VIDEO: Kids Born Through Surrogacy Discuss Prejudice

This video features three young adults, born with Circle Surrogacy, discussing their personal experiences dealing with prejudice. (The Teen Panel from the left, Elinor, Liv, and Zachary.)

Elinor started the discussion by sharing her experience being raised Jewish. She explains that there are passages in the Torah forbidding same-sex relationships. However, she does find comfort in the fact that her friends don’t interpret the Torah literally–and don’t believe there is anything wrong with same-sex relationships.

Liv and Zachary stated they hadn’t experienced much prejudice.

They had great advice to give children and young adults experiencing prejudice. They said not to listen to negative people, not to be ashamed of your family, and to surround yourself with the good people.

The young adults on the panel also discussed the benefits of having two dads when it came to sexual orientation and accepting others. Elinor, Liv, and Zachary express that they knew growing up if they would also be accepted, no matter their sexual orientation. Elinor and Liv identify as straight. Zachary discussed coming out to his parents. He said having two dads “made it easier for me to accept it myself and feel comfortable in my own skin.”

The panel above is from the Men Having Babies Conference in May of 2016.

Turning to Japanese Traditions When Grieving a Miscarriage

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Angela Elson’s New York Times article about grieving after a miscarriage was posted on Facebook at 5:38 p.m. ET on Sunday, January 8 amidst NFL playoffs and Golden Globe mania. In the face of today’s diverse distractions, over 2,000 people shared the post, almost 6,000 reacted, and hundreds of people commented with their stories.

Starting the conversation is the first step to coming up with better traditions for coping with loss.

In the personal piece, Angela shares a story about visiting the famous Mount Koya cemetery in Japan with her husband and seeing hundreds of Jizo statues. As she explains, “These small figurines dressed in red caps and bibs honor the souls of babies who are never born.”

At the time, she admits that she and her husband were young enough to assume miscarriages only happen to “other people.” However, years later Angela miscarried at 10 weeks.

She writes, “We knew miscarriage was common. But why wasn’t there anything people did when it happened?”

Her husband suggested getting a Jizo.

She described the statue as “the height of a paperback and made of cement. His eyes were squinted in a mellow smile, hands folded in prayer.”

Buddhists believe a baby who isn’t born can’t go to heaven, but Jizo sneaks them into heaven in his pockets.

Angela found solace in knitting Jizo the perfect red hat and coat. Her husband planted a garden for him to serve as a reminder, as she writes, “not so often as to make us sad, but often enough so that we don’t forget him entirely.”

To read Angela’s full New York Times article, click here.  

At Circle Surrogacy, we have a comprehensive support team of licensed social workers. Since everyone’s experience is different, we tailor our resources to the parent(s). Our Intended Parent support team is a resource available to IPs throughout their journey. Surrogates are assigned a social worker at the beginning of their journey, who provides support and guidance.  

If you have any questions about Circle Support, please feel free to contact our Outreach Manager, Sarah Marino at smarino@circlesurrogacy.com.

Ellen Pompeo Welcomes Baby Boy Through Surrogacy

Boy Crazy….Here’s to a year filled with happiness and love! Happy New Year ❤️🌎❤️

A video posted by Ellen Pompeo (@ellenpompeo) on

Grey’s Anatomy star Ellen Pompeo and her husband Chris Ivery welcomed a baby boy through surrogate. His name is Eli Christopher. Ellen and Chris have two daughters as well (one of their other daughters was also born via surrogacy).

Ellen has been a vocal advocate for surrogacy, which is important for our community. Public figures help to educate others who are not connected personally to surrogacy. For any couple, deciding to explore surrogacy is an important decision. Announcements from stars, like Ellen, help to start a healthy and positive dialogue. It’s especially encouraging to see the result: a happy parent cuddling and dancing with her newborn baby.

We wish to congratulate Ellen and Chris, and to commend them for being open about their journey.

