5 Dangers of Online Surrogacy Support Groups

If you’re considering starting the surrogacy process, whether as a prospective surrogate or intended parent, you’ve probably come across websites and forums where members of the surrogacy journey share their stories, opinions and advice for others. These websites can be a great way for you to learn more about surrogacy from someone who has been where you are — but it’s important that you take the information presented here with a grain of salt.

When it comes to learning about the surrogacy process, there is no better source of information than the surrogacy specialists at American Surrogacy. When you call 1-800-875-BABY(2229), an experienced surrogacy professional is able to answer your personal questions and help you best determine whether surrogacy is the right path for you.

Proper research is important for every prospective surrogate and intended parent. While we are not discounting the helpful stories and information presented on sites and forums where anyone can share their experience, there are a few things you should know about these information sources.

  1. Not all information is accurate.

You know that not everything on the internet is true — and that is certainly correct when it comes to information shared about surrogacy and other IVF processes.

Surrogacy is still a new way of building a family, which means there are many people out there who do not fully understand how the process works. People who only mean well may be the people constantly sharing incorrect information in online support groups and forums, leading others astray. Don’t take everything you read on these support groups and websites to heart. You could easily be misled about how surrogacy actually works, putting your own surrogacy journey at risk.

For the most accurate information about the surrogacy process, you should speak with a surrogacy agency, a surrogacy attorney and a fertility clinic.

  1. Dramatic circumstances and stories are actually in the minority.

When people hear about surrogacy, their minds often go to the dramatic stories they hear on the news: of surrogates becoming pregnant with their own children, of surrogates taking custody of children, of intended parents refusing to take responsibility for their children, etc. While these stories are popular online, they are in the small minority in real life. The majority of surrogacy stories go well without any hiccups — but, because those are “boring” in comparison, people don’t talk about them as much.

The same applies to stories shared in surrogacy support groups and forums. Because dramatic stories get the most attention, you may see a disproportionate number of these in your feed. Don’t let these scare you away from surrogacy; make sure to speak with a surrogacy professional about how surrogacy actually works before making a decision for your family.

  1. Some support groups are formed with an agenda.

People on the internet always have an opinion, no matter how hard they may try to be objective. However, some people don’t try to be objective at all — and instead use the internet as a way to deliver biased information to sway people one way or another.

There is a very vocal anti-surrogacy community online. You may find yourself stumbling upon a support group or forum that claims to offer helpful information when it really just offers biased, non-factual information intended to dissuade people from surrogacy. For example, even though American surrogacy is very different from surrogacy elsewhere in the world, people use ethical breaches in international surrogacy as reasoning against surrogacy on U.S. soil.

Before you join any online support group or forum, take your time to investigate who is hosting the discussion and what personal affiliations they may have. Even if a support group itself is not biased, remember that certain people will want to promote their own ideas in the comments, as well.

  1. There is always a risk in finding surrogacy partners online.

More and more people are using online support groups and forums to help them find a surrogate or intended parent to share their journey with. A great number of these people use these sources because an agency will not help them match for a traditional surrogacy, or because the laws in their state or country disallow the kind of surrogacy they wish to pursue.

If you use these methods to help yourself find a surrogacy partner, be cautious. Not all intended parents and surrogates on online sites have been properly screened for the surrogacy process. “Matching” with one of these partners on your own can delay your surrogacy journey as they follow through with screening, especially if they are not approved for the surrogacy process.

Working with an experienced surrogacy agency like American Surrogacy is the best way to find a safe and approved surrogate or intended parent for your journey.

  1. Be prepared for “shaming” of surrogates and intended parents.

Online shaming: It’s something that you’ve probably seen in all aspects on the internet, and surrogacy is no different. People are able to say terrible things online that they would never say in a face-to-face conversation because they are emboldened by their anonymity and the lack of consequences.

