Parents say current surrogacy legislation in Ireland fails families

Submitted to Surrogacy Stories

England's Tonight Show shared the struggles of Kilkenny couple Brian and Kathy Egan and their emotional surrogacy journey.

According to RSVP Live, the current affairs programme focused on how the current surrogacy legislation in Ireland is failing families. Viewers were shocked by the segment and took to Twitter to share their thoughts and stand in solidarity with the Egan family.

Brian and Kathy Egan spoke about their journey to parenthood via surrogacy, describing current legislation as “so tough” and “incredibly unfair.”

The family is currently facing additional stress, since 44-year-old Brian has recently been diagnosed with prostate cancer.

Their first son, Harry, was born in 2009. Kathy then suffered eight miscarriages as they tried to build their family. They sought surrogacy in Ukraine and their second son Luke was born via surrogate in 2019.

Although both boys are the biological children of Brian and Kathy, Kathy is not legally recognized as Luke’s mother due to current legislation in Ireland.

Speaking to the Tonight Show Kathy said: “Medical procedures, school enrolment, even if anything happened to Brian - before he turned two Luke would have had no legal guardian.

“It’s tough. I look at the boys and they’re nearly identical, ten years apart. He has 100 per cent the same DNA as his brother, he has 50 per cent mine and 50 per cent Brian’s, yet on paper in the eyes of Irish law I have no relationship to him.

“Since he has turned two I am his legal guardian but that will be relinquished when he’s 18.

“I’m a member of Irish Families Through Surrogacy, and I share the same fears as all of the parents in that group, that our children are not recognized under Irish law and equal citizens. Apart from the fact we’re not entitled to maternity leave, it’s a deeper issue, it’s an equality issue and it’s unfair.”