While the media will attempt to spin this as a surrogacy case gone awry, Ms. Close was never a surrogate. At all relevant times throughout this arrangement she intended and expected to be a co-parent of these twins with the biological father. Unless other facts come out that contradict Ms. Close, this is nothing more than an unfortunate custody dispute where neither party took the appropriate legal precautions before proceeding:
Cindy Close says her lifelong dream was to become a mother. So when her longtime friend approached her with a proposition to be co-parents, she took him up on his offer. She says the two had agreed to live apart but raise children together. But on the day she gave birth to twins in July — one boy and one girl — she was shocked to find her friend had gone to the court, asking to be named the sole parent of children. Marvin McMurrey told the judge Cindy was not the mother, not genetically related (they used his sperm and a donor egg) and “her role was that of a surrogate.”
Cindy says her heart was stolen when she heard the news. She never got to take the twins home (they live with their biological dad and his partner) and she gets to see them two hours a day. “Love is all it takes to be a mom,” she told CNN’s David Mattingly. “Biology doesn’t have to be there.”
The children are now the center of a legal battle in Texas. But the court isn’t just deciding on a custody case, they’ll have to decide what it means to be a “mother,” too.