If you join a surrogacy support group, be prepared for seeing (and receiving) some mean comments about your surrogacy choices. No matter which path you choose, there is always someone on the other side who might disparage your decision. Try not to take these comments to heart. If a surrogacy support group starts doing more harm than good in your surrogacy journey, it’s probably time to give it up and find your information from a local, experienced professional instead.

For more information about surrogacy support groups, including which ones to join and which ones to avoid, reach out to your surrogacy specialist. They can also answer whatever questions you may have about the personal surrogacy journey ahead of you.

5 Resources Everyone Needs for Their Surrogacy

Surrogacy can be a complicated family-building journey — which is why neither intended parents nor surrogates should go through the process alone. But, how do you know which resources you need to have as successful a surrogacy journey as possible?

Ultimately, the decision of who and what to include in your surrogacy will be up to you. It’s a good idea to do as much research as possible before starting this journey to give yourself the best place to start from. Below, you’ll find a few important resources that we recommend — no matter where you are at in your surrogacy process.

1. Informational Websites

There is a wealth of information available online for prospective surrogates and intended parents. Whether you choose to read surrogacy agency websites, objective and informational sources like Surrogate.com, or forums and support groups filled with other surrogates and parents, the information you find on these sites can be invaluable. It can give you a better understanding of exactly what surrogacy entails before you begin this life-changing journey.

Keep in mind, not all of the information that you find online is true. That’s why it’s so important to have a wealth of resources to turn to when making your surrogacy decision — to ensure you are moving forward properly comprehending the steps ahead.

2. Surrogacy Professionals

Where informational websites may fail or be unclear, surrogacy professionals can help. Every intended parent and surrogate will need to work with a surrogacy attorney during their journey, and many choose to work with a surrogacy specialist through an agency, as well.

These professionals can offer the best education and information about the surrogacy process as it relates to your situation. They can answer your personal questions and suggest the best individual path for you and your family. You must work with a surrogacy professional during your surrogacy process; otherwise, you open yourself up to legal and practical risks and complications.

3. Medical Professionals

Another important resource for both surrogates and intended parents is a medical professional, including a fertility specialist and an obstetrician. These professionals will guide both parties through the complicated medical process of surrogacy, such as screening, embryo transfer, prenatal care and childbirth.

A surrogate pregnancy is very different from a naturally conceived pregnancy, and working with a medical professional experienced in this process is crucial. Because every body and medical situation is different, personalized attention from this medical resource keeps all parties in the process safe.

All intended parents should speak at length with a fertility specialist before deciding surrogacy is right for them. Likewise, all surrogates should be screened by a surrogacy medical professional to ensure they are medically capable of this unique journey before moving forward.

4. Support System of Friends and Family

Surrogacy demands a great deal from intended parents and surrogates. Many participants in this process find that a support system of trusted friends and family members is crucial to surviving this period. Friends and family can help watch older children, complete housework and even provide a shoulder to lean on during this practically and emotionally demanding time.

While your friends and family may not know a lot about surrogacy, they can be a valuable resource during times when you want a break from the demands of the process. Your spouse shouldn’t be the only one that you turn to; cultivate relationships with a few other trusted people to get the support that you need during this time.

5. Strong Surrogacy Partner

Although your spouse shouldn’t be the only one who supports you during this surrogacy process, they often play a huge role as they take this journey with you. A supportive, understanding spouse is a great resource during your surrogacy. Whether you are an intended parent or a prospective surrogate, your spouse will take this journey with you, and they should be involved from the beginning to the end of the process.

Before you even consider surrogacy, make sure your spouse is on the same page as you. Starting this journey as a united team will go a long way to ensuring as positive a surrogacy journey as possible. A surrogacy specialist or infertility counselor can help you reach an agreement and provide the building blocks for moving forward together.

Looking for more surrogacy information and more surrogacy resources? Please reach out to our surrogacy specialists at 1-800-875-BABY(2229)for answers to your questions and to start your surrogacy journey today.

How to Create a Lasting Friendship During Your Surrogacy

As part of today’s International Day of Friendship, we want to take the moment to appreciate some of the most important relationships out there — those between intended parents and surrogates.

