Woman's bid to have deceased boyfriend’s child via IVF

A TOOWOOMBA woman has launched a bid to become the first in the state to have her boyfriend's baby using sperm harvested after his death.

Ayla Belinda Cresswell, 24, a bank teller, has asked the Supreme Court to give her the green light to start a family with her partner of three years, bricklayer Joshua Davies, a year after his death.

Cresswell won the right to harvest the sperm in August last year, just hours after Davies died suddenly, but needs to return to court again to be allowed to proceed with IVF.

On July 25 she filed documents in a bid to prove she is physically, emotionally and financially capable of having and raising a child on her own.

Cresswell's lawyer David Riwoe told The Courier-Mail the application was the first of its kind in the state.

Cresswell told the court she and Davies were making plans to get married and start a family before he died. She had been to her GP to get a check-up in July last year and was told her body was in perfect condition to have a baby.

She told her friend Angela Clark afterwards via text "I said I want to have kids in 2 years time and she said I'm perfectly healthy and she feels I wont have any issues conceiving! Yea! All clear!"

Cresswell also said Joshua showed his love for her in a card he made her in August 2014 to tell her that he hoped to spend the rest of his life with her.

"If this was to happen I would be the luckiest man alive," he wrote.

Ayla Creswell and Josh Davies
Ayla Creswell and Josh Davies

Cresswell's psychologist Yvonne Rosman told the court she had counselled Cresswell and believed she had had enough time to grieve for Davies and come to terms with the challenges she might face as a sole parent of a child born from a partner who committed suicide.

"No matter what the reason for his suicide, I strongly believe that Joshua would be happy and proud for me to have his children," Cresswell said.

"Joshua's father told me that this was what Joshua would have wanted and he would be honoured for me to have Joshua's children."

Cresswell said she has "thought carefully about the burden of raising a child by myself" and knows "that it will be a heavy burden" but she feels more confident knowing she has the support of family.

"I have given thought as to how I will inform any child about the circumstances of their birth … ultimately I would want my child to know that they were born into this world with love, and that though their father is not there, they are a living embodiment of his desire to have a family."

She was also counselled to ensure she "did not feel pressured into this by any third party, family or friend or otherwise".

Her family and friends and Davies' family fully support her decision to have a child this way, and one of Davies' friends has even revealed text message exchanges showing he wanted to become a father.

Young Toowoomba man Josh Davies.
Young Toowoomba man Josh Davies.

"I know I've found the right one so if she got pregnant I'd be happy," Davies told his mate Adam Freeman, a spraypainter from Westbrook.

Davies' father John told the court that he called the hospital to ask if sperm could be taken from his son's body on the day he died, after Ayla "told me that she wished that she was pregnant".

"While Joshua never discussed this eventuality, I firmly believe that he would be proud for Ayla to have his children," Mr Davies said.

Cresswell's father Peter, a farmer from Warwick, said "I would be proud to be a grandfather".

Cresswell's GP Sidya Raghaven and her gynaecologist Anthony Cerqui told the court Cresswell is healthy and a good candidate for IVF treatment.

In a letter on May 13, 2017, Dr Cerqui said if Cresswell were successful in court she "would not be planning to proceed with any attempts at IVF until the New Year".

Dr Cerqui said Cresswell would have a 42 per cent chance of positive pregnancy test and a 30 per cent change of a live birth using IVF and the injection of a single frozen sperm into one of her eggs under a microscope.

Cresswell is due to appear in court in Brisbane on September 15.

News Corp Australia

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