My name is Dr. Mariam Kukunashvili, founder of New Life Network. Since founding our first branch, our global network of IVF clinics and egg donation and surrogacy agencies has had the absolute joy of being part of the stories of more than 7,000 families along their journeys to parenthood.
Many infertile couples have been going for surrogacy in order to have a genetically connected child. Surrogacy procedure is often taken by couples who have been tired of failed pregnancies through IVF procedure. This is the time when they remain most sensitive to become parents, and at the same time remain restless due to the previous failed experiences. It will not be too much to say that intended couples remain mentally vulnerable during this time as they have almost lost all of their energies, major part of their money and a lot of trusts.
While choosing surrogacy, it is important for intended parents to go through every clause and details of the surrogacy agency before signing up. As a matter of fact, intended couples look for a dependable shoulder during this time. They have the mental set up of a soldier lost in the battle and giving his final shot to recover from it. This is the best time for the surrogacy agencies to make them understand anything that they want. Intended couples remain far from rationality during this time and the only thing they are looking for now is “dependency”. It is when some cheats win them over with bunches of false promises.
There are several factors that surrogacy agencies tell lies on to the intended parents. With the growing numbers of surrogacy agencies in the fertility business these days, it is difficult to understand which one is genuine and which one is not. Surrogacy agencies are growing like mushrooms in many nations. Most of them lack the necessary accreditations and documentation. They can fool the intended parents in the following ways:
By Offering Low Prices
It is important to be rational while choosing a surrogacy plan for yourself. Price is one of the biggest factors that we understand. But, it should not be the prime criteria to be dealt with. You should be more careful regarding the things the surrogacy agency is offering you at a low cost. Think rationally that why and how they can offer a low price to you on certain things.
By Providing False Documents
Documentation is a major part of the surrogacy litigations. Unless you are given proper documents of the contract, egg/sperm/embryo donation papers and birth certificate of the baby with you and your partner’s name as the legal guardian, the surrogacy procedure is not considered to be completed. Hence, you have to be very careful regarding every bit of paper that you have been issued by the surrogacy agency. Also, do not forget to verify each of them by concerned authorized departments.
Non-Genetic Ties between the Child and the Intended Parents
There have been many cases where surrogacy agencies do not fulfill the commitment of completing the surrogacy procedure with sperm/egg/embryo taken from the intended parents. Intended parents are fooled by given other sperm/egg/embryo even after promising to use it from them. Intended parents have to be conscious and learned about the procedure details to catch such malefic practices.
Not Taking Care of the Surrogates
Surrogacy agencies that grow up here and there do have proper infrastructure for the surrogate mothers. They are often neglected and not given the required medical attention from time to time. Also, they are denied the promised reimbursements for food and shelter. This has major impacts on the gestation and the health of both the child and the surrogate mother. Surrogate mothers are even reported to intoxicate themselves in the absence of a proper tracking system. They are left on their own and, hence, many of them do not duly follow the contract.
What Are The Recommended Remedies To Avoid Such Risks?
The only way to avoid these risks of cheats, frauds, and scamsters is to keep your eyes and ears open as you go for the surrogacy program. Evaluate every aspect of the surrogacy contract and think rationally. Do not go for saving a little money. Remember, that would cost you more in long run.
The easiest way to avoid such risks is to choose a reputed surrogacy agency that has been operating with for quite some time. The Internet is all open for you to read the testimonials left by previous intended parents who by now are successful parents.
A lot is been said and written about Biotex.Com, one of the renowned surrogacy agencies in Ukraine, in the past few days. The center is in the news for all wrong reasons. Let us find out what exactly has the center done and what consequences is the center facing.
How Biotex Gained Popularity
Biotex.com was popular in Ukraine for providing all-inclusive unlimited packages with affordable prices and a decent level of services in surrogacy. It is, in fact, regarded as an IVF giant in Ukraine. However, the General Prosecutor and Ukraine government have lately shut down Biotex as they were dealing with baby trafficking, violating Ukraine laws. Yes, you have read it right; the center has been accused of violating the national laws and operating illegally.
Vital Features of Biotex
We do not deny the fact that Biotex has some of the highly professional doctors and reproductive specialists. They are well equipped with all modern apparatus that any high-class professionals in Ukraine should have. They offer affordable packages that include accommodation and food! This is a convenient feature that attracts intended parents from all over the world.
