Saturday, April 13, 2013

[USA] - The Story Of Happy Family: Richard, Tommy, Aiden & Austin - by Daniel Garcia

In the second series of the Gay Parenting Magazine Pink Parenting, they share real life stories that features the stars of a new print campaign being run by surrogacy agency, Growing Generations, they meet Richard and Tommy, and their twins Aiden and Austin, who share their path to parenthood.

( -- April 12, 2013) London, UK -- Gay Parenting Magazine shares the story: Richard Vaughn & Tommy Woelfel met in 2000, at Richard’s birthday party which was being hosted by some of their mutual friends, and they stayed friends for about a year before they started dating seriously. They have now been together for eleven years and legally married for four and half years of that time.

In 2008, same-sex marriage was made legal for about six months in California, and they were one of the lucky eighteen thousand couples that got married, and they are still legally married even though the laws have since changed back. They are really hopeful that things will change soon in the US for same sex couples and that legal recognition may finally be given to those who wish to get married.


It was only a couple of years that they were together before the topic of wanting kids came up and Richard & Tommy agreed that having a family was something they both wanted to pursue. Neither of them really knew how they would start their family, they just knew that they really wanted children.

Around that same time friends of the couple were going through the process of surrogacy which was great for them as they received regular updates on their friends journey and they were asking all the questions they could think of which opened up their eyes to the possibilities of using surrogacy to have a child. In 2004, they discovered a local gay parenting group called ‘The Pop Luck Club’, which is for gay dads. The club was hosting an annual ‘resource and information’ day where lots of agencies attended and gave out their information, almost like a mini-conference, and that is where Richard and Tommy first met surrogacy agency ‘Growing Generations’.


At that time, conservative estimations for surrogacy were in the range of $100,000 US. This figure has gone up and down a little since then but for Richard and Tommy it was a huge financial commitment which needed a lot of thought. Luckily they had some savings and they were able to get a second mortgage on their house which helped massively towards their surrogacy fees.

All in all it took the couple two years to be financially ready to start the process and in February 2006 they signed up with Growing Generations. Richard and Tommy had gone to visit other surrogacy agencies but they really liked Growing Generations and it just felt right for them. Growing Generations were so inclusive with their services and really experienced in all the problems that could crop up during the surrogacy process and how to deal with these issues, which made the couple feel confident that they were in good hands. Richard & Tommy also loved that the clinic was started by gay founders, Will Halm and Gail Taylor, who had helped a lot of other gay couples achieve their dream so they felt completely relaxed and understood.


It took about six to seven months to find the right surrogate for the couple. For many that sounds like a long time to wait but for Richard & Tommy it worked out fine. They found that there was a nice built in time frame to for them to get used to things. All of their friends were really supportive and they even had three different baby showers which was great fun. The couple made sure that they were fully equipped with toys, clothes and bottles to look after an army of children!

Growing Generations matched Richard and Tommy up with a wonderful surrogate who was so easy going, and it wasn’t long before they were collecting eggs from their donor, which the couple fertilized with both of their sperm. Their first round was unsuccessful, but on the second attempt their Doctor told them that four of the embryos were viable and what would they like to do? Not knowing how many were going to develop into a baby, Tommy and Richard chatted with each other about the possibilities of having twins, triplets or more. Ideally they both wanted twins out of this and they were lucky enough to have their dream come true.

With something as delicate and intimate as surrogacy, you need to have a team around you that you can trust whole heartedly and even more so have that trust with your surrogate. Richard and Tommy grew to love their surrogate and even if they were not with her all the time, they knew that she was taking good care of their twins. She was a natural at it, and they felt that they couldn’t have had a better match.


In August 2008, after excitedly attending several scans and doctors appointments with their surrogate, the couple welcomed their twin boys, Aiden and Austin, into the world. It had been a long 5 years of discussing, planning, saving and preparing, but finally Richard & Tommy had got there, a milestone that changed the couples lives forever.

A lot of their friends have asked if Richard and Tommy if they know which baby belongs to whom, and of course they have their suspicions from behavior or facial expressions that Aiden and Austin have, but they have never wanted to do a DNA test, because in their eyes Aiden and Austin are both equally their children. It really doesn’t matter to these dads who is genetically whose, the kids are both adorable and they love the children to bits. “Nothing can ever change that and Yes, it’s sometimes scary to think that we are responsible for two little boys who, by the way, are growing up so fast.” they told Pink Parenting Magazine.

Every day brings a new set of challenges and experiences for the family, which they embrace and love. Richard and Tommy explained that they tried to do as much preparation for the transition from a regular couple to a family of four, but there is little that can really prepare anyone for the arrival of twins. It’s been a learning process for all of four of them from the start but having their own family is such a blessing to them and Richard and Tommy count their lucky stars every day.

Growing Generations is dedicated to building families through surrogacy, egg donation, and sperm donation. For more information please visit

For more great stories like this one, please visit The Premier Gay Parenting Magazine for the LGBT Community / Twitter / Facebook

[Source: Pink-Parenting]

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