By Nigel Bunyan
A lesbian has given birth to one of the first babies in Britain to be conceived using sperm bought on the internet.
Jaime Saphier, 26, and her partner, Sarah Watkinson, 31, paid £1,365 for the sperm that was delivered to the door of their red-brick terrace in Bootle, Liverpool.
Miss Saphier remained in a local hospital yesterday after having her 6lb 8oz son delivered by caesarean section. Both were doing well.
The couple approached Man Not Included after their GP refused to help them. They initially paid an £80 registration fee that entitled them to three donor searches on what the company claims to be a global donor database.
The rest of the money went on a "premium service" that included an "introduction" to their chosen donor sperm and a full medical screening of the man who provided it.
Miss Saphier, a security officer, had asked for a donor who was "quite tall" and with brown hair and blue eyes. She and her partner looked at the profiles of two men but opted for the baby's father "because he had been with Bupa for three years".
The fee they paid to Man Not Included allows them to have other children from the same biological father.
Miss Saphier's mother, Susan, of Fazakerley, Liverpool, said she was thrilled to be a grandmother.
"Jaime went into hospital on Monday but the baby failed to arrive. The doctors were so concerned they decided to perform an emergency caesarean.
"Jaime said to me, 'I can't believe I'm a mum'. I told her I loved her and felt proud she was a mother.
"The baby is beautiful and it felt wonderful to be holding him for the first time. He is gorgeous, with tiny hands and fingers. He's perfect and I am thrilled to be his nan."
Shortly after news of her pregnancy emerged, Miss Saphier said: "I think everybody's got the right to have a child, as long as they love it. As long as our child does not want for anything, I can't see how it is wrong.
"I've always wanted a baby but I'd resigned myself to not having one because of my sexuality. Then we saw this website. I would have done this even if it had cost £10,000."
Man Not Included was launched in July 2002 as the world's first sperm donor service designed to help lesbians become parents.
Sperm donations are made through one of a network of established clinics and then sent to the recipients. Donors are paid expenses only.
John Gonzalez, the service's founder, said the baby was the website's second to a single-sex couple. "These births are very, very important to us. It is like welcoming a child into your own family."
Is love the only thing to take into consideration when having a baby. Do fathers play an essential part in a childs life.
Personally i don't like the idea of something as sacred as child birth being up for sale, if they make the choice to take a same sex partner, they would have to accept thier choice and recognise that having a child is in accessable to them. However, now another option is open, the internet and sperm for sale. I'm not saying i think it is wrong to have a baby if youre in a same sex relationship, i'm just not sure i like the idea of being able to bye a baby, this topic also relates to the concept of designer babies.
More info. on designer babies.