View Full Version : what do you look for in a surrogate?
At the moment i am only 24 so I know I am to young, but this is something I have been thinking about for 2 years now.
so I am wondering what people look for when deciding who they would like to carry their baby.
I have had 2 kids both 8 hour labours, I had gas and pethedine with both and vaginal births.
Why do the adds I read ask that the person be finished having their family first?
My daughter has Aspergus, would that stop people from wanting to use me?
At the moment i am overweight too, does that matter?
I am just curious as this is something I have been thinking about for 2 years now so I am wondering what people look for in a surrogate:)
I am not 100% sure I want to do this, so I don't want to get anyone's hopes up I am curious as it has been on my mind
I am not actually looking for a surrogate, but did consider it for a time when I found out that I could not have any more children myself.
To answer your questions
- why do most clinics and IP's (intended parents) prefer that you have finished your own family? For 2 reasons mainly. Firstly, with IVF (especially if you are using your own eggs) there is a very small chance that your own fertility could be affected. Therefore, most clinics prefer that donors and surrogates have completed there own families just in case. Secondly for the emotional journey involved in surrogacy. To carry a baby and then give it to someone else takes a special kind of person, and many IP's prefer the surrogate to know what it feels like to have children, to have a baby etc ... and to be content and settled with their own family in order to be happy to give up the baby when it comes.
- would your childs Aspergers be a factor in my decision? No. Not for me. but a lot would depend on the type of surrogacy ... a Gestational Surrogate is one where the IP's use either their own or donated eggs and sperm and insert the fertilised embryo into you. (ie not your eggs). A traditional surrogate is where you use your eggs and either the Intended Father's sperm or donated sperm. Certainly for gestational surrogacy (which is what I was looking at) ... you having a child with Aspergers would not bother me at all.
- You being overweight ... depending on how overweight exactly, would not bother me at all either. As long as you are healthy and happy within yourself with your weight, then I would not consider it an issue. If you are short but over 150kg's then I would perhaps reconsider, but in general, as long as pregnancy was not going to cause you significant issues then it wouldnt really be something I would be concerned about.
As for what I would look for ... mainly I would be looking for someone that I felt an emotional connection to. Someone with the same kind of ideals that basically wanted to help me and my husband acheive our dream of another family. People look for such things as
- emotional connection
- wishes and ideals on contact during the childs life
- especially for traditional surrogacy, how many children or other donations you have done (as they will be genetically connected)
- your age and general health
- why you want to be a surrogate ...
Best wishes for whatever you decide.
Katiesmum has covered it all pretty well.
I think one if the most important aspects is that the IP's and the surrogate click.
Some IP's are more particular than others and this can be due to the surrogacy journey being their last desperate attemtpt at becoming parents.
Most come to surrogacy after years of pregnancy loss and the IVF roller coaster. So some can seem like they want their surrogate to live in a bubble for nine months, some surrogates can manage that.
My surrogacy journey was extremely rewarding I just wish I'd started out younger so I could have done more than one. My IP's are a gay couple, they were happy to leave food and lifestyle choices to me during the pregnancy they trusted that I had a healthy child and would look after and nurture their child as well as I had my own.
You definately need to be happy that your own family is complete. As previously mentioned there could be issues from IVF, there is also the possibilty that complications from a pregnancy could render you unable to have more children, but like the pp said I think the biggest concern of any IP's is that you won't be able to hand that baby over at the end of the pregnancy. Having completed your own family you can be more certain of how you will feel when the surro baby is born and know more about your abilities to seperate from that baby.
It's a fantastic thing to do but you must really know yourself as a person first.
Is it absolutely vital the surrogate's family is complete though? I am 21 (22 in december) and wish to be a surrogate. I have done heaps of research and it is possible at my age to do it (in another state of course). I have had 2 very healthy children, my youngest being 19 months. However I have type one diabetes. I don't think this is such a big deal, as both my children were 110% healthy. No complications at all. How would people feel about me having that though? And being a single mum, there is no way I would want to keep a baby I was "brewing" for someone else (being single and young), do IPs take that into consideration? I do want more kids of my own in the future (not near future), but if I was left unable to have anymore, I would be happy with what I have :)
delaika- I am almost the same as you I am single and why I think it would be nice to have a baby later in life I am happy with the 2 I have. I want to do this while i am young I don't want t be pregnant in my 30's I just never have.
i don't think single-ness is a problem :) and for your daughter having aspergurs, should not be a problem at all. Different disabilities and diseases come from nowhere. The healthiest parents can have a child with a disability. It does not come from who "grew" the child, so don't worry sweetie, that's not a problem (and those who think it is have some problems)
Hey guys, I'm not interested in being a surrogate but I'm just interested in the subject and have read a few threads about it...
