LAUREL Thomas will be left devastated next week as she’s told her baby will likely have Down’s syndrome.
The ITV soap is kicking off a controversial storyline that will see Laurel and Jai decide to terminate their pregnancy after a prenatal diagnosis.
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Next week’s episodes of Emmerdale will see Laurel and Jai leave early for the private scan.
The sonographer predicts that Laurel is thirteen weeks pregnant but says she’s just going to get a colleague to confirm.
A more senior consultant arrives and explains the scan results show the baby is likely to have a type of chromosomal syndrome before asking whether they’d like to carry out another test to confirm this.
While Jai tries to remain positive, viewers will see Laurel crushed by the revelation.
The next day, Laurel continues to fret over the scan results and reacts badly when Arthur makes disparaging comments about a pregnant teacher at school.
Jai and Laurel discuss whether or not to take the CVS test, which will risk the baby’s life.
Actress Charlotte Bellamy – who plays Laurel – has said of the storyline: "Terminating a pregnancy is an emotive subject, but I think, as a programme, what Emmerdale does brilliantly is portray difficult stories that are important to tell."
She added that she's hopeful that "Laurel and Jai's story will take the audience on the journey of them coming to this conclusion and having some understanding why they do".
"There are some very powerfully written scenes that I hope will give a fair portrayal of their situation.
"When I embarked on this storyline I was well aware of the responsibility of the subject matter, but the scripts have been so well written and I think the story is told fairly."
Series producer Laura Shaw said: "Right from the moment the idea was first mooted for this storyline, we knew it was one that, if we went ahead, it had to be fully researched, which involved us speaking to medical professionals, charities and parents with lived experience.
"Listening to women and men telling us their stories, hearing what brought them to make the difficult decision to terminate their pregnancies, cemented for us that this was a topic rarely shown on soap, but a really important one to highlight.
"Translating what we had learnt into Emmerdale scripts led to what was arguably the most challenging and difficult writing our writing team had ever been tasked with.
"What we have produced, and Charlotte and Chris have both brilliantly brought to life, is some of the most heart-breaking and emotional episodes of Emmerdale viewers will have ever seen."
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