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Controversial "Mating Agency" For Wealthy Singles Takes The Romance Out Of Parenting

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Imagine you're independently wealthy, in your mid-30s, and single.

It may sound like a dream (because honestly, it is) but it's a nightmare for clients of a controversial dating agency called The Stork.

That's because these wealthy singles are looking for one thing: a baby.

And it turns out when it comes to parenting, all that money can be a huge roadblock.

"I would love nothing more now than to meet someone, settle down and have a child"

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The Stork has a simple, but highly controversial business model.

Wealthy single men and women pay a $14,000 entry fee, have their financial records checked, and take a DNA test - to guarantee they can have children.

Then, they're matched with an equally wealthy partner to have a baby together.

So far the "mating agency" has made 12 matches that have produced five children, with more expected to arrive soon.

But many parents are alarmed by the unconventional system that puts children before a healthy relationship.

Ticking Clocks

The Stork's founder, Fiona Thomas, says that her customers are so concerned about babies because many of them are getting older.

Others, especially the men, are looking for an heir to the family fortune instead of a soulmate.

Plus, she says that the exclusive agency keeps away "gold-diggers."

"Our members have everything," she explains.

"Amazing careers, wealth, education, travel — but not the one thing they really want: a family."

But the agency's bizarre approach has attracted plenty of criticism.

Ethical Questions

At least one couple who used the stork traveled overseas to guarantee their baby would be male, which is legal in Britain.

Sex selection and the emphasis on children instead of love cast a shadow on The Stork, but Thomas says the agency is a much healthier choice than, say, sperm donation.

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"Research has shown that growing up never knowing, nor having the opportunity to know, your father has a negative psychological impact on a child," she told The Daily Mail.

"Even if the people we bring together decide to simply co-parent, rather than enter into a traditional relationship, at least they will both be there for their child, which I believe is far more ethical."

Her customers obviously aren't bothered either.

Thomas reveals that she has clients on the Forbes Billionaires list, and some with British titles including a marquess and baronet.

Millionaire Seeking Wife

Sir Benjamin Slade.
Sir Benjamin Slade.The Telegraph

The Stork could probably make a client out of Sir Benjamin Slade.

The 70-year-old, wealthy English baronet made headlines last year when he announced he was looking for a wife.

Slade specified he was interesting in a "a breeder" to provide him with "an heir and a spare."

The eccentric nobleman also warned that women "past their sell-by date need not apply."

While plenty of women offered to take Slade up on the chance, there's no word if he's found that special someone yet.

Is it wrong to put children before your marriage? Would you use an agency like this?

[H/T: Daily Mail]

I write about all sorts of things for Shared, especially weird facts, celebrity news, and viral stories. CONTACT: zachary@shared.com