Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month [How to Cope]

Surrogacy is an amazing journey filled with twists and turns, some planned, some unexpected. There may be times where you encounter devastating obstacles. Whether it’s the embryo transferring not taking, a miscarriage or infant loss, experiencing heartbreaks during your surrogacy process is an unfortunate reality for many families. 

That’s why October has been chosen as the month to commemorate pregnancy, infant loss and miscarriage awareness month. Many families don’t know where to turn and feel they must grieve alone, struggling to cope with the loss of their infant or pregnancy. During this month, we encourage families, whether they’ve experienced infant or pregnancy loss or not, to recognize those who have. You should never have to bear these difficult emotions in silence. This month stands to help these families cope with grief in a healthy way. 

While the entirety of October is an awareness month, Oct. 15 is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. “Remembering Our Babies,” a group dedicated to spreading awareness of this issue and encourages everyone to light a candle at 7 p.m. on Oct. 15 to represent the pregnancies and infants that were lost too early. 

The organization also offers guidance for coping with grief of a lost pregnancy or infant over the course of the year. Friends and families can view suggestions on how to support and counsel loved ones going through this grief process. 

In addition to the worldwide candle lighting, you can also see if an organization near you is hosting an awareness walk or activity within the month of October. You can also submit information about an event you’re hosting for advertising on their website. 

How to Cope with Pregnancy or Infancy Loss [Reach Out for Support] 

Many families might not know where to turn for help processing their grief. You might find more solace in one outlet than another. Fortunately, there are many resources available to those going through this difficult experience. 

Step 1. Find someone you can talk to 

The pain of losing an infant or pregnancy is immeasurable. Keeping all of these emotions to yourself can compound the pain and grief you are already experiencing. Your silence can potentially make it difficult if not impossible to grief properly and move forward. Verbally acknowledging your feelings can help you process them and work through them in a progressive way.   

You can find support in a spouse, parent, sibling friend or surrogacy specialist. Being able to talk about your grief can be a great form of emotional release. During National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month also allows you to connect with other families who have experienced this loss.  

Step 2. Find a support group 

There is an abundance of support groups and forums made up of people who are experiencing a lot of the emotions that you may be. Through this groups you can find a safe space to talk about your experience, receive emotional support, connect with others and support them and get tips on accessing helpful resources during this time. 

Whether these groups are in-person or via an online forum, having a community of individuals who can relate to your experience can be incredibly helpful in processing your grief and reaffirms that you are not alone. 

Step 3. Commemorate Your Loss in a Way that’s Meaningful to You 

There are many ways you can remember what you have lost on October 15. You can light a candle in remembrance of not only yours, but all the little ones that have been lost. Some communities organize walks or charity events to remember the ones lost.  

You might donate to a charity that helps other families who are going through the same pain you are. Some families even plant a tree or create some form of a memorial in remembrance of their lost infant. There is no right or wrong way to commemorate your loss. You may decide to do so in a way that’s personal and unique to your family. As long as you find a way to do so in a way that’s means something to you and brings you a sense of closure. 

Many surrogacy specialists can provide counseling and support to intended parents who are coping with their grief during this difficult month. They can also refer you to trusted professional counselors and/or other pregnancy and infant loss support groups. 

The surrogacy groups listed below can help you cope with your grief and connect with others who are experiencing something similar: 

You can also find a full list of infertility and infant loss groups in the United States here

The grief of losing a pregnancy or infant should never be something you have to deal with in silence. You are not alone. Your support system, surrogacy specialist and community of those who share in your grief will be there for you to lean on. To get the emotional support you need, reach out to a surrogacy specialist today. 

Can I Change my Mind About a Match? [What to Look for]

As a surrogate or intended parent, you will get a say in the intended parents that you will be carrying for or the surrogate you want to carry your baby.  It’s important that you match with a person or couple who shares your values and surrogacy goals. But what if you choose the intended parents or surrogate and further down the line change your mind? Can you choose a different person or couple? 

Yes! You should never be made to feel like you have to surrogate for intended parents that you don’t feel comfortable carrying for or choose a surrogate who you don’t want to carry your child. You will always have the right to choose the person or couple you feel best align with your surrogacy goals. Surrogacy is a complex and collaborative process. Having that special connection with the intended parents or surrogate will make for a positive surrogacy experience and foster a lasting bond. 

The Choice is Always Yours 

If you want to pursue surrogacy you will be able to create a surrogacy plan. This will include your preferred compensation, roles and responsibilities, any contact arrangements once the baby is born and more. You will never be forced into doing anything you want to do. Surrogacy is a collaborative effort, so your input will always be valued, even if that means changing intended parents or surrogates. 

While you can change intended parents or surrogates, it’s important that you carefully consider what you’re looking for in the couple or person you will be embarking on this journey with, not only for your sake but for theirs as well. You can take all the time you need to find the match that you feel aligns with your surrogacy goals. Surrogacy is a big decision, so it’s important that you feel completely comfortable with the person or couple you have chosen. 

How do you know when you’ve found the right match? Many surrogates say they could feel it in their gut. 

“It was just a gut feeling. The moment she messaged me there was just something there,” said Megan about her first conversation with her intended parents. “It’s just kind of like, when you know, you know, and… I just knew that they were going to be my family.” 

Your surrogacy specialist will work closely with you to create a set of preferences for the intended parents or surrogate you are looking for. 

Whatever you’re looking for in intended parents or your surrogate, your surrogacy specialist will find a person or couple who meet those preferences and present you with their profiles. Once you find a match  that resonates with you, your surrogacy specialist will be able to set up a meeting so you can get to know them and ask any questions you might have.  

With the help of your surrogacy specialist you’ll never have to ask, “Can I change intended parents?” “What if I’ve changed my mind about the surrogate I’ve chosen?”  You always get to choose the intended parents or surrogate who is right for you, and you will never have to make a choice until you are 100% confident in this decision. 

How to Change Intended Parents [Finding the Right Connection] 

When embarking on a journey as important as surrogacy, we understand that your surrogacy goals may change as you progress through the surrogacy process. It will always be within your rights to change intended parents if you feel this is what’s best for you. 

But, how do you change matches when making this decision? There are a few steps involved: 

Step 1: Tell your Surrogacy Specialist 

Your surrogacy specialist is there to support you in whatever you need. They understand the complex emotions that come with surrogacy and will never judge you for changing your mind about the intended parents you want to carry for or surrogate you want to carry for you.  They want your surrogacy process to be a successful and positive one— and that can’t happen if you aren’t working with the right family. 

Always be up front with your surrogacy specialist. They will be there to help you work through your feelings and potentially address any fears you might have. Whether this decision stems from miscommunication or a misunderstanding, they’ll help you pinpoint exactly what you are looking for in intended parents or surrogate. 

After you tell your specialist about your decision and you’ve talked through everything, they will break the news to your previously selected person or couple, and then help you learn more about how to change intended parents or surrogate and find the right match for you. 

Step 2: Think About what you Want 

If you decide to change intended parents or surrogate, it’s important that you identify the reasons why. Only then can you find the right couple or person to work with. 

