Surrogacy is an incredibly rewarding experience that forever changes another family’s life for the better and creates lifelong relationships between surrogates and the family they help. It is important that surrogates are fully informed as they undertake this journey, and it is normal for those women to consider surrogacy pros and cons before deciding whether to move ahead.
This list outlines the pros and cons of becoming a surrogate and what protections are in place to minimize any risk to the incredible women who decide to be a surrogate.
The Pros of Being a Surrogate
By becoming a surrogate, you are making the world a better place by creating a loving family that wouldn’t otherwise exist. The parents who undertake surrogacy to have a child are among the most loving and devoted parents.
In addition to the pro of giving the invaluable gift of a child to another family, there are many benefits of being a surrogate for the surrogate and her family:
- Pride and fulfillment in helping others
- Becoming a part of a surrogacy community with other strong, caring women
- Experiencing pregnancy again, even if you are done having your own children
- Compensation that helps you and your family achieve your financial goals
- Having the benefit of expert guidance and legal protections
Surrogacy is an Invaluable, Selfless Gift
Our surrogacy community is defined by amazing women who genuinely want to help another family overcome their infertility struggles. Despite the financial compensation you rightfully receive, becoming a surrogate primarily reflects your altruistic and caring nature. If surrogacy is right for you, it is a decision you and your family should be extremely proud of!
Surrogates are Supported by Other Surrogates
Only another surrogate can truly understand all that you will experience throughout your surrogacy journey. We have an incredibly dedicated team of professionals who will guide you through each step of your process, including five past IARC surrogates who are available to support you throughout.
Even more importantly, we have a very active online group of over 200 IARC surrogates who share their experiences and support each other daily. Surrogacy will give you the opportunity to create many new friendships, both with your intended parents and fellow surros.
Learn about our surro community or browse pictures from past surrogate socials to see what it’s like
Surrogates Get to Experience Pregnancy Again
Most surrogates love being pregnant but may now be finished with their own family. One of the positive things about surrogacy is that it allows you to experience pregnancy again and share that pregnancy with the intended parents, who will be excited to hear all of the updates you are willing to share (and who will be doing all those late-night feedings after the baby is born ;))!
Surrogates are Compensated
Surrogacy is a significant time, energy, and physical commitment. There is no doubt that surrogates deserve compensation for all they dedicate to this process, having the ability to then use that compensation to pay off debts or achieve their family’s future financial goals.
IARC surrogates choose their own compensation based on what each feels is fair for their commitment to this process. Learn more about compensation for surrogates with IARC Surrogacy.
Surrogates are Protected
When working with an expert, reputable surrogacy agency, there are multiple protections built into the process for surrogates. Those protections include a comprehensive contract between the intended parents and surrogate.
This contract ensures that the parents are obligated to cover all of the surrogate’s costs and will put money in escrow in advance of pregnancy so it’s available when due. It also ensures that they will take full responsibility for the child upon birth.
You should have independent legal counsel (paid for by the parents) when reviewing and negotiating that contract to be sure that your best interests are looked out for by someone who is only representing your needs. You should also have detailed information about the intended parents before deciding whether it is a good match so you feel confident you are taking on this commitment for the right family.
The Cons of Being a Surrogate
While surrogacy is rewarding in many ways, it is a commitment that should be taken on only after careful considerations of the potential disadvantages of being a surrogate. It is important that the potential consequences of surrogacy are outweighed by the benefits. That decision will be very personal and individual to you and your family.
The potential disadvantages of surrogacy to be considered are:
- Surrogacy can be physically and emotionally challenging
- Surrogacy takes time
- Surrogacy involves the normal risks of pregnancy
- Travel is required in most cases
- Some people have a negative perception of surrogacy
Surrogacy Can Be Physically and Emotionally Challenging
Having experienced pregnancy, surrogates will be able to anticipate the normal physical demands of pregnancy when deciding to become a surrogate. However, IVF treatments require the additional physical commitment of injection medications to prepare the uterine lining before the embryo is implanted and to support the pregnancy in the first trimester.
Many surrogates designate a support person to help with the injections or are able to do the injections themselves. Surrogates generally are also emotionally invested in reaching a successful outcome for their intended parents. With today’s technologies, the majority of cases achieve success easily.
With that said, success is not fully within anyone’s control and is subject to mother nature. It’s important everyone is prepared for those potential unsuccessful outcomes, and IARC is here to support all of the parties when those outcomes do happen.
Surrogacy Takes Time
Surrogacy is not a fast process. In order for everyone to be safe and secure throughout their journey, it is important that certain steps are followed in a particular order. The process starts prescreening so that you are fully educated prior to starting and also feel confident you are medically and psychologically approved to move forward and find your match.
After you match, you and the intended parents will enter into a contract together and you will visit the fertility clinic for final medical approval prior to the embryo transfer being scheduled. On average, those steps take about 6-9 months before attempting pregnancy.
Surrogacy Involves the Normal Risks of Pregnancy
Surrogates are required to have a normal, uncomplicated pregnancy history in order to reduce the health risks of surrogacy and the risk of complications in the surrogate pregnancy. However, each pregnancy carries the normal risks of pregnancy and childbirth.
It is important that you speak with your doctor about these risks prior to moving forward so you can feel confident that you are…
- …healthy to proceed with another pregnancy
- …that the pregnancy will not involve any unreasonable risk to your health
- …and that you are comfortable with those normal medical risks associated with pregnancy.
Travel is Required in Most Cases
For some, the requirement to travel may be among the pros of surrogacy, and for others, this may be a con. The intended parents’ selection of their fertility clinic is based on multiple factors, with the most important factors being high success rates and reasonable cost. Intended parents, therefore, look nationwide to find the best option, and the clinics IARC parents work with most often are highly reputable with excellent success rates.
The intended parents’ chosen clinic is generally not local to the surrogate. Travel will require a one-day trip for final medical approval and then a 3-5 day trip for each embryo transfer. Surrogates have a travel companion for the first transfer and may request a companion for other trips during contract negotiations if they are anxious travelers or feel they need that support.
Some Have a Negative Perception of Surrogacy
Our goal here at IARC Surrogacy is to spread our amazing surrogacy stories far and wide so that these negative misperceptions are eventually eliminated! Surrogacy is an extremely important, beautiful family-building option that is safe for all parties involved when it is done correctly.
As an IARC surrogate, you will be educated in order to be able to explain the surrogacy process to others to help them better understand what a positive family-building option this is. Despite this, some people will not understand.
For most surrogates, there is a small group of supporters they rely on who must understand and support the process, while then being able to ignore others who may have a negative opinion about surrogacy but whose opinion is not important!
Interested in learning more about becoming a surrogate?
Becoming a surrogate is an incredibly important decision. We want all of our IARC surrogates to be fully educated and aware of the potential challenges they may face throughout their surrogacy journey before deciding to move ahead.
We hope to have shown that the cons of surrogacy are really just challenges that can be overcome! If you are a woman who feels that the physical, emotional, and time commitment of surrogacy are worth it to help others have the child they have long dreamed of, please contact us to learn more about your first steps.
We look forward to welcoming you into our caring, supportive surrogacy community as you give this invaluable gift to another family while also financially benefiting your own family for your time and commitment in this process.
Thank you for considering doing something so generous and selfless – and for considering IARC Surrogacy! It is our very sincere privilege to walk this journey with you and your future intended parents.