Being a surrogate mother is one of the most rewarding things you'll ever do. It'll allow you to help someone else bring a new life into the world.
But being a surrogate mother can also be one of the most challenging things you'll ever attempt. There are all kinds of physical, emotional, and psychological hurdles that you'll need to clear within a matter of just a year. And some of those things will stick with you long after you've given birth.
Before you agree to carry a child for someone else, you should consider whether or not becoming a surrogate mother is the right move for you to make. You shouldn't take the decision lightly at all, as it'll likely have a lasting effect on you if you do decide to take part in surrogacy.
Here are some questions you should ask yourself prior to becoming a surrogate mother.
The first thing you should do if you're considering becoming a surrogate mother is write down a list of reasons why you want to be a surrogate. You may have thought of the different reasons in your head before, but it's a good idea to get them down on paper.
Here are a few of the most common reasons why women choose to become surrogates:
There is really no right or wrong reason to become a surrogate mother. Some women do it out of the kindness of their own hearts, while others see it as a financial opportunity that can help them improve their lives.
Whatever the case may be, you should clearly define your reasons for choosing surrogacy. It'll help you to make a final decision with regards to whether or not serving as a surrogate mother is right for you.
Once you've generated a list of reasons for why you want to become a surrogate mother, your next step should be to see if you're healthy enough to carry a baby for someone else. It's a good idea to visit a doctor sooner than later so that you can find out if surrogacy is even an option for you.
If you've carried a child or multiple children in the past without experiencing any major problems, there's a good chance that your doctor will tell you that you're healthy enough to carry another one. But there are no guarantees as far as your health is concerned.
Your age could impact your ability to become a surrogate mother. Certain health conditions can also prevent you from serving as a surrogate. You could even discover that you have an illness or disease that takes precedence over becoming a surrogate.
You should work with both your primary doctor and a fertility specialist to see how healthy you are. You shouldn't ever compromise your health for the sake of surrogacy, so it's important to get a full medical screening before taking the leap of faith and agreeing to become a surrogate.
Technically speaking, your body might be healthy enough to carry a baby around for nine months. You might not have any major issues that will prevent a doctor from signing off on you becoming a surrogate mother.
But only you know how your body really feels on a day in and day out basis. So you have to think long and hard about whether or not your body will be able to hold up well throughout the course of a pregnancy.
Let's say, for example, that you have knee pain that almost never goes away. That knee pain could very well flare up and get even worse once you become pregnant and gain some weight. It could make it extremely difficult for you to get around and make everyday life a huge hassle for you.
You have to decide if your body is going to be able to live up to the challenges that surrogacy will throw at it. You will, of course, have to live with at least a little bit of discomfort while carrying a child around. But you shouldn't have to sacrifice your own well-being and deal with constant pain to do it.
Being a surrogate mother can tax your body and really take a toll on it. But it can take an even bigger toll on your mind, especially if you don't prepare your mind for what's coming.
From the moment you get pregnant with someone else's child, you will start to feel things that you've never felt before. You will obviously feel a strong connection with the child, even though it's not going to be your child once you give birth.
Many surrogate mothers really struggle with this and have a hard time coming to terms with the fact that that connection is only temporary. Naturally, they form a bond with the baby inside of their bodies and aren't always ready to let go of it after giving birth.
You have to decide if you're ready for the mental gymnastics that you'll be forced to perform during your surrogacy. Your emotions are going to get the best of you every now and then, and if you're not prepared for it, it can feel like too much to take.
You're not going to be able to serve as a surrogate mother for someone without having a strong (very strong!) support system in place. You need to make sure your support system is rock solid before becoming a surrogate.
The parents of the child you will be carrying will be there for you during your times of need. But they can't be the only ones on your side. You need other family members and friends who will set you up with support when you need it most.
If you don't feel as though you have a strong enough support system, you should either try to create one or rethink the idea of becoming a surrogate. Going through a surrogacy without any support will prove to be just about impossible to do.
A lot of the women who agree to become surrogate mothers do so because they either don't plan on having kids of their own or don't want to have any more kids than they already do.
If you fall into one of these two categories, being a surrogate mother shouldn't affect your own family planning process. But if you think there's still a chance you want to have kids, surrogacy might not be the best option for you.
Whether you're single, dating someone, or married, you should think long and hard about what the future holds for you and ask yourself if you would like to have more kids one day. The last thing you want is for surrogacy to affect your own plans and throw your life too far off course.
If one of your main reasons for wanting to become a surrogate involves the compensation that comes along with it, you should learn more about how much you'll be paid. "How much do surrogates make?" is a question you should ask yourself at the start of the process.
The exact compensation depends on a number of factors. But in a state like California, women who serve as surrogates can make upwards of $50,000 or more in some cases. They can also claim additional compensation for things like medical care and even lost wages.
The compensation that you receive for being a surrogate mother shouldn't really be your only reason for choosing surrogacy. But it is something you'll want to keep in the back of your mind.
There are so many things that women need to consider before being a surrogate mother.
You should begin by considering why you want to be a surrogate mother and address any health concerns. You should then make sure you're mentally prepared for surrogacy and evaluate the support system surrounding you.
As long as everything checks out, you're free to become a surrogate mother. But make sure you consider everything prior to making a final decision.
If you do ultimately decide to become a surrogate, you should work to stay fit when you're pregnant. Read our blog to find out some tips on how to do it.