Deciding to start the surrogacy process is an exciting step. You’re closer to having a child than you ever have been, and it’s easy to look forward to the positive experiences awaiting you as you take this journey with a gestational carrier.
However, it’s also important to remember that surrogacy is not all rainbows and butterflies. While there are exciting moments in this journey to become a parent, there may be hard moments, too. Before you decide to start the gestational surrogacy process, you’ll need to prepare yourself for the good and the bad.
Fortunately, your specialist at American Surrogacy will be there to support you every step of the way. Wherever you are in your journey, she can answer your questions and address your concerns – making sure that you are comfortable and confident throughout.
Before you start your surrogacy journey, you’ll need to talk with our surrogacy specialists about your expectations. Here’s what we encourage all intended parents prepare themselves for before moving forward:
1. Infertility Grief and Loss
Most intended parents come to gestational surrogacy after months and years of infertility treatment. It can be a sensitive and raw subject, but infertility losses are something that all intended parents should cope with prior to starting the surrogacy journey. Only then can they fully commit themselves to the challenges and rewards of gestational surrogacy.
That said, there may be moments in your surrogacy journey where you are reminded of your previous infertility grief and losses. Infertility memories can pop up when you least expect it, even when you think you’ve fully accepted the situation you are in. Some of the most exciting moments of surrogacy — finding out your carrier is pregnant, being there for your child’s birth — can bring up these old emotions. So, every intended parent should be ready for these moments and prepared for how to handle them in a positive manner.
2. Loss of the Pregnancy Experience
One of the biggest losses for intended parents (especially intended mothers) is the ability to be directly involved in their child’s development in utero. When you choose gestational surrogacy, you are trusting someone else to carry your child for you. That can be a tough thing to reconcile, especially if you’ve had dreams of being pregnant.
Remember: While you may not be carrying your child yourself, you can still be actively involved in your surrogate’s pregnancy. You can be included in important doctor’s appointments, and your surrogate will keep you updated on her pregnancy every step of the way.
It’s important that every intended parent has grieved their loss of the pregnancy experience in order to show the excitement that their gestational surrogate will desire during their journey together.
3. Failed Transfers or Miscarriages
In an ideal surrogacy journey, the first embryo transfer takes and results in a healthy child. However, this isn’t always the case.
Failed transfers and miscarriages are more common than intended parents think, and it can be incredibly disheartening to experience one on your way to becoming a parent. Remember this: There are no dramatic differences in miscarriage rates when it comes to in vitro fertilization, and a miscarriage is no one’s fault. Your surrogacy specialist will be there to support you and your surrogate during this unfortunate situation. When you’re ready to try again, they will help you through the next steps – with no additional fees from our agency.
4. Loss of the Childbirth Experience
Although you won’t be the one physically giving birth to your child, you will still be involved in the childbirth process. Your experience will just be different when you’re an intended parent.
You and your surrogate will create a delivery plan together, which will detail things like:
- Where she will give birth
- Who will hold the baby first
- Whether you will have a room at the hospital
- Whether you will breastfeed your child (if you are an intended mother)
- What kind of medical procedures you have planned for your child
- And more
You will always be treated as the parent during your child’s birth, but it can be tough to create a delivery plan if you have unresolved grief and loss surrounding this experience. Intended parents should cope with these emotions as much as possible prior to starting surrogacy. That way, their child’s birth will be an exciting and joyful process — not an emotionally complicated one.
5. Loss of a “Traditional” Birth Story
Before coming to gestational surrogacy, many intended parents dream about the story they’ll have of bringing their little one into the world. But, when plans change and surrogacy is their only option, they may be initially ashamed or way or sharing their child’s surrogacy story with the world.
Remember this: Surrogacy or any lack of genetic connection does not make you any less of a parent to your child. The prospect of telling your child, friends and family about their surrogacy story may sadden you at first — but it’s actually something to celebrate! Surrogacy is a beautiful and unique way to bring a child into the world, and it’s a story that you and your family should be proud to tell to the world.
If you are not sure of how to explain surrogacy to your child or to your loved ones, your surrogacy specialist will always be here to help.
Coping with the losses of the surrogacy journey can be tough, but any intended parent will tell you that it will be all worth it in the end. If you are having difficulty accepting the losses associated with surrogacy, either before you begin or during your journey, you can call your surrogacy specialist at 1-800-875-BABY(2229) anytime. American Surrogacy will always be here for you.