Right To Children


P1. If infertile couples have the right to create a biological child (like fertile couples do), then surrogacy should be legal

P2. Infertile couples have the right to create a biological child (like fertile couples do)

C. Therefore surrogacy should be legal


Article 16 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says: 

Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family.

United Nations, Universal Declaration of Human Rights. 2019. [ONLINE] Available at: https://www.un.org/en/universal-declaration-human-rights/. [Accessed 21 April 2019].

Does the right to found a family mean that married infertile couples have the right to create a biological child?

From Discussingmarriage.org

A case can be made that a couple’s right to raise a child must be coextensive with their ability to conceive a child. While infertile couples can provide a good home for children who cannot be raised by their biological parents, it would be ethically problematic to consider parenting the children of others a right. Such a right would obligate the state to place a child with every couple who seeks one, and to facilitate the creation of more children if there were not enough to meet demand. If any individual or couple has the right to parent a child (independent of biological reproduction), then the state can make no coherent argument that biological parenthood is better than third party reproduction, or that it is an ideal worth promoting.


In the 2010 study My Daddy’s name is Donor, the following was found in children who never knew one of their parents because they were conceived through donors:

Donor offspring are twice as likely as those raised by biological parents to report problems with the law before age 25. 

They are more than twice as likely to report having struggled with substance abuse. 

And they are about 1.5 times as likely to report depression or other mental health problems.

More than half say that when they see someone who resembles them, they wonder if they are related. 

Forty-five percent agree, “The circumstances of my conception bother me.” 

Nearly half are disturbed that money was involved in their conception. 

About two-thirds affirm the right of donor offspring to know the truth about their origins. 

Almost half report that they think about donor conception at least a few times a week or more often

IAV. 2010. My Daddy’s Name is Donor. [ONLINE] Available at: http://americanvalues.org/catalog/pdfs/Donor_FINAL.pdf. [Accessed 21 April 2019].

As an example of stories published by children raised not knowing one of their parents:

Every day I wonder about my biological mom. Does she wonder about me? Do we look similar? Do we have similar personalities, likes, and dislikes? Do I have half-siblings? Do I have grandparents that know about me? That barely scratches the surface. I can not put into words the pain of not knowing who my biological mother is and not being able to have/have had a relationship with her. I really do think about this at least once a day, and it is deeply mentally, emotionally, and psychologically troubling… Sometimes I wish I weren’t born. I didn’t ask for this, and I never would have consented to it…No one should have to spend hours on hours feeling alone and wondering about half of their biological family. I wouldn’t wish this pain and wondering on ANYONE..