Amanda Broomhall, 39, from Penhill, has two children of her own, but since 1997 has helped couples from all over the UK have babies. Surrogacy UK has recently recorded a surge of interest following high-profile surrogacy stories concerning Elton John and Nicole Kidman. Miss Broomhall said that surrogacy was something she “fell into”.
She said: “I can, so I thought why not if it helps somebody else? People give blood and give bone marrow. I’m just using a part of my body that would otherwise lay dormant.”
Surrogate arrangements are usually set up through agencies, although private arrangements can be made. As a surrogate in the UK, it is illegal for Miss Broomhall to receive payment, although some couples have offered her large sums of money to carry their child.
“People can be desperate,” she said. “People ring me up and say ‘can you help me have a baby?’ and when I tell them I can’t at the moment they say, ‘I’ll pay you lots of money’. They think if they throw money at me I will help them. They think they can buy a child.”
For each birth, Miss Broomhall only takes two weeks off work and has never let the process affect her day-to-day life. She said: “If I sat at home and rested as other new mothers do when they are looking after their new baby, I don’t think that would help me. I want to get my life back on track, so that’s the way I deal with it.”
However, nine weeks into her sixth surrogate pregnancy, Miss Broomhall has decided that this time will be her last. She said her age was the main factor in her decision to give up. “I’m not as young as I used to be,” she said.
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