Trying to start a family may be a very common decision for couples around the world, but the way toward making that dream come true is not as easy or traditional for some. An older couple wishing to have a child again, very late in life, may put both the mother and child at risk during pregnancy. Some women have been diagnosed with conditions like heart disease or HIV/AIDS that may endanger the life of the mother, child, or both. And some women have had critical organs, like the uterus, surgically removed for medical reasons, and thus cannot naturally conceive and nurture a child for nine months.
For hopeful families that encounter these obstacles, it’s not necessarily the end of the road and a life of childlessness. Surrogacy that is, finding a woman that is willing to work with a hopeful family and allow her uterus to accept a fertilized egg, to nurture a baby, is a viable solution. However, finding the right person, and making sure that safe pregnancy and delivery occur, are far from quick, easy things to do. That’s why for many people, one of the best ways to have a safe, successful surrogacy experience is to start looking at surrogacy agencies for help. But what do these agencies do for a hopeful family?
One of the biggest hurdles for any hopeful family that is looking into surrogate motherhood is the intimidating number of things that need to be learned, the questions that have to be asked and answered, all of which is critical to a successful experience. Does the couple want a gestational surrogacy? Do they even know what that is? What about genetic conditions like cystic fibrosis, is there a risk of passing these onto a baby, and if so, can anything be done? Is surrogacy legal in the country, state or province the couple resides in, and if not, will they have to go to another country? If a couple does go to another country, what does that do to the legal status of the child? Does the newborn automatically gain citizenship with the country of origin of the hopeful family, or does something need to be done to ensure this?
These and many other questions need to be asked, thought through, and arrived at with conclusive decisions. While it’s not impossible for a couple to seek the answers themselves, the amount of time it can potentially take to arrive at good answers, and taking reasonable actions based on those answers can take far more time—and money—than may be necessary.
One of the biggest benefits of approaching surrogacy agencies is that for these organizations, this is not the first time. They’ve helped shepherd many hopeful families through this process to a successful conclusion. The already know the answers to the questions a couple will have, and in most cases, will be prepared for answers and solutions to questions a couple hasn’t even asked yet or didn’t know they needed to ask. All of this comes naturally with having a professional work ethic and years of experience.
People that undertake surrogacy need to keep track of many things. One of the biggest challenges is finding a surrogate mother that a hopeful family not only feels comfortable with, but the surrogate mother feels comfortable and taken care of as well. This is not just a matter of agreeing to donate a uterus on a handshake deal; this is a very serious commitment. The surrogate mother should meet a stringent, minimum set of requirements, such as being medically healthy, without any genetic disorders that could be passed on, as well as meeting certain lifestyle requirements, such as not being a drinker, smoker or drug user.
Surrogacy agencies take much of the time, effort and process of elimination away from a hopeful couple, handling both the search and the screening, to make sure that any women offering to be candidates for surrogacy do meet, at a minimum, the health and lifestyle qualities that make for a more successful pregnancy.
All Under One Roof
Aside from selecting a surrogate mother, there is a broad range of important “support considerations” that need to be addressed. How will regular medical check-ups be scheduled? Which doctor will do it? What will happen to the surrogate mother as pregnancy advances and she is unable to work, to support herself and keep both herself and the baby fed and healthy? Where will the childbirth take place?
All of these additional factors can be handled by full-service surrogacy agencies, provided that hopeful parents take the time to do a thorough search and pick the right one. With a solid agency helping to guide families through the surrogacy experience, even complex issues like the citizenship legality of the newborn can be planned ahead of time, and legally addressed to ensure a safe return for the entire family to their country of origin.