Your specialist will talk with you in detail about your preferences and surrogacy goals when they talk about how to change intended parents, including what you didn’t like about the previous match. Together, you will create an updated list of preferences for the ideal intended parents you would like to carry for, and they will start collecting more surrogacy profiles for you to view. 

No matter how long it takes, you will find what you’re looking for, just like Nichole did. 

“We just decided we just wanted to work with each other; we have that connection that people say, ‘When you know, you know,’ and it’s true,” Nichole said. “You just know when it’s the right people to work with.” 

Step 3: Choose a New Surrogate or Intended Parents 

The rest of this process will be the same as choosing your initial match. You will get the chance to ask questions about the person or couple and even speak with them over phone to confirm they are the right choice for you. Think about the concerns you had about the last match, and make sure those are addressed before committing to this partnership. 

What to Consider When Changing Matches 

It’s normal to have reservations about intended parents or your surrogacy plan in general. Surrogacy is a big endeavor, and it’s nothing that you want to rush into before you are 100 percent ready. And that’s why many surrogates, like you, want to know, “Can I change intended parents if I need to?” 

The answer is yes. However, if you’re a surrogate, it’s important to recognize that intended parents have been through a lot, so it’s important to be 100% confident in your decision so that you aren’t jerking them around. Many prospective surrogate mothers and intended parents have an idea of what they want their “perfect match” to look like on paper, and it can be difficult to find intended parents or a surrogate that you feel that special connection with.  

No one is perfect, but that doesn’t mean you won’t find a match that’s perfect for you. To get more information on what to do if you change your mind about a match, reach out to a surrogacy specialist today. 

Surrogacy is About More Than Getting a Baby [8 Life Lessons of Surrogacy]

When you choose surrogacy as intended parents, you’re not just getting a baby — you’re going to learn some important life lessons along the way.

First, here are a few things to remember before you choose to start or grow your family through surrogacy:

  1. Gestational carriers will be sacrificing a lot to carry your baby for you — she deserves your respect.
  2. Putting effort into building a relationship with your surrogate (and her family) can turn your surrogacy experience into a lifelong bond.
  3. Your surrogate is eagerly anticipating the day that you get to meet your baby!

If this sounds like a journey that you’re ready to start today, call American Surrogacy at 1-800-875-BABY (2229). If you meet the requirements to become a surrogate and you’re ready to begin your journey, contact us online at any time.

Next, let’s take a look at some of the life lessons that go hand-in-hand with your surrogacy experience.

1. Respect for Surrogates and Intended Parents

When a woman chooses to carry a child for you, she is doing more than becoming pregnant. Her family, her body and her time are putting in the effort to help you start or grow your family. On the other hand, you having the courage to ask for help when you’re struggling to conceive a child is brave. Trusting a woman to carry the precious gift of a child for you while you shower her with love and appreciation is one of the ways that can bring others faith in humanity. Both gestational carriers and intended parents deserve respect for their loving efforts.

“We were all able to grow in this experience, and it taught us a greater appreciation for what we have and who we are. Surrogacy helped me appreciate the profound luck that many of us have with conceiving and birthing our children and helped me bring about a greater respect for those that cannot. — Kelli, a surrogate

2. Patience [It’s a Virtue of Surrogacy]

Once you decide to choose surrogacy, as a surrogate or as intended parents, you’re ready to get pregnant and have a baby. But, this doesn’t happen in nine months — it could take a year or two. You must be armed with patience and the knowledge that it will happen, even if it doesn’t happen on the first try.

“When you want a baby, you want it right now — you wanted it yesterday — so it’s very, very hard to be patient, but in the end, it’s worth it,” Lindsey said. “You want it to be a happy ending for everyone and, if you’re patient, it will come.” — Lindsey and Shiloh, intended parents

3. Compassion and Understanding

You know the adage of walking a mile in someone else’s shoes? This certainly applies to surrogacy. You may not be going through the pregnancy yourself, but your surrogate is. Asking her how she’s feeling and really taking the time to listen can make a world of difference in your personal relationship with your surrogate. Even joining her at prenatal appointments, if possible, can bring you much needed compassion and understanding.

“Once, in my 2nd trimester, I mentioned to the [intended] dads that sleeping was becoming uncomfortable,” Chelsie, a surrogate, said. “Days later, I came home from work and had a delivery on my front porch — they had bought me a pregnancy body pillow! This is just one of the many sweet things they did for me and my family.”

4. The Humility of Surrogates and Intended Parents

It can be hard to ask for help, especially with something as personal as fertility. When you reach out to American Surrogacy and ask for help finding a prospective surrogate to carry your child for you, it can be a humbling experience. Watching a woman that you may not (yet) know very well go through the rigorous medical process of preparing for embryo transfer, and then carrying your child for nine months, can quickly help you realize that she is a selfless and brave woman — she wants you to have a precious gift that you may be unable to create for yourself.

Cassie, a surrogate, explained the simplicity of the humbling experience of surrogacy to her children in this way:

“[The intended parents] need help having a baby — mommy can help them have a baby.”

5. Surrogacy is About More Than Getting a Baby

You want to start or grow your family through surrogacy, but you will get more than the precious gift of a baby. Through surrogacy, you will meet your incredible surrogate and her family — the spouse and children who are supporting her in the process of carrying your child. You will get the opportunity to get to know wonderful people for nine plus months or even for a lifetime.

“We got our dream baby, but more than that we met amazing people along the way and had renewed faith in humanity and the kindness and love that can get you through tough chapters in life.” — Katie and Bryn, intended parents.

6. An Appreciation for Health

Being unable to carry a child often has to do with health conditions. For example, heart conditions, diminished ovarian reserve, low sperm count and other conditions that make pregnancy dangerous or extremely difficult. Prospective surrogates must have a clean bill of health and proof that their previous pregnancies were low risk and healthy throughout. Surrogacy can be a reminder that some people develop health concerns throughout their lives that prevent them from doing the things that they want to do, like having a baby, and that’s OK.  

 “There are so many great people out there that want a child but can’t do it without help. You were blessed with a body that cannot only give you a family but could help build another!” — Alexis, a surrogate

7. A Surrogacy Support Team Makes All the Difference

When a woman plans to become pregnant with her own child, she has the support of her family and friends before, during and after childbirth. But when a woman becomes pregnant as a gestational carrier, she needs the extra support of American Surrogacy and you, the intended parents. Surrogacy is a unique journey that involves extra supportive people because so much planning, time, effort and love are going into the arrival of your precious child.

“I began the medications, and between the parents, [surrogacy agency], and family, I had people checking on me often to ensure everything felt right. We had the first transfer…and I was confirmed pregnant. It was an amazing feeling knowing we were on our way.” — Kelli, a surrogate

8. It Takes a Village [to Have a Child]

When you choose to have a baby through surrogacy, there are many people involved. It may seem like it’ll be just you (the intended parents) and your surrogate, but that’s not the case!

First, once you reach out to American Surrogacy you will get assistance from your screening coordinator and case manager. They will be involved in your journey from beginning to end, cheering you on and answering all of your questions.

