How much is having a child worth to you?
Nine months of carrying a growing baby? The better part of a year going to events without alcohol? Perhaps a few thousand dollars in fertility treatment?
What about the risk of almost two decades behind bars?
This is the most tragic predicament facing Australian couples who are so desperate to have a child of their own, they’re resorting to paying for donor eggs. It is, by definition, an illegal activity in Australia, carrying punishments which can include prison for up to 15 years.
Tonight’s 60 Minutes explored the complexities of the IVF black market: a suffocating vortex of vulnerable parents, greedy donors, and and a very human and inherent desire to procreate.
For Kim and Greg Castles, it's a market they know too well. After meeting later in life, the couple were in their 40s when they decided they wanted to start a family together.
In 2007, defying most odds, the duo had a baby girl Stephanie. But when the time came to give Stephanie a little brother or sister, Kim miscarried twins and the couple was told their only option going forward was egg donation.
"My initial reaction was no. I just thought no. I just, if I can’t have my own child, I don’t want someone else’s," Kim told reporter Allison Langdon.