Woman gives birth to brother’s baby so he can start family
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A woman has given birth to her brother’s baby so that he can start a family, having kindly stepped up to be a surrogate.
Sabreena Henderson, 29, volunteered to help her brother Shane Petrie, 32, and his husband Paul Petrie, 36, saying she has ‘always felt strongly’ about sexual equality.
Property manager Sabreena, who is mum to four children of her own, is one of five sisters – who had all agreed they would be a surrogate for Shane after he came out as gay at 16.
And when he decided he wanted a child in 2020, Sabreena was the best candidate for the gig.
She said: "Surrogacy is really expensive and so is adoption so when Shane and Paul were ready to be parents I was happy to help facilitate that.
"My eldest sister had already had three C-sections so she couldn't do it, and my two younger sisters were only 18 and 19 at the time.
"That left it between me and my other middle sister. But she'd had a terrible time through both her pregnancies."
Sabreena, from Buena Park, California, finally gave birth to adorable little Tristan in September last year – although the journey wasn’t easy, as his birth followed five failed insemination attempts and a miscarriage.
"Seeing the happiness in their eyes and the smile on my brother's face made it all worth it,” she said.
“And if they asked me I'd do it again in a heartbeat."
She agreed to use Paul’s sperm and her egg so that both fathers would be related to the baby, with the trio trying a first insemination attempt in November 2020.
After several unsuccessful rounds, Sabreena became pregnant in February 2021, but sadly miscarried at 13 weeks.
She took a few months to heal both physically and emotionally before doctors told her it was safe to try again in October that year.
Three months later – after a further three attempts – Sabreena finally became pregnant again.
She said: "When we found out I'd miscarried we were absolutely heartbroken.
"I bled so much and even needed surgery as my body wasn't naturally letting go of the pregnancy.
"It was awful. But it didn't put me off helping my brother and when we got the all clear from the doctor, we tried again.
"The day I found out I was pregnant again was wonderful, although we were all tentatively optimistic because of our previous experience.
"It was a tense nine months, but thankfully everything was fine this time around and I gave birth to Tristan on September 28 last year."
Shane and Paul have now been dads for three months, and are loving their new life as parents.
Shane, who is a drug and alcohol recovery worker from Costa Mesa, California, said he will forever be in debt to his younger sister.
He said: “One of the first things my husband and I ever discussed when we met was we both wanted children.
"We wanted a family, but weren’t sure how we would be able to make that a reality.
"When my sister came to us and asked to help it was life-changing.
"It was the most selfless act I’ve ever seen in my life.
"She gave us the thing that we wanted most in the world, and made our life and family complete, and asked for nothing in return."