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Man who gave birth faces court battle to be father

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Man who gave birth faces court battle to be father
Photo: DPA
16:38 CEST+02:00
A transgender person who became the first man in Germany to give birth to a baby is fighting a court battle to call himself a father rather than a mother.

As reported on Monday, the Berlin man identifies himself as a man but was born a woman. He still has female reproductive organs but has undergone hormone treatment and now looks like a man.

The child was born on April 11th in a home birth with the help of a midwife - as German hospitals are required to name a mother in their documents.

But the father claims the baby has no mother as, although he gave birth to the child, he is a man so cannot be a mother.

Despite being listed a man, in the eyes of the authorities he is the mother, the BZ newspaper reported on Tuesday. The case has been with the courts since April and it is expected to take a while to make a decision.

The newspaper reported that the court in the Schöneberg area of Berlin, which rules on family matters, will now decide whether the man may be registered as the father rather than the mother of the child.

Green Party politician Anja Kofbinge met the man three weeks ago and told the BZ: “He is clearly recognizable as a man. He has a goatee and ash-blonde hair and no breasts.”

German law was changed in 2011 to allow transgender people who have not undergone a full sex change to identify themselves and be registered in official documents as a member of the opposite sex.

The case which broke in the German press on Monday has sparked a debate about transgender people having children.

Heinz-Jürgen Voß a researcher into biology and sex told newspaper the Berliner Morgenpost: “A transgender person having children is not problematic. Why is the sex asked on every form? The problem is this classification. Why isn’t the name enough?”

The baby was born in the Neukölln area of Berlin and authorities there do not appear to have a problem with the man wishing to call himself a father, the Berliner Morgenpost reported. Politician Falko Liecke said: “Why should this person as a transsexual be any less loving towards the child?”

But authorities stressed that at some point the child, who is now five months old, will need to be told the truth that his father was biologically his mother.

The man, who is reportedly in his late twenties, became pregnant with a sperm donation which has caused further controversy.

READ MORE: German law change to recognize third sex

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