If you would like to learn more about becoming a surrogate, click here. If you would like to know about becoming a parent through surrogacy, click here.

Birth Announcement! Join Us in Welcoming Baby Zachary from Circle Surrogacy

baby photo from Circle Surrogacy

Join us in welcoming Baby Zachary! Zachary was born earlier this month weighing in at 7 lbs. and 7 oz. He and his father, John, are happy and healthy. John’s surrogate gave him a wonderful gift.

Circle Surrogacy couldn’t exist without the generosity of surrogates. Baby photos and birth announcements show us how miraculous surrogates are.

We also want to thank John for allowing us to share this collage with you. We are honored every time a parent or surrogate gives us permission to post photos of their journey. These special photos allow us to share in the beauty of the most precious moments of a surrogacy journey.

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If you are interested in learning more about becoming a surrogate, click here.

One of the most frequently asked questions we receive is: “Where do I start if I want to be a surrogate?” Research (reading this blog) is a great place to start. Doing research helps you pick the right agency for you. Agencies vary considerably. Here are a few points to keep in mind when researching agencies:

Circle Surrogacy is the only agency that promotes the parent-surrogate relationship. We help to facilitate a strong connection between the surrogate and her intended parents. Research has shown that having a strong relationship is what’s best for the child.

Circle Surrogacy also provides the most comprehensive social support of any agency. We offer one-on-one time with a licensed social worker, monthly video chats covering a variety of topics related to journey details, and a private Facebook group. The private Facebook group is a forum where current surrogates get to know one another. It’s also a fantastic way to stay engaged in the community after your journey is over. Many former surrogates help current surrogates with support and advice. 

For birth announcements, updates, and surrogacy-related news, follow us on Facebook.com/CircleSurrogacy!

If you are interested in learning more about becoming a parent through surrogacy, click here. ]

VIDEO: Teens Born with Circle Surrogacy Discuss Marriage Equality and Trump

In this video, Elinor, Liv, and Zachary (young adults born with Circle Surrogacy) discuss two defining moments they’ve experienced within the last few years.

The first moment is the passage of the Marriage Equality Act on June 26, 2015. Each panelist had a very positive response to this pivotal decision in our country’s history. Elinor says, “I thought we were on the way to more progress.” Liv added, “I remember feeling like finally the rest of the country is going to be like our state [New York].”

The second defining moment is the election of Donald Trump this past November.

Elinor started off by saying, “It’s more ‘what’s going to happen to us as a country?’ rather than ‘what’s going to happen to us as a family?'” Liv and Zachary shared the same sentiment. They feel an overall concern for the country, not just the LGBTQ community.

This Teen Panel was part of the Men Having Babies Conference in May of 2016. 

 

Happy New Year from Circle Surrogacy!

happy new year from circle surrogacy

 

This year has been tremendous. We want to thank our community for the baby photos we shared on social media (and the ones we didn’t). We also want to thank you for your continued support. The reunions held in the United States and abroad this year confirmed something we already knew–we are part of an incredible community. That’s always a pleasant reminder.

One Circle employee, Jen Rachman, who is a parent through Circle Surrogacy, said that the best part of our New York reunion was telling her son that all of the children at the party were born through surrogacy.

In 2017, we will be doing even more to connect the Circle Surrogacy community. If you would like to become more involved, please feel free to reach out to me (Lauren Muscarella, lmuscarella@circlesurrogacy.com).

You may also use that email to share family photos with us. We love seeing your photos from newborn babies to the 10th birthday photos to the holiday cards that flood the office in December.

No matter what department you ask–Legal Team, Marketing Team, Accounting Team, Social Workers–receiving baby photos, family photos, and announcements is one of the best parts of the job.

