Surrogacy can be a wonderful way for individuals or couples to build their families when traditional methods are not an option. As a surrogacy candidate, it’s important to understand the various choices you have throughout the surrogacy process. Here are some important factors to consider when navigating the decision-making process:
Views on Termination
One of the most important decisions you will make as a surrogacy candidate is your views on termination. This is a deeply personal decision and one that should be made with careful consideration. Some surrogates are comfortable terminating a pregnancy in the event of a medical emergency or if a child would be born with severe medical issues. Others may only be comfortable with termination if the life of the surrogate is in danger. It’s important to discuss your views on termination with your intended parents and your surrogacy agency to ensure that everyone is on the same page.
Number of Embryos to Transfer
Another decision you will need to make as a surrogacy candidate is the number of embryos you are willing to transfer. This decision can impact the chances of a successful pregnancy, as well as the risk of multiples. The American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) recommends transferring no more than two embryos in most cases. Some surrogate candidates are only comfortable transferring one embryo in the hopes of giving birth to one child, while others are excited by the prospect of transferring two embryos with the hope of a twin pregnancy. When making this decision it is important to consider that embryos sometimes split, in the case of identical twins, and it is always a possibility that a single embryo transfer could result in twins or more. That possibility is doubled with a double embryo transfer. One final thing to consider is additional compensation for carrying twins. Most agencies offer an automatic compensation increase of $5,000 to $7,500.
Preferences Regarding Intended Parents
Choosing your intended parents is an important decision and one that should not be taken lightly. It’s important to find intended parents who share your values and beliefs, as well as those who you feel comfortable working with throughout the surrogacy process. Some surrogates prefer working with intended parents who have a similar background or lifestyle, while others may prioritize finding intended parents who are LGBTQ+ or have struggled with infertility. It’s important to take the time to get to know your intended parents and to establish a strong relationship based on mutual trust and respect.
Communication is key throughout the surrogacy process. It’s important to establish clear expectations with your intended parents regarding communication preferences, including how often you will communicate, the preferred method of communication (phone, email, text), and what topics are appropriate for discussion. Establishing strong lines of communication from the outset can help prevent misunderstandings and ensure that everyone is on the same page throughout the process.
Agency versus Independent
When considering surrogacy, one of the biggest decisions a candidate will make is whether to work with an agency or pursue an independent match. While there are benefits to independent matching, the overwhelming recommendation is to work with a reputable surrogacy agency. Agencies offer a number of advantages, including access to vetted intended parents who have been screened for compatibility, preferences, and legal eligibility. This can help ensure that the intended parents you are matched with align with your values and expectations. Agencies also provide support throughout the entire surrogacy process, including counseling, financial management, and access to support groups. Additionally, surrogacy agencies have extensive experience with the surrogacy process, which allows them to provide guidance and handle any bumps that may arise along the way. Legal protections are also offered through the agency, ensuring that all parties are protected in the event of any issues or disputes. Overall, working with a surrogacy agency provides a level of support, protection, and expertise that is difficult to match with independent matching.
As a surrogacy candidate, you have many important choices to make throughout the surrogacy process. By carefully considering your views on termination, the number of embryos to transfer, preferences regarding intended parents and communication, and whether to work with agency or self-match, you can help ensure a successful and positive surrogacy journey for all involved. If you are interested in becoming a surrogate and would like to learn more about working with an experienced agency, please contact Elevate Surrogacy at firstname.lastname@example.org.