10 Things I Wish Surrogates Knew-- From a Surrogate & Agency Owner
by Charlene Kuspa: former surrogate & current agency owner
You can never do too much research.
Use Social Media with caution. WARNING: post with caution, or post with thick skin in some groups. Definitely join them all if you can, but linger a while to get a feel for the ‘good’ groups and the ‘not so good’ groups. Like a lot of social media, some groups can have drama, and some are truly informational, supportive and helpful. Join them all, and use the search function to get crowd-sourced answers to the questions you have. These groups can be a great resource for surrogates and intended parents.
There is A LOT of hurry up and wait with surrogacy. Yes, there are more IPs than GCs, but that doesn’t always mean you will find your perfect match immediately.
This is NOT a quick, get paid thing you are agreeing to do.
The quicker you do your part with paperwork, records, appointments, letters, etc— the quicker the process can move along.
Be prepared. Talk to family and friends about your plans to be a surrogate. Grow your support system as much as you can.
Understand that IPs usually want to be a part of the process, but some have been through so much heartache already that they are guarded for a while. They too have read the bad stories out there, and a lot of IPs have ‘bad stories’ of their own. So if your IPs don’t want bump pictures, or forget to ask about your morning sickness … try not to take it personally. Understand that you ARE on their minds, but some IPs struggle with hearing the GC experience things they wish they were experiencing themselves.
Communicate and communicate timely. IPs have to accept having no control, and often need a little reassurance. So, give it. Be prepared to communicate, because it is crucial!
Remember hormones can be a real brat sometimes. Keep that in mind when you start to get upset, frustrated or feel sensitive to things that were said to you.
DON’T cut corners. If you are matching with an agency, do not allow them to ‘rush’ you through the process. And if you are matching “indy” (independently) do not skip any steps. Don’t let IPs talk you out of steps to save them money or time. Trust me, the process is in place for a reason and it is truly best for all involved to go through EVERY STEP.
Charlene is the co-founder of Carrying Hope Surrogacy, and describes herself as a Christian, Wife, Mom, Agency Owner & Surrogate x2
Stay tuned for her follow-up article: 10 Things I Wish Intended Parents Knew. Coming Soon!
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