What should we look for in a surrogate?

  1. avatar
    Claudia Richardson

    Hi, we are a married couple from Cape Town, in South Africa, but travel very often to the US so we are looking for a surrogate mother there. We are thinking of many characteristics that would describe the ideal profile of our surrogate, but for example she being a postgraduate will make all the difference. Anyhow, we know there are some “fundamental” rules that one should follow when going for this fertility treatment, so what’s your opinion? What are the dos and don’ts?

    February 15, 2016 at 8:31 am
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  2. avatar
    Sandra F.
    Fertility counselor

    Dear Claudia,

    thanks for getting involved. Well, the truth is, the general profile of surrogate women corresponds to caring, responsible, family-oriented, generous women. All in all, they do this because they wish to give others the gift of family. Besides, they are conscientious women who truly wish to participate in the process of surrogacy.

    Be it as it may, you should keep in mind the surrogate’s general state of health, pregnancy history and lifestyle above all. Apart from that, common aspects that every intended parents should take into account when choosing their gestational carrier are:

    – Diet: How willing the prospective surrogate is to follow certain guidelines as to what she should eat and what not is a crucial aspect. Remember that the diet a woman follows during pregnancy may have an impact on the unborn child’s health.
    – Interaction: While some intended parents have a preference for being fully involved in their surrogate’s life during and after pregnancy via phone calls, Skype, appointments, etc., others do not feel this need to stay in contact that much with their surrogate.
    – Invasive procedures: Is your surrogate comfortable with surgery and other invasive procedures that may become necessary throughout the pregnancy, such as amniocentesis?
    – Pregnancy termination or reduction: Multifetal pregnancy reduction (MFPR) is a procedure used to reduce the number of fetuses in cases of multiple births. On the other hand, pregnancy termination or embryonic arrest is another aspect to keep in mind before signing the contract. Do you and the surrogate agree on what to do if any of these issues arose?
    – If she is single: In case your surrogate is not married, another aspect to take into consideration is whether she is planning to date someone while she is carrying your baby.
    – Husband’s or partner’s opinion: Conversely to the previous aspect, in case the surrogate is married or in a relationship, the opinion of her partner must be fully taken into account in order to prevent the occurrence of any problem related to paternity rights, for instance.
    – Responsiveness: During the entire process, surrogates are sent various requests from the agency/clinic. In this sense, my advice is that you look for a responsible woman; otherwise, she may not be committed to follow the schedule.
    – Support system: By “support system” I mean whether she can count on the support of her close relatives, husband/partner, friends, etc. It is essential to evaluate what will be the support system the surrogate will have during the surrogacy process鈥攊s she going to be supported by a partner, a parent, a roommate…?

    Of course, intended parents may look for different characteristics in a surrogate, according to your special requirements, situation, geographic location, etc. You can always share your ideas and/or concerns with your agency or clinic in order to select that surrogate that best fits your needs 馃檪

    I hope I have been able to help,

    Regards

    February 25, 2016 at 11:04 am
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  3. avatar
    Gwineth Black

    Although I am no professional in it and we have used the services of the fertility clinic in order to get the surrogate. I know that you for 100% should look for a woman who doesn’t smoke or drink because it affects the baby. If you will use the traditional surrogacy (as I assume you will or do now) that will mean that your surrogate should correspond all of your requirements (she may be smart or beautiful). For me it’d be better if the surrogate has had her own babies previously or even if she has been a surrogate for someone in the past. She has to be not older than 30 years, that’s the rules of my clinic. She has also to be kind and calm. We unfortunately had the chance to meet ours only when she was on her 12 week and we were surprised that she was so great of a person. I gave her little presents, because as for me it is really important that she is happy and joyful.
    That鈥檚 my advices, maybe for some of you it will sound like the words of the amateur but I am not a professional.
    Good luck with the treatment!

    October 6, 2016 at 9:05 am
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    • avatar
      Sandra F.
      Fertility counselor

      Thank you very much for your comments, Gwineth! I’m pretty sure it’ll be highly reassuring for many 馃槈

      October 6, 2016 at 9:09 am
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