Can I Be a Surrogate For a Friend?

Are you wondering “Can I be a surrogate for a friend?” Learn what the process looks like when you’re thinking about being a surrogate for a friend.

Surrogacy is an act of generosity and compassion, often used to help couples fulfill their dreams of parenthood. In some cases, you might be thinking about becoming a surrogate for a friend.

While being a surrogate mother for a friend allows you to skip the matching process of, it’s crucial to recognize that being a surrogate for a friend comes with a unique set of complexities that require careful consideration and preparation.

As always we’re always here to help you navigate the complexities of being a surrogate for a friend and although you don’t have to worry about completing the matching process, we can still help you with other aspects of your surrogate journey.

Contact us today to begin the process of becoming a surrogate for a friend. Our specialists are ready to help you begin this life-changing journey.

How Does Being a Surrogate for a Friend Work?
If you’re asked to consider being a surrogate for a friend, you might feel thrilled by the chance to support them in such a meaningful way. Witnessing their struggle with infertility, you understand their desire to become parents. Helping them on their journey to parenthood can feel incredibly rewarding.

Yet, there are specific requirements you must meet in order to be a surrogate for a friend. Professionals who handle surrogacy have certain rules in place to safeguard the health of the surrogate and enhance the chances of success for the intended parents during the embryo transfer process. These guidelines aim to ensure a safe, successful surrogacy journey.

Below are some of the requirements on being a surrogate mother for a friend:

  • Age, Health, and Lifestyle Criteria: Meeting age requirements (usually 21–38), maintaining a healthy BMI, abstaining from smoking or drug use and having a successful prior pregnancy are crucial.
  • Financial Independence: Being self-sufficient and not reliant on state assistance.
  • Mental Health: Not being on certain medications for an extended period and passing psychological evaluations.

To learn more about the requirements of being a surrogate for a friend, please feel free to reach out to our surrogate specialists or call us at 1-800-875-2229. Top of Form

How to Be a Surrogate for a Friend

Once you’ve confirmed that you meet the criteria of being a surrogate for a friend, your next question is, “How do I become a surrogate for my friend?”

If both you and your friend are fully committed to this surrogacy path, there are specific steps you’ll need to follow to kick start the surrogacy process:

Step 1: Find a Surrogacy Professional

When you want to start the process of being a surrogate for a friend, you’ll need to work with a team of surrogacy professionals. Working with a surrogacy agency like American Surrogacy can help you navigate becoming a surrogate for a friend with confidence.

We will help you coordinate with other surrogacy professionals, organize your screening and assessments and provide support and counseling whenever you need it. Even though you’re becoming a surrogate for a friend, it doesn’t mean that you have to do it on your own. Our specialists are ready to help you begin your surrogate journey.

Step 2: Complete Screenings and Assessments

Everyone involved in the surrogacy process must complete background, medical and mental health screenings before you can begin the process of being a surrogate for a friend. These assessments ensure that all parties are ready for the complexities of the surrogacy process.

By completing the surrogacy process ahead of time, you can reduce the likelihood of a surrogacy failing later down the line in case any unforeseen circumstances arise. Surrogacy professionals will not proceed with the medical process until all screenings have been completed even when you’re becoming a surrogate for a friend.

Step 3: Draft a Surrogacy Contract

Before officially beginning the process of being a surrogate for a friend, you’ll need to work with your surrogacy professional to create a surrogacy contract. The surrogacy contract outlines every step of your upcoming surrogacy journey and includes responsibilities, expectations and potential risks of the process.

Just because you’re being a surrogate for a friend doesn’t mean you can skip this step of the process. This document protects your rights and interests during your upcoming surrogate journey.

What to Consider Before Being a Surrogate for a Friend

Becoming a surrogate for a friend can bring many positives for both you and your friend. It skips the need for matching services and might be a more affordable choice, providing peace of mind for everyone involved in the surrogacy journey.

But, despite the benefits of being a surrogate for a friend, there are specific challenges to think about before beginning your journey:

Impact on Friendship

Being a surrogate for a friend can profoundly impact the dynamics of your friendship. It’s essential to navigate this path delicately, acknowledging that emotional and physical strains might come up during the process.

Addressing Underlying Issues

Uncovering and addressing any underlying issues within your friendship before becoming a surrogate for a friend is crucial. Open and honest communication about expectations, boundaries and potential scenarios that may arise can make the process go more smoothly.

Financial Disputes

Establishing financial arrangements upfront can help avoid a bigger problem in the future. Even though you’re being a surrogate for a friend, clarity regarding compensation for medical expenses, lost wages and additional costs is crucial to avoid conflicts later.

Emotional Challenges

Being a surrogate for a friend can be emotionally taxing. The journey involves detachment after the birth, potential emotional turmoil and navigating the expectations and responsibilities that come with carrying a child for someone close to you.

While the journey of being a surrogate for a friend may pose challenges, it can also strengthen the bond between friends, offering a unique and lasting connection from the experiences shared throughout the process.

If you’re considering being a friend for a surrogate and want to begin the process, reach out to us now to speak with a trusted surrogacy specialist.

Being a Surrogate for a Family Member [What to Know]

Being a surrogate for a family member is possible through American Surrogacy’s identified surrogacy program. Learn more about how to become a surrogate for a family member.

If you’re wondering if you can be a surrogate for a family member, the short answer is yes. Offering to become a surrogate for a family member is a beautiful way to help someone you love start a family. Surrogacy comes with its own challenges for anyone trying to start a family.

