You’ve heard it before in the news, on TV shows and from acquaintances who “heard about this one surrogate who…” The surrogacy horror stories are louder and spread farther than the countless positive stories.
There are stories of surrogates accidentally becoming pregnant with their own biological baby, of “doctors” who used their own gametes instead of donors’ and of surrogates who decide to keep the baby. So, with instances of such unimaginable outcomes for everyone involved, why would anyone want to pursue surrogacy?
Because: There are actually laws and very thorough safety measures specifically in place to prevent all of those situations. But only reputable agencies like American Surrogacy enforce those safety measures. It’s only when the intended parents and surrogates work outside of the laws and the professionals that a surrogacy situation can “go wrong.”
What the “Surrogacy Gone Wrong” Situations All Had in Common
Those extremely rare nightmare surrogacy situations consistently had the same factors in common:
- They were traditional surrogacy situations — meaning the surrogate was the biological mother of the child.
- Often, the surrogate was a close friend or relative of the intended parents, or they found each other online.
- The surrogate and intended parents were not screened by a surrogacy agency to ensure that they were all physically, mentally and emotionally ready for surrogacy.
- The surrogate and intended parents did not have a formal, legal contract through an Assisted Reproduction Technology (ART) attorney.
- They were not working with reputable professionals.
Likewise, the intended parents and surrogates who have overwhelmingly positive experiences have these factors in common:
- They are gestational surrogacy situations — meaning the surrogate is not the biological mother of the child.
- The surrogate and intended parents are carefully screened by a surrogacy agency to ensure that they are all physically, mentally and emotionally ready for surrogacy.
- The surrogate and intended parents create a formal, legal contract with the help of a licensed Assisted Reproduction Technology (ART) attorney.
- They partner with reputable professionals, like American Surrogacy.
If you’ve considered surrogacy, either as a potential gestational surrogate or as hopeful parents, we understand if you’ve been put off by those horrifying negative surrogacy stories. But, we’re here to explain that, unless you’re considering a traditional surrogacy within your family or surrogacy without a professional, your experience will likely be incredibly positive as well as life-changing in all the best ways.
Avoiding a “Surrogacy Gone Wrong” Scenario is Surprisingly Simple
There are always some risks involved in surrogacy — primarily the physical risks that are always associated with pregnancy, and the financial risk of the IVF process requiring several cycles. Any professional who tells you otherwise is not being transparent with you.
However, there are simple, but incredibly important, ways you can all but prevent becoming a “surrogacy horror story”:
- Do not attempt to “DIY” your surrogacy journey. Always work with experienced and reputable professionals like American Surrogacy from start to finish!
- Do not attempt to find a surrogate or intended parents online or without the help of a professional who can screen your surrogacy match. Intended parents and surrogates trust American Surrogacy to find them a safe and positive match.
- Avoid traditional surrogacy. Most professionals (American Surrogacy included) will not even complete traditional surrogacies.
- Even if the intended parents and surrogate already know and trust one another, they must still work with a licensed professional like American Surrogacy.
- Establish a legally binding contract with a surrogacy attorney! When you create that contract together, intended parents and surrogates talk about a wide range of “what if” scenarios and ensure that everyone is in agreement on important aspects of the surrogacy journey.
The #1 Way to Prevent a Surrogacy Horror Story
Work with a surrogacy agency that has a track record of success.
In surrogacy, “success” means a number of things. We define “success” by:
- Our high numbers of intended parents who have successfully welcomed a child by working with our agency.
- Our surrogates and intended parents who sing our praises, feel safe and comfortable throughout the journey, form genuine friendships and report nothing but positive, happy experiences.
- The healthy and happy children, who have been brought into the world by incredible surrogates and who are raised by amazing intended parents.
If a gestational surrogate and intended parents look back on their surrogacy journey and feel that it was a positive experience in their lives, and perhaps even want to repeat that experience with us, we consider that a success.
To ensure success and safety for our surrogates and intended parents, American Surrogacy:
- Screens the prospective surrogate and intended parents to ensure that everyone is physically, mentally and emotionally ready and committed.
- Educates the prospective surrogate and intended parents, so they know what to expect and to ensure they understand and are truly ready for the surrogacy process.
- Counsels and supports the surrogate and intended parents throughout the process.
- Connects the surrogate and intended parents to licensed, experienced and reputable doctors and attorneys to help with the legal and medical steps of the process.
- Provides financial and legal protection to the intended parents and surrogates.
- Makes sure that the entire process is legal, ethical, smooth and is a positive experience for everyone involved.
As a result, none of our intended parents or gestational surrogates has ever had to worry about the “surrogacy gone wrong” fears that are given center stage in the media. When a surrogacy journey is completed correctly and legally with the help of a professional like American Surrogacy, there’s no need to worry about your surrogacy experience “going wrong.” Our goal is to fill the world with positive surrogacy stories so that the narrative can be shifted toward all the ways in which surrogacy has benefitted people’s lives.