Heart-breaking stories are pouring out of Ukraine, but three Irish families have peace of mind as they unite with their babies, born to Ukrainian surrogates.
The families met their babies in Kyiv and travelled first to Moldova and then to Romania. They are reportedly all back in Ireland.
The four babies (including a set of twins) were born to gestational surrogates in the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv. During the chaos of the current war, the Irish parents were worried sick about their babies. They were flown to Romania on Irish Air Corps PC-12 aircraft, accompanied by a care team.
The families experienced a “huge sense of relief” to be united with their children and bring them to safety. They returned home to Ireland on commercial flights. Ukraine has been a popular destination for families seeking a gestational surrogate and egg donation, as the country allows paid compensation for both services.
This news came as Ukrainian women and children arrived in Dublin to stay with friends and family, relieved to escape the danger of bombings. However, they don’t know if and when they will see their husbands again. This is because all able-bodied men between ages 18 – 60 must stay in Ukraine to fight back against the Russian invasion, which has no end in sight. At the Dublin airport on 4 March, Iryna Mullan waited with her Irish husband Garrett.
She proudly wore a blue and yellow Ukrainian flag around her shoulders as she welcomed sister Halyna Hlijan and nephews Kostea, 11, and David, 4.
Speaking to the Irish Sun, she said, “we live in Balbriggan, and there are many Ukrainian people living there so we are hearing all the time about people’s personal stories. There’s a woman who lives beside us who is from Kharkiv and her sister, and her family are hiding in a shelter under their house and a bomb landed beside it the other night.”
Iryna continued, “they were OK, but this is what is happening. They are just hiding with two small children and just hoping to get through this. That is just one story I have heard but there are many more. Everyone has family and friends who are caught up in it and no one is safe.” She was worried for her parents, even though they are not in a major city.
In addition to countless stories like Iryna and sister Halyna’s, there are likely many other surrogates currently carrying foreign babies in Ukraine
In many cases, they will attempt to get in touch with the parents as they escape the country, but this sadly won’t be possible in all cases. In the coming days and weeks, we are likely to hear many more stories likes these.
Do you or someone you know currently have a gestational surrogate carrying your baby in Ukraine? We’d love to hear your story – get in touch or leave a message in the comment section.