After giving birth to a baby that is of a different race, a British couple is claiming that they were given the wrong embryo during IVF treatments at a Connecticut fertility clinic. The anonymous parents are now suing the facility along with Dr. Melvin Thornton for the mishap.
“Their second child appeared to have a much darker skin pigmentation [than] either the father, the genetic mother or their first child which was extremely unexpected and perplexing as the children were supposed to have the same genetic makeup,” the lawsuit reads, according to the Connecticut Post.
In December 2017, the couple went for a round of IVF at the CT Facility in Trumbull, Conn., where they thought that they were using an embryo from a known donor along with the husband’s sperm. However, when their second child was born on August 22, 2018, the baby did not appear to be related to either the donor or the father.
DNA tests confirmed that the child is not the husband’s biological baby. And while the lawsuit says that the couple loves their son very much, they live in constant fear that the newborn’s real parents will one day recognize the error and take him away. More than that, the parents claim that they are often questioned about their child’s race and have been subject to “ignorant and cruel harassment.”
They’re also concerned about what happened with the husband’s sperm or their donor’s embryo. “They are left with potential life-long haunting uncertainties regarding their second born son, and unknowns about what happened to their genetic material and where their genetic material ended up,” court papers explain.
The couple is seeking $200,000 in damages to cover the cost of the IVF treatments. However, online legal records suggest that the case won’t go to court until September 2021, PEOPLE reports.