Next, you begin the matching process which will result in you meeting your prospective surrogate. She will already have children of her own who you may get the opportunity to meet. Often, your surrogate will be married as well, which means you’ll probably meet her spouse, too.

Finally, you’ll meet with an attorney for contract negotiations and then there will be many other professionals behind the scenes. Fertility doctors, nurses, lab and ultrasound technicians are just a few of the many people involved in helping you have a baby. (Don’t worry: American Surrogacy can help you find these professionals and resources!)

Last, but not least, are the extended family and friends who are looking forward to meeting your baby. These are people who have been by your side as you made the decision to choose surrogacy. All of these people help make it possible for you to meet your baby for the first time and will be there for you as you embark on your journey to parenthood.

If you’re ready to begin your surrogacy journey today, call American Surrogacy at 1-800-875-BABY (2229). Contact us online at any time if you meet the requirements to become a surrogate and you want to learn how you can get started.

80 Surrogacy Quotes that Will Make You Laugh and Cry

What Surrogates and Intended Parents Have to Say about Surrogacy

Surrogacy can be an amazing experience for surrogates, their families and intended parents. But, don’t take our word for it — see what surrogates and intended parents have to say about their surrogacy experiences.

To begin your journey as intended parents or as a gestational carrier, call American Surrogacy today at 1-800-875-BABY (2229). If you meet the requirements to become a surrogate and you’re ready to begin, contact us online at any time.

Why Surrogates Choose Surrogacy

1. “Choosing to be a surrogate and to have a surrogate, is a calling and not without heartfelt considerations.” — Amber, a surrogate

2. “The top reasons I chose to become a surrogate mother was to be pregnant again, to enjoy pregnancy. To help a family, a couple that wasn’t able to have another child. To just give back in some way that not many people think about. But, that’s something easy that you can do and it’s selfless, and it’s something actually fun.” — Alicia, a surrogate

3. “The top reasons I wanted to become a surrogate were to help a family. I enjoy being pregnant, so that wasn’t a problem. It was also going to financially benefit us, so it was good timing, a good fit for us at that point.” — Codi, a surrogate

4. “I initially chose to become involved in surrogacy because I watched some very dear friends struggle with infertility. I knew they would be amazing parents and it broke my heart that they may not have the opportunity to have a family of their own… As a bonus, I also happen to LOVE being pregnant!  I have four children, including a set of twins. And yes, even pregnant with twins, I enjoyed it! — Delicia, a surrogate

5. “Becoming a mom completely changed my life in the most unimaginable way. My son is 6 and I cannot imagine my world without him. After watching several friends face infertility, I realized I could help others who were unable to have their own children. After almost 6 months of research and thinking about the impact surrogacy would have on me and my son, I…made one of the most rewarding decisions of my life.” — Chelsie, a surrogate

6. “Surrogacy was something I had wanted to do for a long time, after having watched a friend struggle with their own fertility and knowing how great of a mother she would be.” — Amanda, a surrogate

7. “My first interest in surrogacy came long before I had children of my own, during the time in which my sister was currently carrying twins for a family who could not conceive themselves…” Kelli said. “After I birthed my second child, I felt that my family was complete and began my research into surrogacy to ensure it was still on the table. It was truly the love I hold for my children that confirmed surrogacy was for me. As many surrogates will say, I could not imagine my life without my children, and wanted to provide every opportunity for a family to be able to say the same thing.” —  Kelli, a surrogate

8. “I became a surrogate from sheer fate. A dear friend of mine had asked if I would be her surrogate. I thought, ‘Surrogate?! That’s a thing?’…Three months later [my friend] was pregnant. However, I was left with the thought of having a baby for someone else. My husband and I were done having more babies, I enjoyed pregnancy and thought, if I could be pregnant and help create a family that I would look into it.” — Alex, a surrogate

9. “I first considered becoming a surrogate while visiting Disney World with my family,” Alexis said. “When I was there, I was overcome with pure joy for the memories we were creating with our three boys. It was like the joy you get at Christmas. It made my heart ache for those who truly want to have this experience but can’t due to health reasons.” — Alexis, a surrogate

10. “Once you put yourself in somebody’s else’s shoes, there’s really no turning back, once you see the struggle and the pain, and you wish you could just help everybody,” Megan said. “I said to [my husband], ‘If we couldn’t have children, what would you want? What would you want somebody else to do for us?’” — Megan, a surrogate

The Surrogacy Motto: “Hurry Up and Wait.”

11. “When you want a baby, you want it right now — you wanted it yesterday — so it’s very, very hard to be patient, but in the end, it’s worth it,” Lindsey said. “You want it to be a happy ending for everyone and, if you’re patient, it will come.” — Lindsey and Shiloh, intended parents

12. “Hurry up and wait. You’re like, ‘Yeah, let’s go get pregnant right now!’ and then you’re like pre-screening, medical screening, psych, contracts…literally it took me two years and all of that time, I was waiting for this moment [when the IPs meet their baby].” — Cassie, a surrogate

13. “I was so excited and my husband was completely supportive and on board but I had no idea what to expect. The next few months consisted of meetings, medical record reviews, appointments with fertility clinics and of course, our match meeting…We knew this journey would be life-changing, and it has greatly bonded my family while adding a new extended family. As we approach our third trimester with our IPs’ first little boy, we are filled with so much excitement and love.” — Amanda, a surrogate

14. “I began the medications, and between the parents, [surrogacy agency], and family, I had people checking on me often to ensure everything felt right. We had the first transfer…and I was confirmed pregnant. It was an amazing feeling knowing we were on our way.” — Kelli, a surrogate

The Moment that Every Surrogate is Waiting for

15. “The surrogacy surpassed all of my expectations. I wanted to help a family and I loved being pregnant, but nothing prepared me for the overwhelming feelings when I saw the dads holding their twins for the first time after delivery! My heart could have burst! It wasn’t just happiness I saw on their faces, but a sense of wholeness. They had the missing pieces from their lives. I immediately told myself: ‘If I am approved to do this again, I will.’ Knowing the difference I’d made and the lives changed through the birth of those sweet twins was so fulfilling.” — Delicia, a surrogate

16. “The first [embryo transfer] was a success! I couldn’t wait to share the news with my intended family. My biggest hope was that I could keep this bun baking to full term so this family could be blessed with a happy, healthy baby… a less stressful welcome to the world than their previous pregnancies.” — Chelsea, a surrogate

17. “WOW, I helped them become dads! They were so full of love, joy, awe, excitement and nervousness at being new parents, but never stopped checking in on me to make sure I was doing well.” — Chelsie, a surrogate

18. “Being able to help give something to someone they may have not had the chance to otherwise is a wonderful feeling. I am most looking forward to seeing our IPs hold and raise this child they have longed for.” — Amanda, a surrogate

19. “From the success of the second transfer to the birth, the little one grew perfectly and was wonderfully (and thankfully) easy to carry every step of the way. I gave birth to a little girl just 4 days before my birthday…the parents were unable to attend, a moment I’d wanted so badly to witness. We sent them many pictures and offered to care for the baby until they arrived…It was close to midnight for the IPs, so they wished us a good day and signed off by saying excitedly, ‘Take care of our little girl!’ My heart swelled for them.” — Kelli, a surrogate

