A Michigan couple has finally won their legal battle to officially adopt their own biological twins, who were born through a gestational carrier, after a two-year-long custody struggle, as reported by PEOPLE. Tammy Myers, the twins’ mother, expressed her relief, saying, “Words cannot express how excited we are to put this adoption process behind us. This ongoing whirlwind has become our normal, and this craziness has all led to this special moment.”
The twins, named Eames and Ellison, were born on January 11, 2021, and the couple had opted for a gestational carrier due to Tammy’s breast cancer diagnosis, which prevented her from carrying the children herself. The couple, who already had a 10-year-old daughter named Corryn, were eager to expand their family.
Despite being the biological parents of Eames and Ellison and having cared for them since birth with the approval of their gestational carrier, Tammy and Jordan had to go through the adoption process due to Michigan’s strict surrogacy regulations.
The adoption process took two long years, but the couple believes that the timing is perfect as there have been recent introductions of new surrogacy bills in the Michigan House of Representatives. Tammy stated, “It’s a great day: We are finally being recognized as our biological twins’ legal parents, and I’m feeling very hopeful that we will see a change to this crazy, outdated Michigan law.”
The couple faced challenges in obtaining emergency legal rights for the twins, with Jordan’s paternal rights being denied as well. Even if Jordan had been granted paternity, Tammy would have still needed to adopt her own biological children as a stepparent because she did not carry them herself. According to Michigan’s 1988 Surrogate Parenting Act, paid surrogacy is prohibited for carriers and intended parents, and any agreements made between parties are not accepted in court.
Despite their legal battle coming to an end, Tammy and Jordan are not giving up, and they have been advocating for the passage of four bills introduced by Michigan Senators and Representatives. Despite being the adoptive parents of the twins, Tammy and Jordan have been their legal guardians since birth, watching Eames and Ellison grow from newborns to active toddlers, walking, running, playing hide-and-seek, and communicating.
Tammy shared, “They’re so much fun and have changed so much over the past year. They were a little bit behind because they were preemies, but over the past year, they’ve fully caught up growth-wise and developmentally. They’re happy, full-of-life little toddlers.”
With the court’s decision, the only change in their household would be that the twins would now be eligible to be added to the family health insurance plan. Previously, in accordance with Michigan law, the twins’ gestational carrier, Lauren, and her husband Jonathan were mentioned on the birth certificate. However, Tammy and Jordan’s names will now be added as the legal parents. Lauren and Jonathan will continue to play an active role in the twins’ lives as their godparents.
Tammy reflected on their journey, saying, “Although this journey has been traumatic and long, it has also been pretty amazing at the same time. With support coming from people around the globe, it’s also hard not to feel that every single aspect of this experience was part of a much bigger plan—every moment representing another puzzle piece that has fallen into place. The big picture is finally clear, and my heart is so full.”