Just a question..
Do surrogates generally get paid to carry the child? If so, how much? I read somewhere it's illegal in aus to be a paid surrogate but I find it hard to believe anyone would do it free of charge for a stranger..?
It is illegal yes. No we do not get paid. Some people have reasons for wanting to be a surrogate though. Myself, it's that I feel healthier and being so fertile (I would assume the egg will take) I want to put my body to good use. I have children of my own and while I enjoy being pregnant, I could not deal with another child of my own any time soon. I like making other people happy, and I have even added being a surrogate mother to my "bucket list" lol. It's something I want to do before I die :) Children are a blessing so why not help out, and make other families as happy as we already are?
So you'd do it our of kindness - that's cool :):)
basically :) well I can carry children well, so why not? :)
delaika- I am so much like you.
I was telling my Mum I wanted to do it the other night and she said she looked into doing it years ago as she wanted the money :confused: (yes she is a b!tch)
Once I explained that we do not get paid she couldn't understand why i wanted to do it, neither could my sister.
But for some reason I really do I am just trying to figure out if I will handle the mental side of things once I have to hand the baby over
yeah, I think that is the reason they usually want the surro to have finished her family first, so she won't want to keep the baby. But the family I'm speaking to know I am young and I openly admit there is no way I could handle another child by myself. I want to do it to make myself healthier and happier :) (selfish or what??!!) but if I can make myself happy and healthy by benefiting other people, shouldn't I do it? Do you think you will struggle to hand the child over?
I think your pretty amazing to be looking into being a surrogate at your age! I myself and 23 and will be looking for a surrogate in the future and I've found it very encouraging to see just how many people are actually willing to be a surrogate at some point in their life.
You having a child with aspergers should not turn other people away, after all, it would not (or shouldn't be) your eggs being used, it would be the commisioning parents thus your childrens medical/ personality factors shouldn't come into play at all!!!
You also say your just not should about the emotional part after handing over the infant, this would all be analysed before you could be a surrogate. I know in victoria the surrogate and the commisioninf parents all go thru rigourous counselling to make sure they are all mentally fit to before they can continue.
I hope that one day you can help someone complete their family.
But for some reason I really do I am just trying to figure out if I will handle the mental side of things once I have to hand the baby over
It's not handing the baby over, it's handing the bub back.
You're caring for someone else's child, and you know that before you start to do it and you are happy to do it. You know it's a full time because you know how much goes into looking after your own.
Yes, you form a bond with the bub, you're supposed to. We're made that way. We're supposed to care and worry and be sleep deprived and watch what we eat and drink while we're the ones in charge.
I've formed this bond with my nieces too. I recently had the joy of having leave the same time as school holidays, so they stayed with me for a week.
(Oh my! Girls are so different from boys! :ecomcity::ecomcity::ecomcity:The only thing I've had from my boys in years is grunts :laughing: )
I formed a bond, I cared for them, I watched what we ate, I didn't drink alcohol ( or other legal drugs), we got some regular exercise, I worried about their futures etc. And just like when it was the right time in my surro bub's life I was happy to see them go back to their mum and dad.
I still call, I still care, it's just a little bit removed from every day.
Did it make me clucky? Oh yes! :yes: Did I realise that 'they're so cute when they're little!' Oh Yes! :yes: Shall we have another ourselves?
Nooooooo :laughing: I like being the favourite Auntie that stirs them up before bed and then goes home to 8 hours of sleep!
(yeah right! Like that happens. More like to be woken at 3am because his eftpos card won't work in the taxi and he can't get home, can I come and get him from the pub?)
The sum up is, of course you can give the baby BACK to it's mum and dad - you're just babysitting.... intensely of course, but still babysitting
Yeah what Kel said !
I too am a surrogate.
You would have a pretty good idea inside yourself whether or not you can hand the bub to it's parents once it's born.