The most successful surrogacies are those in which both surrogacy partners have a genuine, respecting relationship. Surrogacy involves a great deal of trust for intended parents and surrogates, which is why finding the perfect match from the beginning goes a long way in forming this positive, long-lasting relationship. It’s actually not that uncommon for intended parents and surrogates to maintain their friendships after the surrogacy journey is over, as well.

Take it from a few of our former surrogacy clients:

  • “You’re not doing it to have a relationship for the rest of your life (but) the more we talked, he was the one who said, ‘I want you guys to be in Julian’s life. I want Julian to know how he came about and what you guys sacrificed to give him his life.’ Nicholas told our children that Julian is their cousin from Miami… It’s amazing to me that we have such a great relationship.” Nichole, surrogate for intended father Nicholas
  • “I never thought that it would go from complete stranger to best friend and a relationship that will always be there, so that’s pretty neat.” Lindsey, intended mother
  • “I don’t know if anyone could top Lindsey and Shiloh. I hold them on such a high pedestal that I don’t know if I could ever get the same family again. I have such a wonderful relationship with them that I would want that again.” Megan, surrogate for intended mother Lindsay

If you’re new to the surrogacy journey, you may wonder how you can find the same kind of lasting friendship that many other intended parents and surrogates have. Choosing to work with American Surrogacy can be the first step.

Our surrogacy specialists will discuss in detail with you your preferences for the surrogacy process. We’ll use your surrogacy goals and needs to help you find the perfect match for your surrogacy — a huge step to creating a long-lasting, genuine relationship with your surrogacy partner. Our specialists will be there to mediate your first conversations with your surrogacy match, as well as provide suggestions and advice to help you maintain a strong friendship throughout your surrogacy journey.

But, what exactly are some tips to finding that perfect match and creating the surrogacy friendships you’ve heard all about?

1. Know Your Surrogacy Preferences.

The best way to ensure a positive surrogacy relationship is by working with someone who values and wants the same things that you do in your surrogacy journey. That way, you can be in tune throughout your surrogacy journey. However, to do so, you must first recognize your own surrogacy desires.

If you are considering surrogacy for the first time, it can be difficult to know exactly what you want — especially when you’re still learning about the intricacies of the surrogacy process. This is where a surrogacy professional like American Surrogacy can come in handy. Surrogacy specialists can discuss your surrogacy journey in depth to help create a list of preferences moving forward. That way, you can better find a surrogate or intended parent who shares the same goals and preferences.

2. Wait for the Perfect Match.

When you’ve been waiting to start your surrogacy journey, it’s tempting to take the first match you’re presented with, just so you can begin. However, finding the patience to make sure a potential match is perfect for you will be instrumental in creating a positive relationship later on. Sometimes, it may take months to find the perfect match — and that’s okay. When you find the perfect match, you’ll know. It will be worth it to have a genuine friendship based on shared surrogacy desires.

3. Follow the Golden Rule.

Like any other relationships, relationships created during the surrogacy process should be treated with respect and kindness. While the relationship between intended parents and surrogates is certainly a unique one, all of the same rules with everyday relationships apply. Because surrogacy can be a journey filled with emotional ups and downs, it’s important that you continue to respect each other and maintain any boundaries you may have set in your surrogacy contract.

If you ever have complications in establishing and maintaining a positive surrogacy relationship, know that the specialists at American Surrogacy are here for you. To learn more about finding your perfect surrogacy match, please contact our agency at 1-800-875-BABY(2229).

5 Things to Think About Before Considering Surrogacy

Choosing surrogacy is a life-changing decision — and not one to be made lightly. So, what should you know before pursuing this path?

Like with any major decision, it’s important that you do extensive research when considering surrogacy for yourself and your family. There are many complicated aspects involved in this journey, and a clear understanding is necessary before beginning. In fact, it’s necessary even while you are still considering this option.

Whether you are an intended parent or prospective surrogate, here are five things to consider before you start your surrogacy research process.