The all-inclusive packages for surrogacy programs operated by Biotex in Ukraine take care of all the possible stress, complicated, and possible issues on behalf of the intended parents.
With all the conveniences and facilities offered by Biotex, sadly, the center has not been able to maintain the level of services as high as before anymore. The center has lost all its trust as it has entered into legal troubles of a dark accusation of child trafficking.
Bitter Side of Biotex
Biotex was previously in news for its lack of attention to every couple. The existing managers of the IVF center were not able to handle much of the workload and were not able to give enough time and attention to each client. They were too tired to communicate promptly with the clients. On many occasions, new clients have not been answered promptly and have been sent in queue unnecessarily. This is not at all acceptable by the intended parents when they were ready to spend big money on the packages.
Biotex has failed to cooperate with the intended parents and meet their commitments. The head management has failed to guide the Biotex Team in the right direction. Unfortunately, the expectations of the intended parents have not been fulfilled by the Biotex management.
Ever since the news of child trafficking has broken, the pregnant surrogate mothers have left the centers and have hidden themselves in the fear of litigations. The paperwork and documentation are all under question. Police have raided the center and ceased every legal document related to the procedure followed at Biotex. The center has been accused of mixing eggs, committing twins to the intended parents, using the wrong egg donors, improper genetic testing of the eggs, and many more.
Cause of Concern for the Intended Parents
This is a vital cause of concern for the intended parents as no one would like to enter into an illegal organization for a generous cause. No one is interested in entering legal hassles with the documentation of their child. Every intended parent has their own journey of stress and tension. They have all come a long way of struggle before choosing IVF and surrogacy. As a matter of fact, surrogacy laws are sensitive and involve a lot of responsibility for all the parties involved in the process. It is not only the legal authority’s responsibility to keep a track on the illegal operations going on in the name of a vital surrogacy center, but also the duty of intended parents to not let any illegal organization grow into the lane of crimes like child trafficking.
IVF in Ukraine
The number of fertility clinics in this country is limited to 19 only but they are all great clinics in terms of quality service. IVF surrogacy is legal and aged women too have an opportunity to become pregnant as egg donation service is available too.
The country has a fantastic infertility treatment infrastructure pulling a substantial proportion of fertility tourists every year. The specialists in modern Ukrainian clinics are usually trained in Europe and the US. They usually hold specialized training certificates in IVF from Ukraine as well as abroad. The important need of the hour is the true awareness of the intended parents in choosing the right IVF clinic for themselves.
We have emphasized in many of our blogs about the ethical approach of various fertility clinics operating globally. We have constantly updated our readers with the unethical practices followed by various reputed fertility clinics.
It is important for intended parents to understand the importance of ethics in this treatment. There are many fertility clinics that do not follow the current guidelines and principles of the treatment and intended parents have to suffer drastically because of that.
Egg donation is one of the major elements of an IVF cycle. Intended parents prefer to have an egg Donor of their own choice. It is important for them to have an egg Donor matching with their expectation. They emphasize the fact that the egg Donor should have similar attributes that they have and prefer. During this quest, intended parents put up a lot of effort in finding the right egg Donor for them.
There have been shocking reports from much-reputed fertility clinics that the eggs from the chosen egg donor have been shuffled with others with immensely wrong intention. This is a very unethical practice by any fertility clinic to actually cheat intended parents who have trusted them with all their emotions and money.
It is not always possible for the intended parents to keep a track on the eggs chosen by the fertility experts during their IVF cycle. Even if they are smart enough to locate the eggs they have contributed, the people into the business are smarter than them to forge them. There are a number of stages where the fertility clinic maintains privacy and not allow the intended parents to confront them in that section. This is where they can shuffle the good quality eggs and simply put an excuse to the intended parents.
What should an intended parent do?
Awareness is the key to save you from any dishonesty in the fertility treatment. You have to be very aware of the rules and regulations followed at the fertility clinic that you are associated with. You have to remain focused at every meeting session with the doctors, expert, and legal manager of the clinic.
This will help you to locate flaws in their approach if there are any signs of dishonesty in them.
Apart from this, you can always include the clause of DNA matching test with the egg Donor and the baby born out of the IVF treatment in the contract that you sign with the clinic. This is a vital point that will restrict the clinic from being dishonest with the egg transfer.
