Having a child is exciting news for parents. But, what if the expectant mother is a man? A transgender man, Thomas Beatie of Oregon is claiming that he is pregnant. Interestingly, Beatie was expected to hold a news conference today which had some speculating that this might be an April Fool’s joke after all. However, the latest word seems to be that Beatie will appear for an exclusive interview on The Oprah Winfrey Show. The show is said to run on Thursday, April 3rd as an Oprah Winfrey and People Magazine exclusive.
Beatie is a transgendered male who has undergone hormone therapy to change his outward appearance. However, in order to conceive a child he stopped taking testosterone. Clearly, having never undergone surgery he is in fact a woman biologically and can then obviously become pregnant. Beatie, who is married, stated in The Advocate that his wife, Nancy is unable to conceive a child. After spending thousands of dollars only to be denied assistance by many doctors, who did not want to help them for many reasons, did they then resort to home insemination. They purchased the anonymous donor vials through a cryogenic sperm bank.
Many news reports question the ramifications and dangers of a transgendered birth. Is it possible that Beatie could really be pregnant? It may be hard to believe but not impossible according to some experts. The discussion of Beatie’s pregnancy is one that has captivated the attention of news media giants like ABC News and Good Morning America (GMA). Obstetrician, Lisa Masterson, MD of Cedar Sinai Hospital appeared on GMA and stated that Beatie’s case is not unique. It seems that there’s been another transgender male who has conceived a child before. Either way, on April 3, the world will know if Beatie is truly expecting the baby girl he and his wife claim he is carrying.
Male pregnancy hoaxes are not uncommon though. In 1999, the Male Pregnancy website featured the first man to actually become pregnant, Lee Mingwei. The site is fully loaded with video archives following Lee’s pregnancy, a documentary film on male pregnancy and the site even addressed skeptics stating the pregnancy was actually true. So, what has become of Lee’s baby? The child should be about 9 years old by now. According to the website it seems that Lee is still pregnant. Now that’s one big baby! The truth is artist Virgil Wong created the website and fabricated the entire thing for a performance art piece.
The hype of Beatie’s story reminded me of the Cosby Show episode when the men were all pregnant. The birthing scene showed not only Dr. Huxtable giving birth to a giant hoagie and an orange soda but the rest of the male deliveries. Of course, this was all a bad dream the doctor had in which the drinking water was contaminated by spores. Whatever the news of Beatie’s pregnancy holds, if men are able to bear children in the future (pregnant pause) I doubt they’ll be signing up to carry a baby for nine months anytime soon.
Sources: http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/story?id=4526582, http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2008-03/31/content_7891932.htm