To get more information about being a surrogate for a family member, reach out to a surrogacy specialist today.

You will need to meet the requirements to become a surrogate for a family member, but it’s important to understand what can happen after you qualify.

Questions to ask yourself:

  • Is our relationship strong enough for this?
  • Will this make the surrogacy process more complicated due to family dynamics?
  • Do I want to do this, or do I feel pressured to do this?
  • What will our relationship be like after the baby is born?
  • Is surrogacy right for me?

Can You Be a Surrogate for a Family Member?

Yes! If you already know your intended parents, this is called identified surrogacy. Here are some things to consider before being a surrogate for a family member:

Changes in Relationship

It’s important to realize being a surrogate for a family member can change your relationship with that person. No matter how close you are to the intended parents, this could change the dynamic of your relationship. Because you have a different relationship from many intended parents and surrogates, you may feel like more or less inclined to advocate for yourself.

While family dynamics can change, you should be aware of where you started and where you want to grow as a family. But also remember, this could create a new level for your relationship that is positive. It has the potential to bring you closer to that family member and have a special bond with their child.

Set Boundaries

To try to prevent negative changes in your relationship, it can be helpful to set boundaries with each other. If you decide that being a surrogate for a family member is something you’d like to do, you should talk with the family member before moving forward with any medical procedures to decide how you’d like to relay information, when to talk about the baby, who can share information about the baby and more.

This is when working with a surrogacy agency can be beneficial. They will work through any mediation needed between intended parents and surrogates to make sure things go smoothly for a better surrogacy experience.

Altruistic Surrogacy

Altruistic surrogates do not require compensation. This means that you would not be paid for your service as a surrogate if you chose to go this route as a surrogate for a family member. Not all situations where intended parents know the surrogate result in altruistic surrogacy. However, some intended parents may choose this path due to the likelihood of finding an altruistic surrogate.

How to Become a Surrogate for a Family Member

If you’re interested in being a surrogate for a family member, American Surrogacy can help make this happen through our identified surrogacy program. As a surrogate, the identified surrogacy process will only differ in the matching step of your journey.  Since you already have plans to be a surrogate for a family member, you don’t have to go through the matching process. Here’s what you can expect from our identified surrogacy process:

  1. Reaching Out to American Surrogacy: If you decide American Surrogacy is right for you, you can reach out to our specialist at any time to begin your surrogacy process.
  2. Legal Process: Since you already have your surrogacy partner in mind, you can move to the legal process of drafting a surrogacy contract. If you don’t have a surrogacy attorney, we can connect you with a surrogacy attorney from our network of professionals.
  3. Medical Process: You’ll follow a fertility medication protocol to prepare your body for embryo transfer. In vitro fertilization (IVF) is used to create embryos using the intended parents’ genetic material. After successful embryo creation, one or more embryos are transferred to your uterus. Subsequent pregnancy tests will confirm whether the transfer was successful.
  4. Birth and Beyond: Throughout the pregnancy, you’ll receive medical care and support from your healthcare team and the surrogacy agency. Regular check-ups ensure the health and well-being of both you and the baby. Following a healthy pregnancy, you’ll bring new life into the world for your family member. The birthing process will be coordinated with the intended parents’ involvement and preferences.

It’s Your Choice

If family members are pressuring you to be a gestational or altruistic surrogate for a family member, then this might not be a great fit. Decide for yourself if surrogacy is right for you. Learn more about what being a surrogate means and if you feel ready to become a surrogate for a family member. Get started by reaching out to a surrogacy specialist today.

Honoring Infertility Awareness Month

June is Infertility Awareness Month. The event was created to help people experiencing infertility discover they aren’t alone and to highlight how they can work through this common diagnosis.

If you’re considering using surrogacy to grow your family, you or your partner may be working through infertility. We want you to know that you’re not alone, and we’re here to support you through whatever stage you’re at in your family-building journey.

Contact us today to connect with a surrogacy specialist who can refer you to a counselor specializing in infertility. With Infertility Awareness Month on the horizon, now is the perfect time to find a professional to help you work through your feelings.

Keep reading to learn about Infertility Awareness Month, how to honor it, and more.

What is Infertility Awareness Month?

June is Infertility Awareness Month. The month-long event was created to bring awareness to how common infertility is and to spotlight the treatments that can help solve some infertility issues.

We’re choosing to honor Infertility Awareness Month by detailing who is affected by it and how people overcome the condition.

Who Experiences Infertility?

According to the National Library of Medicine, 10% to 15% of couples in the United States experience infertility.  Men and women experience infertility at the same rate (10%), and sometimes, a couple’s infertility challenges are because of a combination of several factors.

The following are a few other facts about infertility:

  • A doctor can diagnose infertility when a couple cannot conceive after 12 months of regular, unprotected sex.
  • A doctor can check men and women for infertility through a variety of tests.
  • There are several infertility treatments men, and women can pursue.

Common Infertility Treatments

One of the important aspects of Infertility Awareness Month is ensuring people affected by this common condition know their options. One way to handle infertility is through treatment.

The following are just some of the effective infertility treatments people try:

  • Infertility Medications: Certain medications can be prescribed to men and women to help resolve certain infertility issues.
  • Infertility Surgeries: Men and women may undergo certain surgeries that can help repair internal infertility causes.
  • Assisted Reproductive Technologies:  Recently, IUI and IVF have become more common. These procedures can help couples overcome many infertility challenges and help them conceive.