However, it is always important for the intended parents to research well before registering themselves for any fertility treatment. It is important not only because there are a lot of emotions involved in it but there is a risk of big money associated with the entire procedure as well. You have to do your homework well and know about the reputation of any fertility clinic that you are on for a consideration. Read about the patient testimonials left by previous intended parents to know about real feedback about them. In case testimonials are not available on their website; you can always ask the authorities to provide you with testimonials of previous intended parents. This will help you evaluate them better and come to a concrete conclusion.
At NewLife, we believe in complete transparency in every section of the procedure. We include every detail in the concept that we sign with the intended parents. Our support staffs are always there to explain every clause to the intended parents before they make their signatures on the contract. Our legal assistant team is neutral and satisfied every minor query of the intended parent. Not only at the time of initiating the procedure, have we committed to communicating with the intended parents at every point of the treatment procedure.
Menopause means the end of the menstrual cycle. It is diagnosed after going 12 consecutive months without a period. Menopause does not come at a concrete age, it is individual and will usually happen in 40s or 50s. The age at which menopause comes can be genetical. Women who have a family history of early menopause, will most likely experience it earlier too.
Even though menopause is very natural, it may come with symptoms and complications that interfere with everyday life and need to be relieved.
Perimenopause is the period before the Menopause – it lasts before the menopause begins. Perimenopause is a natural transition to menopause and will usually start several years before the menopause when the estrogen production slowly starts to decrease. It can start even in 30s or 40s. In the last 1 -2 years of perimenopause the estrogen levels fall even more faster and it is exactly when women will start to experience symptoms of menopause.
The perimenopausal symptoms, leading to menopause include:
● Irregular menstrual periods
● Dryness in the vagina
● Sweating at night
● Mood swings
● Metabolic problems
● Hair Loss
● Drier skin
During perimenopause, it is very common to skip periods. Some women may skip it for more than a month but will get it back for several more months. The returned periods will usually be shorter than before.
A common question regarding the perimenopause is if it is possible to get pregnant during it. The answer is yes. There is definitely a drop in fertility but this does not exclude the chances.
Menopause, as already said is a natural process that is the result of a decline in the reproductive hormones. As woman ages, estrogen as well as progesterone production and levels drop. These hormones regulate menstrual cycle and with their decline, ovaries gradually stop to produce eggs. This whole process leads to the end of periods.
Menopause may not always come naturally. It can also be the result of chemotherapy, radiation therapy, primary ovarian insufficiency or hysterectomy.
Even though menopause itself does not need a special treatment, it is a huge change in the body and the decline of two very important hormones can increase the risk of certain medical conditions. Some women may face inability to contain urine, cardiovascular diseases, osteoporosis. A number of women will also gain weight unexpectedly. Dryness in the vaginal area lowers the libido and makes sexual experiences more problematic rather than pleasant.
For these reasons, it is recommended to consult with the doctor on regular basis an target the concrete issues that make everyday life problematic. The symptoms may need to be relieved either during perimenopause or after diagnosing menopause. Doctor may recommend taking antidepressants for handling mood swings, hormone therapy for relieving hot flashes, vaginal estrogen for relieving dryness and so on.
Smoking is known to accelerate menopause and on average, smokers will get it 1-2 years earlier than the non-smokers.
Irregular periods are normal during perimenopause, however, they are supposed to get shorter and lighter. Consider contacting the doctor immediately if the bleeding in the perimenopausal period gets too heavy, lasts longer than 7 days or occurs between the menstruations. This could mean that there are complications that need to be addressed and treated by the doctor.
IVF is a complex treatment where not all of the cycles are successful. After several unsuccessful IVF attempts, intended parents often ask about alternative treatment techniques and endometrial scratching is one of them.
What is Endometrial Scratching?
The inner side of the uterus is lined by the endometrium. One of the most crucial parts of pregnancy is implantation – the process when fertilized egg attaches itself to the endometrium. Pregnancy is at a very high risk unless this process completes successfully. This is why, when talking about infertility, miscarriages and other related subjects, implantation failure is always so commonly heard of.
Back to endometrial scratching, you may have guessed correctly that the procedure involves “damaging” the endometrium on purpose. The main idea is to make a small disruption in order to increase the chances of a successful implantation.
