There are many misconceptions and myths surrounding surrogacy and working with a surrogate/gestational carrier. If you are in the fact finding stage, read on as we debunk common surrogacy myths and break down the facts.
Myth: Surrogacy is only for the wealthy or celebrities.
Busted: This myth exists because the cost of surrogacy is almost indeterminable. Surrogate fees and expenses vary substantially depending on several factors such as “Is the mother (intended parent) using her own eggs or will she need the help of an egg donor?” Are there agency fees or do they have a friend or family member willing to carry their baby? The cost of medical care and health insurance is also a huge factor to consider as there are some insurance carriers that exclude surrogacy, in which case the parents must purchase a policy that is specifically for surrogacy that costs about $30,000. However, there are some surrogate mothers who have excellent health insurance that does not limit or exclude surrogacy – in these cases, there is little or no cost to the parents for any maternity, labor or delivery of their baby. There are also select fertility centers that offer in-house financing, payment plans or cash discounts to assist their patients.
Myth: A woman will opt for surrogacy to save her figure or avoid pregnancy.
Busted: Surrogacy is a very emotional and expensive process for a woman to have a baby. A woman who typically chooses surrogacy after multiple failed attempts and methods to conceive and carry a baby herself. The decision to continue onto surrogacy is almost always a last resort. There is little to no truth to a woman going through surrogacy to keep their figure. Most women who want to be parents do not care about the temporary weight gain. Having a family is the most important aspect of their lives and our number one priority. Surrogacy is about one woman helping another woman enjoy parenthood, which has nothing to do with the mom to be concerned with her physical appearance.
Myth: The surrogate may try to take on parental custody of the child.
Busted: Most fertility clinics will request that both the intended parents and the surrogate and her partner/spouse undergo a psychological evaluation prior to entering into a surrogacy agreement. If this is not required, it is a good idea to consider it. Working with a reproductive law attorney will also be able to guide you on the state laws surrounding surrogacy and confirm if that particular state will recognize the intended parents for the child’s parentage. Although the surrogate will nurture your child throughout the pregnancy, surrogates and gestational carriers are aware from the onset that she will not parent or have legal parentage rights of the child.
Myth: I will have trouble bonding with my baby.
Busted: Bonding with the child after birth is something that many intended parents worry over leading up to the pregnancy. The bonding process begins after the child is born, not while in the womb. Once the child is born he/she is immediately handed over to the intended parents where that bond will begin to form. It is the ones who nurture and love on the child that secure the forever bond.