Brian Dowling shares sweet tribute to surrogate following the birth of his daughter


Following the birth of his daughter last week, Brian Dowling has posted a heartfelt tribute to his sister Aoife, who acted as surrogate from himself and husband Arthur Gourounlian.

Sharing a snap of himself and Aoife in the maternity hospital, Brian began: “You are an ABSOLUTELY INCREDIBLE HUMAN.”

Explaining how Aoife being their surrogate came about, he wrote: “From our first jokingly conversations about this back in 2015 when you moved in with us in London to our more serious chats about it in January 2021 in the middle of the pandemic when we would go on our daily walks. This has been in the works for YEARS.”

Continuing on, he praised Aoife for helping them start a family, and for accepting that would happen in the public eye.

Writing: “But everything happens when it’s supposed to & for us everything really clicked. Your dedication and focus has been out of this world. You have also put yourself out there publicly for everyone to voice their opinions about this & you never faltered. Even the vile / disgusting messages we all received just encouraged us to be more open regarding our Surrogacy journey.”

“From dramas regarding trying to get you on hormones especially here in Ireland where there’s no legislation regarding surrogacy and the lack of any real information or guidance.”

Pic: Instagram/Brian Dowling

But while there has been plenty celebrating following the birth of baby Blake, their journey to parenthood wasn’t easy.

Brian confessed: “To numerous conversations about your cycle & when you would or wouldn’t get it To the night of mum’s birthday dinner last December when we made it by minutes to the pharmacy & purchased the very last ovulation test. We have been THROUGH IT ALL.”

“At one point we actually thought it wasn’t going to happen & Arthur & I debated stopping everything for a few months & you were like NO we have this so let’s keep going. And boy did we keep going.”

“To that magic day last December 30th when those 4 pregnancy tests all turned positive. Then there was the situation of getting you to ” hide ” the pregnancy until a time when it was safe & we were happy to reveal the MOST AMAZING NEWS. Plus let’s be honest there were accusations & rumours during this time also & you handled it all like a pro.”

Aoife and Brian Dowling with Arthur Gourounlian Pic: Instagram/Arthur Gourounlian

Heaping the praise on his sister, Brian confessed they were in “awe” of her, for the gift she has given them.

Saying: “You glided through your pregnancy with such joy & elegance & overcame any obstacles in your way medically or other wise. Just when we thought we couldn’t be in awe of you anymore you handled our delivery day last Thursday, September 1st, like a BOSS.”

“I’m here writing this actually thinking you need a medal or indeed be Knighted. I think Dame Aoife Dowling have a FABULOUS ring to it Seeing you hold Blake for the first time was so emotional for all of us. We know her because of you, because of all the time we spent together.”

“All those take aways or dinners you cooked for us. To all the belly rubs where we would feel her move. To the million cups of tea we had and the gossip sessions WOW they were THE BEST. You aren’t just my sister or Arthur’s sister- in- law, you are AN ANGEL & also our BEST FRIEND. You DESERVE the WORLD & EVERYTHING YOU DESIRE. We LOVE YOU, AOIFE DOWLING YOU ARE OUR QUEEN & LONG MAY YOU REIGN”


Brian’s husband, Arthur shared similar sentiments in the comment section, writing: “I LOVE YOU WITH ALL MY HEART [Aoife] and I miss our TikTok’s, come back.”

While Brian’s best friend Pippa O’Connor agreed, saying: “What a hero .. Aoife you’re a queen, special beyond words xx”

Arthur’s DWTS colleague Laura Nolan wrote: “This is sooo beautiful as I write this crying. [Aoife] you are incredible”

TV presenter Síle Seoige commented: “So so beautiful and so very well said. You are incredible @effidy_dowling_ and the bond you all have is very special.”

While Girls Aloud’s Kimberley Walsh said: “I am totally in awe of you [Aoife] and this wonderful gift you have given [Brian] and [Arthur]. What a special human you are! I am sending you the most love and hoping you are recovering well.”


The couple welcomed a baby girl, on Thursday, the 1st of September, sharing the news today.

Posting sweet photos from the delivery room, Brian shared a sweet tribute to their daughter and revealed the stunning name they have chosen.

Writing: “Please be upstanding for the arrival of our BEAUTIFUL DAUGHTER Blake Maria Rose Dowling Gourounlian. Yes people another BDG”

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