Becoming a parent through gestational surrogacy is an exciting yet complex journey. Not only are you, the intended parents, navigating the medical aspects of the process and preparing to welcome a baby to your family, but you’re also building a relationship with your gestational surrogate.
Establishing a strong relationship built on trust and respect is key to making the process a happy, healthy time. Supporting your surrogate throughout the process helps to build that solid relationship. Before, during and after your gestational surrogate’s pregnancy, you can support her by:
Acknowledging Your Surrogate’s Role
To make your surrogate feel appreciated and validated, try to acknowledge the incredible role she’s playing in your journey to expand your family. Without her, none of this would be possible.
You can show your appreciation by acknowledging her role and expressing gratitude throughout the process. This is as simple as occasionally saying “thank you.” Knowing how grateful you are for her selfless gift helps your surrogate get through the more challenging times and strengthens your relationship with her.
Communicating With Clarity and Honesty
Clear communication is essential for any successful relationship, but it’s especially important in the context of surrogacy. From the beginning, intended parents should be honest about their expectations and needs for the process. Be upfront with your surrogate about your expectations of:
- How often you’ll contact her
- The level of involvement in the pregnancy
It’s also important for intended parents to be open to feedback from their surrogate. If the surrogate expresses concerns or needs, you must listen and work together to find a solution.
Gestational surrogates are making an incredible sacrifice by carrying a child for someone else, and they probably have their own preferences about the level of involvement they want from the intended parents.
Always show respect for her boundaries and work with your surrogate to find a level of involvement that satisfies everyone. This may involve negotiating a balance between staying informed about the pregnancy and giving the surrogate space to experience it on her own.
Prioritizing Her Physical and Mental Health
Pregnancy takes a toll on the body and mind. In fact, researchers say the physical intensity of carrying a baby is the same as running a 40-week marathon! Your gestational surrogate is doing some hard work, and it’s important that you support her in staying healthy and taking care of herself without pressuring or judging her. Applaud her efforts to eat healthy, exercise, and get plenty of rest.
When it comes to mental health, avoid gaslighting or dismissing any of your surrogate’s struggles. Be a shoulder to lean on and encourage her to seek professional help if needed. A therapist can help the surrogate work through any feelings of anxiety, stress, or other mental health issues that may arise.
Supporting Her Emotionally
Thanks to hormones and bodily changes, pregnancy is often an emotional rollercoaster. Gestational surrogates may experience a range of feelings throughout the process. As intended parents, you can offer emotional support by listening and validating your surrogate’s feelings when needed.
Sending thoughtful gifts or notes every so often also helps to show your appreciation and support for your surrogate. Gestational surrogacy is a partnership, and showing your gratitude and support in these ways can help to strengthen that partnership.
While intended parents may have a plan in place for their surrogacy journey, it’s important to adapt to unexpected changes. Pregnancy is sometimes unpredictable, and plans may need to change due to medical issues or other unforeseen circumstances.
Prepare yourself in advance to embrace flexibility and work together with your surrogate to find the best path forward. For example, you might have to adjust your travel plans or financial arrangements throughout the pregnancy and birth. Keep an open mind and stay focused on the end goal.
Supporting your gestational surrogate is a must-do no matter where you are in the surrogacy journey. Acknowledging the surrogate’s role, clear communication, respecting boundaries, prioritizing her health, offering emotional support, and being flexible can strengthen your relationship with your surrogate. By following these tips, you can build a relationship that will last a lifetime.
Surrogacy and Egg Donor Services
Since 2004, The Fertility Agency has helped bring over 1100+ babies into the world. We work with all intended parents, surrogates, and egg donors no matter their sexual preference, relationship status, ethnicity, location, etc. Our personal experiences and years of expertise provide us with the perfect balance of business and passion. Contact us for more information.