1. The Different Types of Surrogacy

Surrogacy is not a “one-size-fits-all” practice. Every surrogacy journey is different based on the needs, goals and preferences of each surrogacy party. Before you consider surrogacy, make sure you understand the different types available to you.

  • Gestational: In which a surrogate is not genetically related to the baby she carries. The most popular form of surrogacy today.
  • Traditional: In which the surrogate’s eggs are used to create the embryo, meaning she is genetically related to the baby she carries.
  • Agency-Assisted: In which both parties work with a surrogacy agency from beginning to end of their surrogacy agreement, including finding a match.
  • Independent: In which both parties find a match on their own and only work with a surrogacy attorney and a fertility clinic.
  • Altruistic: In which a surrogate does not receive base compensation for her services.
  • Compensated/Commercial: In which a surrogate receives a base compensation for her services on top of reimbursements for her surrogacy expenses.

Before you start seriously considering surrogacy, educate yourself about these paths and narrow down to which ones you think are best for you. That will make the next steps in your surrogacy research process easier.

2. Your Personal Motivations

Ask yourself this: Why are you considering surrogacy?

Every intended parent and surrogate chooses surrogacy for slightly different reasons. However, most intended parents choose this path because they want to be the parent of a genetic child and have decided surrogacy is best for them after exploring all of their options. Prospective surrogates choose surrogacy to help bring a child into the world (and not just because of the financial compensation offered to them).

If you have other overwhelming reasons for considering surrogacy, think about whether they are enough to sustain you through the long and complicated process ahead. We encourage you to speak to a surrogacy professional about your motivations for their advice on whether this is the right path for you.

3. The Impact of This Choice on Your Life

Surrogacy is not always easy. If you consider this path, you should also think about the challenges of the process, not just the eventual rewards and joys it will bring you.

Surrogacy can take a year or more to complete, and it involves many appointments with lawyers, doctors, and other professionals along the way. There will be times when your everyday life is disrupted (especially if you are considering becoming a surrogate), and there may be emotionally challenging times, as well. You should only consider this path if you are ready to accept these changes to your life. Speak with other intended parents or surrogates to learn more about the path ahead of you.

4. The Financial Implications

If you are an intended parent, surrogacy is typically not a simple decision to make, at least when it comes to your finances. Surrogacy costs tens of thousands of dollars, and you need to accept the realities of these costs before going any further into this process. While there is financial assistance like grants and loans available, you will still be required to commit a certain amount of your own money for this family-building path.

If you are thinking about being a surrogate, you probably have heard about surrogate compensation. This compensation can aid surrogates like you in important financial goals, like a down payment on a house or paying off student loans. However, it should not the main motivation for becoming a surrogate. Surrogacy comes with inherent risks and, while your contract will address those, you may sometimes be required to miss work and family obligations as a surrogate.

Many surrogacy professionals will not work with surrogates who only have a financial motivation for this journey.

5. Your Expectations

Finally, consider your own surrogacy goals and preferences before seriously researching this process. Are they realistic? Have you thought about all the aspects of surrogacy — negative and positive?

It’s extremely helpful to speak with former surrogates and intended parents to learn more about what this process is like. If you have an unrealistic expectation of surrogacy, you will have a negative surrogacy experience.

If you are looking for an easy way to have a child as a parent or make money as a surrogate, surrogacy will not be right for you. It’s an involved process that includes a great deal of screening and professional work before a match can even be made. But, if you are prepared to put in the hard work and overcome any challenges along the way, surrogacy can help you make your dreams come true.

Want to learn more? Contact our surrogacy specialists at 1-800-875-2229(BABY) to aid in your surrogacy research process.

The Logistics of Completing a Surrogacy Across State Lines

With so many surrogates and intended parents across the country looking for their perfect match, it’s more common today than ever for an interstate surrogacy to be arranged. So, how exactly is this process different from matching with a surrogacy partner in your own state?

