6.7 million people per year suffer with infertility, and a surrogate mother can help. Some may think having a surrogate is out of the question for them based on costs. What most people are unaware of is that expensive agencies are not the only way to go about this journey for your family.
Going through the challenges of infertility, early pregnancy loss, or having a stillbirth takes a toll on a person. Mentally and physically.
- Check-in with yourself
- Make sure to reach out for help
- Don’t be afraid to let those around you know what you need from them.
- Do what works for you!
Dealing with any loss is a heartbreak and your feelings are valid! The grief may last longer than we think. Please remember to be kind to yourself and never blame your body. There are other options. Roughly 750 babies are born each year via surrogacy.
What is A Surrogate Mother
Traditional or gestational surrogacy does not have to be a daunting process or something difficult to talk about. Traditional surrogacy involves a mother allowing the use of her own egg for the process and being the “biological mother” of the child born. On the other hand, gestational surrogacy involves only being the “oven”. When someone does gestational surrogacy it’s a donor egg (not her own) and does not share any DNA with the surrogate mother.
If working with an agency is out of the budget for intended parents finding a surrogate independently can happen! If you feel comfortable with your family or have a close friend acting as a surrogate, it may be worth asking them if they’d help you with this process! Surrogacy is such a selfless act, you’re bound to run into someone who may want to help out! Typically when you work through an agency they do all the back work for you. Interviews of both parties (yourself the surrogate mother, and the intended parents) finding health insurance, dealing with lawyers and much more. However, keep in mind that you will be paying A LOT to go through an agency. Use google as much as possible and the guide below to save where you can and if you feel comfortable enough you may not need an agency.
What does the Surrogacy process look like
The surrogate mother matches with IPs (intended parents) and has a psychological evaluation. You both go through this process with your partners (if you have any) and then you do a group call together with the psychologist. This has to happen before any medical appointments or contracts are drawn up. The purpose of this evaluation is to make sure both parties know what the surrogacy motherhood journey will entail and that all situations are thought out. For example: will the intended parents be in the room for Apts? During birth? Will IPs make medical calls or will the surrogate mother and IPs make decisions together? After the evaluation is the clearance needed from the fertility clinic. At this appointment the doctor will review the surrogate’s medical and birth history (1 healthy pregnancy and birth needed to be a candidate). The surrogate will also get an ultrasound done to check her uterus and ovaries. After clearance, both parties will obtain their own lawyers and costs are covered by the IPs. Contracts are then drawn up, signed and the process starts!!
Sometimes depending on the surrogates insurance plan the IPs will have to buy and pay for the health insurance for the duration of pregnancy. The fertility clinic will manage all appointments from medications, hormone level checks, embryo transfer to confirmed pregnancy test. Only after a confirmed pregnancy test in clinic the surrogate is released to an OB of choice. She will have regular routine appointments, prenatal testings and with the IPs can choose a hospital to give birth at.
Every family looks different. With a baby or without you are valuable, important and here to leave your mark. Fill your arms with handmade blankets made special by other moms experiencing infant loss, miscarriage or still births.