Born to a rented mother
Olivia Maurel, 32, was born to a surrogate mother and today fights on the front line against the practice which she defines as "atrocious" and "monstrous". He always knew something was wrong in his family. He suffers from depression, has had alcoholism problems and has attempted suicide several times. Only recently did he discover the truth about his origins and that he had suffered the trauma of abandonment. “What happened to me should happen to no child again,” he says.

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Commercial or "altruistic" the surrogate must be abolished. They are the words of Olivia Maurel, born December 1991 in Kentucky to a traditional surrogate (i.e. in which the oocyte also belongs to the "rented mother", ed.) who recounted her experience in a conference at the parliament of the Czech Republic. Today, married with two children in Cannes, “proud to be a feminist" as we read on its page fights against the surrogate. His testimony, very precious as it is there are still very few children born with this method willing to tell their stories publicly, is in the name of those who do not have a voice: «Too often we forget the people who have been affected by the surrogate. People who never gave their consent. These are children born by surrogate, taken from their mothers at birth to be sold to strangers, like machines to be ordered from the factory. Children considered vulgar objects and products. Like me: created, sold, bought"

The parents, given the advanced age of the adoptive mother, contacted the biological mother through an agency. «My surrogate mother is also linked to me biologically but this makes no difference because for me a mother is someone who carries the child for nine months and then gives birth to him." Unlike what is said about the economic independence of surrogate mothers, hers he needed money. And it was very fragile. “It is said that the agencies do very thorough tests and make sure that the women have no debts to pay. But we know that's not true. In 2022 the market has reached $14 billion. Do you think women are really examined closely in case they lie during interviews? Mine is a perfect example, my mother was not psychologically stable, she had a long history of depression plus, before having me, she had lost a two and a half year old son. Era totally devastated, in debt but he had to put on a good face for the family. The agency saw what it wanted to see, the money it could generate. They abused a woman who needed money to feed her children and pay bills.".

Olivia's birth was traumatic: «The moment I was born I was not placed in the arms of my mother, the one who fed me, who spoke to me, whose emotions I felt for nine months. The only person I knew. No, I leapt from her womb into a cold, austere world of hospital lights. I had to be sold to finalize the transaction in the arms of my unknown adoptive parents. And unfortunately that was the first trauma of my life. The trauma of abandonment." All her life Olivia Maurel has been marked by abandonment and rejection. «My parents couldn't leave me. I had hysterics. I couldn't make friends. I was a complicated child». Growing up he had alcoholism problems and has attempted suicide several times. As an adult she was diagnosed with one bipolar syndrome which he believes was inherited from his biological mother, even if he has no proof of this because he never had access to his mother's documents. «When I was pregnant with my first daughter I was terrified because I didn't know what I could pass on to her: cancer, a genetic or mental illness». 

Olivia Maurel discovered her story a year ago using MyHeritage, a DNA test, but in reality she says she always felt she didn't belong to her family: «I couldn't connect with my mother. A little more with my father. I knew something was wrong.". But she had no harsh words towards her adoptive parents who nevertheless guaranteed her a good education. «They made a series of decisions, small and large, and I came into the world. Hopefully soon I will be the one to help abolish the atrocity of surrogacy. But I don't want to blame them, they used an option that was handed to them on a silver platter and they didn't have the strength to resist. I don't hate them, I love them. Rather I blame the system that is trying to progressively legalize surrogacy, first for medical reasons such as infertility, then for social reasons and any other reason until we accept child trafficking altogether.” Maurel concluded: «I'm not a doctor, I'm just a daughter and the most important reasons for abolishing this monstrosity are the well-being of the child, his rights, his psychological balance. To all those who think that surrogate motherhood should be regulated, I reply that if even one child finds himself facing the problems I faced, it should be enough to convince you that noThere is nothing good in this process which in no way can be made ethical».

The video of Olivia Maurel's testimony here

Translation by Mara Accettura


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