If you decide to become a surrogate mother for a friend, a family member or any other family, there are some important aspects that you need to know about first.
There are people for whom the only way to find a biological child is to seek help from a surrogate mother. These are single parents, representatives of LGBT communities and couples who have struggled with maternity for many years. Such people can ask for help from a surrogacy motherhood agency or try to find a surrogate mother on their own. This role can be also fulfilled by a friend or a relative.
If you are asked to become a surrogate mother for friends or family members, our article is for you.
To become a surrogate mother for a friend or family member is an important and very serious decision. There are important points that you must take into account before you agree to perform this noble and invaluable mission.
Becoming a surrogate mother for the child of your friend, brother or other family member or anny other person or family, remember that this is a complex process that can affect your relationships for a long time if it is not enough to approach him responsibly. Since surrogacy motherhood is connected with a lot of legal, emotional and financial problems, it is best to work with a professional agency or surrogacy motherhood specialists to be sure that the process is proceeding as correctly and smoothly as possible.
You should discuss all the issues in detail with a surrogate mother and a person asking you to become a surrogate mother before taking this responsible decision. To help you understand the details of the surrogate motherhood process, we have prepared answers to some of the questions that most often arise from women who were asked by close people to become a surrogate mother for their child.
- Can I become a surrogate mother for my friend (sister, brother, cousin, etc.)?
While the laws of surrogacy motherhood vary from state to state, you can become a surrogate mother for the child of a friend or member of your family. Despite the fact that you will be hatching a new canoe of your family or child for friends, legally you will not be his mother. Therefore, do not worry about any legal relationship with a future child. The decision to become a surrogate mother for a child of a family member or friend not only provides a lifelong gift of motherhood, but also can make the path to finding a long-awaited baby less tense and painful, given absolute confidence in its choice and love and understanding between the surrogate mother and future biological parents.
- How to become a surrogate mother for a child of a family member or friend or a couples or singles found by the agency?
The process of surrogate motherhood is long, even if you are well acquainted with biological parents. Of course, you do not have to wait for the agency to pick up the parents, whose requirements you most closely match and that match yours. However, to ensure the success of the program, we strongly recommend the following steps with the help of specialists in surrogate motherhood.
The first step on the way to surrogate motherhood is to decide whether the surrogacy motherhood program is suitable for both sides of this complicated process.
You need to realize your emotions and feelings when deciding to become a surrogate mother for a child for a family. Remember that you need to bear and give birth to a child who is not yours biologically and will never be yours factually as well. Consider whether you are ready to undergo all medical and legal procedures related to participation in the surrogate motherhood program.
You may think that this will be easy, moreover, if you know the future genetic parents very well, but the process of surrogacy motherhood can test out your relationships from the most unexpected perspective. For example, if you are carrying a child for a brother or sister, you may experience childhood feelings of rivalry. While your sister will be infinitely grateful to you for carrying her baby, she can also feel acute jealousy because of incapability to do it yourself. In addition, you will need to clearly define your relationships with friends or family members as new ones that will arise when you are carryring their biological child. You do not have to do anything under pressure and against your will, just because you have close relationships with biological parents.
Before beginning the medical preparation for the surrogacy motherhood process for friends or family members, you should specify with your lawyer all the legal details of the surrogacy motherhood program. Work with him on a contract to make sure that all the legal aspects are taken into account. In such a contract, all financial compensations, possible risks of pregnancy and the procedure for establishing the rights to the child by biological parents must be stipulated. It is a mistake to think that a legal contract is not needed if you know the genetic parents well. It is important that each side of the process is protected, and their acts are legal.
After signing the contract, you enter the process of extracorporeal fertilization and embryo transfer. As a surrogate mother, you will receive certain medical treatment even before the embryo is transferred to the cavity of your uterus. As soon as this happens, most likely, within a few days you will need rest. After embryos are implanted and palpitations are determined, your pregnancy will be the same as if it came naturally not in the surrogacy program (prenatal care, hospital plans, etc.). Depending on the laws of the state, genetic parents may begin to issue appropriate documents on recognition of them as biological parents of the child during the second or third trimester.
After the birth of the child, you and the biological parents will be able to return home, maintaining new strong bonds which will connect you to the end of life. Surrogacy motherhood for a friend or family member creates an incredibly strong relationship. It is likely that the child will know what role you played in his appearance and probably will remain with you in close contact. This will depend on the mode of relations the parents will choose to have with the child.