The performance itself is no different than an endometrial biopsy which is performed with the thin tube, known as pipelle catheter. The tube is inserted through the cervix in the uterus and will cause a disruption with gentle movements and rotation. Although the description may sound as if the process is painful, it is not true and no anaesthetic is required. However, doctors will usually recommend taking the pain medication to avoid post procedural discomfort.
The procedure is the best when performed about a week prior to the IVF cycle.
How can endometrial scratching support IVF?
Causing a disruption in order to achieve a better result can be confusing. The biological background and the process is still not very well investigated and the odds of increasing the chances of a pregnancy are not yet proven. The logic is however the following : any scratch or injury on the body provokes a repairing reaction. Endometrium too, is not an exception. Scratching is causing an inflammatory response and the healing process of the endometrium is thought to improve the environment for implantation.
When may endometrial scratching be recommended?
Not a lot of data and evidences are available around this subject. A huge, complex studies are ahead to firmly conclude that the endometrial scratching increases the chance of pregnancy and guarantees a higher success rate in IVF.
From the existing examples , the experience shows that endometrial scratching is not so effective in women with one failed IVF cycle. However, it has shown better results for patients who have had two or more failed IVF cycles.
The fertility specialists will unlikely recommend endometrial scratching to patients who are new to the treatment or have had implantation problems only once. Even though the procedure is not expensive, complicated or painful, it is still a discomfort. On the other hand, if there is a history of several failed IVF cycles, your fertility doctor may feel that endometrial scratching could be helpful in your case and is a procedure worth including in your treatment.
It is a generous and selfless act of a woman to act as a surrogate mother. She gives her mind, body, and soul to nurture the baby of another family. She dedicates her body conceive for a childless couple and give them a baby.
The noble cause of surrogacy has its own set of challenges. Surrogate mothers go through a lot of pain in the entire journey of carrying the gestation and delivering the baby successfully. There are a lot of precautions to be taken to make this journey a little easy for her. We have discussed tips for painless surrogacy journey for the surrogate mother through this article.
Mental Preparation for The Surrogacy Journey
It is important for the surrogate mother to go through certain counseling before the initiation of the program. This helps her prepare yourself for the job. These sessions are reality checks for the surrogate mothers who have an agreed to this only on affectionate grounds.
Legal Preparation for The Surrogacy Journey
Once you have decided to become a surrogate mother you have to consider the litigation related to it. Sit with your lawyer and discuss everything in detail with him. Hire him to represent you in the negotiation with the other parties.
Surrogacy laws are different in a different nation. As a surrogate mother, you must learn about the surrogacy litigation that you have to abide by. Remember that you are not going to have any guardianship over the baby. Prepare yourself accordingly and do not let any emotional wave disturb your professional commitment.
Make sure that you have mentioned that terms of terminating the pregnancy in case it is affecting your health. There can be undeniable possibilities of aborting the baby in case the surrogate mother’s health is at risk. The contract agreement should have the intended parents’ consent regarding search abortion. Your legal representation should be strong enough to establish your interests.
Preparing Yourself Medically
As you have decided to be a surrogate for a childless couple, you must accept the embryo in your uterus. There are risk and side effects related to the surrogacy procedure that you should be aware of. You must medically prepare yourself to support the embryo and develop it into pregnancy. Being a surrogate mother is a vital responsibility. You are not only lending your womb to the childless couple but are taking the entire responsibility for the baby’s health during the gestation period. If you take care of your medical preparation better, you can proceed towards a painless surrogacy.
Blood draws are done at the starting of the surrogacy journey to ascertain the health of the surrogate mother. This diagnosis is executed to evaluate your capacity to shelter and embryo for the entire duration of gestation. The diagnosis can bring some amount of discomfort in you as it uses a needle. You might have mild bruising at the site after the needle is removed. Cold compressions are effective in providing relief after such procedure.
Remember the fact that doctor attending you are working with the greatest motivation to save you from any unnecessary pain. They provide you with superior medical facilities without any delay. Surrogate mothers are treated with care and compassion by everyone in the medical clinics. You will get all of them along with a lot of love to ease your pain.
Now, this is one of the least pleasant aspects for the surrogate mother to prepare herself to receive the embryo. The surrogacy medications that she must take before receiving the embryo can alter her hormones. She can experience a little imbalance in her hormone level.
