There have been at least 25 births in the past five years from women who have never had sexual intercourse according to four major fertility clinics in Great Britain. The number was reported by The Daily Mail this week.
The women get pregnant through a process called in vitro fertilization (IVF) where the woman’s egg is fertilized with a donor sperm in a lab and then implanted into the woman. These fertility treatments don’t come cheap. In Great Britain, they come up to at least £5,000 (around P355,000) per procedure.
Reasons for opting to raise a child without a partner vary but most are saying that they’re prepared to be a mother and want to have a child already but can no longer wait for the right partner to come along. Some psychotherapists, however, are pointing to a fear of sex and an emotional immaturity to establish a stable relationship as reasons for the virgin pregnancies.
Maha Ragunath, medical director of One is Care Fertility clinic in Nottingham, UK, has helped single women have children. Most, she says, are in their early twenties.
“When I ask them why they are coming for treatment, very often the response is that they are ready to have a child and they don’t want to wait around for the right partner to come along,” she told The Daily Mail.
In the past three years, Ragunath has helped three women who have either never been in a relationship or have never had sex give birth to children.
Strong views are coming from religious sectors, however, about these single women giving birth to children with most saying that it takes a mother and a father to raise a family.
In the Philippines, the procedure is limited to married couples only, which means single women, whether virgin or not, are not currently allowed to undergo IVF procedures. There are only three centers in the country that perform IVF, as of 2010.
According to endocrinologist, infertility and menopause specialist Dr. Joan Tan-Garcia, the success rate for one cycle of IVF treatment is higher for a woman in her late 20s than for a woman in her late 30s.
Sources: Sept. 27, 2015. "Advent of the virgin births: Women who have never been in a relationship paying £5,000 to get pregnant". dailymail.co.uk Sept. 29, 2015. "More women are choosing to have babies without losing their virginity". sheknows.com