20. “I was so excited to see my intended parents hold their daughter for the first time. As I had been watching them prepare for parenthood and decorate her nursery, I couldn’t wait to see them feed her, change her, love her. As a mother and parent I know that feeling and for them, the moment she was born, I knew they felt the same exact way. — Alex, a surrogate

21. “It was such a fulfilling experience to see my IPs head home as a family.” — Maggie, a surrogate

22. “It was the moment that I had been waiting for, it was just like all of this work and that [moment] was the pay-off…I loved my first journey so much that I decided to do it again.” — Cassie, a surrogate

The Gestational Carrier/Intended Parent Relationship

23. “I think what made it was the connection — the very first connection,” Nichole says. “I think if you have the right match, you will have an extended family for the rest of your life… I chose to go with American [Surrogacy] because Angie was also worried about finding me the perfect match, and that’s what I wanted.” — Nichole, a surrogate

24. “Now I am on my second and final journey as surrogate,” Alexis, a surrogate, said. “I felt so much happiness providing a baby to a wonderful family that I decided to do it again. The new family I’m working with feels like I have been best friends with them for 20 years. They are so kind and grateful for the chance to have a baby. It is going to be a great experience that will end in a friendship for a lifetime.”

25. “We were very lucky that we got pregnant with our little baby girl, Freia. Our surrogate was so loving towards our baby, she also told her children about her, and they all called her by her name and spoke with her during the pregnancy, which we are so grateful for, she could never have been in better hands.” — Anne-Marie and Igor, intended parents

26. “[The surrogacy] team found us the most amazing woman to be our surrogate and carry our baby girl. She is just an excellent match for us! We have created a very unique relationship with her and her family! …Now our first baby girl is in our arms and our dreams have come true! We are looking forward to our next journey…in the very near future!” — Jasmine and Victor, intended parents

27. “We started the matching process…I got to meet my intended parents, we did contracts and matched. Once all of that was taken care of it became very much about building a relationship with my intended parents so that they felt comfortable trusting someone with their child, and then also for me so that I didn’t feel just like a body. That relationship was really important for me.” — Codi, a surrogate

28. “My life has changed so much since having been a surrogate…I have had one very successful surrogacy journey that resulted in me delivering a beautiful baby girl to the most amazing couple, of whom I remain good friends with!” — Anonymous surrogate

29. “Even though they lived around the world, they were involved, supportive and very open and communication was easy. They built a solid relationship with me, my parents, and my son. Once, in my 2nd trimester, I mentioned to the dads that sleeping was becoming uncomfortable. Days later, I came home from work and had a delivery on my front porch — they had bought me a pregnancy body pillow! This is just one of the many sweet things they did for me and my family.” — Chelsie, a surrogate

30. “But, I believe I was most grateful for the opportunity to select the family as much as the family is able to select me. It is important in this journey to feel comfortable and happy…when choosing my path.” — Kelli, a surrogate

31. “As a first-time surrogate, I knew that helping someone have a family was something I wanted to do, however, I had no idea how life-changing this would be. I was matched with a wonderful couple — it could not have been any better of a match. For this couple, I carried twins, a boy and a girl…When I look back on my experience, I realize that I have given a couple a beautiful family, gained a good friend [the intended mother], and developed a new level of closeness with my husband. I am changed forever in a beautiful way!” — Nicole, a surrogate

32. “You get [to give] your baby kisses and smooches, and I get to love on [the intended parents], too,” Megan says. “I didn’t just have babies for somebody else; I gained an entire family through the whole process….It was the most rewarding thing in the entire world. I would do it all over again.” — Megan, a surrogate

33. “Nicholas told our children that Julian is their cousin from Miami… It’s amazing to me that we have such a great relationship.” — Nichole, a surrogate

34. “For some surrogates, it’s a goodbye: ‘Thanks for everything you did; I’m out.’ But it just wasn’t like that,” Nichole said. “It was, ‘We love you guys, we’ll see you later, thanks so much’ — that kind of relationship.” — Nichole, a surrogate

How Surrogates Explain Surrogacy to Their Kids

35. “I told my children that it’s just like when we buy supplies or Christmas gifts for needy children – we are helping a family have a baby they can’t have on their own,” Alexis, a surrogate, said. “I told my boys, ‘If I could never make these amazing memories with you, I would be heartbroken.’ We are allowing someone else to create happy memories and complete a hole in their hearts.’ I have always believed in teaching my kids compassion for others and we are here on this earth to help one another, not to be self-consumed. What better way of showing this but by example of helping a family have a child!”

36. “My kids and my [intended parents] are very close. They Skype with us and send presents on holidays and birthdays and my kids/surrokids refer to themselves as ‘siblings of the heart.’ The experience has been an amazing way for my kids to learn compassion for others and the importance of using what you have available to help others.” — Delicia, a surrogate

37. “Since the beginning, my husband and I have been very open with our two boys (ages 5 and 3) about our plans for surrogacy and even brought them to our match meeting, and to meet with our IPs in person, as we felt if we wanted a lifetime connection, our children were just as big of a part of that.” — Amanda, a surrogate

38. “[The intended parents] were involved with my kids, and my daughter knew they were the parents of the baby I was pregnant with and that this baby had no ties to mommy. My son just thought I ate all of his toys.” — Alex, a surrogate

39. “Kids are so nonjudgmental. They don’t have that in their brains yet, so they’re like, ‘cool mom’ and they get it…With our IPs I told my smallest that [the intended mother’s] tummy is broken, mommy’s is not, and we’re just going to help them have a family like I have a family.” — Rose, a surrogate

40. “Nobody’s been able to tell [your kids] that [surrogacy is] weird or that there’s anything different about it. They’re just like, ‘OK they need help having a baby — mommy can help them have a baby,’ and that’s perfectly enough for them.” — Cassie, a surrogate

41. “I was just open and honest with them throughout the whole process. They were really young when I started, but I talked to them and laid it out for them, even in their young age, I explained to them what was going to happen. I wanted to make sure that they understand. I wanted to make sure that they were comfortable with the process before I even moved forward. And I think if you do it like that they just kind of take it and that’s what it is and they just accept it…They’re not going to think it’s weird unless you tell them it’s weird.” — Ami, a surrogate

Surrogacy Can Influence Positive Change in Your Family, Your Friends and Yourself

42. “I have always been a giver by nature and…I thought, ‘This is an amazing gift!’ Alexis, a surrogate, said. “I will be honest – my husband thought I was crazy but…he admitted he was very intrigued by the money. How things change! After our first [surrogacy] meeting, he said, ‘This is truly the greatest gift that you can give.’”