Embracing Surrogacy After Infertility

One of the final aspects of acknowledging Infertility Awareness Month is working through your feelings on infertility and deciding your next steps.

Working Through Infertility Grief

Choosing when you’re ready to move from infertility treatments to another family-building option like surrogacy isn’t a simple decision.

You and your partner will experience several intense emotions during this time. You may even decide to work with an infertility counselor to help process your feelings.

Even if you decide not to continue your family-building journey this year, you can use this time to work through your grief and allow yourself time to heal.

Choosing Surrogacy

If you and your partner determine that you’re ready to move on from infertility to another family-building option and choose to go forward with surrogacy, congratulations! Surrogacy is a wonderful choice, and it has helped many people become parents.

One of the benefits of working with American Surrogacy for your surrogacy journey is that our agency can provide the essential benefits needed to help you succeed.

The following are some of the most important benefits our agency can provide you:

  • Surrogacy Screening: We’re dedicated to ensuring that hopeful intended parents and prospective surrogates are ready to start the surrogacy process. We do this by coordinating your psychological, medical, and physical screenings.
  • Matchmaking: When you work with our agency, you can expect an average match time of 30 to 90 days. We maintain this by prescreening all hopeful intended parents and surrogates, providing in-house marketing, and keeping a 1:1 intended parent-to-surrogate ratio.
  • Case Management: We will organize and manage your case so you can spend your time focusing on yourself and your surrogacy partner during your surrogacy journey.
  • 24/7 Support: American Surrogacy will provide you with continuous support from licensed social workers from the beginning to the end of their journey.
  • Financial Certainty and Transparency: Our agency offers a transparent fixed cost of $149,900 that covers our services, gestational carrier fees, and medical and legal costs. We also provide a Parent Protection Fee and will organize your journey’s variable fees.

Reach Out to Us Today

This June, we hope you can honor Infertility Awareness Month by caring for yourself. If you need extra support during this time, you can contact us anytime, and we’ll refer you to an infertility counselor who can help you process your emotions.

How to Talk About Your Surrogacy Decision

Surrogacy can be a beautiful journey, and it is becoming more common, but not everyone is familiar with the process. Sharing the news with friends and family can be an exciting step, but it can also bring up questions and conversations.

This guide can help you talk about your surrogacy decision with friends and family. You can also call 1-800-875-BABY or click here to talk to a surrogacy professional and get guidance on sharing the news with friends and family.

How to Share Your Good News

How you share your news of surrogacy is totally up to you, and you have some options:

Sharing One-on-One

Sitting down with each person individually in a comfortable space can give you time to talk through any details. This can be a great way to share news with people close to you so that you can give them space to feel included in your journey and give them an opportunity to show their support for you.

This can also be a great strategy if you think someone may have questions or concerns so that you can address them fully and allow them space to share their thoughts and feelings with you. You can also choose who exactly you want to tell and keep the process as private as you would like.

Sharing Through a Social Media Post or Pregnancy Announcement

When it comes to sharing with a lot of friends and family, social media posts or pregnancy announcements can be a great way to get the word out to everyone.

If you choose to share through a social media post or pregnancy announcement, it means that all of your family and friends can feel included in your journey, and it can also help you out later on when the new baby comes—since you won’t be showing a baby bump, it can keep people from being surprised by the new addition to your family.

This choice can allow you to get creative in announcing the pregnancy, and you may even choose to include your surrogate so that people are aware of your journey. It also gives people an opportunity to come to you if they want to talk to you more about surrogacy.

Those who have any questions or negative thoughts may have the space to do research or collect themselves before they talk to you, so you may have more productive conversations, and if they have negative things to say, they may not go out of their way to talk to you.

Sharing at a Dinner or Gathering

Another great strategy for sharing your announcement is to share the news while your friends and family are gathered. Sharing in person can make the news feel more personal and special rather than sharing it over social media or in mailed announcements.

Sharing in a group can be even easier if you tell a friend or two ahead of time because you will know that you have supportive people by your side. When you are surrounded by supportive people, anyone who might have something negative to say may keep their thoughts to themselves.

Answering Some Common Questions

Coming prepared with answers to common questions may help you prepare for announcing your surrogacy. We have included some below.


Asking why you chose surrogacy may be a sensitive subject, especially if you have personal or medical reasons for choosing surrogacy that you don’t want to share with friends or family.

Remember that you are empowered to share your journey in the way that is most comfortable for you, and no one is entitled to know your personal or medical history. Something as simple as “We are excited to grow our family, and this is a great way to do it.” can be just as effective as a more in-depth answer.

If you are comfortable, sharing more information with friends or family may be a great way to include them in your journey. Having a one or two-sentence explanation for why you chose surrogacy can help you if you are nervous about getting the “why” questions.

Some examples:

“We had embryos left from IVF and were excited to have a child.”

“We wanted to have a child, and after reflection, we decided surrogacy was our best option.”

“It’s been a long journey to have a child, and it led us to surrogacy.”

“We learned more about surrogacy and found that it was a great option for us.”

Will Your Surrogate Share DNA with Your Baby?

In modern surrogacy, your baby will not share DNA with your surrogate. You can simply say “no.”

How Does it Work?

This kind of question can come in many forms. Some may ask you about generalities or specifics. In some cases, people may even wonder aloud about whether there was intimacy involved with your surrogate.

These questions can sometimes be said without thought, but the questions almost always come out of genuine curiosity. You can read articles on how the process works and explain as much as you want, or you can share articles and resources that they can read themselves. With the wide variety of information available online, you only need to share what you feel comfortable sharing.

