Surrogacy has made having a family possible for couples with physical limitations or those who have failed fertility treatments. The choice to use a surrogate is a personal and complicated one.
What exactly is the surrogate process and how does a candidate become a surrogate? Of course, the process includes the gestational surrogate, also known as the gestational carrier, because she carries the pregnancy for the intended parents.
The women who act as gestational surrogates do not provide eggs for the pregnancy. The prospective surrogate mother undergoes rigorous mental and physical health testing before she is chosen. The candidate must have had at least one pregnancy that has been taken to term.
To be considered, the candidate must be at least 21 years old. To be considered to be in good health, the woman must also be a non-smoker and have a healthy body mass index. Attention will be given to her obstetric and gynecological medical history. Testing is also performed to identify infectious diseases, such as HIV or Hepatitis C.
Candidates must also be part of a secure environment that does not have any financial hardship or social stresses. A comprehensive psychological and social screening will also be conducted by a mental health specialist who is familiar with both gestational surrogates and intended parents; they work exclusively in the field, so they have a compassionate, in-depth understanding of the process. They will also meet with the surrogate mother and the intended parents to ensure a cohesive partnership between the individuals.
When choosing a surrogate mother, some couples chose a trusted friend or family member. If the intended parents do not have this situation, there are agencies dedicated to finding perfect cohesive candidates.
It is important that the intended parents maintain connectedness and involvement with the pregnancy, the surrogate and the developing surrogate baby. Some intended parents have already gone through a grieving process due to the fact that they themselves are not able to reproduce. This grieving may continue up to the birth of the baby. It is important to address any of these issues before the baby's arrival. Psychologists suggests that the intended parents decorate the nursery and have a baby shower to encourage bonding.
Besides being a very emotional process, surrogacy can also be very costly. The costs can vary from state to state, but generally for a gestational surrogacy pregnancy, the cost can be upwards to $125,000.
Want to learn more about how you can begin the surrogacy process? Contact us today. We'll explain the process of gestational surrogacy and help you make the best decision for your family's future.