Surrogacy is a wonderful option to grow your family. It is usually considered after multiple rounds of in vitro fertilization (IVF) have failed to produce a viable fetus. Surrogacy is a common practice, but many people still don’t know how it works. If you are considering surrogacy, here are the basics of what you need to know to start your journey.
What Is Surrogacy?
Surrogacy is a form of reproductive assistance where a woman carries and delivers a baby for a couple. There are two types of surrogacy. The first is traditional surrogacy, where the woman provides the egg and is fertilized by a donor. This process can be done through IVF or artificial insemination. The second type of surrogacy is called gestational surrogacy. Gestational surrogacy is when the parents provide the fertilized egg to a woman who carries the baby until birth. Once the child is born, the parents take full custody and the child joins their family.
Common Reasons Parents Choose Surrogacy
There are several reasons why parents would choose surrogacy including:
- Infertility issues in one or both partners
- Medical issues that could impact the health of the fetus
- Required prescription medications that could risk the health of the baby
- Same-sex couples who are unable to conceive a child on their own
- Single parents who want to start or grow their family
- Past trauma from a loss or bad pregnancy
- Impacted fertility as the result of advanced age
There’s also many personal reasons including not wanting to miss work, not interested in being pregnant, or even simply wanting to maintain their current physique. No matter what the reason, surrogacy is an excellent solution to all of these barriers to growing your family.
How Do I Find A Surrogate?
When looking for a surrogate, parents often turn to their network of friends and family. This can be very challenging because it is difficult to find a surrogate. Even if you do, there are numerous issues that can complicate the process and damage the personal relationship. Thus, most of the time, people choose instead to work with a surrogacy agency. Surrogacy agencies partner with women who want to become a surrogate. The surrogates are fully vetted through a robust screening process and held to very high standards. The surrogacy agency will work closely with the family to ensure they are partnered with the right surrogate for their needs.
Who Chooses To Become A Surrogate?
The women who choose to become surrogates are best thought about as compassionate humanitarians. They are women who love children and often have children of their own. They understand how heartbreaking it is not being able to conceive and that family is the most important thing. Surrogates have a pretty broad demographic range, but in general they:
- Are between the ages of 21 and 40
- Have had at least one successful, healthy pregnancy and enjoy pregnancy
- Have a good health history and lead a healthy lifestyle
- Are typically highly-educated and have economic security
Selecting a surrogate is a pretty straightforward process with an agency. Agencies work closely with the parents to find surrogates that are an ideal match. They then guide parents through the whole process from introduction to birth.
How Do I Select A Surrogacy Agency?
When choosing a Surrogacy Agency there are many factors to consider including:
- Experience: It is best to work with an agency that has a long history of successful surrogacies. When vetting agencies, ask about their history, experience, and references from past clients.
- Legal Staff: Surrogacy is regulated by governmental bodies and thus, requires significant legal expertise to navigate these laws. Look for an agency that has a legal staff that will guide you through the legal process.
- Flexibility: Every surrogacy is different and will face unique obstacles. Working with a flexible agency can ensure that they can both meet your personal needs and overcome unexpected barriers.
- Location: In the United States, surrogacy is regulated at the state level which can create a lot of complications and confusion during the process. However, the Republic of Georgia is one of the only countries with clear laws surrounding surrogacy making the process easier. Consider expanding your search beyond your borders.
Sometimes choosing your agency comes down to a gut feeling about what is right. Just make sure that whoever you choose is communicative, transparent, and professional.
If you are ready to learn more about surrogacy, contact our knowledgeable team at Stork Service Surrogacy Center. We’ll be happy to answer any questions and help you understand if you are ready for surrogacy. We take an individual approach, getting to know each of our clients on a personal level before introducing them to their match. When you work with us, you will get legal, medical, psychological, and administrative support throughout the whole process to help you grow your family.