As you get closer to giving birth to your intended parents’ baby, you’ll reach an exciting point in your pregnancy. After all, the baby you have all worked so hard to bring into the world is almost here!
At this point in your pregnancy, your intended parents or their friends may choose to throw a baby shower. Baby showers are wonderful ways to celebrate the upcoming birth of the baby and help intended parents prepare with gifts and support.
However, as a surrogate, you may not be sure what the protocol is for a surrogacy baby shower. Should you expect to be invited? Do you need to bring a gift? What do you do while you’re there?
Each surrogacy situation is different, and the relationship that you have with your intended parent will likely play a role in your involvement (or lack thereof) in the baby shower. No matter what involvement you do have, it’s important to understand that this can be a delicate situation; whether you’re invited or not, know that you are an important part of this surrogacy process and the intended parents greatly appreciate everything you’re doing for them.
If You Are Invited
For some intended parents, throwing a baby shower and inviting their surrogate just seems the natural thing to do. You’re an integral part of their parenthood journey, so it makes sense that you would be there for the baby shower. You do not have to attend a baby shower unless you’re comfortable doing so; some surrogates would rather let the intended parents have this time for themselves and their friends rather than attending and not being sure of what to do at the event.
If you do decide to attend the intended parents’ baby shower, you may still have reservations about what role you’ll play. Here’s the most important thing: This shower is about the baby and the family you are helping to create. Make sure that the intended parents get the attention they deserve, and it will be a positive experience for all of you.
It’s understandable if the parents’ family and friends are curious about you and want to talk to you during this event. If they tend to monopolize the conversation with you, gently steer the conversation back to the intended parents, mentioning reasons why you’re happy to carry for them, why they’ll be such great parents, etc. The intended parents will greatly appreciate you for doing this. If at any time you feel uncomfortable or feel like you’re stealing the spotlight, don’t be afraid to step out so guests can give the intended parents more focus.
In most cases, the friends and family of the baby shower will treat you as any other guest, instead showering their affection on the intended parents. So, if the intended parents express a desire for you to be at the shower, you should strongly consider attending, as it will mean a great deal to them. However, if you feel uncomfortable doing so, the intended parents will also understand.
After deciding to attend the baby shower, you may wonder whether you should bring a gift. Even though you are giving the intended parents the most priceless gift by carrying their baby, you may have concerns about showing up to a shower without actually “showering” the intended parents.
You are in no way obligated to bring a gift for the intended parents, and they will completely understand that. However, if you do want to bring a present to the baby shower, it might be a good idea to bring something personal and special to your relationship. For example, you may wish to make a handmade gift for the baby (like a painting or knitted cap) or find a special memento from your home state that can be placed in the baby’s room as a representation of their surrogacy story. If you have questions about what kind of gifts are appropriate or need help thinking of some ideas, your surrogacy specialist will always be available to you.
A baby shower should always be a happy event, not one that brings you worry or concern. Understanding your role as a surrogate at this important event will help make it go much smoother for you and the intended parents.
If You’re Not Invited
Sometimes, intended parents may not wish to include their surrogates in their baby shower; instead, they may want it to be a small event of family and close friends. If this is the case for you as a surrogate, it’s important to understand that this decision is not a slight against you — and does not way diminish your importance in the surrogacy process.
Just as you may have reservations about attending the baby shower, the intended parents may have concerns about making you feel obligated to attend an event you don’t want to. To avoid that awkwardness, they may choose to simply avoid the dilemma at all. This is never a malicious move and, as a surrogate, you should understand that the decision likely has little to do with you. Whatever your intended parents choose, you should support them and their decision.
Remember, if you have concerns or questions about baby showers as a surrogate or any other special event usually reserved for the woman carrying a baby, your surrogacy specialist at American Surrogacy can offer you support and guidance. Please feel free to give us a call at 1-800-875-2229(BABY) any time.