A woman was ecstatic over the prospect of becoming a mother after her wife's brother offered his sperm.
But when the brother-in-law later discovered he and his wife were not able to have children of their own, he asked Redditor "AITAreturnthefavour" to bear three children for him and his wife.
The Original Poster (OP) asked AITA (Am I The A**hole) for not wanting to return the favor with three children in addition to the two she was already planning on for herself and her wife.
"I'm going to preface this by saying I don't think I'm TA, and neither does my wife, but my in laws all think we are hypocrites and we want to see the other side of this and hopefully use that to figure out a way forward."
"My wife and I are both women. My wife and I want kids, and we would like it if they could be related to us, but obviously there's an issue there as far as making babies goes."
"We were considering adoption when my wife suggested asking her older brother to donate sperm to us."
"I know this sounds batsh*t crazy but they're siblings, so they look a lot alike and they're really close, and this is the closest we could possibly get to having a child that's biologically both of ours."
"The brother said he'd be willing to donate when we're ready and can't wait to be an uncle."
So far so good, until there was a change in plans.
"Since the brother agreed to this he and his wife have found out that his wife can't have kids."
"Recently the brother told us he wants to renegotiate the sperm donor situation. In short, he wants to make 5 babies with me."
"Again, I know how this sounds, and I wish this was fake. He and his wife want 3 kids, me and my wife want 2."
"He wants me to go through 5 pregnancies, and he'll provide the sperm for each one, so biologically all 5 kids will be full siblings, but raised as cousins."
The conditional offer just isn't fair.
"We get how big a favour he'd be doing us by donating, and we were honestly thrilled when he agreed, but the thing is the amount of time he'd spend creating 5 babies is about an hour or so, and the amount of time I'd spend is nearly 4 years (without recovery time)."
"I was fine with 2 lots of 9 months when I was keeping the babies, but the idea of carrying those 2 plus 3 additional pregnancies where I didn't keep the babies is a whole other thing."
"When they asked my wife and I said no. They asked why not, and our response was that he was asking me to go through 3 more pregnancies on top of the 2 we'd agreed on."
"He then said that if we weren't willing to give him children, he wouldn't do the same for us. We said that was his right to change his mind, but he was asking too much from us."
"So now no one is having biological children. My wife and I were seriously considering adoption before the brother suggestion ever came up, and we do still want to try that."
"So at the end of the day we'd be just as happy to have a non biological child as a biological one, however the brother, who doesn't want to adopt, has told their mother who has told the extended family, and it appears that just about everyone in my wife's family believes that we should agree to it and 'return the favour.'"
"Basically if he gives us children then I should do the same for him, and by the time I'm done everyone has their desired number of biological babies."
"The brother and his wife are similarly pressuring us, telling us they'd give us children so why won't we give them kids, and that the two things are the same, and called us hypocrites because we'd have kids with their help but won't help them have kids."
"Like I said at the start, my wife and I believe we're in the right, but we want to hear if we actually are or not and what the other perspective might be in order to know how to proceed."
Redditors agreed the OP was NTA (Not the A**hole).
"NTA. Three babies in exchange for one jackoff session?!? He's nuts. The family is nuts. Go adopt a baby and congrats to you and your wife." – FinalFeeling
This kind suggestion could be good karma.
"I don't think you're TA at all, but I do think you should consider donating your eggs to the wife and they can get a surrogate to keep the lines clear."
"It's a lot to go through but it would be an amazing gesture on your part. I would limit the rounds to 1-2 for your sanity as it is not an easy process. Or adopt, like this commenter said." – sweetcampfire
The brother-in-law's one-shot deal is still a lot easier than the process of donating eggs, as this user pointed out.
"It's been a while since I looked it up but I recall the process of donating eggs would take up to a month, compared to a 2-10 mins jack off session for donating sperm."
"So even just donating eggs would be a remarkably longer and difficult process than what the brother would go through." – BraidedSilver
"I've donated twice. A whole barrage of blood screenings, and then injecting myself once or twice daily for a couple of weeks."
"Surgery under general anesthetic for the collection. Pain for a week after. My second collection surgery led to me developing ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome, and multiple hospital admissions plus weeks of recovery time until I felt normal again."
"My abdomen ballooned. I would vomit if I tried to walk, and breathing was limited by the pressure placed on everything. It's a serious condition, and yet a surprisingly common side effect to egg donation."
"It's very much different to jacking off in a cup. I'd invite you educate yourself on the procedure and complications before your wife goes through it, if she decides to. Please don't underestimate how involved the process will be for her." – badscars
The in-laws got re-evaluated.
"Do not negotiate with, or give your gametes to, people who don't understand how pregnancy works. OP should be way madder -- they're totally discounting the magnitude of this ask and treating her body like an incubator."
"These people are a**holes who don't deserve to raise kids." – Sensitive-Garbage
The arrangement can get very complicated. This Redditor had so many questions.
"And who gets which in which order?"
"Do they get to call dibs depending on gender? What if there's complications and the baby is born with a medical problem?"
"What if, deity forbids, something happens in the late stages and there's no baby, is some due another pregnancy? Who pays the medical costs."
"Are they going to push for a timeline, like 'pop them out every year' or 'we want them spaced exactly 2 or 3 years apart?'"
"Who gets the bonus twin if that's the last pregnancy?"
"What they are asking for is so weird I'm not sure it would give a very credible sitcom!" – PatatietPatata
The OP updated her post to mention that neither her wife nor the brother's wife are able to produce viable eggs or carry to term.
"Some form of IVF/surrogacy wouldn't be possible involving either of them, and I'm basically the only chance at biological children for any of us."
"The brother and his wife can't afford to pay a surrogate. My wife and I are going back to adoption as our preferred route in the hopes that this will stop any further tension."
The brother is not willing to negotiate on the number of children he and his wife want.
"We have tried to negotiate the number of kids but they want exactly 3 kids, and they want them all to be full siblings because they're worried if I gave them one child with the brother's sperm and they adopted the rest then they'd subconsciously prefer the one who was related to the brother."
"To clarify: of the 2 biological requirements of creating children - producing viable eggs and carrying to term - I am the only woman in this scenario that can do both, while my wife and my brother in law's wife can't do either. The only people in this situation capable of having children are myself and my wife's brother."
"AGAIN, BROTHER IN LAW. I AM NOT HAVING MY BIOLOGICAL BROTHER'S BABIES!"
Since then, the lesbian couple's plans have changed.
"We are going back to adoption, which was our plan before the brother was even suggested."
Given the family drama this has caused, adoption is a wonderful option.
The book Infreakinfertility: How to Survive When Getting Pregnant Gets Hard is available here.