When you work with a surrogacy professional like American Surrogacy, it’s really not that different. You’ll receive the same level of quality case management, support and counseling services no matter where your surrogate or intended parent is located. Our surrogacy specialists work hard to ensure that an interstate surrogacy match does not negatively affect your journey, but you will always have the chance to choose the desired location of a surrogacy match.

If you are matched with a surrogate or intended parent in another state, there are a few important things to know about the process ahead of you:

Laws in the Surrogate’s State are the Ones that Matter

Often, intended parents ask, “Is surrogacy legal in my state?” However, the real question they should be asking is, “Is surrogacy legal in my surrogate’s state?”

Because the surrogate’s state is where the majority of the legal surrogacy process will take place, it’s her state laws that will impact your surrogacy journey. Therefore, even if you live in a state that is not surrogacy-friendly, you can still become parents with a surrogate from another state. Indeed, this will likely be your best path of action.

If you are a surrogate in a state that is not surrogacy-friendly, it will be difficult and risky to complete a surrogacy where you live. Many times, surrogacy agencies and attorneys will not work with surrogates from these states.

Once you find a surrogacy match, your surrogacy attorney and your partner’s surrogacy attorney will discuss the applicable laws for your situation. These will be laid out in your surrogacy contract and determine what steps to take moving forward.

Communication May Require Some Extra Work

In most surrogacies, intended parents and surrogates are not located closely enough to be in constant face-to-face contact. Most of their communication takes place over texts and emails, with intended parents coming to the surrogate for important milestones like ultrasounds.

In this way, an interstate surrogacy is not much different. Most of the communication will take place in the same manner (although time zone differences may have to be considered). However, depending on distance, intended parents may not be able to attend as many ultrasounds or complete as many visits prior to their baby’s birth. This does not necessarily mean your relationship won’t be strong; it will just be conducted in a long-distance way and, therefore, may require additional effort.

The distance won’t just affect your surrogacy communication. It can also conceivably make it harder for intended parents to get to their surrogate in case something unexpected occurs.

Before you solidify an interstate surrogacy match, speak with your surrogacy professional about the logistics of your communication and create a contact schedule that both parties are comfortable with.

Consider the Delivery and Post-Birth Processes, Too

On the same note, remember that out-of-state intended parents may not be able to be present right on time for an unexpected, early delivery. However, intended parents do make plans to travel to the surrogate’s state slightly before her due date or induction date. This way, they can better ensure they are there for the birth of their child.

As part of your surrogacy plan, your surrogacy specialists will help you create a hospital delivery plan. This will lay out the expectations of the delivery, including what kind of procedures a surrogate will have, who will be present in the delivery room, what kind of lodging is available for intended parents and more. Even if you are an intended parent coming from out of state, you will still be equally prepared for the hospital stay.

The intended parents’ surrogacy attorney will work with them to ensure proper parental rights are established after birth. Depending on the surrogate’s state laws, a parentage order may be executed before or after birth, or an adoption completed post-birth, if needed.

One final thing to consider about interstate surrogacy journeys is the return to your home state if you are an intended parent. Returning home with a new baby will be much more complicated than your original trip for the surrogate’s delivery. If you will need to take a plane home, consider how you can do so in the best interest of your new baby. Most airlines will allow babies to fly as long as they are two days old, but talk with your pediatrician and evaluate your own comfort when creating this plan. Whether you end up flying or taking another mode of transportation home, make the preparations to safely move and care for your baby during this journey.

Remember, you will always be able to choose the location of your surrogacy partner, whether you are a surrogate or an intended parent. Our surrogacy specialists can explain in detail how this may affect your wait time, as well as how our agency can guide you through a surrogacy in a different state. Learn more by calling us at 1-800-875-2229(BABY) today.

5 Secrets to a Successful Surrogacy

It’s no secret — surrogacy can be an overwhelming and complicated but equally rewarding family-building process. So, are there any tips for making it as successful a process as possible?

Whether you’re an intended parent or prospective surrogate, there are a couple of rules to live by if you want to have a surrogacy that meets all of your dreams and goals.

