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Surrogacy 101 - How To Find A Surrogate
a blog by Grey Fox, November 1, 2013
So… you think maybe you need a surrogate. How do you find a person willing to carry a baby for 9 months and then hand it over to you? I won’t lie - it’s not easy. Any of the following options will work:
- Go through a surrogacy agency and have them “match” you
- Go through a surrogacy website and try to find a good match yourself
- Ask a friend or family member or wait/hope for one to offer
Just Google surrogacy + agency and you will find many results. Many are international. If surrogacy is not legal in your state or country, an international surrogacy (India and Thailand readily come to mind) may be right for you. If surrogacy is legal where you live you could also start with your fertility clinic - they may be able to recommend an agency that they work with regularly.
The upside of agencies is that they do all the work for you. The downside is that they charge you A LOT for all that work. I would advise doing a little preliminary research to help you determine whether going through an agency is the right, and financially viable, choice for you.
Again, Google is your friend and can identify a lot of sites out there to help you find a good match. But are they reputable? I would advise some serious due diligence if you choose this route. I looked into this for myself at one point and found the Fertile Thoughts Surrogacy board extremely helpful. Ask people who have done this what their experience was before you dive right in. There’s no need to reinvent the wheel and there are likely plenty of scammers out there so take advice from people who have already gone that route before seriously pursuing it on your own.
This is probably the ideal route for most people. Or at least it would appear to be on the surface. But it can be very awkward to ask friends or family members to carry your baby. And, if you haven’t been vocal about your infertility, they may not know to offer. And even if you do get offers, you need to seriously consider them before jumping in. Just because someone offers to be a surrogate (sadly) doesn’t mean she is serious about it. Or even if she is serious, she may not be a good candidate for surrogacy. Or she may not be the right candidate for you (see previous post on how to choose a surrogate).
I know, I know. You’re probably yelling at the screen right now that of course you take what you get if someone offers. But that is really not advisable. See my previous post on what makes a good match. You really don’t want to end up in the papers and go through some long, drawn-out custody battle because you and the surrogate didn’t agree on whether or not to terminate if there was something wrong with the baby.
The bottom line here is that it is more important than ever to take a step back and go into this with a clear head. Many women/couples are exhausted from treatments and just want a baby NOW. Before you move on to surrogacy you need to take some time and clear your head and try to make decisions rationally instead of emotionally. In the long run, you’ll be better off for it.
This concludes Surrogacy 101. I'm contemplating a Surrogacy 102 if anyone is interested...?