Published on Friday, 03 May 2013 00:00
A woman in London forced her 14-year-old daughter to get pregnant with sperm bought over the internet after her last application to adopt another child was revoked.
The daughter, a virgin, inseminated herself with syringes of donor sperm because she was too afraid to refuse her “domineering” mother. She is believed to have had a miscarriage at 14, but got pregnant again at 16 after repeated attempts.
Details of the outrageous case were revealed to public after permission was granted to report a previously secret court judgement. The mother cannot be named to protect the identity of the daughter only referred to as A and her baby, D.
The mother is now serving a five-year prison sentence for pleading guilty to child cruelty. In his judgement, Family division judge Mr Justice Jackson described “an abiding sense of disbelief that a parent could behave in such a wicked and selfish way towards a vulnerable child.”
The mother had already adopted three children as babies from abroad, one of which was A. She had chosen not to give birth to a child herself because of a health condition and had undergone an elective sterilisation. She was distressed when she was denied approval to adopt a fourth baby, so she turned to A.
In his ruling, Jackson mentioned that the artificial insemination program was planned when A was 13, and carried out when she turned 14. It only ended after she became pregnant with D.
Jackson said that A “became pregnant at the mother's request, using donor sperm bought by the mother, with the purpose of providing a fourth child for the mother to bring up as her own.”
The daughter was shocked by her mother’s suggestion but she thought to herself, “If I do this ... maybe she will love me more.”
“My mum is a very determined person and she does her best not to let anything get in her way if she wants it,” A added.
The case of child abuse was only discovered during the birth of the baby. Midwives were alarmed at the “pushy and insensitive” mother who tried to prevent her daughter from breastfeeding D. They quoted the mother as saying “we don't want any of that attachment thing”. Noticing the daughter’s reluctance to hand over the baby, they called in child protection workers when the mother insisted on removing the baby from the ward.
"The mother resorted to the AI programme because she was determined to have a fourth child, and because there was no other way of achieving this," said the judge. The daughter "allowed her body to be used by her mother because she loves her", and though she did not want to take part, she has said in interviews she was not "brave enough" to tell her mother.
The mother subjected her daughter to a "degrading, humiliating and, on occasions, painful" ordeal. Over two years the daughter had to inseminate herself seven times, "alone in her bedroom, using syringes of semen and douches prepared by the mother".
The world is indeed becoming a dark, dark place to live in.