Whenever I am asked to speak about the dangers of surrogacy, egg “donation,” or #BigFertility in general, I can almost always count on being asked about data and numbers. Everyone seems to want to know “how many women are harmed” or “how many children are abandoned”? The truth is, we don’t know. #BigFertility, and “the nation’s leading science-based, data-driven, service organization that protects the public’s health” (aka the CDC) refuses to track data on egg “donors,” surrogate mothers, and the children born as a result of third-party reproduction in any significant way. For us, one is always too many. 

At the CBC we’ve heard from too many women, mothers, sisters, fathers, and others who are left disappointed, devastated, and destroyed after they themselves or family members have responded to the over-simplified plea to “help a family” or “give the gift of life.” Some don’t want to share their stories publicly, but simply want to be heard and understood from a group that understands. Others are seeking help or guidance, not knowing what to do next. Some are ready to share their stories with the world, hoping to save someone else from the pain they’ve endured at the hands of money-hungry fertility clinics and to shine a light on what surrogacy really is: a modern form of trafficking. 

Recently, I was contacted by one such woman. Military wife and stay-at-home mother of two was “sold this dream” of “being helped while helping someone complete their family.” Gloria tells me, “As a stay at home mom, it was kind of like ‘how perfect’, I get to complete this job while also being available to my family 24-7.”

What started as a “great feeling” and sense of belonging, turned into feelings of shame, manipulation, and in her words, feeling as if she was “trafficked.” “They tell you how you’re going to be the most important person in these people’s lives… You’re part of this huge team that gave a well-deserving couple a child. I mean, yeah, it’s definitely a great feeling. Um, now we know that it’s not always the case.”

Watch the full interview with Gloria on our YouTube channel.

This is part one of a five part series. Over the several weeks we will be releasing a write-up based off of our exclusive interview with Gloria. 

Part One

Part Two

Part Three

Part Four

Part Five

Author Profile

Kallie Fell, Executive Director
Kallie Fell, Executive Director
Kallie Fell, MS, BSN, RN, started her professional career as a scientist in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Vanderbilt University Medical Center utilizing a Master of Science degree in Animal Sciences with an emphasis on Reproductive Physiology and Molecular Biology from Purdue University. While assisting in the investigation of endometriosis and pre-term birth, Kallie simultaneously pursued a degree in nursing with hopes of working with women as a perinatal nurse. After meeting Jennifer at a conference, Kallie became interested in the work of the Center for Bioethics and Culture and started volunteering with the organization. It is obvious that Kallie is passionate about women’s health. She continues to work, as she has for the past 6 years, as a perinatal nurse and has worked with the CBC since 2018, first as a volunteer writer, then as our staff Research Associate, and now as the Executive Director. In 2021, Kallie co-directed the CBC’s newest documentary, Trans Mission: What’s the Rush to Reassign Gender? Kallie also hosts the popular podcast Venus Rising and is the Program Director for the Paul Ramsey Institute.