How to Deal with Potentially Unsupportive Friends and Family

If you are expecting a friend or family member may not be supportive, talking one-on-one with a supportive partner or friend by your side may help you feel comfortable.

It may also be helpful to remind yourself that this may be a new process for friends and family, and they may be learning, so try not to take questions or their emotions personally. Their first reactions are not necessarily a reflection of their long-term support or feelings on the subject.

Get Help from a Surrogacy Professional

Surrogacy professionals can help you during every step of your surrogacy journey, including announcing the decision to family and friends. You can call 1-800-875-BABY or click here to get help from a surrogacy professional now.

Pursuing Surrogacy with Family and Friends [Things to Consider]

Is pursuing surrogacy with family and friends an option for you? Here are some things to consider before you move forward.

Surrogacy can be an incredibly personal process. Asking someone to carry your baby requires a lot of vulnerability, so it can feel particularly intimidating to ask this of someone who you’ve never met before. Because of this, you might be considering pursuing surrogacy with family or friends.

But, there are some potential risks of choosing surrogacy with close friends and family members. What are those risks, though? And how can you ensure that your surrogacy process is as stress-free as can be? We have prepared this in-depth article to help you out. You can also contact us online at any time to get more surrogacy information now. In the meantime, you can continue reading to learn what you need to consider before choosing surrogacy with a loved one.

Gestational Surrogacy with Family and Friends [Things to Consider]

As someone interested in the surrogacy process, you simply want to realize your lifelong dreams of parenthood. To make this complex process a bit easier, maybe you’ve thought about pursuing gestational surrogacy with a family member or a close friend. But, the risks of this path may outweigh the initial comforts.

For instance, what happens if something doesn’t go according to plan? Just as the surrogacy journey can be complicated itself, the emotions you will all experience along the way can also be complex. These can range anywhere from joy and excitement to depression and grief.

To avoid the possible pitfalls and lost relationships, working with an agency like American Surrogacy means you’ll have everything that you need for your surrogacy experience. When you work with us, you can match with a well-qualified surrogate or the right intended parents. You can all have a wonderful surrogacy journey together without the risk of damaging significant relationships due to the complex emotions and occasional challenges of the lengthy surrogacy process.

What Is Gestational Surrogacy?

There’s no doubt that surrogacy can be a pretty technical concept. There is a lot of jargon and terminology that you may not know, and that’s completely OK. So, just what is gestational surrogacy? This is a type of surrogacy in which the gestational surrogate, also known as the gestational carrier, has no biological tie to the child that they’re carrying for the intended parents.

When it comes to the types of surrogacy, gestational surrogacy differs quite a bit from traditional surrogacy. In traditional surrogacy, the surrogate’s egg is used to create the embryo. This means that the surrogate will be the biological mother of the baby, so their parental rights will need to be terminated.

IUI vs. IVF [What to Consider]

Another key difference between traditional and gestational surrogacy is that the former uses intrauterine insemination (IUI), whereas the latter uses in vitro fertilization (IVF). These days, gestational surrogacy and IVF are the norm for surrogates and intended parents.

This is a component worth thinking about if you’re choosing surrogacy with a family member or friend. IUI is when the embryo is created using the surrogate’s own egg. On the other hand, IVF is when the embryo is created by the intended parents, and it may require a donated egg or sperm. Once the embryo is created, a fertility clinician will transfer it to the surrogate’s uterus. Keep in mind, though, that this process does have the potential for multiple tries.

Here at American Surrogacy, we exclusively facilitate gestational surrogacies, so IVF is what our intended parents and prospective surrogates will use. Also, because of our matching process, you can all form an amazing connection that lasts a lifetime. In fact, you may discover that you’ve made a new extended family member or a new close friend throughout your journey.

What to Know about Your Matching Process

American Surrogacy is a national surrogacy agency, which means that we coordinate surrogacies throughout the United States. This gives you the greatest chance possible of finding the absolute perfect match. Our national reach ensures that you will reach as many prospective surrogates or intended parents as you can.

Also, our trusted specialists will be there for you every step of the way. When you choose American Surrogacy, you can rest assured that we will find you the perfect match, and your relationships with friends and family will remain as close as they have always been.

If you do decide to pursue your surrogacy journey with a family member or friend, you can feel confident knowing your surrogacy specialist will help navigate any potential challenges, ensuring that you have the best experience possible.

American Surrogacy is the fastest-growing, full-service surrogacy agency in the U.S., and we can guide you through the entire process with the personal attention you deserve.


Do you have some more questions? We’re here to answer them for you. You can fill out our online contact form at any time to get more free information now. We’re looking forward to hearing from you!

10 Holiday Gift Alternatives for Those Going Through Surrogacy

Are you gearing up for the holiday season? If you’re like most people, then you’re probably struggling with what to give your loved ones — especially if they’re an intended parent or a surrogate and you’re not sure about what is appropriate.

It’s easy to stick with the usual just to be safe: gift cards to their favorite restaurants or to a movie, clothes, holiday money. But we know that you’d rather get them something that’s a little more special. If you’ve having a hard time figuring out what to give them that will really blow them away, you’re not alone.

If you’re tired of pacing the aisles of Target to find the perfect gift, or if you’re looking for something a little out of the box, check out 10 gift ideas that will really impress your loved one going through the surrogacy process.

