A Lincoln man who describes himself as “queer, disabled, autistic, polyamorous, pansexual and bear cub spoonie” is trying to raise money to have his own baby and make his dream of becoming a dad a reality.
Lucas Honey, 31, has lived in Lincoln and around the county for most of his life after moving from Scotland when he was eight.
He has ME (chronic fatigue syndrome) and autism and has been out of work since leaving his job at Go Outdoors in the city due to chronic illness since January this year.
Lucas, who uses a wheelchair when he is outside his home, is now focusing on the next chapter of his life and has an overwhelming feeling of excitement in his journey of hopefully becoming a dad.
He has found a donor, as well as a surrogate who is one of his friends, but he is enduring financial stress as he needs to raise around £15,000 to be able to progress with the process.
An emotional Lucas spoke to The Lincolnite about his rollercoaster journey so far.
He tried to have a baby with his now ex-wife, who he split with amicably a few years ago after the couple grew apart. He said every time they got a negative test it felt heartbreaking.
Lucas has a donor and a surrogate ready and is trying to save every penny he can, including by selling his motorbike to help fund the process.
A GoFundMe page set up by Kathryn Wilson, who he describes as his chosen family, has so far raised £200 of its £15,000 target.
The £15,000 includes the cost of IVF (which is nearly £7,000 for each round), preliminary tests for the surrogate such as blood tests and screenings, paternity clinical fees and legal fees.
He needs to raise the money all in one go, because if he starts the process earlier and anything gets delayed, he could incur further costs.
The embryos will be created using a donor in the clinic and the surrogate mother will be a gestational surrogate.
Lucas said this means the embryos will be implanted and that the surrogate will not be biologically related to the child, and that having an unmarried surrogate was less complicated.
After the child is born there will be legal costs for paperwork for Lucas to get full custody.
He said it would be a non-agency adoption where one parent gives up their legal parental rights — which the surrogate has told him she will do.
Lucas told The Lincolnite: “The scary part is trying to fund it. I am not scared at all about becoming a dad.
“I’ve had so many children in my life and I love them all, and I love working with kids. I don’t think I’ll have any worries about being a dad.
“I am trying not to get too excited as I am stressing about the money, but when I think about holding my child for the first time it is quite an overwhelming feeling.
“I am cautious about letting myself think about that too much when there is such a financial block in the way for this to become a reality for me.
“I have a group of friends, who are my chosen family, that have rallied around me and set up a GoFundMe page.”
Kat, who set up the GoFundMe page said she “loves watching Lucas with my kids, they always have so much fun together and he is always able to be on their level and connect whatever mood they are in”.
Lucas has always been interested in fostering and adoption, which he also plans to do in the future.
In his spare time, Lucas does online work supporting people with chronic illness and helps raise awareness, as well as doing LGBT advocacy.
He also ran an after school programme for foster children and taught music in a special school in Lincoln as part of his Drama in the Community course at Bishop Grosseteste University between 2007-2010.
He said he is feeling “pretty exhausted emotionally” at the moment after losing a tribunal relating to an application for Personal Independence Payment (PIP).
However, Lucas is putting his energy into positively focusing on the next chapter in his life.