build families.

Thaddeus advises couples struggling with infertility to go for surrogacy without shame after trying other methods like in vitro fertilisation (IVF) without success.

IVF is a procedure where eggs and sperm are combined outside the body to create an embryo, which is then implanted in the woman’s uterus.

“There is a need for couples battling infertility to seek treatment early rather than wait endlessly without achieving a result,” Thaddeus emphasized.

Surrogacy is a fertility treatment where a woman, called a surrogate mother, carries and delivers a baby for another couple, known as the intended parents. It can be a solution for couples facing infertility due to various reasons.

Thaddeus, speaking at a media event in Lagos, highlighted that an inability to conceive naturally doesn’t preclude women from motherhood.

Surrogacy allows women who cannot carry pregnancies or have blocked fallopian tubes to have biological children.

She added that surrogacy is also an option for women with cancer, kidney problems, or other conditions posing risks to pregnancy.

“Surrogacy has many benefits,” Thaddeus explained, “as it gives intending parents the opportunity to have a biological child.”

Thaddeus emphasized the need to raise awareness about surrogacy, citing the growing global concern of infertility. “One in every four couples suffers from infertility,” she said.

She acknowledged, “I understand this method of having children isn’t cheap. IVF is expensive, and with the current economic situation, it’s even more so. That’s why Meet Surrogate Mothers Agency is offering free IVF treatment to 15 fertility-challenged women in our upcoming program in Lagos.”

The fertility awareness program aims to educate women battling infertility about various options to have children, instead of waiting endlessly.

Thaddeus addressed the negative portrayal of surrogacy in the media, despite the hope it offers to intended parents. “The world is evolving,” she said. “If we don’t move with it, we will be left behind. In the United States and other countries, these procedures are widely practiced and accepted.”

“But in Nigeria, many women still struggle due to societal beliefs, culture, and religion,” she continued. “I am determined to change that narrative, to educate and empower women to embrace surrogacy without guilt or shame.”

“When they see increasing media support for surrogacy and IVF, they will be more likely to step out and seek these services,” Thaddeus concluded.