Updated: Oct 10, 2022
As a surrogate, what does it mean to have a “successful” journey?
Delivering a baby for a family who has long dreamed about that baby is just one of many factors that makes up a successful surrogacy journey. Successful surrogacy is about the holistic experience for both parents and surrogates and minimizing risks of adverse outcomes.
This short blog will discuss the controllable variables we have seen as being most important to a surrogate having an ideal experience.
You are treated as an individual.
In a process that can become very standardized and transactional in big agencies, we believe this is not a one-size-fits-all journey. Everyone will have different needs. So, while we streamline the parts of the process that make the journey easier for surrogates, there are many parts of the process that are flexible in order to accommodate the varying needs of each client.
All bills and payments are paid in full and on time.
Surrogates incur a significant amount of expenses during the surrogacy process. You need to be confident that there will be enough money from the parents in the escrow account to pay all expenses and fees in full and on time. Your agency typically sets the rules for how much money the parents put in escrow at what points in the journey, so it’s important to review those rules carefully to ensure they keep you secure.
These terms will also be reviewed with your attorney in detail during the contract phase to be sure those terms are appropriately reflected in your surrogacy contract.
Attentive, responsive coordination and support.
Each process inevitably has its twists and turns. You want to feel confident your agency is always attentive to the individual needs of your journey, is available whenever needed, and is motivated to quickly problem-solve through any situation that arises.
It is also ideal to minimize the number of agency contacts you have – when you have a question, you don’t want to have to scroll through email just to remember who you are working with at that particular moment! You want to know who you are working with, and more importantly, that they know you.
Administrative tasks are minimized.
Surrogacy is filled with administrative tasks, many of which can be tedious. From scheduling monitoring appointments leading up to transfer and getting those results sent to the fertility clinic, to booking travel, to paying attention to the many time-triggered tasks and payments in your surrogacy contract. Many agencies become more hands-off after you match and have the embryo transfer, so administrative tasks can be left for you to monitor and/or complete on your own. If minimizing these is important to you, be sure to ask your agency what administrative support you will get at each stage.
Avoidable surprises are avoided.
An agency’s ability to do this typically can only be gained through significant experience, so be sure to ask questions about the experience of the owner of any agency you consider, in addition to the experience of the coordinator who will be supporting you.
Meaningful connection with the family you helped.
It is pretty universal that the parents who invest the time, emotional, and financial resources that surrogacy requires make devoted and loving parents. With that said, each agency will have different philosophies on which parents they accept into their program and whether they undergo any screening. While we believe any parent who wishes to parent should have the right to become a parent, we also view surrogacy as a human experience that is relationship-based. We therefore ask all of our parents and surrogates to commit to an open, trust-based, relational process with one another, which maximizes the chances of a meaningful, long-term connection between you.
If you would like to learn more about becoming a surrogate and how we help our surrogates have the most successful of surrogacy experiences, contact us and we would be privileged to support you through your research!