Couple who asked wedding guests to help fund their IVF welcome twins

Couple who asked their wedding guests to help fund their IVF are proud parents to twin boys after putting £6,000 they received towards three rounds of fertility treatment

  • Marc, 42, and Nikki Tibballs, 40, were unable to conceive a baby naturally
  • Couple from Slough, Berkshire, had £6,000 donated by family and friends 
  • Welcomed none identical twin sons Freddy and Olly following IVF treatment

A couple who experienced fertility problems have thanked their generous wedding guests for donating £6,000 towards funding their IVF treatment after welcoming twins.

Marc, 42, and Nikki Tibballs, 40, who live in Slough, Berkshire, were devastated to discover they would be unable to conceive naturally and were left heartbroken when their one free chance on the NHS failed.

The couple were overwhelmed by the generosity of loved ones and instead of traditional wedding gifts they received thousands of pounds to help them try for a baby.  

‘We already had our home, our kitchenware and furniture, the only thing missing from our lives was children,’ Nikki said. 

Marc, 42, and Nikki Tibballs, 40, who live in Slough, Berkshire, asked their wedding guests to help fund IVF treatment after experiencing fertility problems. Pictured: Nikki and Marc with their twin sons Freddy and Olly 

Marc proposed to Nikki before the couple had their first round of IVF and when it failed, they decided to focus on planning their wedding day  

Freddy and Olly, aged five, were born thanks to the generosity of their parents’ friends and family who contributed towards the cost of IVF 

‘We were really unsure whether to ask people to help, we didn’t know if it was cheeky or rude, but in the run up to the wedding people asked constantly us what we wanted as wedding gifts, but there was only one thing we wanted.

‘A friend wrote a poem for our invites and it seemed the perfect way to let people know our polite request.

‘We made sure everyone knew they were under no obligation at all to but if they were unsure what to bring as a gift, this was the most precious gift they could help with.’

The couple were trying for a baby when Nikki discovered her fallopian tubes were blocked, which meant she would struggle to fall pregnant naturally and if she did conceive, it would be an ectopic pregnancy.

Now a full time mum, she was shocked at discovering she had fertility problems.

Nikki said: ‘I never thought for a moment we would have any issues at all.

The twins were born at 37 weeks and had to spend a short time in special care after their early arrival 

Nikki said a friend wrote a poem for their wedding invites, which seemed like the perfect way to make people aware of their request to help them have a baby 

Nikki and Mark, pictured with their wedding guests, said they didn’t need their loved ones to buy a dinner set or toaster because they already lived together, and instead asked for contributions towards IVF

‘I remember breaking down as the news was so overwhelming.’

Nikki then had to decide to have her tubes removed.

She continued: ‘It was a very stressful and upsetting time, but we knew IVF was the safest way to try for a baby.’

The couple had one funded attempt on the NHS but sadly it failed. 

Nikki said: ‘After our failed round on the NHS, we decided we needed a break from it all. Before we started our IVF journey Marc, had proposed so we focused on the wedding.’

Marc and Nikki Tibballs’ hope for a child was mentioned in the speeches – with a disagreement over which team any future children would support 

Nikki pictured with her idential twin sister and Marc with his identical twin sister on their wedding day. The couple are now parents to non-identical twin boys 

Double trouble! New mother Nikki joking around for the camera while tandem feeding her twin boys when they arrived home from hospital  

Nikki and Marc, who is a problems manager for a communications company, wanted to try again but knew that IVF would cost them £3,000 – £5,000 per cycle.

They decided to ask for help when wedding guests started to ask them what they would like as a gift.

 Nikki said: ‘We already lived together, we didn’t need a dinner set or a toaster. The only thing missing was children.’

The couple married in August 2013 and were amazed by the financial help they received.

Nikki said: ‘The wedding speeches were so emotional.

The IVF cycle at The Fertility Partnership’s (TFP) Oxford Fertility clinic was successful and just two weeks later Nikki and Marc found out they were expecting. In anticipation of their boys’ arrival, they decorated the nursery blue with two cots for the twins 

Freddy and Olly were born at 37 weeks and had to spend some time in special care after arriving three weeks early  

‘My dad is a big Chelsea fan and Marc supports Liverpool, they even had a joke about what football kit to buy our future baby.

