Stevie: I wanted kids since I was wee, maybe about 15. I’m 20 now. I’ve got nine brothers and sisters. I used to have a business with my mum and we worked it so that I could give my sister her feeds. We did the same with my wee brother.
Lauren: We got together in June last year. My wee boy was born in July, not long after. I’m 17 now.
Stevie: We were mates before and started going out when Lauren was pregnant. I knew in my head that I wanted to be with her before she was pregnant but I just didn’t have the balls to ask her.
Lauren: We’d known each other two or three years. I got pregnant, experimenting with a friend. It was complicated, a stupid mistake. I was at the stage, when I asked Stevie out, of thinking about whether to keep the baby or have it adopted. We decided to keep it.
Stevie: She thought she was going to lose me and that was why she thought of getting rid of the baby but I managed to talk her round when I said I would be there for her no matter what. I’d known for a year that I wanted to be with her.
Lauren: I knew years ago, just after we started talking the first time.
Stevie: Lauren didn’t want another baby after the baby was born but I did.
Lauren: I didn’t, not after I had to have a C section. The pregnancy was rough. My baby was premature.
Stevie: We were lying in bed one night, watching a film, Knocked Up. I went downstairs for some water and she went to the toilet. We didn’t know it but her waters had broken. In the film, the woman’s waters had broken at the same time.
Lauren: I didn’t realise it was my waters breaking – I thought I’d wet myself!
Stevie: I got concerned because she didn’t move all night and her bump had disappeared: it was just a baby shape.
Lauren: I had an appointment with the midwife the next day. She said the baby was OK. I was having pains from when my waters broke but not serious ones. Then I started having shitty ones and we called the midwife again. She said he was coming – the baby. He was six weeks early.
Stevie: I had had to leave, because of work. I was virtually living at Lauren’s mum’s, apart from when I had to go south to work. I got a phone call at 9pm to say Lauren was going into hospital. I got there the next day. I met her mum downstairs in the café and she took me up to her.
Lauren: The day after, I got my C section. I was in labour for four days. They gave me a jab and tablets. I didn’t have an epidural because I freaked out when I saw the needle.
The baby was feet down and his cord was wrapped round and pulling at my belly button. If I’d pushed him out it would have ripped me and killed him, so they had to do the C section.
Stevie: I was sitting with her mum and her sisters, a bag of nerves. I had to get a cuddle off her sister because I didn’t know what to do. It was my first experience of the whole lot. No-one came to tell us how the baby was. We even had to stop Lauren’s midwife to find out if Lauren was OK. They said they couldn’t tell me much because Lauren hadn’t come round but the baby had flatlined and had to g o to intensive care.
Lauren: He was out, not breathing, for 40 minutes. They told me while I was still coming round and asked me if they could pass the information on.
Stevie: You don’t remember anything about the two days after that.
Lauren: I can’t remember anything after they told me he’d flatlined apart from going to see him for five minutes. I remember holding him, leaving him in there, in intensive care but nothing after that. I was away with the fairies because of the drugs.
He had all these tubes in him. He had a thing on his foot, a splint on his arm, a drip in his leg, pads on his chest, a hose thing for breathing. He was in intensive care for five weeks.
Stevie: We had to wait until he weighed 5lb 10oz ’til he could come out of hospital. Even then there were complications. It was his second week home.
He was feeding and there was food or mucus stuck in his throat. He just flopped in his gran’s arms. He’d gone blue.
Lauren: It was horrible. He was taken back to hospital. He’s been back three times. The day after he had to go back because he wasn’t peeing. There was nothing in his nappy. They got medicine for him and it seemed to work.
Stevie: Your mum said he was taking the mick because he came home and peed. The he had to go back in again because he had reflux. He projectile vomited all over me. From there we just had to be careful how much we were feeding him. We had to go back to the premature food. Now he just eats everything.
Lauren: He’s OK now, there’s nothing wrong.
Stevie: He’s nearly walking. He’s a happy boy now – he was quite narky when he was wee.
He’s staying up north with his gran while we sort out the flat, then he’ll come down and live here.
Lauren: We just see him at weekends at the moment but he’ll come here when we’ve moved everything in and he’ll go and see them at weekends.