1. Sending Ready-Made Meals

Even those of us who absolutely love to cook could use a break sometimes. If your intended parent or surrogate’s idea of a good time is spending the evening in the kitchen, ordering a meal-kit delivery service is a great way to take the extra burden of meal-prepping off their shoulders. And, now that meal kits are more popular than ever, you have plenty of options to choose from.

These services are an easy way to ensure that the person you’re buying them for has healthy meals all week long without having to drive to the grocery store. Many of them also have options for specific diets   like vegan or vegetarian. Some, like Snap Kitchen and Fresh and Easy, even provide ready-made meals, which takes away the stress of getting dinner on the table ready. The options range in price, so you should be able to find one that fits perfectly in your budget.

A few favorites?

2. Meal-Prepping for Surrogates Who are Pregnant

There’s nothing better than having a meal made ahead of time. If you like the idea of meal-kit services, but you’d like to put your own spin on things, you might think about meal-prepping for your surrogate during her pregnancy.

Being pregnant isn’t easy, especially when carrying a child for someone else. With so much to worry about, it can be stressful to keep the fridge stocked and dinner on the table. During this holiday season, take the load off a surrogate’s shoulders by doing some of the heavy lifting for her. If you start early on Sunday morning, she’ll have plenty to enjoy throughout the week.

3. Donating to an Intended Parent’s Surrogacy Fund

Everyone loves getting gift cards during the holiday season. They’re simple, and you can find them just about anywhere. But this year, you might think about donating to something other than your local restaurant’s or movie theatre’s cash fund.

If your friend or loved one is pursing surrogacy, even just a little bit of your financial support goes a long way toward making a difference in their surrogacy expenses. Like adoption, surrogacy is an expensive endeavor. It takes a lot of time, money and resources to make intended parents’ dreams of building a family a reality. If you decide to donate to their surrogacy fund, you could take a financial burden off their shoulders.  burden off their shoulders.

4. Donating Your Time

The holidays are all about spending time together. It might seem like a small gift, but just your time can make a huge difference during someone’s surrogacy journey. Run their errands, offer babysitting services for their other children as they make their way to medical appointments, and more.

This can be a priceless gift for super busy people like your surrogate or intended parent. And having one stress-free day will make their surrogacy journey so much easier.

5. Giving Something Sentimental

The surrogacy journey will connect intended parents and surrogates together for years to come. If you are wondering what to give each other, it might be nice to either make or commission a gift that will remind you of your journey together. Consider a necklace that has the baby’s birthdate, a bracelet with the family’s initials, or some other personalized present.

6. Making a Homemade Treat

Over the last year, we’ve all had plenty of time to practice our baking and cooking skills. You’ve probably seen people on social media showing off their bread-making skills in the comfort of their own home. If you fall into that category, now is the time to show your loved ones how much you’ve learned.

Bring over some delicious bread, some handmade jam, or anything else that you think they might like.

7. Organizing a Personalized Gift Basket

You’ve probably seen gift baskets like Edible Arrangements, but you can also make your own gift basket for the special person in your life. Remember, it doesn’t need to be expensive or extravagant.

While you’re making your gift basket, think about where your loved one is at in their surrogacy journey. For example, if this is the intended parents’ first Christmas with their baby, they might want a few special items — like an ornament or figurine — that will help them commemorate this special day.

Likewise, think about where a surrogate is at in her pregnancy. If she’s just delivered, she might like something to commemorate the experience with the intended parents, as well as items for her postpartum recovery.

8. Putting Together a Memory Book

The surrogacy journey is full of ups and downs — just like any family-building experience. For this holiday season, you might decide to look back and create your own memory book of your surrogacy journey. Make a collection of your favorite pregnancy photos and or pictures of your child and put them in the book to share repeatedly.

Don’t forget a copy for your surrogacy partner!

9. Choosing Something for the Surrogate’s Family

If you’re the intended parent or the family of an intended parent, it could be nice to include a small gift for the surrogate and her family. Whether it’s something handmade or something you plan on buying, we’re sure you’ll find something special — like tickets to a local zoo or a movie night out.

10. Just Spending Time Together

Giving gifts is a wonderful part of the holidays. But it’s not the most important thing.

If you can, carve out some time to spend with the intended parents or the surrogate. Even if you choose to not spend any money, you can still have a great time with fun, family-friendly activities. Hold a talent show, a concert, or just watch a movie together from a distance.

It’s easy to get caught up in the holiday cheer and go all out with elaborate, expensive gifts. But the best gifts are the ones with the most thought put into them.

No matter what you decide to give your intended parents or surrogate, we know that they’ll appreciate it. If you put in the time and care to think about what they really want, you will make this holiday season one to remember.

Looking for more holiday gift ideas for your surrogacy partner? Contact your surrogacy specialist for suggestions!

4 Ways to Introduce Your Newborn to Family During COVID-19

Socially distancing ourselves from one another this year, especially our own family members, has been hard. If you welcomed a baby in 2020 (or are about to), the inability to enjoy the magical meet-the-baby moments is especially disappointing and isolating for everyone — even more so if you’ve waited a long time for those experiences.

We understand how badly you and your family members want to hug each other and hold the newest member of the family. And we know that new parenthood is always a little lonely and isolating, even before those feelings became heightened by new parenthood in a global pandemic.

Right now, you’re all eager to share in your excitement and love. But, as you know, now just isn’t the safest time to celebrate together in person.

Your infant isn’t the only one considered high-risk for COVID complications; your older or immunocompromised loved ones are also at risk. For everyone’s safety, things are going to have to look a little different.

