One woman’s act of kindness: Surrogacy

A heartfelt surrogacy journey attracts media attention.

There’s no better feeling than to read an inspiring true story which has the potential to leave someone with a sense of encouragement. At a time when news headlines often trigger sadness and concern, reading one that describes an act of kindness is more welcome now than it has ever been.

Recently, a real story like this has warmed numerous hearts while garnering much-deserved attention from publications such as People and Redbook. New York couple Nicole and Kevin Barattini lost hope of ever having children. Everything changed when their friend offered to be their surrogate.

Now, the Barattini’s are parents to twin babies.

There are many reasons why a woman may not be able to carry a child. She may have had a hysterectomy at an early age or rendered infertile following cancer treatments. At 16, Nicole Barratini was diagnosed with thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP). While Nicole’s autoimmune illness was controlled with medication, it was this very medication which could harm her unborn child if she became pregnant. Stopping the medication altogether could result in serious health ramifications for Nicole.

“We had heard stories that sisters carried and mothers carried [eggs for women who could not carry], but I don’t have a sister, and my mother is over the age [to be able to be a carrier],” Nicole shared in her interview with Redbook on March 31, 2017. “We just did it [froze my eggs] for precautionary reasons and hoped for the best.”

Reporters who covered this story were quick to point out that altruistic surrogacy is fine in New York; however, paying a gestational surrogate living in the state is illegal. Close acquaintances with good intentions thought they could be the couple’s surrogate, but for one reason or another, things just didn’t work out.

Then a dinner with their friends changed Nicole and Kevin’s outlook, and a glimmer of hope appeared on the horizon.

“I was blessed to have five kids, and they are all amazing, and I couldn’t picture my life without them,” Lianna Fives told People in an interview. “And to see this family so deserving it broke my heart.”

Fives, 37, admitted how she had wanted to help the couple but in her heart, she needed to wait until she completed having her family.

“At first it was difficult for me to get a sense of why she wanted to do this,” Nicole explained in her People interview. “She is an angel. She wanted to do this out of the kindness of her heart.”

It’s these types of stories that pull on the heartstrings of mothers who want to help other women achieve their dreams of parenthood. So many couples around the world are struggling with infertility and are unable to have children of their own. While fertility treatments happily work for some, they sadly don’t work for others.

Individuals and couples having endured failed pregnancy attempts are many times left with a feeling of defeat. But that raw emotion can be replaced with hope since surrogacy is a gift which can help someone experience the love of a child.

“After hearing our story, I hope that there are people out there that will help other couples because they gave us life,” Nicole shared with ABC 7. “They changed our lives forever.”