A transgender man has carried and given birth to a baby girl, after his wife was unable to fall pregnant.
Chris Rehs-Dupin, 33, and his wife Amy from Columbus, Ohio knew when they met and fell in love in their twenties, that they wanted a family.
Chris – who was born Christina – was pre-op transgender male at the time, they initially hoped that Amy could be the biological mother.
But when five attempts of intrauterine insemination – fertility treatment that involves placing sperm inside a uterus to facilitate fertilisation – failed, Chris, who still had his female reproductive organs, volunteered to carry their baby instead, shares Daily Mail.
He gave birth to their now two-year-old daughter, Hayden, naturally on December 20, 2014, after five rounds of IUI treatment and a miscarriage.
Having Hayden made Amy, now 33, even more determined to carry a baby herself and in 2016 she had a son, Milo, after a further round of IUI.
Explaining their unusual parenting arrangements, Amy said: ‘We went through a lot of fertility treatments, until we finally reached a point where we needed to make a decision as to whether we were going to do more medical intervention or if we were going to switch bodies.
‘We were fortunate enough to have two uteruses. So, after a lot of thought and emotion and difficulties we switched to Chris.’
While Chris lived as a man and didn’t feel female, he was willing to use his womb, for the good of their family.
After five IUI attempts failed, they resorted to drastic action – with Chris volunteering to carry their baby instead.
Chris explained: ‘When I went to university in 2007, I knew I wasn’t a woman and it was an easy realisation to make.
‘I didn’t want to take hormones, because I was happy with who I was and who I was presenting myself as, but I have always been very open with Amy.’
Still, Amy’s love for Chris meant his gender was not an issue.
She added: ‘By the time I met him, I knew the issue of his gender was at the forefront of his mind. And, eventually, he became more masculine and lived as a man.
But, when Chris finally fell pregnant, despite their excitement, they both struggled with what was happening throughout the pregnancy.
Amy confessed: ‘When Chris was pregnant it was really difficult, because I always thought I would be the one to carry our children. It was definitely a strain and it was difficult.’
And while Chris started to experience the physical signs of pregnancy – he was constantly sick and his belly and breasts grew – his changing hormones strangely made his natural goatee beard grow thicker and more prominent.
‘Some days, he looked like a man with a beer belly,’ Amy joked.
Being pregnant was also a confusing time for Chris. He admitted: ‘Being pregnant is such a female thing and that’s when I started to question that it was not what I was.’
‘I don’t think I had a problem emotionally having a child, I wasn’t losing a part of my identity. I think the world had a bigger problem with it than I did.’
‘Some people think men aren’t supposed to carry children, that’s the world we live in. So, I feel like the world would see it as emasculating, that it would make me less trans but not the case for me. For me it was an amazing experiencing.’
But Chris insisted he did not want to breastfeed. He said: ‘I had no intention of breastfeeding and I hated the fact my breasts had grown. After years of binding them flat, any pressure now left me in agony.’
Meanwhile, worried about bonding with her baby, Amy decided to take birth control pills, to trick her body into mimicking pregnancy. She also took a hormone called domperidone, to make her body produce breast milk.
Neither Chris nor Amy will ever forget the moment, when Hayden was born, weighing 8lbs and 11oz, and they became parents for the first time.
‘I couldn’t believe we were parents,’ said Chris, who explained that Amy was legally registered as Hayden’s mother, while he was listed as ‘parent.’ ‘We both cried, holding her in our arms. Finally, our prayers had been answered.’
Sadly, though, Amy didn’t produce enough, so they decided together that Chris would breastfeed Hayden after all.
Ironically, however, being pregnant made Chris more certain than ever that he wanted to further his transition to become a man.
What an amazing family. Love to them all.
Share your comments below.
More related stories:
- The transgender dad who proudly “chest-feeds” his baby
- The transgender couple who made history
- Primary school student comes out as transgender using social media
- The world’s first “pregnant man” hopes for a fourth child