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Richard Dawkins hails Mary Portas’ beautiful family arrangement

Nick Duffy February 16, 2015
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Richard Dawkins spoken out in support of Mary Portas’ brother, for donating sperm to his sister’s wife.

Ms Portas revealed last week that she had asked brother Lawrence Newton to donate sperm so her wife could conceive – as both Portas her wife Melanie Rickie wanted a genetic link to the child.

The Queen of Shops has two children with her ex-husband Graham. Portas and Ms Rickey entered into a civil partnership in 2010 and were among the first couples to convert their civil partnership to a marriage last December.

After criticism of the family arrangement, evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins has spoken out to praise the family.

Mr Dawkins tweeted: “Beautiful. Sperm donor father is the brother of the lesbian partner of the mother. I can see why he felt ‘honoured’.”

In her memoir, Portas explains that she felt that Ms Rickey, being younger, should be the birth mother and they would ask the brother of Portas, Lawrence Newton if he would donate sperm.

Ms Rickey said “Bring it on”, while Portas’ brother said “I’d be honoured”.

“Lawrence was the first one there [with us] and he picked him up and it was just very emotional,” she told The Times.

“I said to him ‘Thank you’, and he said ‘It’s my pleasure’, and we just held each other. And now, when I look at Horatio, he is a complete mix of [Ms Rickey] and me.”

Portas said that son Horatio calls her “Mama”, while Ms Rickey is “Mummy”. Mr Newton, who is currently living with the family is called “Daddy” by their son.

“Of course, now I know that it could only ever have been Lawrence who was Horatio’s father,” she said.

The pair are one of a growing number of same-sex couples who have chosen to have children with the assistance of their brothers or sisters.

Related topics: baby, couple, donation, England, Gay, lesbian, LGBT, Mary Portas, Melanie Rickie, Richard Dawkins, sperm

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