I was (duly) horrified by this story, about a white couple who had IVF and due to a mix-up had mixed race children, one of whom apparently has noticeably darker skin than the rest of them.
Now, clearly this isn't ideal, it is concerning that such mix-ups can occur, and the couple, who wanted to keep their IVF a secret for some reason, are feeling now that this secret might be revealed.
However, this poor child is suffering from what, I fear, is an element of racism from his parents. He apparently asks his Dad at night 'Why am I brown? How can I make myself lighter, like you?'
This must be hard for them to hear, but there is a clear reason why he is not happy in his own skin.
Because of his colour,
the Williamses are suing the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust (formerly the Royal Group of Hospitals Trust) for damages for their mental distress, social discredit and breach of contract under the Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982.
They consider that their black son is a 'social discredit' to them, his skin colour causes them mental distress, and I'm not sure whether he'd have been consider goods or services when he was 'supplied'.
His father says:
'I felt very angry and betrayed,' he says. 'We'd placed all our trust in the hospital and one person's mistake had ruined all our futures.
He also says:
'It's not so bad when we all go away on holiday, but at home I've given up picking up my son from school and we don't go out as a family any more.
How can this boy have a chance of having any kind of positive self-image, or appreciation of his heritage, with his parents openly suing the hospital, refusing to pick him up from school or take him out anywhere, all because of the colour of his skin?
It's no wonder he wants to whiten his skin.