43. “We were all able to grow in this experience, and it taught us a greater appreciation for what we have and who we are. Surrogacy helped me appreciate the profound luck that many of us have with conceiving and birthing our children and helped me bring about a greater respect for those that cannot. — Kelli, a surrogate

44. “[My dad] was not supportive at all…But, he’s done a complete turnaround…It’s a humbling experience for everybody that you come in contact with and it’s definitely a growth experience for me, I know, and for people like my dad.” — Rose, a surrogate

45. “It helped open a lot of people’s eyes to surrogacy. My mom was one that whenever I told her, ‘I think I want to be a surrogate,’ she was one of those people that was like, ‘How does that work? I don’t understand the whole process.’ But then now, at the end of it, she was so proud of me and proud of what I was able to help these people get. Any chance that she has she tells people about me.” — Cassi, a surrogate

46. “Once people find out how the whole [surrogacy] process works and everything, a lot of the time they change their tune. Once they realize that it’s not malicious or you’re not doing anything wrong that you’re genuinely just helping people.” — Cassie, a surrogate

The Hardest Part of Surrogacy is…

47. “Of course, there are challenges in the process, like the shots and medications, and the strong feeling of not wanting to disappoint anyone, and even wondering if it would be difficult to say goodbye to the baby,” Alexis, a surrogate, said. “But as the journey progressed, I was so eager for the family to meet their little one. The shots were hard; but like childbirth, you quickly forget the pain.”

48. “As surrogates, I don’t think we can imagine the potential emotional stress and challenges that are ahead. My IPs and I have had our smiles and our tears. Having someone qualified and experienced…makes the whole process and experience smoother and more enjoyable for all.” — Susan, a surrogate

49. “Anyone who has ever been pregnant knows that pregnancy is a stressful time, no matter how ideal. Carrying a baby for someone else has the potential to be even more stressful…Even though I didn’t have any major issues, it was comforting to know that someone was available, day or night, if I needed them for anything!” — Suzie, a surrogate

50. “I am in my second surrogate relationship and have found that it is an emotional roller coaster no matter who you’re coupled with…For me it has made all the difference in the world to have that personal relationship with [a surrogacy agency] who cares about my journey.” — Jovita, a surrogate

51. “The hardest part about being a surrogate is being pregnant, it’s the best and the hardest part because you’re giving up a part of your life for somebody else. It’s not even for your own family; it’s for someone else’s family to have this precious gift. And I believe that’s the hardest part that you have to put a part of your life on pause for nine plus months to give someone else a gift.” — Alicia, a surrogate

52. “The hardest part for me about being a surrogate was the weight of carrying somebody else’s joy and happiness. You carry your own, and you love them immensely, and you know that you would do the best things for them, but when you’re carrying somebody else’s you have all of those feelings, but you feel like you have to prove to someone, ‘I promise I’m taking care of him to the best of my ability.’ I found myself worrying about things that I didn’t worry about with my own son. That was the hardest part. By the end of the journey I was very much ready to not be responsible for somebody else’s joy and prized possession.” — Codi, a surrogate

53. “Unfortunately, we lost the baby the following August. It was an event that was always a possibility, but it still caught me off guard. It was the only fear I had going into the process and it had happened. I could not believe the outpouring of support the IPs and I received from all the agencies. The IPs even extended their condolences to me, which is the least selfish thing I have ever experienced. They were eager for another transfer and we tried again…” — Kelli, a surrogate

54. “Due to her prematurity, the baby had some difficulties breathing on her own and had to be whisked away in the middle of the night to a proper NICU almost 2 hours away. I believe hormones played a role, but this was the only moment in my surrogacy that I felt helpless. I had cared for this little being for almost 9 months and protected her, but now I couldn’t do anything to help her, and her IPs were not yet here to hold her…I was suddenly alone with the thought that I had failed. In hindsight, I know that this thought was misguided, but I was devastated…and very concerned for the baby…It was a unique emotion, but the other hospital called me regularly to update her status…and the IPs and I talked as much as possible until they arrived. As soon as I was well enough to leave the hospital, I immediately traveled to the NICU. Baby girl and her parents were all cozy in their own private room. I had missed the moment they were united as a family for the first time, the moment I’d dreamed about since day one, but it didn’t matter. You could almost feel the love and excitement in the room…It was almost overwhelming. The baby was released from the hospital in less than a week, and she is now home with two loving parents and an extended group of family and friends that have waited years for her arrival.” — Kelli, a surrogate

Reimbursement and Compensation

55. “When I started the process I always thought, ‘I could probably do it without compensation, like I just really want to do this.’ However, I think it’s important now that I’ve gone through it, to say it was very valuable. The compensation made it feel like I was valued in that sense.” — Codi, a surrogate

56. “I did not know what I was going to do with the money ahead of time. The first time around I did know that I was going to go to nursing school with the money, which I did get to do that, and that was very helpful. The second time around…I used the money for expenses and also for my daughter. Trips with her, we went on vacations a lot. I used a lot of the money for her…to show my appreciation for her being so understanding and just a great little helper while I was going through the process.” — Alicia, a surrogate

57. “For me, surrogacy was a great experience I hope to repeat again one day when my husband and I both finish school, hopefully debt-free thanks to the compensation!” — Kelli, a surrogate

58. “The first time I did it to make a difference in the world,” Alexis, a surrogate, said. “I wanted to show my children how to help others and that giving is a great thing. This time I am excited to give the gift of a child but I’m doing it for my family. We spent the first money on home improvements and a trip, but this time I am doing it for financial peace. We plan on paying off both our cars and student loans. This will free up $900 in our monthly bills! We will save that extra money and plan to travel more with our kids. It is allowing us to do more without hurting us financially and paying off our debt will save us over $10,000 a year! So yes, my motives have slightly shifted for the second surrogacy but in the end, a wonderful family will get the baby they so eagerly await!”

59. “This journey has changed our life in so many positive ways. Aside from the financial gain that we are experiencing, being able to save for a house and build our savings, we have been able to positively educate people on gestational surrogacy and teach our children the act of giving.” — Amanda, a surrogate

Surrogates Believe Surrogacy is Worth It

60. “I can tell you now it is worth every second, and every up and every down. Surrogacy is worth it, 110%.” — Megan, a surrogate

61. “I was very happy that they had their child. I at no point wanted to take their child home nor did I feel like it actually belonged to me. I did not have that portion, I didn’t feel like a piece of me was missing. I felt like I did something good for someone else, and it was their child to have. I was glad that I was able to carry their child for them.” — Alicia, a surrogate

62. “The journey was so much more rewarding than I could ever have imagined!” Alexis, a surrogate, said. “From little things, like hearing the parents cry with joy when they found out I was pregnant, to the breathtaking ultrasound with the grandparents in the room. I will never forget the grandpa crying when he learned his family name would carry on and that the baby was a boy! There was not one dry eye in the room.”

63. “On this Mother’s Day evening…I am reflecting on how I made someone a mother of 2 beautiful healthy babies which she could never have on her own,” Jessika, a surrogate, said. “Wish I could do it for many more women out there. What a dream come true.”