1. Be Open.

More than anything else, surrogacy is an intimate partnership between not only intended parents and their surrogate but also the surrogacy and medical professionals that guide them through the process. Because surrogacy can be so complicated and cause so many different emotions, it’s important that intended parents and surrogates are open with each other and their professionals from the start.

For intended parents, this may mean opening up about past infertility struggles that are difficult to talk about. For surrogates, it means being willing to share intimate medical information about their body every step of the way. Many times, surrogacy is a new experience for both, so it’s important to be open to those new experiences in order to do what is best for your personal journey.

2. Be Honest.

Similarly, it’s important to always be honest about what you are feeling at different points in your surrogacy process. It’s normal to encounter difficult emotions along the way — like jealousy, discomfort and more — but the only healthy way of coping with them is by addressing them honestly, either with your surrogacy partner or your surrogacy professional.

Trying to hide what you are feeling — either because of your own discomfort in revealing your emotions or in attempting to save someone else from discomfort — will only cause more problems further along in your surrogacy process. In fact, your surrogacy professionals are often trained to detect dishonesty or other similar issues, and your surrogacy process could stall until you resolve those emotions.

3. Be Prepared.

There are many moving parts involved in a successful surrogacy, and one of the secrets to making yours as positive as possible is by knowing what to expect. All intended parents and surrogates should fully understand the logistics of the surrogacy process before starting, but you should also speak with your surrogacy professional so you are aware of potential complications that could arise. Even if you don’t believe these circumstances will arise, you should always be prepared, just in case.

The better prepared you are, the smoother your surrogacy will progress.

4. Be Flexible.

On the same note, in the case of unexpected developments, flexibility is key. Your surrogacy may not go as you expect; you may experience delays in screening, failed transfers or even a miscarriage. As discouraging as these situations are, they are completely normal aspects of a surrogacy — and you should be prepared for the possibility of them occurring.

Being flexible under non-ideal circumstances will not only help save your mental health but it will also help you grow a strong relationship with your surrogacy partner, who will also be going through the same situations.

5. Be Realistic.

When you finally begin your surrogacy journey, you will be incredibly excited for the progress to come! However, as mentioned, surrogacy can come with unexpected delays and complications, and not everything will go perfectly the first time.

An average surrogacy journey takes about 12–18 months. Of course, all surrogacy journeys are different, and you may hear about other people’s journeys on both extremes of the spectrum. However, don’t expect to be matched within days and have a confirmed pregnancy the next month. Surrogacy takes time, and it will all happen based on what’s best for your individual journey. You may not see it while you are in the process, but you will look back later and know that everything happened when it did for a reason.

If you’re looking for more tips on having a successful surrogacy, look no further than American Surrogacy. Our surrogacy specialists can provide the case management and support services you need during every step of this complicated journey to help you achieve your personal surrogacy goals. Learn more by contacting us today at 1-800-875-2229(BABY).

Why Aren’t Surrogacy Agencies Regulated?

Often, intended parents and surrogates ask, “Why aren’t surrogacy agencies regulated?” Knowing that other family-building organizations like private infant adoption agencies and foster care agencies undergo annual review and scrutiny from official government organizations, they may be wary of the fact that surrogacy agencies don’t have this same certification process.

So, how do you know surrogacy agencies are safe if they don’t have this same certification? And why aren’t surrogacy agencies subject to the same scrutiny as other family-building professionals?

The most important thing to know is that just because a surrogacy agency isn’t regulated doesn’t mean it’s a poor choice for your family-building process. Before passing judgement on the lack of regulation, it’s important to recognize exactly why the surrogacy professional field is this way.

It’s Not Because They Don’t Want to Be

You may think that surrogacy agencies take advantage of the lack of regulation: charging whatever they like, offering as many (or as few) services as they deem acceptable, and generally looking out for themselves rather than their clients. And while this may be true with a few organizations, this could not be farther from the mark for most of the surrogacy agencies that exist today.

