If you’ve looked through the requirements to become a surrogate, you’ve probably noticed that right near the top of the list is the stipulation that says you must have given birth to a baby already and be raising a child of your own. At a glance, it probably seems like an odd requirement. After all, not having given birth before doesn’t mean you couldn’t be an amazing surrogate, and there’s certainly a great need for women who are generous enough to help families grow in such a selfless way. There’s actually a couple reasons for this, and we’ll explore them below.
Prior Healthy Pregnancies Increases the Chances of Having a Healthy Pregnancy this Time
Medical tests can only reveal so much about a woman’s fertility and overall health, and pregnancy, in general, is a massive industry. There are millions of books, forums, and resources devoted to helping women through pregnancy, and while some of it is run-of-the-mill, each pregnancy is unique.
Take Kate Middleton’s pregnancies, for example. The Duchess of Cambridge suffered from hyperemesis gravidarum during each of her three pregnancies, meaning she essentially had severe morning sickness for the full term each time. There was no way to predict that Kate would be so ill prior to her pregnancy. The Duchess was blessed in that she obviously had a whole care team devoted to ensuring she and the babies she carried stayed healthy and that she was made as comfortable as possible. Despite knowing that she might well fall ill during subsequent pregnancies, she opted to have more children. However, other women may not have made the same choice. It’s a very personal decision. Moreover, even something like hyperemesis gravidarum can result in hospitalizations; Kate was hospitalized due to complications from it during her first pregnancy. That can add to the expenses, overall burdens for surrogates, and more.
That being said, hyperemesis gravidarum is only one condition that’s impossible to predict prior to a pregnancy. There are many. Most doctors and intended parents appreciate the security of knowing you already know how your body will respond to a pregnancy prior to becoming a surrogate. A healthy previous pregnancy means you and the little one will likely be healthy for this pregnancy too, which is a win for everyone involved.
Emotions are Hard to Predict When You Don’t Have Firsthand Experience
Carrying a baby is an emotional process and many surrogates can become attached to the little one. That’s natural and to be expected. The attachment and love you feel for the baby also helps ensure that you take good care of yourself throughout, so it is a valuable emotion. Women who have children have experienced the flood of emotions that come with pregnancy and childbirth, so they already have a good idea of how they’ll cope with the baby going home with the intended parents. They go into it being emotionally prepared. They recognize from the onset that the baby isn’t theirs to keep and that they’re providing the parent or parents with an amazing gift. It’s not so easy to predict how a woman will react emotionally if she hasn’t already had a pregnancy.
Moreover, women who know the joy of motherhood and are actively experiencing what it’s like to raise a child of their own tend to be more empathetic to the intended parent(s). They become a surrogate because they know what an amazing experience it is to be a parent and they want others to be able to have the same joy they do. That’s not to say you can’t have compassion for someone experiencing infertility or who cannot have a child of their own for other reasons if you aren’t a mother, but chances are you’ll experience a pivotal emotional shift after the birth of your own child. Your logic behind the decision to become a surrogate will likely be different when you have at least one child of your own.
Become a Surrogate with EDSI
The reality is, it’s not easy to become a surrogate. Few women have the genuine altruistic nature necessary and fit the health requirements. However, because the health of the baby relies upon these foundations, as does the relationship between the surrogate and intended parent(s), and it’s a large investment of time and money, making sure surrogates are fully prepared before beginning the process is essential. If you already have at least one child of your own, had an uncomplicated pregnancy, and fit the general health requirements, and feel like becoming a surrogate is right for you, we’d love to hear from you. Check out our information for surrogates and complete the online application when you’re ready to take the next step.