64. “The entire experience of being pregnant again, being a surrogate, and helping a couple have a baby was all that I had hoped it would be…Though I have to wait a while before I can be a surrogate again due to my own medical reasons, it is something I feel I would like to repeat.” — Charleen, a surrogate

65. “When the baby was delivered I was very relieved, first off, and then very excited because the parents were in the room so they got to see the baby and everyone was already coming up to me saying ‘thank you’ and kisses and hugs. It was just a great experience and I felt really proud of what I did at that time. Even afterwards, when the baby came to visit me the next day, I was very grateful to be a part of this experience and they were grateful for me having the child for them and you could see it in everyone’s face, and they tell you, and it was just a lot of love and joy in the room and it was a great thing to be a part of.” — Alicia, a surrogate

66. “I never felt attached to the baby in the same way I felt attached to my own, but I did get very attached to the adventure…,” Kelli said. “There were a few individuals who said I would regret it, but I am happy to state that I definitely do not, and knew I never would.” — Kelli, a surrogate

67. “You are giving the ultimate gift,” Alexis, a surrogate, said. “There are so many great people out there that want a child but can’t do it without help. You were blessed with a body that cannot only give you a family but could help build another!”

68. “I would do it again in a heartbeat. It was the most amazing thing I’ve ever done. It just made me feel so fulfilled, so happy, so blessed to be able to do that for a family.” — Ami, a surrogate

69. “Surrogacy allowed me to fulfill a dream that I had always wanted to do. I wanted to give the biggest gift possible and, to me, that was life. I got to fulfill that and I got to watch the emotions and I get to see the joy and it is the most amazing feeling in the world.” — Megan, a surrogate

What Intended Parents Say About Surrogacy and Their Gestational Carriers

70. “It means more than the world; only very selfless people could do that,” Nicholas said. “It’s such a huge commitment from a woman to carry a child — mentally, emotionally, physically — I can’t even realize it. I will be forever, forever grateful to [my surrogate], Nichole.” — Nicholas, intended parent

71. “One of the first things [Megan] said to me was, ‘I’m not in this for the money,’” Lindsey said. “She wasn’t going to just do it for anybody; she wanted a family that she felt a connection with. That meant a lot to me.” — Lindsey and Shiloh, intended parents

72. “I never thought that [the surrogacy relationship] would go from complete stranger to best friend and a relationship that will always be there, so that’s pretty neat,” Lindsey said. — Lindsey and Shiloh, intended parents

73. “So I try to repay [our surrogate] in any way I can. Just any little thing that makes her feel loved – just anything to say ‘thank you, thank you, thank you for helping make me a mom!’” — Jenn and Brad, intended parents

74. “We got our dream baby, but more than that we met amazing people along the way and had renewed faith in humanity and the kindness and love that can get you through tough chapters in life.” — Katie and Bryn, intended parents

75. “My husband and I had a beautiful girl on Feb. 26., and I can’t describe how happy and excited we are…We liked our surrogate very much, she is amazing and a wonderful woman…We are ready for a second child now, and hope that… we can have a second child next year.” — Sunny, intended parent

76. “My husband and I have been trying to have a baby for eight years…[our surrogacy agency] has…provided us a wonderful surrogate, who is a beautiful spirit and a lovely person whom I believe is a true gift to us and our future child!” — Tamara, intended parent

77. “[Our surrogacy agency] paired us with a wonderful surrogate…and ultimately to a successful result. As we write this, our surrogate is carrying our next pair of twins! …It’s been a wonderful experience.” — Mike and Lisa, intended parents

78. “This is an incredible thing to do with your life, to give the gift of carrying someone’s child, so I am very grateful and feel very blessed and grateful to [my surrogate].” — Ellen Pompeo, intended mother

Why People Love American Surrogacy

79. “You need someone that you’re going to trust to choose a surrogate for you, and American Surrogacy was the only agency I felt comfortable with and was genuine enough for me to choose over the other agencies. I spoke to many surrogacy agencies — small and big — and none of them made me feel the way American Surrogacy made me feel. The people (at American Surrogacy) really cared about what they were doing, and this is the main, main thing you have to find. Everyone over there cared about me and what I wanted. ” –Nicholas, intended father

80. “When I researched American [Surrogacy], they had a lot of information on their website — information you could obtain without submitting your information first. I submitted my information and immediately I got a response back. [My American Surrogacy specialist] wasn’t in it just to have her company make money. She was very sincere in finding out how I was and finding me a good match. She worked really hard to do so, and that match was amazing.” –Nichole, surrogate

To begin your journey as intended parents or as a gestational surrogate, call American Surrogacy today at 1-800-875-BABY (2229). If you meet the requirements to become a surrogate and you’re ready to begin, contact us online at any time.

3 Ways Faith Plays a Role in Surrogacy

Making the decision to become an intended parent or a surrogate means that you have many things to consider before you can take the leap. One of those is how your faith will play a role in your surrogacy journey.

As surrogacy continues to grow as a popular way for hopeful couples to grow their families and for hopeful surrogates to bless a couple with the gift of a child, the opinion on what is acceptable within a certain faith continues to change, too. Now, there are more and more people who can recognize the blessing of a family, no matter how that family was formed.

As you start your journey, we know that you’ll have a lot of questions about how to include your faith in growing a family through surrogacy. We hope that these tips can reassure you and give you the courage you need to take your first step towards this family-building process.

And if you’re looking for someone to talk to, you can always reach out to one of our specialists at 1-800-875-2229 to get more information, or you can consult a faith-based surrogacy agency for additional resources.

What Does Religion Have to Say About Surrogacy?

If you are someone with a strong faith, then you likely have a lot of questions about how your beliefs will be a factor in your surrogacy journey. And depending on what your specific religion has to say about assisted reproductive technology, you might be left with many questions about what to do next.

Every religion has its own opinion about surrogacy and sometimes IVF. Additionally, your religious leaders and congregation might have their own interpretations about how surrogacy fits into your religion.

When you are thinking about ways that surrogacy can fit into your religion, try to remember that religious views on surrogacy are still changing. While many religions were established thousands of years before surrogacy or IVF were thought about, there is still room and time for opinions to evolve. If you are worried about what your particular faith has to say about your decision, we encourage you to reach out to either a trusted religious leader or another family who understands what you’re going through.

3 Ways Faith Plays a Role in Surrogacy

Religion can connect us in many different ways. But you might be surprised to find that there are actually a few ways in which faith can play a role in your surrogacy journey. Here are just a few to think about.

  1. Surrogacy itself requires a leap of faith: Surrogacy is an incredible way to expand a family, but it’s definitely not a process that’s quick or easy. When you decide to start this journey, there are a lot of people on whom you’ll rely to make this process as smooth as possible. This can be especially true when you’re an intended parent, as you’ll be spending a lot of time waiting and putting your faith in your surrogate. When so many factors are out of your control, being patient and holding onto faith is one of the best things you can do.
  2. Your faith can connect you to other families: It might seem like you don’t have anyone to reach out to, but there are plenty of families in your position who have either thought about starting their surrogacy journey or are getting started just like you. Additionally, you’ve probably considering looking for a match with a gestational surrogate who shares your beliefs. While there could be a wait to find the right person, it will be well worth it in the end.
  3. It’s one of the greatest ways to help others:  There are many reasons why women choose to become surrogates. But one of the many reasons is because becoming a surrogate is spiritually and emotionally rewarding or fulfilling, and offers an opportunity for them to give back in some way.

