Friday 24th July 2020
Today I had the privilege of speaking with Marcin Smietana. Marcin is a research associate at ReproSoc, where he coordinates the ‘LGBTQ+ In/Fertilities’ work package on the changing fertility perceptions and behaviours among LGBTQ+ people. This work is part of the collaborative grant ‘Changing In/Fertilities,’ directed by Prof. Sarah Franklin (Cambridge) and Prof. Marcia Inhorn (Yale), and funded by the Wellcome Trust (2018-2021).
I discovered this research project purely by chance one evening while checking through the many Surrogacy Facebook groups. A poster, reaching out to gay men in the UK who are/have pursued surrogacy in the UK or overseas, caught my eye. The project is currently looking for gay men’s experiences of surrogacy, which is part of a larger research project about contemporary changes in reproductive behaviours and perceptions, Changing (In)Fertilities. Whether you are in the surrogacy process or have completed it, and whether you have pursued surrogacy in the UK or overseas.
Before the day of our zoom chat took place, Marcin fully explained the purpose of the research and its history. The conversation would last roughly two hours and comprise of a range of questions about why I wanted to be a father, why I chose surrogacy, how I have found the journey to date, how would I finance my journey and the support network around me. The discussion was very informal and relaxed, Marcin was incredibly patient, especially when I felt I had gone wildly off-topic about an element of my journey and had forgotten the purpose of the question he had previously asked.
If anything, I found the whole experience quite cathartic. Whilst I have been adding to my blog over many weeks and discussing new progress with friends and family at each stage they occur, it was very therapeutic to pick apart the decisions I have made over the past weeks, months and even years.
Marcin, thank you for allowing me to share my journey with you, as brief as it may be so far. I wish you all the best in your study and look forward to hearing about how it progresses over the coming months and years.
You can read more about Marcin’s study on the following link
If you are a gay man/couple on a surrogacy journey and would like to be part of the study, please take a look at the poster below and get in touch with Marcin (email@example.com).
Until next time, keep the Dad dream alive!
Read more from my Dad.Be blog here
Follow me on Instagram @stephens_surrogacy_adventure