Providing a childless couple with the chance to experience the thrill of parenthood is a tremendously selfless act. Surrogate mothers help to forge fresh beginnings and new families. But, it is not a job suited to everyone.
If you are considering becoming a surrogate mother, there are some important questions that you should ask yourself first.
Was pregnancy a positive experience for you?
While having a baby is a joyous occasion, the act of actually being “pregnant” is not always an enjoyable one. According to “Is Surrogate Motherhood Right For Me?,” the vast majority of women who choose to become surrogates say they loved being pregnant, and that pregnancy was an easy, wonderful experience for them.
In order to be considered as a surrogate mother, you have to have experienced at least one complication-free pregnancy and birth. And, remember, past successes do not guarantee you an easy surrogate pregnancy.
Are you comfortable disclosing very personal information?
Before becoming accepted as a surrogate mother, you will be asked to answer several questions regarding your personal history. “Becoming a Surrogate Mother: Is it Right for Me?,” says that some of these questions may include information about pregnancies, abortions, miscarriages, your psychological stability, periods of depression or mental illness, and any sexually transmitted diseases. You may also be asked to disclose genetic illnesses, bankruptcies, and drug or alcohol abuse as well. If you are not comfortable responding to questions of this nature in a frank manner, becoming a surrogate mother may not be for you.
Are you willing to partake in counseling during and after the surrogacy process?
It is impossible to foresee what emotions you will experience during and after your surrogate pregnancy. In fact, Dr. Philrecommends ongoing psychological counseling throughout the pregnancy and for at least two months after the birth.
Do you plan to seek legal counsel?
Never proceed with a surrogacy arrangement without first seeking the counsel of a lawyer. And, be sure to use a different lawyer than the couple for whom you plan to be a surrogate.
Surrogacy is not legal in every state and the laws pertaining to surrogacy vary greatly. A lawyer will be able to ensure that the surrogacy contract adheres to the law and protects your interests.
Do you have an adequate support system?
It is important to make sure that your family is onboard with your decision to become a surrogate. After all, they will be required to make sacrifices over the next nine months and beyond.
Is your husband comfortable with you carrying someone else’s child? Is he willing to provide you with both emotional and physical support during your surrogacy? Is he willing to be tested for STD’s or abstain from sex during the timeframe required by your surrogacy agreement?
Are your children comfortable with the idea of mommy being pregnant with a child who will not be their brother or sister? It is important that your decision to become a surrogate does cause not friction within your own family.
Will you be able to give up the child you have carried for 9 months?
One of the most important questions you can ask yourself, is whether or not you will be emotionally prepared to relinquish the child you have carried. If you have any doubts that you will be able to do this, this is likely not the right choice for you.
What others questions should a prospective surrogate mother ask herself before proceeding?