Coming to Terms with Surrogacy and Your Religious Beliefs

It’s difficult to become fully excited about this process if you’re worried about how it could clash with your beliefs. After all, even though you’ve likely thought about this process for a long time, your faith has likely been a part of your life for even longer.

If you’d like someone to talk to about how your faith can impact your experience with the surrogacy process, you can always reach out to one of our specialists. There are also several faith-based surrogacy agencies, like Surrogacy by Faith, which you can always reach out to if you’re looking for more information.

We know that you already have a lot to think about before you start your journey. But before you can be sure that surrogacy is right for you, it’s important to consider your faith as well. So, no matter what your final decision ends up being, we just want you to make the best choice for you. If you have any questions at all about what your next step should be, you can always reach out to your surrogacy specialist for help.

A Year in Review: The Biggest Surrogacy News from 2020

Surrogacy is an ever-changing field. Each year, legislation is changed, laws are fine-tuned and most important, families are made. However, more than ever, this year shook the surrogacy world. 

As all of us navigated the COVID-19 crisis, we watched as every aspect of our lives was impacted, including surrogacy. Here are some of the biggest developments that 2020 brought to the world of surrogacy:

IVF Procedures Were Temporarily Halted

This spring, fertility treatments and IVF procedures were temporarily suspended in response to the worsening outbreak of COVID-19. This was devastating news to the intended parents and surrogates who were about to undertake this next step in their journey.

Since then, fertility clinics have reopened with additional health and safety measures. Intended parents and surrogates have been able to resume the process and move forward.

Families Created through Surrogacy Faced Uncertainty and Separation

One of the scariest parts of the year for intended parents and surrogates was the inability to travel. As countries around the world instituted travel bans and in-country quarantines, surrogates and intended parents who were pursuing international surrogacy were separated.

Intended parents and surrogates who were pursuing domestic surrogacy were largely unaffected, but some international matches are still struggling with COVID-related travel bans.

International Surrogacy Became Too Great a Risk

In many ways, 2020 signaled the end of international surrogacy. While this type of surrogacy has always held greater risk than domestic surrogacy, the tragic separation of international intended parents and surrogates forced the world to reexamine this common path to parenthood.

Now, more than ever, intended parents and surrogates are urged to complete their surrogacy journeys domestically with agencies like American Surrogacy.

Gestational Carriers Stepped Up Even Further

In the worst-case-scenarios that many international surrogacy matches had to face this year, gestational carriers once again proved themselves to be fearlessly compassionate and giving. 

Devastated international intended parents were unable to be with their surrogate for her delivery and the arrival of their child. But many of these gestational surrogates bravely took on the task of caring for the intended parents child until they could be reunited. They adapted to the challenges at hand and rose above and beyond what they were originally asked to do.

As a result, international intended parents have since been able to reunite with their babies with peace of mind, knowing that their child was cared for in their absence.

American Surrogacy Keeps Making Families

Through this rollercoaster of a year, American Surrogacy has continued to help create families. We’re so proud of our specialists, who expertly navigated our intended parents and gestational surrogates through the unknowns of 2020. 

As we move into 2021, American Surrogacy will continue to be a safe and supportive place to grow your family. Intended parents and gestational surrogates who were originally considering an international agency have now turned to domestic agencies like American Surrogacy to help them pursue their surrogacy dreams. 

Despite all the challenges and uncertainties of 2020, American Surrogacy continued to grow families through the gift of surrogacy. We’ll continue to do the same in the coming year, and we’re honored to be a part of your surrogacy journey in 2021!

7 Ways Gestational Surrogacy is a Gift

The holiday season encourages us to reflect on the gifts we give and are given. And we’re not just talking about presents under the tree!

There are gifts in the world that are truly special, and can never be repaid. Gestational surrogacy is such a gift. Here are 7 ways gestational surrogacy reminds us of these special gifts:

1. The ability to carry and deliver a baby is a gift.

So many people assume this ability is a given — until they learn that they don’t possess this gift. Gestational surrogates recognize that their ability to carry and deliver a baby is a gift that can be shared with others. 

It takes an incredible person to be willing to share this gift with someone else. Gestational surrogates honor and celebrate the gift that their bodies can give in the most amazing way possible.

One of the most beautiful aspects of surrogacy is that none of the people involved will ever take this gift for granted again.

2. Gamete donors give families a gift, too.

The men and women who choose to donate their genetics and help families in their IVF journeys are contributing more than just the building blocks of a life. They’re giving an important gift.

These donors understand that they have something that so many others desperately wish for: The ability to help create a life. They choose to give this gift to hopeful parents (who are sometimes complete strangers) and in doing so, they give the gift of life. 

3. Surrogates give their time, effort and love.

Beyond the natural gift that their bodies possess, gestational surrogates give so much. Carrying and caring for someone else’s child requires an intense amount of physical effort, time, patience and love.

They endure uncomfortable medical procedures, stick themselves with needles, take medications, keep themselves in top health and ultimately, go through childbirth. All while still caring for their own family and handling their personal and career responsibilities. Gestational carriers give all of this to the intended family because they know how much parenthood means to them.

4. Intended parents give their surrogate their trust, love and a place in their family.

In turn, the intended parents give back to their surrogate. They give her the gift of their complete trust — trusting someone else to carry and care for your child is no small gift, and surrogates understand this.

Intended parents welcome their gestational surrogate as an important part of their lives and in their child’s story. They give her the gift of their love and gratitude, forever.

5. The families of the surrogate and intended parents give them their love and support.

While they may seem “behind the scenes,” there are so many people who are giving the surrogate and intended parents any gifts they can. Without them, no surrogacy journey would be possible.

The friends, families and loved ones of the gestational carrier and the intended parents are there to give their love, encouragement and support. Whether through a kind word, a hand around the house or a hug, these people give everything that surrogates and intended parents need throughout their surrogacy journey.

6. Modern science gives the gift of parenthood to so many.

None of this would be possible without the gift of modern science. The medical professionals involved in every surrogacy journey give the gift of their knowledge and talent.

The IVF process, fertility specialists, lab technicians and everyone whose research contributed to these advancements all give an amazing gift to the world. Thanks to the gift of science, families can be created where they would otherwise not be able to have children.

7. This child will be a gift to so many people throughout his or her life.

Most of all, surrogacy gives the gift of a new life to the entire world. It’s humbling to think of all the people whose lives will be better by knowing the person who is being created.

This child will have family, friends, coworkers, peers and more who can all benefit from knowing him or her. The ripple effect that surrogacy creates is truly a gift.


How are you grateful for surrogacy this year? Let us know in the comments!

6 Ways to Honor Loss During National Infertility Awareness Week

Wherever you’re at in your experience with infertility — whether you’ve recently received a diagnosis of infertility, or it’s been years since then and you’ve created a family through surrogacy or adoption — it’s alright to take a moment to honor loss this National Infertility Awareness Week.

Here are some ways you can acknowledge loss this week while still looking to the future:

1. Take Some Time for Yourself

Anniversaries that remind you of things like pregnancy losses, the feeling that everyone around you is getting pregnant, or National Infertility Awareness Week itself can all open old wounds. If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed, give yourself permission to take care of yourself this week. 