While it’s still not safe for your friends and family to hold your newborn, there are a few creative ways in which they can meet and see your child while still prioritizing everyone’s health:

1. A Virtual Party

Zoom, FaceTime, Google Hangouts and other video call platforms have been a saving grace for all of us during the pandemic. With these tools, there’s no reason to cancel your baby shower or “welcome home” party.

It may not have the same feel as an in-person party, but there are some upsides to a virtual meet-and-greet:

  • No need to have a bunch of people in your home when you’re already juggling the chaotic messes and sleeplessness of a newborn.
  • You won’t have to clean up the mountain of spit-up rags and stray bottles scattered everywhere.
  • Everyone can attend, even if they live far away.
  • You’ll limit your family’s exposure to the seasonal flu, colds and other common illnesses in addition to serious illnesses like COVID-19.

You were probably already going to ask a friend or family member to help you organize a party pre-pandemic. So now, just ask that person if they’d be willing to schedule a virtual party and help coordinate the tech aspects with attendees.

2. A Drive-By Parade

One fun, lively and creative solution that has arisen in the age of COVID-19 is the drive-by parade. People throughout the world have lined up from inside the safety of their cars and slowly driven past the houses of friends and family members in honor of a celebration: birthdays, graduations, marriages, important anniversaries and, yes, to meet children for the first time.

If you invite your friends and family to participate in a drive-by parade past your home, you should probably ask them to skip the horn-honking — your baby wouldn’t appreciate the noise. However, this is a way for your loved ones to view your baby through their rolled-up car windows and offer their congratulations from a safe distance.

If they want to drop off gifts or food while they’re in the area, you probably don’t need to worry about disinfecting those items. As you know, COVID-19 is primarily spread through in-person contact (so keeping a rolled-up car window in between one another will do the trick) but it’s also completely fine to request that your visitors refrain from delivering gifts if you’re worried.

3. A Photo Shoot

Many parents-to-be were planning on having a newborn photo session long before COVID-19 struck. Now, those photos may be the only way for your friends and family to see your baby at the moment.

We know looking at a photo is a poor substitute for your loved ones cuddling your new baby, but it will give them the opportunity to see your baby closer than they would safely be able to right now.

Plus, scheduling a photo shoot with your newborn during this difficult time will someday serve as an amazing reminder of your child’s entrance into a world that felt a little upside-down. Someday, you’ll be able to show those photos to your child and explain to them what a blessing they were in the midst of such a scary and dark time.

When booking your photo session, make sure that your group is limited to the parents, the baby and the photographer. Talk with your photographer about precautions that you’ll all want to take, including but not limited to:

  • Quarantining before your photo shoot.
  • If available in your area, getting yourselves tested for COVID prior to the session, to be certain that you’re all negative.
  • Wearing masks as often as possible during your session — put them back on after you smile!
  • Taking photos outdoors rather than at home or in a studio.
  • Staying at least six feet apart from the photographer when possible. They may want to bring a zoom lens!

Don’t forget to take at least one photo with your masks on, if only to commemorate the strangeness of this moment in time!

Once your photos are ready, be sure to send an online link, physical prints, or a keepsake album of your family photo session to your loved ones, so that they can see your baby up close without being close.

4. A Safe In-Person Meeting

We understand that it may be a priority for certain loved ones to meet your baby in person and that waiting until this pandemic is completely over just isn’t an option. You may feel that it’s important enough for people like your parents or siblings to hold your baby that you’re all willing to take the necessary precautions, as well as accept some level of risk.

Not everyone will feel comfortable with an in-person visit right now, so always remain respectful of everyone’s individual levels of comfort and health concerns. However, if you and a few close family members mutually decide that an in-person meeting can’t wait, we recommend that you all take some important precautions, which can include but are not limited to:

Meeting at home.

Meeting outdoors is preferable to an enclosed space, but it might not be an option in your situation — caring for a newborn as well as local weather conditions may necessitate an indoors meeting. If you do meet inside, stay at home rather than meeting up in a public place to avoid contact with non-family members.

Quarantining before the visit.

Ask your loved ones to stay at home and avoid contact with non-household members for two weeks, and practice the same quarantine measures yourself. It may seem extreme, but it’s the best way to keep everyone (including your newborn) safe.

It may not be possible for you and your family members to get tested for COVID-19 in preparation for the visit, so quarantining in advance is the best way to prevent potential spread of the illness.

Wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) during the visit.

Everyone but the baby should be wearing a mask throughout the entirety of the visit. Remember: Try not to touch your mask while you’re together. Wearing a mask won’t do anyone any good if you’re not using it properly!

Washing hands and sanitizing.

It may seem simple and it’s been said countless times, but you and your visitors should wash your hands in accordance with CDC guidelines before, during and after the visit. Even if visitors aren’t planning on touching the new baby, they’ll still probably touch a few shared surfaces or objects. Sanitizing frequently touched areas (doorknobs, tables, your phones, etc.) before and after the visit will also limit the risk of COVID-19 exposure.

Keeping your distance.

As tempting as it is to pass your baby around for long-awaited cuddles, everyone should try to maintain a six-foot distance as often as possible. If your loved one must hold your baby, ask that they refrain from kissing your newborn or removing their mask.

Additionally, make sure that you and your loved ones maintain a safe distance from one another. We know it’s hard not to touch, hug, kiss, or be physically close to your family during this important moment, but safely needs to come first right now. Remind everyone to keep touching to a minimum.