The best surrogacy agencies today are made up of professionals who have already made their living in the family-building process as trained social workers, medical professionals, lawyers and more. Coming from these fields, they are used to regulation and set internal standards for themselves and their agency. In fact, many of these professionals would welcome a universal regulation and certification process to add credibility to their organization and stand out from the rest. Some professionals today are even advocating for a regulation process for surrogacy agencies.

It’s Because Surrogacy is New and Rapidly Advancing

Unlike other family-building processes like adoption, surrogacy is still a fairly new way of bringing children into a family. Because surrogacy is so heavily based in science, rapid developments in how infertility is treated and the embryo transfer process itself has made it difficult to set standards. If they were to be set, they would have to be constantly updated to reflect the changes in the field.

However, the best surrogacy agencies (like American Surrogacy) stay up-to-date on these changes and reflect them in their programs and the professionals they choose. While national regulation at this point would be incredibly difficult due to these continual changes (not to mention vastly different state laws), the self-regulation that surrogacy agencies perform is an effective way of incorporating modern updates.

How You Can Choose a Professional You Can Trust

Just because a surrogacy agency is not regulated doesn’t mean there is no way of determining whether their program is professional and up-to-date. One of the best ways to determine a surrogacy agency can provide the professional guidance you need is by learning what kind of licensed services they do provide. When considering a surrogacy agency, look for the following:

Of course, it’s always a good idea to speak with former and current clients of a surrogacy agency for their opinion on whether the services offered by the professional meet your personal needs and preferences.

Here at American Surrogacy, our surrogacy specialists are licensed social workers and we only work with professional, licensed surrogacy attorneys and medical professionals. Contact us today to learn more about how we keep our surrogacy program up-to-date, safe and regulated in the best interest of our surrogates and intended parents.

Happy Holidays from American Surrogacy!

Merry Christmas and happy holidays to all from the staff of American Surrogacy! We and our sister agency American Adoptions are honored to be a part of so many families’ lives in helping to make their dreams come true.

The holidays are a wonderful time to celebrate with family but, if you haven’t quite reached your family goals, you can always contact a surrogacy specialist at 1-800-875-2229(BABY) or an adoption specialist at 1-800-ADOPTION. We are here to help you make your parenthood dreams come true.

What Does Religion Say About the Morality of Surrogacy?

Hopeful parents thinking about surrogacy have many things to consider before embarking on this life-changing journey. For those with a strong faith, they may need to consider how their religion will factor into their surrogacy process, as well.

Religion and any kind of assisted reproductive technology has always been a complicated issue. Many faiths emphasize the importance of a husband and wife conceiving naturally on their own, and involving anyone else in this process can be viewed as unholy.

However, as infertility and IVF become more everyday topics of conversation, many religious people have begun to change their views on what is acceptable within their faith — recognizing that it’s having a family that’s more important than the process behind it.

Religious Views on Surrogacy

Each faith is different and, therefore, what your faith may say about assisted reproductive technology and surrogacy may differ from what’s written below — based on your personal beliefs and that of your local congregation and religious leaders.

In general, here is how some major faiths view surrogacy:

  • Catholicism: While surrogacy is present in the Book of Genesis with the story of Sarah and Abraham, the Catholic Church does not advocate for surrogacy. Instead, the Church teaches that children are a gift from God, only to be conceived and carried naturally by a married husband and wife. Any addition of a third party to this process is considered immoral.
  • Protestantism: Because there are many different factions of Protestantism, views of the surrogacy practice will vary. However, these sects of Christianity are usually more liberal, and surrogacy and other assisted reproductive technology may be more accepted among certain religious groups.
  • Judaism: Like with other faiths, more conservative Jewish factions do not approve of surrogacy. In vitro fertilization can be completed under rabbinical supervision, but there is a complicated discussion regarding the heritage of a child born via egg donor (as Jewish heritage is matrilineal). More liberal religious thinkers may accept surrogacy as a way to ease the suffering of infertile couples.
  • Islam: Muslim views of surrogacy can be wide-varying. Some scholars argue that the process is akin to adultery and that the child has no legal lineage, while others claim that surrogacy is an integral part of the belief that humans have a responsibility to preserve the human species however they can. Some more modern Muslims believe that IVF and surrogacy is allowable as long as semen and ovum are from a married couple, while Sunni Muslims believe no third-party assistance should be permissible.
  • Buddhism: Surrogacy is completely accepted in Buddhism, mainly because procreation is not seen as a moral duty. Therefore, couples are under no obligation to have children and, when they do, they can do so through whatever way they deem fit.
  • Hinduism: Like many faiths, Hinduism and its views on surrogacy vary. In general, infertility treatments can be allowable, like through artificial insemination if the sperm is the husband’s. It’s important to note that surrogacy in India is a thriving industry, and many of the surrogates there are of Hindu faith.

