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Fathers fight to bring home baby daughter

A gay couple are stranded in Thailand after the surrogate mother of their daughter refused to sign passport documents for the baby.

The surrogate, who is not biologically related to the baby, handed Carmen over to her parents in January, but later refused to allow her to leave the country. 

It is believed the woman did not know the couple were gay until she saw documents following the baby’s birth, prompting her to change her mind.

According to The Guardian, American man, Gordon Lake and his Spanish husband, Manuel are now in hiding with their daughter and two-year-old brother – a surrogate baby born in India – as they fight to take her home.

“I was flabbergasted in a complete state of shock. It’s your worst nightmare in a process like this. I didn’t believe it,” Gordon told The Guardian via Skype.

“We sent messages back, hoping there was some sort of miscommunication. We were terrified.

“She said she thought she was doing this for an ‘ordinary family’ and when she found out that it wasn’t an ordinary family she was worried for Carmen’s wellbeing.”

While the surrogate was pregnant with Carmen,  a series of high-profile surrogacy scandals – including the infamous case involving Baby Gammy who was abandoned by his Australian parents because he has Downs syndrome – led to a ban on the industry.

Lake told the newspaper he was relieved when the surrogate signed the initial release documents to allow them to take Carmen from the hospital.

Just ten days later Lake received a message via a translator that the surrogate wanted the baby back.


The couple will launch a court case for full parental rights of Carmen later this month, despite Thai law not recognising same-sex couples.

Lake works online remotely as he tries to raise his children in Bangkok. So far he has crowdfunded just over $20,000 for a trial that could last months.

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