On the practical side, I told myself during the pregnancy it's not my baby. I chose to refer to it as "it" or "the baby" not he or she and not by a nickname. Everyone finds their own way of getting their heads and hearts around what they are doing.
It is important to go into the process with an open mind and an acceptance that it is normal and ok to have some strange empty feelings when you first go home from hospital without a baby in your arms, but it is fleeting. You need to be prepared to take out your feelings acknowledge them for what they are, put them into perspective, deal with them and move on .Your children, those you have at home remind you every minute why you did what you did, and on bad days LOL they remind you why you were happy to walk away without that baby in your arms fulltime.
You can't go into surrogacy with even an inkling of an idea that the baby you are carrying is yours. It's not, even those of us who do traditional surrogacy with our own egg, conceive that child for it's IP's.
When the thought of night feeds and endless nappies and toilet training and all the hard slog that goes with young babies is no longer attractive, despite how cute and loveable they are to you then you could be on the road to being in the right head space.
Like Kel says it's like you're a really special babysitter.
I just want to mention that there's a way around most of the laws...particulary the one that states the surrogate has to be 25. I was 23 when I agreed to be a surrogate and 24 when we had transfer and fell pregnant. We very recently (last Tuesday!) finally had the court case for the parenting order, and the lawyer stated that the law reads the surrogate has to be aged 25 for AI, now if you a gestational surrogate, you don't undergo AI, you undergo IVF to become pregnant, therefore did not apply to us, and mum and dad happily got their parenting order signed off and are now eagerly awaiting their birth certificate.
I have to say, while I was pregnant, I was more than happy and willing to hand the baby back to her mama and daddy when she was born, so against night feeds etc, but right now, I'm more clucky than ever and trying for my own 3rd baby!
Oh my god, i cant believe you guys are so selfless. (sorry i dont mean to be rude but you are just amazing). I am not a gushy person usually and I have never been on this thread before but the fact you are thinking of doing this for other people is just......well as i said before - amazing.
It is one thing donating eggs but using your body to carry a child for 9 months and then giving that gift to somebody else ........well......i wont say it again.
I have been through a number of ivf's including one with donor eggs and was considering that again, however, having had two miscarriages and having a bicornuate uterus (double one) and being 46 wonder whether i will ever get pregnant again and if so whether i will be able to carry it.
I had never thought of surrogacy as i thought you had to use your own eggs (and being 46 now thats not going to happen). Somebody mentioned that you can do surrogacy with donor eggs or the surrogates own eggs - how does that work, is that not like adoption?
Sorry for my ignorance but have never really looked into this before.
I always feel so much better when someone else says they're so ignorant, because I was soooo niaive! LOL
I had no idea what surrogacy involved either.
Hopeful45, Traditional Surrogacy (TS) is when a surro donates her egg as well as her oven. Pregnancy can be achieved by home insemination, by artificial insem at a clinic, or if need be: her eggs collected, embies created in a clinic and transferred back like IVF.
Donor eggs can also be collected, embies created in a clinic and then transferred to the (oven) Gestational Surrogate (GS).
The laws state that the birth mother is the one who gives birth regardless of the genetics but some of the states recognise a TS if it is lodged before conception. (and heaps of other forms of course)
Thanks for the info bfkel. i guess its pretty hard to find a surrogate though. What is the legal situation regarding the child prior to the birth ? what if the surrogate changes her mind ? this could be very upsetting
the legal side of things is stupid in my opinion. The surrogate has all legal rights to the child up to the application for the parenting order is approve, in my case, that took 8 months..
The surrogate can change her mind and walk away with the baby. But in my opinion, here in Australia, if you follow all the right channels, and you click with your surrogate, you should be pretty safe. I mean, there's no monetry gain for someone doing it in Australia, so if someone does step up and offer to do it, and goes through all the councelling and psych appointments and is still happy to go ahead, I'd say your on a winner...
I'm currently 'watching' a surrogacy journey that has turned very very sour indeed atm, the right channels weren't followed, lies where told to the clinic to get the proceedure to go ahead etc, and now, the surrogate wants very very little to do with the parents, she wants her space, she feels like she was pressured into doing it, there's disputes about the birth arrangements etc. This is all stuff that will be hashed out with psychs and councellors etc...
I'd say FOLLOW YOUR GUT, if it doesn't feel right with someone don't do it, there's a reason it doesn't feel right, and follow all the right channels, and you'd be fine!
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