There are self-administered injections that the surrogate mother must take. These injections are to be taken thrice over the course of several weeks to prepare for the embryo transfer. The surrogate experiences discomfort related to such injections. There are many pain relievers to reduce the needle pain.
It is important for the surrogate mother to know about all pain-relieving medications beforehand. This will help her to get relief from extreme pain or discomfort at any point in time during the gestation.
Yoga and Meditation
Yoga and meditation are effective ways to combat all the discomfort originating in the body due to hormonal imbalances. Yoga prepares the body and makes it stress-free. It releases tension and comforts the surrogate mother. Meditation brings in positive energy into her and influences her spirit in a positive way.
Responsibilities of The Intended Parents and Medical Facilitator
It is very important for the intended parents to take care of the surrogate during her gestation. They should not forget the fact that the surrogate mother is providing them with a divine gift in the form of their baby. There should be cautious towards her in every phase of the surrogacy journey and provide all required medical facilities to her.
It can be really devastating for a couple to know that the embryo transfer did not turn out to be positive. It is difficult for them to accept the fact that they are healthy and perfect embryo could not get developed in the perfect uterus of the surrogate. As a matter of fact, this is a very normal thing to happen. We completely understand that the couple goes through shock, disbelief, and grief after the hear such a news.
It is important for the intended couple to understand the fact that things might not go as per plan all the time. There should be room for a human element and everything cannot be put on technology. Well, a failed transfer does not mean that the couple will never achieve pregnancy. They must remain calm, composed and carry a positive attitude.
Depression Communicated to The Surrogate Mother
If you as an intended parent will remain sad and disappointed due to the failed transfer, your surrogate might also feel guilty and down. She might distance herself from you as she is also going through a tough time. Of course, they are professionals but are humans too. They also feel bad about the fact that they have not been able to develop your embryo. hence, you must remain compassionate towards her and console her. Don’t let her think that you are blaming her in any way for the failed transfer. You must understand her emotions and maintain communication with her. If you are distancing yourself from the surrogate since you are not mentally well, that might unintentionally hurt her feelings.
You must remember that surrogate mothers are professionals and they follow every instruction from the doctor. If they get a silence from your side she might take it as an absence of trust in her.
You must understand the fact that a failed transfer is a normal element in this process. You might have learned this fact way before when you were researching on the subject. There can be unexplainable reasons behind such failure. Calm yourself down and prepare yourself for the next trial. You cannot forget the fact that you have come a long way ever since you have decided to bring home your baby through surrogacy. This process demands patience and perseverance.
The Journey from Childless Couple to Unintended Parent
As a childless couple, you have had your part of the struggle. You have walked a long way as you have decided to have a genetically connected baby. The journey of being a childless couple to an intended couple has a lot of struggle in it. You must see yourself as a warrior and not get defeated by any spirit. This journey involves you and the surrogate mother you have chosen. You must take her through along with your journey in similar spirit. This combination is going to lead you toward success. So, you must be careful about your reaction towards the failed embryo transfer as it is going to have severe consequences on the surrogate mother as well.
Learn from The Failure
Do not let depression to accompany you. Take this failure wholeheartedly and gain strength from it. You were aware of this possible failure before the beginning of the trial, weren’t you? So, this phase was pretty known to you. Accepting the feeling that you are going through will help you to make a new beginning. Do not let this small phase to break your confidence or spirit. You must focus on your goal and move towards it.
Yoga and Meditation Classes
Join yoga and meditation classes to balance your mind and body. These sessions will help you to prepare yourself better for your next attempt. It will also help you to stay positive and react better.
Grow Your Bond Stronger as A Couple
Spend time with each other and grow your bond stronger as a couple. You must be with each other all the while till you achieve your goal.
You have taken a major decision of having a baby through surrogacy and should trust your decision until your goal is achieved. We understand the fact that you are going through a severe emotional turmoil inside you. You can take help of the other intended parents who have had similar experiences before. There are groups in fertility clinics where you can interact with people going through similar experiences. This will help you to share your grief with them and learn from their experiences.
If it is being difficult for you to survive this phase, you can take help of the center coordinators. They will introduce you to the professional counselor they have, and you can have sessions with him. This is a very effective way to come out with all the negative thoughts and depressive feelings. You can prepare yourself to be stronger than before and go for your next attempt.
