A woman living in the UK has been sentenced to five years in jail after she repeatedly forced her adopted teenage daughter to be artificially inseminated.
The mother first tried to force pregnancy on her adopted teenage daughter when she was 13 years old. The daughter is believed to have miscarried when she was 14, but the mother persisted in her efforts to impregnate her daughter. The daughter became pregnant again at age 16. After three years of artificial insemination attempts, she gave birth to a baby boy in July of 2011.
Presiding judge Peter Jackson said the mother, who along with her daughter remains anonymous, acted in “a wicked and selfish way” in forcing the pregnancy on her daughter. The mother allegedly forced the pregnancy on her daughter because she could not become pregnant herself and she was forbidden from adopting any more children. The pregnant daughter is one of three children the mother has adopted.
Judge Jackson said the girl “became pregnant at the mother’s request, using donor sperm bought by the mother, with the purpose of providing a fourth child for the mother to bring up as her own.”
Court documents reveal disturbing details about the lengths the mother forced her daughter to go to in order to become pregnant. Documents show that the girl endured "degrading, humiliating and, on occasions, painful" insemination processes. Over two years the daughter had to inseminate herself seven times, "alone in her bedroom, using syringes of semen and douches prepared by the mother".
The mother purchased semen online from Cyros International, a sperm bank based in Denmark.
The daughter says she did not want to become pregnant, but felt she had no choice but to follow her mother’s orders. “If I do this … maybe she will love me more,” the girl said of her mother. The teenager added that her “mum is a very determined person and she does her best not to let anything get in her way if she wants it.”
The motives behind the girl’s pregnancy were kept secret until midwives noticed unusual behavior from the now-convicted mother. “The truth was only discovered at the birth. Midwives were alarmed at the ‘pushy and insensitive’ mother, who tried to prevent her daughter breastfeeding the newborn, saying ‘we don’t want any of that attachment thing.’” Authorities investigated the situation after reports from the midwives and several neighbors began to accumulate.
The mother is accused of isolating her children and keeping social services away from away from their home as well. The woman homeschooled all three of her adopted children. Authorities had been informed about screaming and cursing from the mother in the past, but found no imminent threat to the children’s safety.
The woman has officially been convicted of child cruelty. The local UK Safeguarding Children Board has said they will conduct a serious review of the case and publish their findings in the following weeks. A statement from the Board said that “The lessons from this case are already being put into practice as the relevant agencies are starting to implement its draft findings."