Mum who had baby with partner after he died says she was judged online for decision
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Featured Image Credit: @ellidy_/Instagram
Ellidy Pullin has responded to online trolls who criticised her decision to harvest her partner Olympic snowboarder Alex 'Chumpy' Pullin's sperm after he died unexpectedly to have a baby.
Australian model Ellidy opened up about the procedure in the podcast Kicpod.
The couple tried for a baby when Chumpy was alive, but they faced difficulty because Ellidy has a low egg count, which turned their attention to IVF.
Laws differ across the Australian states regarding harvesting and usage laws for posthumous sperm, but Ellidy explained she was able to do both in Queensland.
Because she and Chump were unmarried when he died, his parents had to ‘sign a few things’ to get the sperm and they needed to be ‘fully on board,’ Ellidy explains.
She reflected on the decision and said: “People of course don't agree with this for religious or ethical reasons and absolutely they can have their opinion, that's fine.
"I didn't really have to deal with that front on. It's not like anyone came up to me and said, 'I think what you're doing is wrong' and I had to confront them and ask them why they think that.
"They don't know my life with Chumpy, they don't know our love, they don't know our plans for the future.
"I'd probably just ask them that if they came up to me directly, but that's the beauty of the online trolls.
"They can sit behind behind their little keyboard and come at me. I literally do not care.
"I was too busy and pregnant to care what they thought.
"People from the outside looking in who don’t know us or our relationship or our love or that we were trying for a baby would probably be like, ‘holy moly this is the craziest thing this chick did’, but everyone around us in our close circle is just like, ‘this is an absolute no brainer, like absolutely she’s doing the right thing and this is what she should do’ because they kinda know me and know him and know us and our plans for the future."
The conversation about retrieving Chump’s sperm posthumously began not long after his death.
The sperm was extracted 36 hours after he passed away with a procedure hadn’t been done many times before.
The IVF doctor who did the procedure had had never done it before, but he has since helped seven other families.
The two-time world champion died on 8 July 2020 at the age of 32 while spearfishing in Australia.
He was found unresponsive off a beach on Queensland's Gold Coast, and was treated by paramedics at the scene. However, he could not be revived.
Ellidy explains that Chump had an underwater blackout, which occurs when people hold their breath for too long. It’s very common and is why it's advised to not to go diving on you own.
His partner birth to their child 15 months after his tragic death, and Ellidy revealed she had given birth to a baby girl named Minnie Alex Pullin, who arrived in October 2021.
Ellidy shared her pregnancy journey on social media and in her podcast Darling, Shine, where she explained how she and her husband had been trying to conceive before he died. The couple had also considered IVF treatment before he died.
She announced she was pregnant in June 2021, writing that she and Alex had been 'dreaming' of having a child for years.
"Bubba Chump coming this October. Your Dad and I have been dreaming of you for years little one,” she wrote.
"With a heart wrenching plot twist in the middle, I am honoured to finally welcome a piece of the phenomenon that is Chumpy back into this world!
"When my love had his accident, we all held onto hope that I'd be pregnant that month. We'd been trying for a baby. IVF was on our cards but it wasn't something I ever imagined I'd be tackling on my own.
"Bittersweet like none other, I've never been more certain or excited about anything in my entire life."