Reconciling Surrogacy with Your Religious Beliefs

Because many religions were established thousands of years before IVF or gestational surrogacy could even be imagined, it can be difficult to determine whether surrogacy is really ethical for your religious beliefs.

Remember that all properly completed surrogacy processes protect the rights of both intended parents and surrogates in an ethical way, and both parties enter into the agreement together. It can be difficult to reconcile this positive process with something that many believe to be against their god’s will, especially if having children is so important to a certain religious culture.

If you are concerned about how your religious faith may play into your surrogacy process, we encourage you to speak to a trusted religious leader and other intended parents or surrogates who have been through the same process. They may be able to help you sort out your feelings and understand exactly what you feel is right and wrong about pursuing surrogacy with your religious convictions.

A surrogacy specialist can also speak to you about the American Surrogacy process so you can determine how it may affect your religious beliefs. There are also several faith-based surrogacy agencies specifically designed to address this family-building process from a religious standpoint.

Determining whether surrogacy is right for you is always a process that takes time, and considering your faith is an important part of this. We encourage intended parents and prospective surrogates to take the time they need to make the best decision for them and, if they have any questions, to contact us at 1-800-875-2229(BABY) today.

10 Surrogacy Social Media Accounts to Follow Today

Whether you’re considering surrogacy as an intended parent or a prospective surrogate, it’s important to be up-to-date on all the latest surrogacy news and information you need to know. But, with so much information out there, how do you find the stuff that’s relevant to you?

Thankfully, there are many surrogacy social media accounts out there that curate all of the constantly emerging surrogacy information. When you choose to follow them, you’ll receive all this information straight in your social media feeds, rather than attempting to gather it all yourself.

Keep in mind that because there is a lot of information on the internet about surrogacy, not all of it is accurate or helpful. Therefore, surrogacy social media accounts are a great way to receive only the information that is credible, accurate and useful. You can find social media accounts that are informational and objective or personal accounts of someone’s experience with surrogacy. Whatever you’re looking for, it’s likely that you can find it.

This is just a small sampling of the social media accounts available to you, but some of the ones that American Surrogacy recommends the most, both for surrogacy and general pregnancy health information:

  1. American Surrogacy, Twitter: @US_Surrogacy
  2. All Things Surrogacy, Twitter: @AllThingsSurro, Instagram: @allthingssurrogacy
  3. RESOLVE: The National Infertility Assocation, Twitter: @resolveorg
  4. Fertility Smarts, Twitter:@fertilitysmarts, Instagram: @fertilitysmarts
  5. The Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses, Twitter: @AWHONN, Instagram: @awhonn
  6. Surrogate Mothers Online, LLC, Twitter: @surromomsonline
  7. Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, Twitter: @NICHD_NIH
  8. American Society for Reproductive Medicine, Twitter: @ReprodMed
  9. Academy of Adoption and Assisted Reproduction Attorneys, Twitter: @ReproLawAcademy
  10. Surrogacy By Design, Twitter: @SurrogacySusan

Remember, these are only a few of the social media accounts about surrogacy and infertility that you can follow. Keep an eye out for posts from other helpful organizations, and drop us a line when you find one you think we should add!