Stevie: I started nagging Lauren as soon as he was born, about me having a child too. I think she felt insecure because she thought I wanted to have a child with a man, so we didn’t talk about it for a while but once we’d cleared that up, we started talking about it again.
Lauren: We want them [the children] to have the same skin tone as us, so they don’t look too different.
Stevie: We’ve got someone – a donor – in Edinburgh, someone in Glasgow and someone in Dundee, who we’ve discussed it with. One I know, the others we met through some online sites which are registered and where all the donors are checked. They check out if the family has genetic problems and they have medical checks.
I knew before Lauren got pregnant that there were ways I could go about it because I’d seen a programme. I decided on this way more for Lauren, so we can do it ourselves through artificial insemination.
The person [potential donor] I know, we were having a discussion about how I wanted kids and how I wanted them to have my skin colour. It was just a general conversation and he said he would do it but he’d have to speak to his wife. He’s married with kids. He wasn’t sure if she’d allow it, him not seeing the kid or her knowing he had a kid out there but not by her.
We spoke about if he did go ahead with it, would he want to have contact.
Lauren: I’d prefer it if we had a donor who then walked away and had no contact.
Stevie: It might be OK if they wanted contact once in a blue moon, sent a birthday card…
Lauren: I don’t know if I would be comfortable with that. It might cause complications.
Stevie: There was a donor in Edinburgh who said he wanted to buy everything until the baby was born and then walk away but we didn’t think that was fair.
We’ve got a number one donor who really wants to do it, who’s constantly in contact asking when we’re ready. And we’ve decided we really want to start next month, after we get the flat ready. We need to find out my ovulation days and then tell him we’re ready to start. Now that we have our own place, we might have him over to stay.
Lauren: I’m not sure about that. He was OK about staying in a hotel.
Stevie: We’ve thought about it so long now. This month we’re just counting the days. I’ve got a test to find out when I’m ovulating, so we know when it will be next month. I’ve got syringes to use on the night.
My advice is to do a lot of research online or even just go to one of the youth groups. Get into some of the forums and ask around. Find out about the different ways of doing it – it’s not just sleeping with a guy or IVF, there’s artificial insemination.
It does put a strain on a relationship so make sure you are steady before you do it. Trust is the main thing. Be supportive of the other person, especially when they’re pregnant – be prepared for mood swings!
Lauren: You still need to do everything a normal couple does while you’re pregnant, have fun, just more carefully.
Stevie: Realise the partner needs to bond with the bump. I found it quite easy. I would put my head on the bump and talk to him, feeling his foot move against my finger. He knew my voice straightaway.
Lauren: Enjoy the pregnancy while you can. Make sure your partner’s not going to run.
Stevie: Start saving now. Just make sure you’ve got a steady income.
Lauren: Some people think a baby just costs a couple of pounds here and there, they don’t realise how much it costs.
Stevie: Research it. You need to talk about it all in depth, to know you both want it – not one person wanting a baby and the other being put on the spot and saying “Yes, let’s do it,” then chickening out.
Lauren: If the wee boy asks, we’ll tell him about his dad but if he doesn’t I don’t see the point. His dad is not showing any interest so far and he only lives a couple of doors away.
Stevie: We’re not really wanting the complications of one child knowing their dad and the other one not, or one getting more presents than the other one.
Lauren: My family’s been really supportive.
Stevie: My mum has never really accepted that I want to be with a girl and doesn’t really acknowledge that we have a kid already. She’s been brought up the way her mum was brought up, the old way where girls shouldn’t be with girls and boys shouldn’t be with boys. She’s just stubborn when it comes to this. She doesn’t even mind when it’s outside the family, it’s because it’s me. My cousin’s scared of coming out because of the way the family treated me when I came out. I’ve got concerns about when my children go to school, about being bullied.
Lauren: I don’t think our wee boy will be picked on.
Stevie: I know quite a lot of gay people who have got kids. I don’t think they’ve had any problems.
Lauren: I know someone in my family who hasn’t had any problems and her wee boy is 10.
Stevie: There were a couple of women who came out and their kid got picked on. They moved away. My home area is bad for people who come out, so it would be bad for bringing up a kid. I was getting on a train and someone threw a bottle at my head.
I think when the wee boy gets to a certain age, we’ll be wanting to move away. My brother’s in Australia and I’ve got a career that means I can get a transfer across there.