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Featured Image Credit: The Morning Show/Seven News
A throuple have made legal history after a court allowed three dads to be named on their children's birth certificates.
Ian Jenkins, Alan Mayfield and Jeremy Allen Hodges used donated embryos and surrogates to welcome their two children, daughter Piper and son Parker, into the world.
The trio made legal history in 2017 when a judge allowed them all to be on the birth certificate of Piper - which was a huge milestone for polyamorous families to gain recognition in the US.
Ian, a doctor, told Huff Post: "One of [Jeremy's] friends offered us the embryos they had left from making their family through IVF but couldn't use.
"We had the option to adopt the embryos and make the decision to raise a unique family.
"We did have a slight attention to the fact that our kids might be perceived differently. We didn't want them to become a target of teasing or bullying or online abuse.
"We've had zero pushback from anyone in our professional and personal lives.
"Our oldest now is in preschool, and the other parents and kids are like, 'Cool! Tell us that story.'"
Despite many people accepting their domestic set-up, the biggest challenge came before Piper was born because restrictive laws were preventing them from building a family through surrogacy.
Speaking to The Morning Show, Alan - who has been in a relationship with Ian for 17 years and with their partner, Jeremy, for eight - said: "The big challenge for us was the legal challenges.
"So with surrogacy you have to have a parentage order from the court, declaring who will be the legal parents.
"At the beginning we weren't sure that we could all three of us on the birth certificate, so it became a court process.
"We argued in court - it was a pretty interesting, tense courtroom scene.
"At first it seemed we were not going to be granted that, so we asked to speak in court and pled out viewpoint and the judge ultimately changed her mind and granted us legal parentage for our child before she was born."
Ian has now written a book about their story, called Three Dads and a Baby.
Speaking about why it was important to him to pen the memoir, he said: "We wanted everyone to know that love makes a family and families may look different but if you care about your kids and you're doing everything you can to give them the best possible childhood - that's what matters."
Three Dads and a Baby: Adventures in Modern Parenting is available now.