A Partner's Guide To Surrogacy
Reasons That Women Become Surrogates
If you’re reading this, your spouse, girlfriend, sister, daughter or friend has shared her wish to become a surrogate, right? We’re so impressed that you are researching ways to support and empower her. While she loves helping others, at this time, she needs your help.
But this is more than you helping her, you will be an active participant in this journey. You may even end up becoming friends with the Intended Parents. You are, in fact, watching over their growing baby – and they are counting on her support network to help make their dream come true. It truly is a family affair.
We have created this page to help you understand the process, the compensation, and your direct involvement during each phase
A Partner's Surrogacy Journey Timeline
Your wife, girlfriend, sister, or friend may have told you the steps to become a Surrogate and you’ve already forgotten them? Or perhaps you want to learn more so you can help and support her navigate each phase. Either way, here’s a timeline with the major steps and what to expect:
The Surrogate will have an initial consult and learn more about the process from then agency then fill out a questionnaire, get her medical records and have any testing required. Once she is approved and admitted to our program, she will be ready to be matched.
When our TrueMatch™ team has found great match for her (and you too!) we will show you the Intended Parent/s’ profile and they will also see yours.
If you like what you’ve learned and the Intended Parent/s feel the same way, we will set up a Zoom chat with the agency, the Intended Parents, your partner and you. We break the ice between everyone and help make your first meeting go smoothly. If all goes well - congratulations, it’s a match!
Once matched, you and your partner will meet with a licensed psychologist (that specializes in surrogacy) and s/he will help ensure that you both understand the commitment that is needed on a surrogacy journey.
Next the Surrogate will be required to have a medical exam overseen by the Intended Parent/s' reproductive doctor (aka Reproductive Endocrinologist aka RE). This may require traveling for her if you do not live near the clinic. Travel will be arranged by the agency and paid for by the Intended Parent/s.
You may join her, or you can do your part at a lab near to your home or work. Your role is simple, all we need is bloodwork.
The next step is to review and sign the contract. Here's a bit about the process:
- Contracts are the framework of what payments will be paid and under what circumstances, how people will behave, and what each party’s obligations are to the other.
- Your contract will cover all eventualities like the need for childcare, lost wages, etc., so you will never have to worry about money to meet her surrogacy obligations.
- If you are legally married, you will bot need to sign the contract, and you will have your own lawyer (that specializes in surrogacy contracts).
- Your lawyer will work with you and go over everything in the contract and make sure you understand it and are on board with what is in it before signing.
Great news! You are done with your part, so now things should be easy-peasy for you.
For the Surrogate, once contracts are signed, her body will be hormonally prepared to make it ready to become pregnant with the embryo. All this is done at home (taking and injecting hormones) and at screening appointments at a fertility clinic close to your home.
If all goes according to plan, she will travel to the Intended Parent/s’ clinic for the embryo transfer. She has the option to bring you (or someone else if you can’t get away) as her travel companion.
Most Surrogates describe embryo transfer as pain-free.
Usually, a single embryo will be transferred using a slim catheter to place the embryo in her uterus. Within an hour she will go back home or to a nearby hotel that the agency has booked to rest for approximately one day.
After the transfer, you will both have to wait a week to 10 days for your first beta testt, (hat is a blood test that tells whether or not there is a pregnancy).
Like many surrogates, she may be really excited to find out if she's pregnant before she does the blood work. Don’t be surprised if she goes out and buys some home pregnancy tests (HPTs). If she does, please remember they are called “evil pee sticks” – that is because they are not always accurate. You can be pregnant even if they say you are not. So, she will continue all prescribed medication no matter what the HPT says.
On the day her doctor prescribes, she will go to a local lab, have her blood drawn, and hopefully you will both be getting that great news later the same day – SHE’S PREGNANT!
She’s been pregnant before, but as you can see, this one is going to be different.
After the positive beta, the clinic will have her do a few more blood tests and then a couple of weeks later she will have an ultrasound to make sure the fetus is developing properly.
For up to 10 weeks, she will take medications and be overseen by the Reproductive Endocrinologist. When her body takes over and produces the hormones without medication, she is released to your OB (usually around 10 weeks).
From this point forward it will be like her typical pregnancies…except there are Intended Parents and an agency to support both of you.
This is the point in the journey when communication often starts to pick up between you, the Surrogate, and the Intended Parent/s. Often Surrogates like to communicate with updates, belly bump pictures, etc. Some Intended Parents and Gestational Surrogates like to text, others FaceTime/Zoom or use the phone. There’s no right or wrong way - with time you will all find the right amount and type of communication that works.
And let’s not forget your family – this truly is a family affair with your kids or extended family forming bonds and joining in the joyous thing you are doing.
Our role during her surrogacy is to give you all the support you need. We want to be there for you but not smother you either.
Her Case Manager will help with all of the logistics from travel to payments.
The Surrogate Coordinator is an experienced surrogate and is someone the Surrogate can speak with as a peer. The Surrogate Coordinator can often offer special insight – because she and her family have been there.
About halfway through the pregnancy, the agency will have helped create a “birth plan” with you and the Intended Parent/s. Everyone will have agreed on the plan for who will be in the delivery room and where people will be standing, who will cut the umbilical cord, etc.
This is the moment everyone’s been waiting for. Even if the Intended Parent/s live halfway around the world, they will do everything in their power to be there for the birth.
Often, your family will want to meet the baby and of course, you will want to say goodbye and wish him or her well.
While everyone may have a plan for communication after the baby is born, it often depends on how the communication went during the journey. In almost all cases, people stay in touch via Facebook and Whatsapp, and in some cases even get together as the baby grows – even with great distances.
You will have changed lives for both the parent/s, the baby, and your own family - and that is a gift that is immeasurable!
You are a star!
Compensation For Creating A Family
Your spouse/girlfriend, sister, or friend loves to help others and we know what an amazing gift this is for her to be able to help a couple or individual create their own family.
We also understand and appreciate that Surrogates are providing a valuable service and are compensated accordingly. Here are some things for you to know about compensation:
- The compensation varies based on a Surrogate’s location, experience, insurance, and more.
- Most surrogates receive $35,000 – $65,000 as their “base fee”.
- The base fee is paid in installments throughout the pregnancy.
- Base fees are determined by experience, location, and insurance status.
- Aside from the base fee, our surrogates also receive a monthly allowance, lost wages, travel expenses, childcare, housekeeping, maternity clothes allowance, and more.
- Lost wages are also included for the surrogate’s partner when they accompany her for her evaluation or transfer and work missed for the birth.
See the full Compensation Package.