IVF dad: I struggle to love the daughter I didn’t want
He reveals guilt after defeat in court
THE father of a child born after his ex forged his signature to have IVF treatment says he finds it hard to love his daughter – and there are times it’s difficult to even hug her.
The businessman – in his 50s and now married – admitted conflicting emotions towards the girl, now six.
He said: “On one hand it’s a beautiful child – intelligent, lovely, happy. But at the same time the child has represented so much pain and suffering for us.
“There are times I find it impossible to reach out and hug her. I have this inner block. But at the same time I’m filled with this profound sense of guilt and it is extremely challenging to try to reconcile those extremely difficult feelings.
“But then there’s this beautiful girl who’s not responsible for her being and she needs the best opportunity in life.
“I feel not only a duty as a father but a moral duty to do as much for her as I do for the other children in the family. It’s a very difficult situation for my wife and I.”
He spoke after a High Court judge rejected his bid for damages against the Harley Street clinic which failed to check if he had signed the form permitting his frozen embryos to be used.
Mr Justice Jay ruled that although IVF Hammersmith failed in its obligation to ensure consent from both parties, public policy is that no parent can be compensated for the birth of a healthy child.
In a moving interview, the man revealed how his ex-partner – a teacher in her 40s – told him she was pregnant by text message a year after they split.
He said: “It was a bolt from outer space. I mean how do you respond to that?” He was furious with the clinic, telling Radio 4’s Today that although “in control of probably, well certainly, the most sacred, important medical procedure known to mankind – the creation of human life – they were careless.
“There was no check by way of a phone call or getting in touch with me via Skype or by email.”
Jude Fleming of IVF Hammersmith, which denied liability, said it acted with “reasonable care” and added: “We have reinforced our procedures to go above and beyond the industry standard and ensure such a case couldn’t occur again.”