Friday, October 5th, 2012
Maggie Rizer, the model, is expecting her second son with husband Alex Mehran. Her older son, Zander, is only 11 months old, and Rizer tells PEOPLE.com that she is thrilled with the closeness of her kids’ ages:
Rizer, 34, grew up with four siblings and hopes to replicate the experience for her own children. “Alex and I always wanted a big family,” she explains. “We want to have as many kids as we can — within reason.”
The happy announcement follows the devastating loss of the family’s beloved golden retriever, Bea, who died on an airline flight in September. Having two children so close in age “will be just about the sweetest thing in the world,” she says. “A made-for-you best friend. We feel incredibly blessed.”
Image: Maggie Rizer, via Featureflash / Shutterstock.com
Monday, September 10th, 2012
A Washington state family is joining the ranks of those who are having children through a gestational surrogate–a woman who carries and delivers a baby for a couple that can create a healthy embryo but cannot sustain a healthy pregnancy.
Tiffany Burke, a mother of 2, is carrying a baby for her brother and his wife, James and Natalie Lucich. The couple has a son, but Lucich required postpartum surgery in which her uterus had to be removed. CNN has more:
It took a week for the news to set in. Lucich could have no more children naturally. Her dream had always been to have three. She was crushed.
A few days later, Burke headed over to the Luciches’ house to take pictures of the new family. Lucich confided how conflicted she felt: She was grateful for Hunter but also mourning the loss of the children she would never have.
Lucich mentioned to Burke that she still had her eggs. She and James were considering using a gestational surrogate. An embryo, created in a Petri dish from Natalie’s egg and James’ sperm, would be implanted in the surrogate mother. None of the surrogate’s DNA is involved.
“I was pissed!” Burke recalled. She was worried: What if the surrogate drank or smoked or did something to harm herself? She didn’t want the Luciches to take that chance.
Suddenly, Burke blurted out, “I’ll do it!” Embarrassed, she immediately covered her mouth and apologized.
Lucich looked at her. “I thought you didn’t want any more children, you were done being pregnant.”
“Yes,” Burke responded, “we don’t want any more natural children of our own … but I have this perfectly good uterus!”
Earlier this month, a 49-year-old Maine grandmother served as the surrogate for her own grandson, and reality TV stars Giuliana and Bill Rancic welcomed a baby boy born via a surrogate who was not a family member.
Image: Hand touching pregnant belly, via Shutterstock
Monday, August 15th, 2011
A study published in the journal Pediatrics has found that siblings of children with autism are more likely than previous research had suggested to develop the disorder themselves.
Previously, studies had estimated between 3 and 10 percent of siblings of autistic children would develop the disorder. The new research shows a higher number–just more than 18 percent. The study also found that boys are more likely than girls to develop autism–26 percent of boys with autistic siblings developed symptoms, compared to only 9 percent of girls, a nearly three-fold difference.
From The Associated Press:
Autism has no known cause but experts believe that genetics and external influences are involved. Research is examining whether these could include infections, pollution and other non-inherited problems. [Lead researcher Sally] Ozonoff noted that siblings often are exposed to similar outside influences, which could partly explain the study results.
The study is an important addition to autism research and “has critical implications for families who are deciding whether they’ll have another child,” said Catherine Lord, director of the Institute for Brain Development at New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center. Lord was not involved in the study.
Infants in the study were enrolled before they showed any signs of autism, such as poor eye contact and little social interaction.
Autism is the spectrum of developmental, cognitive, and behavioral disorders that affects an estimated 1.5 million Americans.
(image via: http://www.babble.com)