Celebrating the arrival of a child can feel strange in the middle of so many unknowns and stressors. But, it absolutely still deserves celebration and joy — even if those celebrations are a little bit different from how we had originally imagined!

7 Things Grandparents Need to Know About Surrogacy

Happy (early) Grandparents Day! The role a grandparent plays in the life of their children and grandchildren is indispensible. Comfort, joy, security, and peace — these are all things a grandparent can provide in a unique way.

And for this year’s Grandparents Day on Sunday, we want to specifically speak to those with grandchildren who became a part of the family through the surrogacy process, or who will soon be a part of the family through this journey.

We know — surrogacy can be a bit confusing. You’re probably wondering how it all works, and if there’s anything different you need to do to be the best grandparent possible.

We’re sure you are going to be a great grandparent, especially once you have an even better understanding of surrogacy. So, without further ado, here are seven things every grandparent needs to know about surrogacy.

Your children considered all their options.

Is your child in the process of becoming a parent through surrogacy? It may seem like an odd choice. You may not really “get it.” What about adoption? Or foster care?

It’s completely understandable to have questions. However, you should be aware that asking could sound like an accusation or disapproval.

Anyone starting the surrogacy process has thoroughly considered all of their options. If this is what your child has chosen, then they did it intentionally. Rather than question (even with good intentions), it’s best to stick to support and encouragement.

There’s a difference between questioning the process and asking questions about the process.

With that said, we don’t want to stifle your curiosity! It’s expected that you’d have questions about how surrogacy works. This is different than questioning the method itself.

It’s okay to ask about the process. This shows your interest and makes it clear that you are going to be invested.

Your grandchild could be biologically related to you.

There are two types of surrogacy: traditional and gestational. The vast majority of modern surrogacies are gestational. That means both the egg and sperm are combined through IVF, and the surrogate’s eggs are not used in the process. The surrogate is not biologically related to the child.

Some intended parents turn to donors for viable sperm and eggs. Others are able to use their own. This means that in a gestational surrogacy, your grandchild could have a biological connection to you. Either way, though, they are still your grandchild!

The surrogacy process can be challenging.

Intended parents have to work through a lot of complicated emotions and endure long periods of waiting during the process. It can be difficult. Reach out and check on them — offer to make dinners, host a movie night, or really anything that could pick them up.

The surrogate is an important piece of the journey, both then and now.

The surrogate is on the other side of the surrogacy process from the intended parents. It may be an awkward relationship to think about, but she is an important piece of the process and could remain a part of the family’s life moving forward. Consider how you can be kind and welcoming to her during (and after) this process.

Your grandchild should hear their surrogacy story.

You know those old tropes about keeping adoption secret, like it’s something to be ashamed of? You’ve probably seen it in movies and TV shows. Well, it’s completely wrong. And just like adoption stories, surrogacy stories are something to be shared early and often.

The parents take on the primary responsibility of teaching their child about their surrogacy story. When you are grandparents of a child via surrogacy, ask the parents how you can help. They may have good books to read at bedtime when the kids stay over, or helpful answers for questions they’ve been asking lately. Try to familiarize yourself with talking about surrogacy, especially at age-appropriate levels.

You have a lot to be proud of.

Your children made a brave decision to pursue surrogacy. They chose the best route for them to fulfill their dreams of becoming parents. It took dedication and strength, as they faced plenty of frustrations and challenges along the way.

Whether you are grandparents already or grandparents-to-be, you have a lot to be proud of. That’s something to be thankful for on this Grandparents Day.

10 Great Father’s Day Presents: For Dads and Dads-to-Be

Fatherhood is the greatest gift any man can receive. But with Father’s Day right around the corner, now is a great time to lavish the dad or dad-to-be in your life with even more presents.

Parenthood is a unique journey for each person. Even within a surrogacy partnership, participants will have different experiences. When you’ve recently become a parent through the surrogacy process — or are preparing as an intended parent — the journey is especially distinct.

The joys and challenges of surrogacy are unlike anything else. With this in mind, there are several Father’s Day gift ideas that are great for anyone who became a father through surrogacy.

10 Great Father’s Day Presents

1. Surrogacy Memory Book

This gift takes preparation, but it’s worth the time. Collect pictures, texts or letters exchanged during the surrogacy process. If you can, ask the surrogate to contribute, too. You can create a physical scrapbook commemorating the journey or make something digital.

2. A Grilling Set — With a Mini Match

This is only one example of a larger idea: Find something that will create a bond and memory between father and child.

Does the new dad love grilling? Get him a set of new grill tools, and a play grill that he can set up next to the real thing. Kids emulate dads, and it will be the sweetest thing to look out on the deck and see the two of them out there together, spatula in hand, flipping burgers.

This gift could be anything. A small basketball goal, a little lawnmower, a miniature set of golf clubs — whatever you could foresee your child and their dad doing together.

3. Parenting Classes

This may not be the most fun gift, but any dad-to-be will appreciate it. Becoming a parent for the first time isn’t easy. For those who became fathers through surrogacy, there can be unique challenges forming attachment with the baby. Parenting resources and classes for new dads can be helpful, and these could be a great Father’s Day gift.

4. A Date Night

In the whirlwind of becoming parents together through surrogacy, don’t forget about your relationship. Your partnership is the foundation of your parenting. Take care of it, too, by giving your dad or dad-to-be a night out for Father’s Day.