When it comes to PGD and PGS, there are a lot of experts around us. Our family, relatives, friend, colleagues, and acquaintances everyone seems to be an expert. Of course, you have your doctor as well to tell you about PGD And PGS. So, amongst all these “experts” around us, we gather a lot of wrong information about the subject and assume even more. Thus, it becomes difficult to distinguish between facts and fictions.
Several women research on their own to debunk all the misconceptions and contradictory advice. If you are facing infertility issues and experience failed conception, it is highly recommended to you to consult an expert in this field rather than depending on the myths and misconceptions.
Preimplantation genetic screening (PGS) and preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) are the most debatable and misunderstood subjects of infertility. These are screening methods to increase the chances of a healthy embryo implantation. PGS screens for the missing or extra copies of chromosomes. On the other hand, PGD screens for single-gene defects that might cause genetic disorders.
Here we have mentioned five common misconceptions about PGS and PGD testing:
1. PGS is for women who are at an advanced maternal age
It is a common belief that PGS is for all those women who have reached an advanced maternity age. As a matter of fact, women at an advanced Maternity age tend to suffer from infertility and require this treatment. However, we cannot deny the fact that women even in their young ages suffer from infertility issues and might require this screening. There is no certain age for a woman to suffer from infertility. They have the risk of having chromosomally abnormal embryos at every stage of their maternity age. So, it is not true that women at an advance maternity age only needs a PGS screening.
2. PGS Screening Is Only Done to Identify Chromosome Abnormalities
PGS screening is important for the couples suffering from chromosomal abnormalities. Apart from this fact, couples can go through PGS to detect and prepare themselves for Down’s syndrome. As a matter of fact, a couple experiencing multiple failed pregnancies or IVF transfers also needs a PGS screening to find out the real reason behind search failures. They can thus ascertain why their embryos either aren’t implanting or are resulting in early losses until after genetic testing. Couples experiencing unexplained infertility very much need the PGS screening to get the much-needed answers.
3. PGD Is Acting to Be God
Preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) is one controversy procedure. The process is applied in conjunction with in vitro fertilization (IVF) with an objective to detect genetic disorders in the gene. This is a proven method 2 find out early signs of genetic disorders. Because of this, many have termed this to be an act of being a God. However, the fact is that there can be hundreds of other reasons that can cause genetic disorder in the baby and cannot be detected through PGD. From preventative medications to C-sections and even to ventilators, there can be a lot many reasons for genetic disorders in a baby those might remain undiscovered in Preimplantation genetic diagnosis.
4. PGD Is Applied to Individual Carriers of Single-Gene Disorders
It is a common misconception that PGD is recommended to a couple who have had a family history of single-gene disorders like cystic fibrosis or sickle cell anemia. As a matter of fact, most couples are not at risk for single-gene disorders. Individuals may be carriers of four to six different genetic diseases but it is not necessary that their partner is also a carrier for the same genetic disease. It is important to know that, in the case of most single-gene disorders where PGD is recommended and applied, both parents need to be carriers for there to be a risk to the child.
5. Low-Grade Embryo Leads to Unsuccessful Pregnancy
When it comes to transfer, embryos are labeled as per its qualities and the best of the lot is picked. Embryos labeled as “low grade” also has the potential to lead to a successful pregnancy. The low-grade embryo does not have chromosome abnormalities. This is a common misconception that we must come out of. There is no necessary correlation between a low-quality egg and an egg with chromosomal abnormalities. Many couples conduct PGS screening on the low-quality eggs to detect the presence of chromosomal abnormalities in it. As we have discussed there is no connection of proven chromosomal abnormalities in a low-quality egg and it does not require a compulsory PCS screening.
We always emphasize the fact that when you are researching on a sensitive thing, you must consider the guidance of an expert. We mean a real expert and not everybody around you. You can read books on it, browse the Internet to read more about it and talk to a doctor about your queries. It is not wise to assume things and make the situation even more difficult for you.
As surrogacy agencies, we have a noble goal: to create life and help families grow. This requires that our bottom-line mission be to the health and wellness of families everywhere. This includes our surrogate mothers and their respective families.
