Cheryl Keye’s emotional true-life story about how her sister became a surrogate for her appeared in the SUNDAY PEOPLE newspaper at the weekend.
When Cheryl emailed me last week through Featureworld’s Sell My Story contact form, I knew it would make a wonderful read for a Sunday newspaper. And I wasn’t wrong as Cheryl’s story was snapped up by the Sunday People newspaper and on Easter Sunday, appeared over two pages.
Cheryl’s emotional story began when she found out at the age of 17 she suffered from a rare condition and had been born without a uterus. It was a devastating shock, not least because it made her feel less of a woman and she worried how she would explain it to any man.
However, in her early twenties she met her husband, Jason, and he reassured her it didn’t matter to him. However, they did both want children. They toyed with the idea of adoption but as Cheryl grew older, she began to wonder if it might be possible to have their own child – after all, although she doesn’t have a womb, she does have her ovaries.
The couple began considering surrogacy. But it was when Cheryl told younger sister Lyndsay their plans, she made them the most wonderful offer. She offered to carry their baby for them in her womb.
Eggs were retrieved from Cheryl and fertilised with Jason’s sperm and one was put back into Lyndsay’s womb. The fantastic result was last year Lyndsay gave birth to Elliot, Cheryl and Jason’s gorgeous son. He is now eight months old and has changed their lives beyond all belief. Needless to say, Cheryl and Jason are incredibly grateful for Lyndsay’s selfless gift to them.
This story is now due to appear in a national women’s weekly magazine, in another national newspaper and also in a monthly women’s magazine.
Cheryl said: “I really wanted to sell my story to give hope to others. However, when I first looked into selling my story, I had no idea how to go about it. But going through Alison has enabled us to place the story with a variety of publications so we really feel it is getting excellent coverage.”
Have you used a surrogate to have a baby? Maybe you are considering surrogacy via a relative or friend or through an agency. Surrogacy stories are always popular so do contact me to discuss which magazines and newspapers might be interested. For a personal appraisal of your real-life story, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Read more about selling a story: Real-Life story
How could any woman not know she is pregnant until she gives birth? Story in the DAILY MAIL
This story featuring three interviews I did with women who gave birth unexpectedly was the focus of much debate on Mail Online after it was printed on Wednesday.
As a mum of three myself, there was a time when I used to wonder myself how anyone could possibly be heavily pregnant and not know. However, over the past 20 years (or so!) as a journalist, I have come across these stories a number of times. And having spoken to professionals such as doctors and midwives (not to mention listening to the women’s accounts) I can say the phenomenon definitely exists.
Now, recent studies back this up. It is believed as many as one in 600 births happen to women who had no idea they were pregnant when they went into labour or only found out shortly before.
This is not to be confused with concealed pregnancies, which are actually much rarer. This is where the woman does know she is pregnant but hides it from friends or families. This often results in the more tragic outcomes we read in the papers such as abandoned newborn babies.
Fortunately, the mums I spoke to for the Daily Mail article this week were all absolutely thrilled to have their babies – once they’d got over the shock of giving birth of course!
Anyway, it was a throughly enjoyable feature to research and a pleasure to speak to the mums involved.
Surprise baby stories are always popular and I have probably sold up to a dozen similar stories in my career to various newspapers and magazines.
So do let me know here if the same thing has happened to you!