Proud dad Scott Parker today reveals how he became the first man in Britain to have a baby.
The graphic designer, who was born female 23 years ago, gave birth to daughter Sara on April 29 – almost seven weeks before Hayden Cross, who last week was reported to be the first man in Britain to give birth.
As he tenderly cradled his daughter last night, ecstatic Scott declared: ‘She is beautiful and I feel so fortunate, and I think I am doing pretty well as a parent.’
Scott has been living as a man for two years and is a patient at the gender identity clinic at Charing Cross Hospital in West London but put his transition on hold to have Sara.
He proudly showed The Mail on Sunday a 32-week scan which clearly records his gender as ‘male’ and revealed how understanding staff at the hospital where he gave birth always called him ‘dad’.
Since the birth Scott has resumed life as a man and is continuing with his transition – planning to have an operation to remove his breasts next year. More surgery to transform other organs could follow.
The taxpayer-funded process costs an average of £29,000.
In an exclusive interview with the MoS, Scott explained that he had always wanted children despite realising as a child that he was born the wrong sex.
‘I did want to have my own children, and I had thought about how it might be possible with fertility treatment, but in the end I just wrote it off as something that is not going to happen,’ he said. ‘I thought, “I’m a man now – I can’t have children.”
‘Now I have everything. I am the man I am meant to be and a parent. I want others to know they can do it too.
‘It is wonderful that attitudes are changing and people like me can celebrate being a parent. I am overjoyed for Hayden Cross too.’
However, Scott still fears he could face abuse over his decision to have a baby as a man, and requested that his family name was changed in this article to disguise his identity.
Scott did not plan to get pregnant but discovered he was expecting after a drunken one-night stand with a male friend in August last year.
He has a partner who was also born female and is also transitioning to become a man and knows about the fling.
The partner asked not to be named, but said he intends to adopt Sara and become her legal parent too. The couple said the biological father does not want to be involved in the baby’s life.
Scott revealed how he begged to be called ‘father’ on Sara’s birth certificate but was told by officials that this was not permitted. Instead he is listed on the document as the baby’s mother.
Scott said the unplanned pregnancy was the ‘perfect chance’ for him to have a child before completing his transition.
He said: ‘I didn’t want to start the hormones and then come off them to get pregnant because there are no real studies of how this will affect the eggs you have and the health of the children you might have in the future. And I know that freezing eggs can sometimes damage them as well.
‘So this is pretty much the only opportunity I’ll have to have a child free of medical intervention. It was the perfect chance.’
He began living full-time as a man in May 2015. After making the ‘terrifying’ decision, he cut his hair into a short back and sides style, began wearing men’s clothes and changed his name by deed poll to Scott.
He also split with his ‘straight’ boyfriend of three years and began a relationship with his current transgender partner.
In June 2016, he was placed on the NHS transition programme. At his first appointment he was psychologically assessed to confirm he was transgender and that he was mentally prepared to undergo the treatment. In October, he will be given a testosterone injection, which will set in motion irreversible physical changes.
Once the pregnancy was confirmed, Scott was referred to a midwife in Kent, who he described as ‘fantastic’ in understanding his situation. But his first challenge came when he attended his 12-week scan at Ashford Hospital.
He said: ‘When I turned up, the receptionist took one look at me and my forms which referred to me as “Mr” and assumed I was in the wrong place. But when they realised the situation they were nothing but professional.’
Later in the pregnancy Scott and his partner moved to Brighton, where he said staff at the Royal Sussex County Hospital were also careful to refer to him as a ‘father’ rather than a ‘mother’. His maternity card used the gender-neutral title ‘Mx’ rather than ‘Mr’.
And at his next ultrasound appointment, at the top of the scan image of his baby daughter he was classified as a ‘male’ patient. The hospital also agreed that after giving birth he would be allowed to stay in his own private room, rather than joining the women in the maternity unit.
‘Everyone in the medical field has referred to me as dad since we moved to Brighton,’ Scott said. ‘They were wonderful about me being a pregnant man and giving birth. I was the first they had come across so they were keen to learn and accommodate me. When I didn’t want to go to the antenatal classes with women, my midwife discussed everything that I needed to know with me one-on-one basis. She was amazing.’
During his pregnancy, Scott struggled with the changes happening to his body, but said he was able to cope because he knew they would be temporary. ‘I knew that my chest would get bigger, but that I was going to have surgery one day and they’ll be gone. And I might be having a lot of oestrogen now, but I’m going to have testosterone eventually and that will be fine.
‘There were days when I felt uncomfortable with my body. I tried to cover my chest as much as possible and wear baggier clothes. But it helped that I had something to focus on other than myself. I had to love my body because of baby was growing inside me.’
Ten days overdue, Scott went to the Royal Sussex to be induced on April 28. After a six-hour overnight labour, Sara was born in a birthing pool.
Scott said he and his partner have doted on their new daughter since taking her home to their modest flat in Brighton.
He spent five weeks ‘chest-feeding’, which is the term he prefers rather than breast-feeding, but stopped because he was uncomfortable feeding Sara in public. ‘It got to the point that she was feeding every hour and I wasn’t comfortable with having to get my boobs out anywhere,’ he said.
Scott said his mother, a mental health nurse, his father, a bricklayer, and his three sisters have all been supportive of his transition and his decision to go ahead with the pregnancy.
But he added that older relatives sometimes ‘slip up’.
‘They support me and love me, but sometimes they slip up and use the wrong name or say things like, “Go back to mummy”. And I’m like, “No.”
Now that he has given birth, Scott said he was keen to ‘get on with the transition’. He is unsure if he will have any other children, but one thing of which he is certain is that he will be ‘completely honest’ with his daughter about the story of her conception when she is older.
‘I’ll tell her that I gave birth to her,’ he said.
‘I’ll tell her that I was born exactly the same way you are now but I’m a boy. I’m a girl who grew up to be a big boy.
‘I want society to understand this a bit better so that when she grows up it’s more normal to say, “Yes, my dad had me.”’
The first man to have a baby was Thomas Beatie, from Arizona, in 2007. Also born female, he went on to have three children using donor sperm.
Credit: Daily Mail