‘Everybody there on the day knew how important it was to us and they have were part of making it possible. We were nervous to ask but people were thrilled by the idea and were happy to help.

‘My dad thanked everyone for helping to play a part in making our dream of a family come true.

‘They knew it meant everything to us and that made their gift even more special.’

After their honeymoon, the couple felt emotionally ready to try again.

Nikki and Marc waited until after their honeymoon to be emotionally ready to try again for a baby. Pictured: The happy couple leaving hospital with their twins 

Freddy and Olly settling in at home in their matching Moses baskets. The pair are non-identical twins 

Freddy and Olly as babies: Nikki said they were hoping and praying to have a family, after using donations from their wedding for their last round of IVF

They paid for their first round of IVF but were left heartbroken when the cycle had to be abandoned due to Nikki not responding to the medication to produce any eggs.

However, thanks to their wedding guests they were able to try for a third time – but knew it was their last chance.

Nikki said: ‘We didn’t have any money left, so we were just hoping and praying that it happened.’

The IVF cycle at The Fertility Partnership’s (TFP) Oxford Fertility clinic was successful and just two weeks later Nikki and Marc found out they were expecting.

Nikki said: ‘I couldn’t believe it. I went home from work one day to do a test, I couldn’t wait.’

Nikki and Marc found out they were expecting just two weeks after having treatment at The Fertility Partnership’s (TFP) Oxford Fertility clinic. Pictured: The family with nurse Bridget at Oxford Fertility 

Couple were eager to meet their sons, who needed to spend time in a special care unit after being born. Pictured: Spending time with their sons in hospital 

Nikki said everyone was happy for them and it made more special knowing their loved ones had been involved in making it happen. Pictured: Olly and Freddy, aged four 

‘Everyone was so happy for us, it just made it all the more special knowing our loved ones had played such an important part in making it happen.’ 

Nikki and Marc who are both identical twins, welcomed their non-identical twin sons, Freddy and Olly in November 2014, born at 37 weeks.

They spent a short while in special care but were soon home with their proud parents.

Nikki said: ‘People assume we had twins because both Marc and I are identical twins, but identical twins are not hereditary.

Olly and Freddy, aged four. Nikki said their sons are thriving at school and are a sporty pair who love football

Nikki with her sons, aged six months. She said people assume they’ve had twins because she and Marc are twins, however identical twins are not hereditary

‘Having twin boys was such an incredible blessing for us.’

The couple, who have been together since 2010 and were friends for several years before that, also had one frozen embryo left but after consideration decided to donate their remaining egg to research.

Freddy and Olly are now six years old.

Nikki said: ‘Our little monkeys love football, they are thriving at school. They love being outdoors and support Liverpool, Marc didn’t give them a choice, despite my dad buying a Chelsea shirt for his future grandchild.’

Nikki urges people to do lots of research and to consider IVF.

Nikki said anyone going through IVF should put their trust in the clinic and use their resources. Pictured: Couple taking their sons back to visit Oxford fertility clinic 

New mother Nikki with her twin boys the first time she was able to hold them after they were born at 37 weeks

She said: ‘The staff at The Fertility Partnership were absolutely amazing. There is a huge emotional side to undergoing IVF treatment and so many options available, I tried fertility acupuncture and used Embroglue section.

‘I also had an embryoscope, time lapse incubation and was able to watch a video of the boys as embryos which was fascinating

‘You have to inject yourself every day and the hormonal side of things takes it toll.

‘For anyone going through this, I would say put your trust in the clinic and use their resources.

Couple decided to donate their remaining frozen embryo to research. Pictured: Olly and Freddy, aged five

‘Ensure you have good support around you and talk if you can to others perhaps experiencing the same as you will discover it’s a lot more common than you realise.’

Nikki added: ‘We are forever grateful to our friends, family and the clinic, we can’t thank everyone enough.’

The Fertility Partnership is one of the UK’s largest IVF providers and fertility specialists.

From IVF to fertility preservation and egg and sperm donation, The Fertility Partnership is renowned internationally and has nine clinics across the UK with over 200 clinicians.

Nikki said she and Marc are forever grateful to their family, friends and the clinic. Pictured: Nikki with her sons 

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