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The Truth about Surrogacy

a blog by Pamela MacPhee, May 30, 2013

I suppose at this point I should expect it. But it doesn’t make me want to stop fighting it.

Some so-called professionals and women’s rights proponents continue over and over again, in the name of preventing state surrogacy legislation to prevail, to claim that surrogacy is the exploitation of poor women. Let’s be transparent here. Surrogacy legislation is designed actually to protect surrogates and Intended Parents to prevent exploitation and disappointment for both parties. I am a real proponent of women’s rights and I believe wholeheartedly in surrogacy.

Surrogacy is a truly beautiful expression of the basic human desire to offer compassion and assistance to others in need. One woman for a myriad of unfortunate reasons is unable to carry a pregnancy and fulfill her dream of a family to call her own. Another caring, compassionate, and capable soul offers to step in and carry her baby for her. And when that surrogate at the end of a challenging journey delivers a baby into the arms of its parents, she is absolutely thrilled to bring such joy to another human being. And those Intended Parents are deeply grateful.

To directly combat the rhetoric, let me assure you that any woman in dire financial need would never pass the comprehensive screening tests all reputable surrogacy agencies perform before contracting with a potential surrogate. Medical history, mental health history, financial history, motivations and background checks are all part of the in depth review performed on surrogate candidates, specifically to ensure that only the most stable, capable, strong and compassionate women are chosen to carry a baby for someone else.

If we continue to falsely accuse surrogacy of exploiting women and their bodies, we will never get the necessary legislation in place across our nation to protect the women and couples for whom surrogacy is a life affirming opportunity.

I have met hundreds of surrogates over the years and never met one who ever felt exploited or had any regrets about carrying a baby for another couple. None of them were in dire financial need. They were all in stable financial situations, but for some of them their compensation allowed them the freedom to start a college fund or perhaps a down payment on a house. But most importantly their surrogacies allowed them the opportunity to make a difference for someone else and to feel a sense of accomplishment for bringing joy to another’s life.

I carried a baby girl as a gestational surrogate for my cousin and his wife and delivered her into their arms twelve years ago. It was the most fulfilling moment of my life.

Surrogacy is a truly great thing. And it is good. Don’t let somebody else tell you differently.

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