Your date night doesn’t need to be extravagant. Find a sitter you trust, make a reservation at your favorite restaurant and enjoy yourself. Maybe pick up a bottle of your favorite wine to wind down once you get home. It’s the simple things that mean a lot.

5. Surrogacy-Specific Gifts

There are many small boutiques that make handmade, surrogacy-specific gifts. Etsy shops are a good place to start, if this sounds like something the dad or dad-to-be in your life would like. Decorative pieces with common surrogacy phrases are a good touch for the office as he returns to work, or it could be something to put in the home.

6. Cool-Looking Baby Gear

Baby bags are essential, and most of them are made for moms. But, there’s cool gear out there for any new dad.

From tactical baby bags to svelte diaper bags to trendy stroller organizers, you can find something practical and attractive for your Father’s Day gift.

7. Slippers

Okay, hear us out. Few things matter more to new parents than comfort. They’re going to lose some sleep, and they’ll be pushed to their breaking point more than once. The least you can do is treat them well. Why not help your new dad out with a nice pair of slippers?

At least this way his feet feel good on the long walk down the hall at 3 a.m.

8. Home Workout Equipment

Becoming a parent seems to shorten your days. You used to have time to get to the gym a couple days a week. Now? Not so much.

A small home workout set could be a great Father’s Day present. Even a little daily activity can go a long way toward improving physical and mental health — which makes you a happier person and a better parent. It’s a win-win-win for father, mother and baby.

9. Local Coffee and a New Mug

Notice any increased caffeine needs recently? Coffee and a mug are always great options for Father’s Day. Find a local roaster and pick out their most popular bag to make the dad’s mornings much better. There are plenty of good Father’s Day mugs to choose from. Or, if you want something less holiday-themed, you could go with a practical to-go cup.

10. A Summer Getaway

For our final idea, take date night up a notch and make it a whole weekend getaway. You and your spouse may not be ready for this yet, as it takes time to feel comfortable being apart from your baby. But, if you’re ready, why not book a nice, relaxing cabin for a couple nights?

Enjoy the summer skies, go for hikes, sip coffee (maybe from that new mug) surrounded by towering trees, and refuel together from your first months as new parents.

There are so many ways to show your appreciation through gifts. Don’t forget to express it in other ways, too. Simple words of encouragement go a long way for any new dads or dads-to-be.

Becoming a new parent through surrogacy is incredible. Take time this Father’s Day to celebrate all that has happened for the new dad in your life and all the good things yet to come.

10 Mother’s Day Gifts for an Intended Mom-to-Be

Mother’s Day is just around the corner! And that means it’s time to start thinking about the perfect gift. But, if you’re buying for an intended parent, you’re probably worried about accidentally purchasing the wrong thing — , gifts are related to breastfeeding that might not be as well-received by an intended mother.

If you’re worried about what to pick, we’ve got you covered. Here are 10 gift ideas that are perfect for the soon-to-be mom in your life.

1. Something handmade

There’s something special about a handmade gift on Mother’s Day. You don’t have to spend a lot of money if you’re making it yourself, which might ease some of your worries. Any gift will be much appreciated. If you’re making it yourself, you might choose a painting, a card, a knitted or crocheted blanket, baked goods, and more. As long as it’s from the heart, that’s what counts.

2. A self-care package

The most thoughtful gifts are ones with the most detail — and nothing says “thinking of you” like a self-care package. You can use this opportunity to fill it with all of her favorite things: candles, an eye mask, her favorite books, bath bombs, a weighted blanket and more. However much you plan on including, personalizing your gift will only make it that much more special.

3. A journal

Some moms like to chronicle their journey through motherhood. There’s so much that can happen in a year, and every mom wants to remember all those special moments. You can either send her a journal with prompts that she can fill out, or you can gift her a bullet journal so that she can stretch her creative muscles.

4. Baby supplies

Much-needed essentials for the baby are some of the best gifts. You can buy items like clothing, blankets, baby slings, strollers and more.

5. Diapers

Ask any parent and they’ll tell you there’s no such thing as too many diapers. Giving some is a great way to help them stock up before the baby gets here or after they’ve already been born. Some moms have a preferred brand they like to stick with, so double-check with them before making any purchases.

6. A spa day

What better way to relax than with a spa day? This is one of the best ways to get some quality “me time” in. If you’d like, you can send a gift card for a manicure, pedicure, or a facial. If you don’t want to spend too much, you can always make her a DIY spa kit.

7. Flowers

Nothing says Mother’s Day quite like a bouquet. It’s tradition to send carnations, but you can always send some of her favorites, like: lilies, tulips, and roses.

8. A gift card to one of her favorite places

If you know that an intended mom really wants to treat herself to her favorite store, a gift card is the best way to help her do that. You could get her a Visa gift card that can be used just about anywhere, or you get one that’s for a specific location — like a movie theatre or her favorite restaurant. No matter what you pick, we’re sure she’ll love it!

9. A meal-delivery service

Not everyone has time to cook — especially new moms. Why not send her a ready-made meal? Blue Apron, HelloFresh and Sun Basket are some of the most popular options, but there are other options available. Each one varies in price, so you should be able to find one that fits your budget, too.

10. Something to help her get ready

If Mother’s Day falls during the middle of the surrogacy process, you might want to gift her something that will make her feel more prepared:  a set of parenting classes, baby-proofing devices or a first-time-parent kit.

We know that surrogacy is new for many people, and it can be hard to pick out the right gift or know what’s appropriate. That’s why American Surrogacy is always here to help. Contact us online for more suggestions on appropriate surrogacy gifts.