There are some surrogacy agencies who do not treat their surrogate mothers with the care and respect they deserve. These agencies can be hotbeds for exploitation. We believe that women should not be seen as merely “wombs for rent”, but that they should be considered as who they really are: women with families, careers, dreams, and feelings. Our surrogates are altruistic women who want to bring joy to the lives of others. They are unselfish, giving, and deserve the best possible care for themselves and their families.
So here’s exactly why we take care of our surrogate mothers. Because we – and thousands of families across the globe – would not be the same without these amazing women.
1. Taking care of surrogate mothers is taking care of the children
We all have the same goal: to bring forth healthy and happy children into this world. We want to give our children the best possible start in life. Agencies who don’t prioritize the surrogate mother are simply not prioritizing the health of the children. Agencies have the responsibility of ensuring their surrogates are taken care of mentally and physically.
The child’s health and development begins before birth and is closely tied to the health and wellbeing of the surrogate mother. Research shows that a child’s risk of developing emotional or behavioral problems doubles from 6% to 12% if the surrogate mother is stressed, anxious, or depressed. This is because in times of maternal stress, the fetus is exposed to cortisol, the stress hormone. So of course, agencies doing all they can to improve the mental health status of the surrogate mother will always benefit the child.
2. Agencies who don’t take the best possible care of surrogate mothers can expect less successful outcomes.
The goal of an agency should be for a 100% positive outcome rate. A successful agency is one where both intended parents and surrogate mothers come back for more because of their overwhelmingly positive experience. Here at New Life, many intended parents come back to us so they can give their first child a sibling. Many surrogates and egg donors come back for a second experience, because their first experience gave them so much joy by bringing other families happiness. That’s what it’s all about for us – happy families, and helping people help each other.
Agencies who don’t take the best possible care of their surrogate mothers end up with lower success rates. They end up with less healthy pregnancies where the surrogate mother is not properly cared for. These pregnancies can be marked by high blood pressure, stress, and higher incidences of mental health issues. When an agency steps in to provide state-of-the-art health care and psychological services, they ensure that the surrogacy experience will be a positive one for all parties involved.
3. Taking good care of surrogate mothers prevents misunderstandings and conflict.
Everyone in the contract – surrogate mothers and intended parents alike – need to feel like their needs are being tended to. They need their questions answered, their anxieties allayed, and their health prioritized.
The major reason why prospective parents choose an agency to begin with is to make the entire process smoother. Intended parents have been through enough already without having to worry about everything the surrogate mother needs. The agency’s job is to step in and make this easier on both parties. We make sure everyone has what they need. We make sure that the surrogate mothers are well tended to so that they can focus on what really matters with the intended parents: the joy of bringing a healthy baby into the world.
4. Agencies are the first line of defense against the exploitation of women.
This is something we feel strongly about. Here at New Life, we are advocates for women. We believe in improving the lives of women everywhere – whether it’s through providing them a complete family, providing the satisfaction of helping others, or helping them boost their own family’s income.
We make sure that all our surrogate mothers are signing up on their own free will. We look into her motivations, how her family feels about surrogacy and perform reference checks to ensure that surrogacy is the best possible decision for both the woman and her family. Agencies can make all the difference in being a force of good in the lives of women across the globe.
How We Think About Surrogate Mothers
For us, it’s all a matter of how we think about the surrogate mothers. We don’t just see them as numbers in the system. We don’t just see them as a means to an end. We see them as the full, dynamic, beautiful people they are – people who want to bring joy and love to the lives of others. We see them as the caring, giving women they are.
Before agreeing to work with a surrogate, we meet her in person, evaluate her home environment, perform reference checks, screen her for emotional, mental, and physical health, and interview her about her priorities, desires, and motivations. Our surrogates are mentally and physically healthy. They have already experienced pregnancy and childbirth and know what to expect. They are mothers already to children they are raising, so they understand the incredible bond between parent and child, and these women want to give that joy to intended parents.
Here at New Life, we know that surrogate mothers play an important role. They have incredible responsibility in bringing life to families, and we have the incredible responsibility to ensure their utmost respect and care. We provide psychological counseling, consistent guidance, and excellent medical care. Rest assured that here at New Life, we prioritize our surrogate mothers. They are the reason we can bring forth the miracle of new life for families across the globe.
Surrogacy is one of the major decisions for gay men to make as they move ahead to build a family. They are brave enough to accept their sexual orientation and choose a life for them. They go beyond every convention and create a world of their own.