Take a look this snapshot of Circle Surrogacy over the last decade!

circle surrogacy then and now Circle Surrogacy

 

 

The Top 10 Posts of the Year from Circle Surrogacy

Last year we went through our most popular posts from 2015. This year as we count down the days before 2017, we want to look back and remember some of our highlights. We were surprised to see that many of the most *LIKED* posts included photos and updates from the Circle Office in Boston. We’re flattered! Next year, we’ll try to include more of our time together to give you a sneak peak at the office (if you haven’t seen it).

As you may imagine, the Circle Office is very special. We feel like one big family. Cheers to a wonderful 2017! Now let’s countdown the year’s best.

#10 Giving thanks! Our turkey icon grabbed some attention. [ Reach 1.6K ] 

Thanksgiving Circle Surrogacy

#9 Every year, the entire Boston office (and even some remote employees) dress up for a Halloween and enjoy a midday break of pizza and prizes (for best costume). It’s pretty competitive. This year’s prize went to our Accounting Manager, Melissa Riccioli. She dressed up as C-3PO! [ Reach 1.7K ] 

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#8 Wishing you a Merry Christmas! The photo from our Christmas card was taken at our annual summer party–back when Boston was warming and inviting. It’s a balmy 38 right now! [ Reach 1.8K ]

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#7 This photo was taken when we attended the RESOLVE New England conference in November. Resolve has many chapters throughout the country. This non-profit is dedicated to helping couples struggling with fertility find resources and support to make informed decisions. [ Reach 1.9K ] 

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#6 Birthday wishes for Circle Surrogacy Founder and CEO, John Weltman. [ Reach 2.1K ] 

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#5 After Donald Trump won the presidency, many intended parents and members of our community had questions about what that would mean for surrogacy. We are planning a live webinar in January to discuss surrogacy under Trump, the Affordable Care Act, and the precautions we’ve taken in the event that the ACA is repealed.

In early December we put together a short video with our Director of Legal Services Dean Hutchison to review the basics of surrogacy under a Trump presidency. Watch the video here. [ Reach 2.5K ] 

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#4 John Weltman traveled to China with our Outreach Coordinator for China, Eva Yu. While there, Eva captured a few candid videos meeting with friends.

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#3 On October 28, we attended the GLAD (GLBTQ Legal Advocates and Defenders) 17th Annual Spirit of Justice Award Dinner. We heard inspiring stories from members of the community who stood up to injustice to pave the way for others. Watch two of the speeches from the event here. [ Reach 3.2K ] 

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#2 In October, we traveled to New York City for the NY LGBT Center‘s panel discussion, Planning Parenthood Through Surrogacy. Circle attorney, Gina-Marie Madow led the discussion.

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And the #1 post of 2016 with a reach of over 4,700 is…

Our post about the Norwegian, Icelandic, Estonian, and Swedish Father’s Day! Norway, Iceland, Estonia, and Sweden celebrate Father’s Day the second sunday of November.

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We appreciate your support and social engagement. If you have other suggestions for posts in 2017 or if you would like to contribute to the blog with photos, stories, or videos, please contact me at lmuscarella@circlesurrogacy.com (Lauren Muscarella).

VIDEO: Teens Born Through Circle Surrogacy Kids Discussing Origin Stories

In this Teen Panel, Elinor, Liv, and Zachary (all born with Circle Surrogacy) share how they found out they were born via gestational carrier.

The panelists described asking questions from ages 3 years old to 8 years old about coming into the world through surrogacy. They also asked their parents about genetics and their background.

The panelists told parents to have open communication with their child so they feel comfortable asking questions. [Books for discussing surrogacy with your child].

When asked about having a mother figure, the panelists feel that they don’t have a mother figure, but some have strong female figures in their lives.

On the concept of feminism, the panel all expressed an ongoing need for equality between genders. Lastly, the young adults expressed the different roles their fathers play in their lives.

In giving advice to prospective parents, Zachary says, “A family is about love and caring. I’d say if you’ve got two people who love each other and they want to have kids, they should have kids.”

The Teen Panel was part of the Men Having Babies Conference in November, 2016,