First transgender man who gave birth to baby is now fighting to be registered as father and not mother on birth certificate
Freddy McConnell, a Guardian multimedia journalist, became pregnant in 2017 through artificial insemination using sperm from a donor
The first transgender man who gave birth is now fighting a legal battle to register himself as the father on his child's birth certificate.
Thirty-two-year-old Freddy McConnell transitioned from female to male before giving birth in 2018, according to the Guardian, where he works as a multimedia journalist.
When McConnell was born, his registered gender was female. But in 2010, when he was 23, he realized that he was trans.
He subsequently started living as a male and took testosterone treatment in April 2013. He has also undergone a chest reshaping surgery in Florida.
In April 2016, he sought advice from a fertility clinic about getting pregnant, and his hormone treatment was suspended so his menstrual cycle would start up once again.
McConnell became pregnant in 2017 through artificial insemination using sperm from a donor but before doing so he had applied for a gender recognition certificate that would list him as a male.
That certificate had been granted, which meant he was legally male when his child was born. However, when he went to register the birth, the registrar informed him that he could only be listed as the mother.
McConnell challenged the decision via a judicial review in the family division of the high court. His legal team says the UK's system of birth registration does not treat families equally and unless it's changed, their client would be forced to register as the "mother."
They argued that this was the case for all transgender fathers regardless of whether they carry their babies or not, and also for all transgender mothers, who are forced to register as the "father."
Karen Holding, one of his lawyers, said, "Having an accurate birth certificate is vital as it stays with someone for their entire life and forms part of their identity. We took on this case to support changing a part of UK law that denies equality, creates inaccurate documentation and fails to serve multiple groups with the LGBTQ+ community."
While the judgment on whether he will be allowed to be called the child's father is expected later this week, McConnell saw an anonymity order that was protecting his identity lifted by the court after a filing by numerous media organizations.
His lawyers had said that linking his name to the case was unfair because he would be the subject of online trolling, doorstepping by the media, and other distressing behavior. They also said that the consequences for his child would be "extreme" as the potential for it to be "the target of playground bullies was all too plain."
McConnell is currently co-operating with documentary 'Seahorse' that will cover the conception, pregnancy, and birth of his child where he is openly named, and which has already been broadcasted at numerous film festivals.
Lawyers for the media organizations, who had asked that his anonymity order be lifted, claimed victory by saying that the documentary had already revealed his identity.
They said he had "put himself at the forefront of the debate on transgender rights" and that it was legitimate that they wanted to name him as claiming the right to be called the child’s father.