Like each one of us, gay men also require a family for them to sustain. They also like to have children who they can take care of. Adoption is one of the options for them to have babies at home. However, most of them like to have their genetically connected child and hence go for surrogacy. Surrogacy has become one of the most popular ways of having genetically connected children for single and homosexual parents. Surrogacy has not only bought a ray of hope in all those childless parents’ lives but has enabled single and gay parents to build their families.
There is a lot of research involved while embarking on an abroad surrogacy. For many reasons, people choose to get their surrogacy program done at international destinations. Finance, privacy, and litigations are the prime reasons for that. Well, we are in a generation where gay surrogacy has gained so much popularity and is no taboo. We are working more on how we can make the procedure smooth for them. We have discussed top ten queries that gay men mostly have in their minds before embarking for their international surrogacy programs. In fact, they should raise these ten questions in order to have an accomplished tour.
It is highly recommended to the gay men to register themselves with a reputed surrogacy agency. This supports their legal services, psychological counselling, and medical advice from time to time. Gay couples or singles require family planning support in multiple dimensions:
Who is going to be the egg donor?
This is an important question for the gays before they leave for their surrogacy destination. Since both the parents are men, gay couples require an egg donor. Now, the questions are, whether they can choose the egg donor on their own or set criteria for the same? Most fertility centres allow leverage for the couples to find egg donors for them. In case they are not able to find one, fertility clinics arrange for one. Gay couples/singles can also use cryopreserved eggs from the fertility banks. IVF clinics have cryopreserved eggs/embryos with them.
Can they/he use their/his sperm for the process?
People usually go for IVF and surrogacy programs as they desire to have a genetically connected baby. This is actually the reason why they choose surrogacy over adoption. Gay couples or singles should consult with the fertility experts on whether they can offer their sperm for the purpose of creating an embryo or not? In most cases, fertility experts use the couple’s sperm for the fertilisation procedure.
Who is going to be the surrogate? Is she comfortable in serving a gay couple to have a baby?
The surrogate mother plays an important role in the whole program. These ladies are thorough professionals and take part in the program after signing the contract. Gay couples are sometimes anxious about who the surrogate mother is going to be. They want to make sure whether she will be comfortable in carrying their baby without any prejudice. It is wise to sort all these before signing the contract with her.
What proportion of involvement does the gay couple/single have in the surrogate’s pregnancy?
Like any other conventional couple, a gay couple would also like to be the part of the surrogacy program. They also want to be with the surrogate throughout the gestational period. They also desire to communicate with the surrogate during the carrying period until delivery. So, they usually talk this off with the fertility centre and the surrogate and make their point clear.
What are the litigations related to the country where the surrogacy program is executed?
International surrogacy has certain litigations to follow. Almost every nation has its set of rules to channelize surrogacy in a better way. When it comes to gay surrogacy, authorities have unique rules for them. A gay couple or single should ask about all the litigations involved in it before going for any such program. Surrogacy clinics at various nations have their legal consultants to help the intended parents with all queries related to litigations.
What are the litigations of the gay parent’s homeland related to child’s identity?
Not only in the surrogacy destination, have the gay couple also had to be assured of his country’s rules related to gay surrogacy. There are litigations related to acceptance of the birth certificate issued by the surrogacy destination.
What world is the total cost of the surrogacy program?
It is important for the gay couple to know about the cost of the surrogacy program before embarking abroad. Since he/they will be leaving their country for another in order to execute his/their surrogacy program, it’s better to be sure of the amount required for the entire procedure.
What will be the consequences in case the gay couple decides to abort if the baby is diagnosed with any genetic diseases?
In recent times we have come across incidents where the baby is diagnosed with Down’s syndrome or other genetic diseases before the baby’s birth. In such cases, the baby is generally aborted. It is important for any gay intended parent to ask questions on this and know the consequences of it before. He should be aware of the terms he would be having with the surrogate in case the baby requires to be aborted midway.
Can the intended parent be a part of the birth/delivery procedure?
Gay intended parents also desire to be a witness to the delivery procedure and welcome their baby. Such things should be better clarified before to grow a stronger bond between them and the surrogate.
Can they be in touch with the surrogate or the egg donor in future?
This is a common question that remains in every intended parent’s mind, including the gays. They want to be sure about the prospects and accordingly proceed for the program.