Parents Ask Surrogate to Terminate Pregnancy Because the Baby Has Down Syndrome

Brittany Chalmers
Jan 24, 2022
12:20 P.M.

When a woman agreed to be a surrogate mother for her friends, she felt honored and happy to help them start a family. However, the couple asked her to do something unexpected after the 12-week ultrasound.


Andrea and Keston Ott-Dahl's friends struggled to get pregnant for six years, so they stepped up to help them. Andrea donated her eggs, and everyone was excited when they found out she was pregnant.

However, when they went to the 12-week scan, they received troubling news. The doctor informed them that the baby had a few health concerns and would be born with Down Syndrome.

Andrea Ott-Dahl with her baby girl [left] Andrea Ott-Dahl and her daughter who has Down syndrome [right] | Photo: facebook.com/andrea.ott.5

Andrea Ott-Dahl with her baby girl [left] Andrea Ott-Dahl and her daughter who has Down syndrome [right] | Photo: facebook.com/andrea.ott.5


Medical professionals revealed the worst-case scenario, and many urged them to terminate the pregnancy in 2013. They were also informed that the baby had a five percent chance of surviving until her due date.


The intended parents of the baby, a lesbian couple living in Antioch, California, told Andrea that they did not want the baby anymore and instructed her to terminate the pregnancy.


The Ott-Dahls decided to follow their hearts and Andrea kept the baby. They loved her and started a journey to discover more about children with Down syndrome. They were surprised to see that they could do the same things other children did.

After lots of research, they found people with Down Syndrome growing up to be actors, making it big as entrepreneurs, getting married, and even having families of their own.



The couple wanted to break the stigma and show people that individuals with Down Syndrome can still live extraordinary lives. The intended mothers of the baby initially threatened the Ott-Dahls with a lawsuit.

However, they never went through with it. According to a lawyer, Lori Meyers, no person can file a lawsuit that forces another into terminating a pregnancy.



The Ott-Dahls chose to show the intended mothers kindness. Andrea shared: "From their perspective, I have to be kind of sensitive to them. When you're trying to get pregnant for so long, it's hard to be optimistic."

Their baby girl was born in July 2016, and they named her Delaney Skye. She had a heart defect that required medical attention, but she proved many doctors wrong. She survived the pregnancy and is a happy little girl now.



By 2018, the two-year-old was dancing, playing, and enjoying life like any child. Andrea stated: "Delaney is amazing. She's like any typical 2-year-old. She likes getting into mischief and making messes."

Despite her Down Syndrome, she met various milestones and could talk in five-word sentences. The Ott-Dahls hope their story encourages parents to hold onto hope and consider other options before giving up on a child with Down syndrome.



Delaney wasn't the only child with Down syndrome that was not welcomed with open arms by everyone. Twenty families rejected a newborn baby named Alba before someone adopted her.

Luca Trapanese gave her a home in 2017, and he became the first single gay dad to legally adopt a child in Italy. The proud father shared that his life was filled with new purpose and joy when she entered it.

The same can be said for the Ott-Dahls. Both families showed that Down syndrome does not have to define a child, and with loving and devoted parents, anything is possible.

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