It’s absolutely possible to be a surrogate mother without a partner. If you meet all the necessary requirements for surrogacy, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t pursue your dream of becoming a surrogate, regardless of your marital status. Other women have done it, and you can, too!
That being said, becoming a gestational surrogate when you’re single is a very different experience than when you have a committed partner or spouse included in your journey. It’s important to ask yourself these eight questions and answer them honestly before deciding if becoming a single surrogate at this point is right for you:
1. How will your children factor into this?
At American Surrogacy and with all surrogacy professionals, surrogates are required to be currently raising at least one child in their home. You may be the primary or only parent of your child(ren), or you may have the help of their other parent, a family member, or a trusted friend.
If you share parenting responsibilities, will your child(ren)’s other parent be on board with your surrogacy decision? Will they commit to caring for your child(ren) while you’re attending doctor’s appointments, at the hospital, etc.?
If you’re the sole parent, who can help take care of your child(ren) during your surrogacy journey?
Have a plan, and talk to anyone you may need to reach out to for help before you commit to becoming a surrogate.
2. Is your career flexible enough right now?
As a single woman, you’re likely the sole provider for your household. Although your journey as a surrogate will provide you with a monthly allowance and base compensation in addition to having all your surrogacy- and pregnancy-related expenses covered, you probably don’t want to put your entire career on hold, either.
Is your job generous with time off, or do they have a fairly strict leave policy? You can always talk to a surrogate specialist at American Surrogacy about how much time you’ll likely need to be away from work for surrogacy-related appointments, and then you can talk to your employer about whether or not they’re comfortable with you taking that much time away.
3. Can you give yourself fertility shots?
Part of the medical process for surrogates includes a regimen of medications, including regular fertility injections. Many people find that they struggle to inject themselves with the needles on their own, and need another person’s help.
An important thing to know about fertility injections is that they must be administered at the same time every day, so if you do need help, you’ll need to ask yourself: who can you realistically rely on to give you those shots at the same day every time? What happens if they’re busy with something unavoidable? Will you need to travel to this person every day? Generally, it’s best if you’re able to administer injections yourself if you’re single, but if you find that you can’t, you’ll need to prepare accordingly.
4. Can you commit to the necessary traveling?
Fortunately, there’s not a lot of traveling required for gestational surrogates. The primary event(s) you may need to travel for, depending on where the intended parents’ fertility clinic is location, is the embryo transfer procedure.
Embryo transfers are not a physically intensive process — they’re not painful, nor do they require anesthesia. However, they do require that you rest and take it easy, first at the clinic, then for another couple days following the procedure. This encourages successful embryo implantation. That means you’d likely need to spend some additional time away from work and your children. Do you have someone who can help out while you’re off your feet?
Minor, everyday traveling for surrogates would be the frequent trips to your OB or fertility clinic that you’ll likely be making. These will be local to you, but can still be difficult if you don’t have a partner or spouse to handle the everyday tasks at home while you’re at these appointments.
5. Who will commit to being your practical and emotional support during your surrogacy journey?
Surrogacy is a collaborative effort in every way, and gestational surrogates need a strong support system as part of their team. You’ll need supportive and encouraging friends and family to talk to during your surrogacy journey, as the process is often full of ups and downs.
You’ll also need people in your life who you can count on for practical support as well as emotional encouragement. Particularly as your pregnancy progresses, you’ll likely need help with some physical tasks. Who can you ask for help, big and small favors, or just general support and encouragement? Who do you know who will drop what they’re doing to support you however they can through this journey?
6. In case of emergency or when you go into labor, who will you designate to take you to the hospital?
A surrogate’s spouse is usually ready to take her to the hospital in the event of emergencies or when she goes into labor, and her spouse knows who to contact and what to do. As a single surrogate, you may need to designate someone to help you in case you’re unable to help yourself in these situations.
You might want to ask someone in your support system if they’re willing to be “on call” for medical emergencies and labor. When choosing this person, make sure that they live near to you, that they’re willing and able to drop everything to come get you and take you to the hospital, and that they know where to take you, who to contact and more.
This person will also need to be ready to make childcare arrangements for your kids, and to call your surrogate specialist.
7. Are you dating anyone right now?
If you’re currently seeing someone, they’ll need to be included in aspects of your initial surrogate screening process, including the psychological evaluation and the CDC screening for communicable diseases. Remember that your significant other must support your surrogacy decision. Your surrogacy process can affect your dating life in a number of ways — an important one being the restrictions on sexual intimacy that prevents you from accidentally becoming pregnant with a child other than the intended parents’.
If you’re currently dating someone and he or she is unsupportive or unsure of your intentions to become a surrogate when you approach them with your wishes, you should put your surrogacy journey on hold.
If you start dating someone new during your surrogacy journey, you would need to let your surrogate specialist know right away so we can make sure your new partner is tested for communicable diseases before you have any sexual contact. We understand all of this can be a little awkward, but we also know you want to do what’s best for you and the baby’s health!
8. Are you getting married any time soon?
Getting married while you’re under a surrogacy contract would legally complicate things. If you’re engaged right now or thinking about marrying soon, it’s best to either postpone your surrogacy journey, or wait until after the baby is born to tie the knot. Consult with your surrogacy attorney for more information.
Most women who become surrogates are married or are in committed relationships, yes. But we’ve successfully worked with surrogates who were single, and we’d be happy to help you become a surrogate if you’re ready to take on this challenging and rewarding journey. Contact American Surrogacy at 1-800-875-BABY(2229) to learn more about becoming a surrogate today.