Here are 9 things to keep in mind when becoming a surrogate mother:
1. Becoming a Surrogate Mother
As you may already know, roughly 12% of the reproductive age population is suffering from infertility in the US. For many of these people, the only option is surrogacy. Fortunately, this is easier than ever to accomplish thanks to gestational surrogacy and donor eggs.
- Women who pass the initial screening advance to the testing step.
- Testing involves complete medical and fertility exams.
- Drug testing and social history validation are necessary.
- The best qualified are women who have had uncomplicated, healthy pregnancies.
Most women feel more comfortable with a larger medical center where everything, including doctors, labs & legal advisors, are under one roof.
2. The Gift of LIFE
Surrogates have a super power, they can give the gift of life.
These women love children and feel incredible compassion for people who can’t carry their own children, including:
- Women infertile due to medical issues.
- Women with viable eggs who can’t carry a pregnancy.
- Menopausal women.
- Women born with abnormal reproductive organs.
- Single men and women wishing to become parents.
- Same sex couples.
3. Take Good Care of Yourself
- A healthy mommy equals to a healthy baby, it makes sense to take care of yourself while pregnant.
- The monthly surrogacy stipend should more than cover hiring help when you need it so you don’t overwork.
- Professional surrogacy agencies hold monthly get-togethers for surrogates where they, and their families, can socialize with other surrogate families.
4. Seek Out Surrogacy Professionals
- The term professional refers to individuals with more than 20 years’ experience, don’t be fooled by less experienced physicians.
- Visit the surrogacy center to make sure you feel comfortable with the staff and doctors.
- Professional surrogacy centers have numerous resources, they can make sure you get every benefit you’re entitled to.
- A professional surrogacy center will have counselors, including former surrogate mothers, available to discuss surrogacy.
5. Document Your Journey
- The surrogate is a big part of the child’s story, you should take pictures at different milestones during your pregnancy for the baby book.
- Don’t forget to include a picture of your whole family.
- Make sure the Intended Parents have copies of all ultrasounds and other test results.
6. Screening Process
Surrogate mothers go through a strict screening process that includes psychological health and medical screening. Some conditions that disqualify candidates are:
- Mental health issues, especially severe postpartum depression.
- Pregnancy related problems like preeclampsia and gestational diabetes.
- Conditions like HIV that can be transmitted to the child.
7. Basic Surrogacy Requirements
- Age 21-37.
- Have at least 1 child you are parenting.
- A non-smoker, non-drug-user with healthy lifestyle.
- No major pregnancy complications.
- BMI under 32.
- US citizen or legal resident.
- No felony convictions.
- If you have a spouse or partner, they are supportive of you becoming a surrogate.
8. Become a Gestational Surrogate Mother
Gestational surrogacy is when the surrogate only carries the baby, her egg is not used. The embryo is created using the intended mother’s egg, or a donated egg, and the intended father’s sperm.
- You are assigned a case manager who will be with you from start to finish.
- After matching with an IP family, your cycle will be synced with the intended mother or egg donor.
- An embryo will be implanted into your uterus.
- You will continue progesterone support for the first several weeks of the pregnancy.
- The intended parents are often involved throughout the process, from the first meeting where you are matched until the birth at the hospital.
A surrogate pregnancy takes a lot out of a woman and she should be compensated appropriately. After all, growing a new person and keeping it healthy and safe for its parents is a noble calling.
- All surrogates are paid roughly a year’s salary per surrogacy.
- Experienced surrogates, and surrogates carrying pregnancies with multiples, are paid more.
- The chart below is from a leading California fertility center:
When you’re searching for surrogacy agencies it’s important to find one that values your time and genuinely cares about you. Large, established, fertility medical centers:
- Have everything under one roof.
- Have the process streamlined so you know what to expect and when.
A clinic with an extensive amount of experience that truly values your time, ideally with all facilities in one location.