Everyone’s version of self-care will look different, but consider:

  • Taking a break from social media
  • Spending some quality alone-time with your spouse on a date night
  • Treating yourself to a long bath or even a trip to the spa
  • Taking 10 minutes to practice some breathing exercises 
  • Taking a weekend or day-trip alone with your spouse for a short getaway
  • Going on a long walk somewhere quiet and bringing a journal
  • Reading a book that inspires you

2. Share Your Story

You’ve never obligated to share your story, nor should you share more than you’re comfortable with — but talking about your personality fertility struggles can help you and others.

Infertility affects 1 in 8 couples in the U.S. By sharing your personal story with others, you’ll likely provide comfort and information to someone else who is, or will be, affected by infertility. Connecting with others who have experienced infertility can be mutually beneficial — feeling supported and heard is instrumental in healing from fertility losses.

Sharing your story can also be important for acknowledging the losses you’ve experienced. Some people have also experienced pregnancy loss and need others to acknowledge that those pregnancies are not simply “replaced” or something to just “get over,” even when moving from infertility to surrogacy.

If you’re ready, you can share your story on social media, on an infertility blog, speak at a local National Infertility Awareness Week event, or even just open up to a friend or family member.

3. Share Information

A simple, quick and easy way to raise awareness and to help others who are struggling with infertility is to share the facts. Resolve is a great resource to get you started, as is the National Infertility Awareness Week website if you’d like to share a link or graphic on your social media or in an email.

The whole point of National Infertility Awareness Week is to raise awareness! What better way to honor your own personal losses and journey than to call widespread attention to this common struggle. 

4. Start a Tradition

One way to deal with grief is create a tradition that allows you a special time to honor your losses. This way, you can continue to move forward with your life throughout the rest of the year but never forget where you’ve been. 

Feeling as if you’re “moving on” can be bittersweet. You deserve to be happy again, but it can be hard to let go of grief. Having a tradition that allows you to honor that grief in a special way at a special time can help you to do both. 

Consider incorporating a tradition for National Infertility Awareness Week like:

  • Lighting a candle
  • Planting a flower in a memory garden
  • Writing a letter to yourself
  • Saying a special prayer
  • Putting a wish into a box

5. Honor the Things You’re Grateful For

When you look back on your infertility journey, you might be surprised to find that you gained things that you didn’t have before, despite the losses you may have experienced. Take a moment to honor the things that you’re grateful for, in addition to honoring the things you’ve lost.

This will be different for everyone, but did you…

  • Become closer to your spouse, a friend, or a family member?
  • Turn to someone for support in a difficult moment and were met with love and comfort?
  • Find a newfound support group?
  • Discover something about yourself?
  • Experience a spiritual strengthening? 

Even though you and your relationships were likely tested in unimaginable ways, you also likely discovered something that you’re grateful for. Take a moment to write down everything in your life that you’re grateful for at this point.

Maybe you even chose to have a child through surrogacy or adoption — that would certainly be something important that you’ve gained.

6. Get Involved with National Infertility Awareness Week

One way to honor your own loss is to help others with their own losses and to help raise public awareness about infertility. Find a way to get involved with National Infertility Awareness Week, big or small. You can:

How do you plan on recognizing National Infertility Awareness Week? Let us know in the comments.

How are Embryos Shipped from Clinic to Clinic?

Intended parents often have questions about transporting frozen embryos from one fertility clinic to another, especially if those embryos are about to cross the whole country. It’s completely understandable — those embryos are the result of a lot of time, money and hope, so they mean a lot to you.

To help you prepare for your embryos’ journey, here are the answers to five frequently asked questions about shipping embryos:

1. Why Would You Need to Ship Embryos?

Common reasons why you might need to ship your embryos include:

  • Switching fertility clinics
  • Moving and needing to take them to wherever you’re relocating to
  • Sending them to your gestational surrogate’s clinic for her transfer date

2. Does Shipping Embryos Damage Them or Affect Viability?

No. In vitro fertilization is still a relatively new family-building method, so there’s not a lot of data on the success rates of shipped versus not-shipped frozen embryos outside of what’s collected by individual clinics. But, looking at the data that has been collected, there’s no real difference in the success rates between the two.

This is because of how the embryos are frozen, stored and shipped — and the extreme care that’s taken in that process.

Shipping embryos does not hurt them or affect their viability when done correctly, as is consistently the case. It’s common to ship embryos and, if there’s an issue with those embryos, it’s usually because the embryos themselves were low quality or (possible, but less likely) they were damaged in the freezing or thawing process.

3. How are Embryos Stored When Shipped?

The embryos are kept cryogenically frozen during the move with dry vapor liquid nitrogen. They’ll be safe in the packing and can be kept at a consistent temperature for about 10 days.

Some clinics partner with shipping services that ship the embryos in cryogenic storage dewars, high-density foam coolers or other temperature-safe packing material. Whatever shipping service you and your clinic partner with, it will have the necessary containers to protect the embryos and maintain their frozen state. These types of containers are meant to transport medical samples and live tissue, so they’ll work for embryos, as well.

The shipping service may provide the temperature-controlled containers itself, or you may need to pay a deposit, which is refunded when the empty container is returned to the shipping service after the embryos have arrived at the new clinic.

4. How Much Does It Cost to Ship Embryos?

Total shipping cost (within the U.S.) usually falls somewhere around $200 – $500, but this can change based on a number of variables similar to shipping costs with anything else.

Your cost will primarily depend on how far you’re shipping the embryos.

Shipping can be done by ground or air, and it can often happen overnight, depending on how close the two clinics are. Don’t stress about paying extra for overnight shipping as; again, the embryos will be protected in the temperature-controlled storage container. However, how quickly you need the embryos shipped will also significantly affect your cost, just like any delivery service.

Some intended parents choose to drive the embryos (after the clinic has packed them up) from one clinic to the other if the distance isn’t too far. It’s kind of your first road trip with the “kids,” right? This might save you a significant amount of money if your clinic is able to handle this for you, but that option might not be available in every situation.

Other factors that can affect cost are any add-ons you purchase with the shipping service, such as insurance. There will also typically be an equipment rental fee of some sort, regardless of whether the embryos are shipped through a third-party service or the clinic, or you choose to drive them yourself.

You should be able to receive a cost estimate from the company you’re working with for shipping, so check with that professional and request a fee breakdown.

5. How Do You Find an Embryo Shipping Service?

The sending fertility clinic may have a particular cryogenic shipping service with which they partner. If not, your clinic may have a recommendation for a third-party shipping service that specializes in this type of transport, like one of these companies:

However, most clinics don’t work with third-party companies. You might be surprised to learn that the primary (and typically, preferred) mode of transportation for frozen embryos is through FedEx and UPS. Both of those shipping companies frequently work with fertility clinics, hospitals and medical laboratories, and they offer specialty services for transporting cryogenically frozen samples and live tissue. So, you’ll likely work with one of those two primary shipping providers.

If you have any more questions, or you’re worried about transporting your embryos, you can always reach out to your surrogacy specialist at American Surrogacy by calling 1-800-875-BABY(2229).