- If I already know for whom I will be carrying a child as a surrogate mother, why should we work with a surrogacy motherhood agency?
Since there are many issues and problems associated with surrogacy motherhood for a child of a family member or friend or even any other people, it is very important that you work with someone who is an expert in surrogacy motherhood procedures.
The surrogacy motherhood agency can provide a service for assessing the psychological and physical preparation of you and biological parents for participation in the surrogate motherhood program, as well as being a coordinator between you and third-party organizations. Working with hospitals, insurance companies, lawyers takes a lot of time and effort, so the surrogacy motherhood agency can be extremely useful.
- I do not feel comfortable taking money from my friend or relative. Can I not take therefore financial compensation?
One of the advantages of choosing a friend or relative as a surrogate mother for your child is to reduce the cost of the surrogate motherhood program for potential parents. They do not have to pay for the agency's services for selection of a surrogate mother. If you are ready to become a surrogate mother on an altruistic basis for their child, you will greatly save their budget, because parents will have to pay significantly less or not pay at all.
However, although initially such financial relations may seem like a good idea, it is necessary to consider some problems that may arise in the case of altruistic surrogate motherhood. Gestational surrogacy cost is pretty high in the world. Such arrangements are absolutely legal and, in some cases, can work well, however, such a model of material relations does not allow biological parents to at least somehow compensate your invaluable service and form a sense of unpaid debt. This can cause a feeling of discomfort and guilt in front of you and harm your relationships.
This is not the only negative point. Even if you did not think so at the beginning of the surrogacy motherhood program, you as a surrogate mother for a friend's child or a family member, any other person, can have a feeling of resentment for being used for free. Carrying out someone's child is not an easy task. If you do not feel grateful for this priceless gift, your relationship will be on the card.
To avoid these difficult and painful situations, we strongly recommend that you agree to any compensation for participating in the process as a surrogate mother for the child of your friend or relative even. It is quite understandable that you feel embarrassed when you receive money from a friend or family member for becoming a surrogate mother for their child, but if you agree with the compensation that will suit both of you, it will bring positive benefits in the long run.
To exclude the embarrassment in the relationship when discussing the amount of compensation, we recommend that you ask for help in this matter to lawyers who will agree on compensation on your behalf and facilitate your communication with friends or family members directly about the money.
- What awaits me if I decide to become a surrogate mother for a friend or family member?
Being a surrogate mother is not easy in itself. If we add to this long-established relationship, things can become even more complicated. Your relationship with biological parents will change no matter what. If earlier you were just friends or relatives, now because of the joint way of surrogate motherhood you will have an incredibly deep and strong connection that you will carry through your whole life.
Know that if you become a surrogate mother for your brother's or sister's child, childhood feelings of rivalry, jealousy and envy, warmed by thoughts of who is actually carrying the child, may flare up again. It is important to be patient and understanding all the way to surrogacy motherhood. Many emotions appear against the background of stress and suppress the desire to be parents.
You also need to identify clear boundaries between you and the genetic parents. Despite the fact that you know them as your relatives or friends, they cannot participate in all aspects of your life while you are pregnant. For a healthy pregnancy and good relationships with the child's biological parents, you need to create your own space. Communication is key in this process. You should feel free to inform the biological parents about your health and ask them for help. Even if you are uncomfortable discussing your problems with someone, it is necessary to maintain good relations with your friend or family members after the termination of the surrogate motherhood program.
One way to know that your thoughts are heard is to work with a surrogate motherhood agency that will provide you with an experienced social worker or consultant to facilitate contact between you and potential parents, especially if you are struggling with disagreements or psycho-emotional problems. Such a surrogate mother can help you with all the emotional aspects of your participation in the surrogacy motherhood program (either through your agency or refer you to a third-party specialist) and, if necessary, intervene in the relationship between you and potential surrogate parents.
If your friend, brother or sister wants you to be a surrogate mother for their child, keep in mind that you always have the opportunity to say "no." You should never agree to a surrogate motherhood if you feel absolutely ready, regardless of what kind of relationship you had with your biological parents before.
If you think you are ready to be a surrogate mother for a child of a family member or friend, contact the surrogate motherhood agency and carefully discuss all aspects of this process with potential parents before moving forward. Regardless of how long or difficult the process may be, remember that eventually you will give your friend or family member one of the most valuable gifts and that you will have even closer relationships with them than ever before.