A same-sex couple both called Laura have given birth to TRIPLETS – after four years of trying through IVF.
Proud Laura Shepherd, 37, and Laura McLoughlin, 33, welcomed Hope, Teddy and Arthur after paying more than £20,000 for 11 rounds of of artificial insemination.
Their quest was entirely self-funded as no NHS funding is available for same sex couples and it cost them £2,000 every time they tried.
But the two Lauras – who met ten years ago and both had their hearts set on having children – said their family was now complete.
And as Laura Shepherd already has a son, Jack, 17, it was decided it was the younger Laura’s turn to become pregnant.
The couple, from Plymouth, Devon, hope that their journey will promote same-sex families and show that there are options out there for having children.
Miss Shepherd, a nursery teacher, said: “It’s been an emotional and financial rollercoaster but we wouldn’t change it for the world.
“We always knew we wanted children and our family and friends always knew we would right from the off really.
“We’ve had a lot of support and have never experienced any discrimination or negativity.
“We are very conscious the children will be going to school with two mums but in five years time I’m sure they won’t be the only ones with same-sex parents.
“As long as they have parents who love them it shouldn’t matter.”
It was on their 11th treatment of intrauterine insemination that doctors told Miss McLoughlin she had four ‘follicles’ which could be used, and that anything above two would most likely result in multiple babies.
But the pair consented to it, and just weeks later they had a scan to show the group of babies.
She did manage to conceive quadruplets, but sadly one had no heartbeat in the first scan.
Miss McLoughlin, a nursery supervisor, worked up until she was 28 weeks pregnant, gave birth on May 12 via an emergency c-section, nine weeks before they were due.
She added: “Since having triplets we’ve faced things we didn’t even consider.
“We’ve had to get a seven seater car and now things like going into town which would usually take say two hours, now takes four.
“They’re the smallest people in this house but they take up the most space.
“The neonatal staff were fabulous and got them into a routine we’ve carried on.
“It’s great fun having triplets – very tiring, and worth every penny.”
Not only is it rare enough for a couple to be graced with triplets, but they all had their own sacs and placentas too.
Because the trio arrived over two months early, they had to spend three weeks in a neonatal intensive care unit.
Each baby was in one of the three different wards – intensive care, high dependency and special care.
The couple praised the staff at Plymouth’s Derriford Hospital for helping their babies recover and settle at home.