Surrogacy-The Commissioning Mother
Surrogacy-Two Mothers, One Father
As with any story, there are at least two sides, and surrogacy is no different. In surrogacy, one woman (called the host or surrogate mother) carries a child for another as the result of an agreement which is made before conception that the child should be handed over after birth. The couple wishing to have the child is called the commissioning couple.
There are many couples who desire children and, for any number of reasons, have not been successful in conception and/or carrying a pregnancy to term. Some have determined to adopt a baby to fill the gap in their lives for a child while other have decided to make one last effort for a child to be born through surrogacy. In straight surrogacy, the host mother uses her own eggs and is artificially inseminated with the sperm of the intended father. In this case, the baby has a biological connection to the surrogate mother. Host surrogacy or gestational surrogacy uses the eggs of the intended mother combined with the sperm of the intended father or a sperm donor. The embryo is then implanted in the host mother by in vitro fertilization. The surrogate mother provides the baby with a womb, but has no biological connection to the baby. Many couples prefer this method, even though it tends to be more difficult and costly to perform.
There Is More Than Legal Matters To Consider
There are not only legal implications to surrogacy, there are also emotional implications involved which deserve long, hard consideration before proceeding on the road to surrogate birth. It's a complex issue, to be sure. However, surrogacy offers a unique option for infertile women and it differs from adoption because it allows for a full or partial genetic line with the child. It also differs from donation because a pregnancy is not possible and surrogacy would be the only way for the couple to have a baby of their own that is genetically part of them.
Questions and considerations must be addressed before embarking upon this kind of journey. There are more people in the picture than a man and woman wanting to have a baby. After all, if a couple is infertile and unable to become pregnant, friends, family and colleagues will have some questions when a new baby arrives on the scene. How will these people be made aware of the decision? If there are already other children in the equation, either in the family of the commissioning couple or the surrogate family, how and what shall those children be told? Children need to be prepared beforehand.
Some Questions For The Intended Mother
The intended mother will have to be very honest about her feelings concerning the pregnancy and birth. If the surrogacy is a partial one, or straight surrogacy, how will she feel about another woman having her husband's baby? Will contact be maintained with the surrogate mother? Will the child grow up knowing who the surrogate mother is? If it is a gestational surrogacy, how will she feel about another woman carrying her baby? Will she cope well with living a pregnancy vicariously?
These and many more questions are important to consider and work through before entering into a contracted agreement with a surrogate mother. The rewards are huge, but the cost can be too.