Mary Beth Whitehead
- Category : 1957-births
- Type : GP
- Profile : 3/5 - Martyr / Heretic
- Definition : Split - Small (1,7,20)
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Penetration 1
American news figure who was the surrogate mother, by contract, for the child of William Stern, a 40-year old biochemist who was married and childless. After the baby was born on 3/27/1986, she decided to keep her, naming her Sara. The child was removed by court order on 3/31/1987 and remanded to the custody of her father, who had filed suit for breach of contract. The case was landmark for the legal and moral questions surrounding surrogate parenting. Mary Beth was originally inseminated with sperm from William Stern on 7/02/1985. The child was named Melissa Stern by her dad.
Stern's victory was not total, though, as Whitehead was granted visitation rights twice a month with her daughter. Melissa has been raised with full knowledge of the story and calls both her surrogate and biological mothers, "mom." At two, the little girl could not say Melissa so gave herself the name of Sassy. She lives with the Sterns a majority of the time but visits with her mom and half brothers whenever they choose. The two families are civil, but not really friendly.
Whitehead separated from her husband, Richard, a former trash collector, in August 1987 after a marriage of 14 years when she became pregnant by another man. On 11/29/1987 she married a Wall Street accountant, Dean Gould, and had a baby boy with him, Austin, on 5/09/1988, Long Branch, NJ. and the following year, Morgan.