To have a baby is for many couples, a lifelong dream. And for couples who are having difficulty conceiving a child and can’t afford the astronomical prices of fertility treatments, adoption, or a surrogate, that’s exactly what it is — only a dream.

As cited by the National Infertility Association, the national average price of fertility treatments cost $12,400, and adoption/surrogacy cost upwards of tens of thousands of dollars. For couples battling infertility, these prices undeniably add to the desperation, which has led many couples straight to Crowdfunding. Sites such as GoFundMe and Indiegogo all allow people to raise money online from family and friends towards a cause of their choice.

One couple who shared their story with Cosmopolitan magazine, Jessica Haley and her husband Sean, said they were given less than 1 percent of having a child by natural conception. Although financially stable, the couple couldn’t simply put down the thousands of dollars right away for in-vitro fertilization, so they opted for for funding. As Cosmo reported, friends, family, strangers with their own fertility issues and other acquaintances were touched by their story and ended up donating enough to cover the expenses. Months later, Jessica announced her pregnancy to her Indiegogo followers, and on April 7th, 2012, her son Landon was born. (His parents believe he is America’s first-ever crowdfunded baby.)

Although this story has a happy ending, many people who opt for crowdfunding are receiving backlash for their efforts. The controversy surrounding having outsiders pay for these types of treatments is that there is no guarantee that the money will go towards its’ intended purpose, so fraud is possible.

It’s also worth noting that no matter how much money is raised, there’s no guarantee that a child will be born after IVF. According to the National Infertility Association, about 35% of couples don’t have a successful IVF, so there’s always a chance there won’t be a child.Despite the backlash, the fact that creating a family could be a simple click away is intriguing. It offers immense hope for all couples fighting fertility issues and desperate to have a baby.

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