Surrogate Information, 13 Questions Answered

surrogate-questions Considering becoming a surrogate? We’ve compiled some of the most common questions that women ask regarding the process. Read on for some insight.

Is there a difference between gestational and traditional surrogacy?
Yes. Gestational surrogacy is the process by which a fertilized embryo is implanted into a surrogate who then carries the baby to term. She bears no genetic relationship to the child. By contrast, traditional surrogacy is when the woman is both the genetic and gestational mother. She’ll undergo artificial insemination and relinquish custody of the resulting child/children upon birth.

Why should I work with a surrogacy agency? Agencies provide a full range of services and offer support throughout the entire process. All aspects of a surrogate’s journey, including financial and legal issues, are handled by a qualified staff. [Read more…]

Rhode Island Senate Passes Gay Marriage

rhode-island-gay-marriage What a great month for marriage equality!

A day after the French gay marriage vote that all but ensures its approval in France, a week after New Zealand’s marriage equality bill received approval, and almost two weeks after same-sex marriage became law in Uruguay, Rhode Island is on track to join the rest of New England in approving gay marriage.

The state’s marriage equality bill passed the Rhode Island House of Representatives in January. This evening, an amended version of the bill passed the state’s Senate in a 26-12 vote. It now returns to the House for a procedural vote. Once approved, it will be signed by Governor Lincoln Chafee, an independent, who supports the effort. [Read more…]

Who is a Surrogate? The Woman Behind the Baby Bump

She’s strong. She’s courageous. She’s powerful. She is a surrogate!

Incredible women are out there, willing to make miracles happen through gestational surrogacy. They come from all walks of life—the stay-at-home mom raising toddlers, the executive who loves being pregnant, the fertile woman who simply feels compelled to help a couple in need. Their motivations and personal interests all vary, but they share a common thread. Surrogates are human beings who are willing and able to do something incredible for someone else. We thought we’d take some time to educate you on — and clear up some common misconceptions about — what it takes for a woman to be a successful surrogate.

She ought to be…

%surrogate Honest
A surrogate should be honest about everything. Throughout pregnancy, unexpected questions and concerns will arise, and absolute transparency and communication will be key. The simplest way to address newly developed issues or worries is for intended parents and surrogates to establish an open and honest relationship. Moreover, being truthful encourages communication. This will help to foster the surrogate-intended parent relationship and make the experience all the more worthwhile and meaningful.

Organized
Surrogacy is a huge commitment. With travel, screenings, evaluations, treatments, and — last but certainly not least — the actual pregnancy, the surrogate has a lot going on. That’s why it’s vital she be on top of her game and know how to efficiently manage her time. And, it’s important that she understands that surrogacy may need to take precedence over other commitments. A woman who decides to become a gestational surrogate needs to be all in— head and heart, as well as womb! 

[Read more…]

France Gay Marriage, Adoption Bill Passes Parliament

France’s National Assembly approved the “marriage for all” bill in a 331-225 vote on Tuesday. The vote will likely bring the bill before President François Hollande, who has been a champion of marriage equality. Upon approval of the bill, France would become the ninth country in Europe and the 14th country in the world to allow gay marriage.

Justice Minister Christiane Taubira, who argued passionately for the bill on the floors of both parliamentary houses, called it a “very beautiful reform.”  Visibly moved after the bill’s approval, Taubira told lawmakers, “It is a generous text that you’ve voted for today.”

france-marriage-equality Like the New Zealand and Uruguay marriage equality bills which passed earlier this month, France’s bill allows same-sex couples to jointly adopt. While gay adoption provoked little opposition among the public in New Zealand and Uruguay, it has been a thorny issue in France, where protestors participated in demonstrations that occasionally became violent, warning of the supposed dangers of same-sex parenting. [Read more…]

Circle Surrogacy at Stupid Cancer’s OMG! Summit

circle-surrogacy-cancer

Stupid Cancer is an non-profit organization whose mission is to empower young adults affected by cancer. Each year, the group hosts the largest cancer conference aimed specifically at the under-40 age group, known as the OMG! Annual Cancer Summit for Young Adults.

The 6th annual event will provide an atmosphere for attendees to network, receive education and support from their peers and professionals. The four day conference will feature break out sessions touching on issues such as managing your career, dealing with insurance companies, infertility, social media, caring for your caregivers, progress in healthcare, intimacy and relationships etc.

Circle Surrogacy will be among several organizations exhibiting at the summit in Las Vegas, April 25-28. As a young adult survivor who became a mother with the help of Circle Surrogacy last year, I’m thrilled to be representing them at the conference to share my knowledge and experience with other cancer survivors.

Choosing Surrogacy, Is It Right for Me?

I want to become a parent, but don’t know if gestational surrogacy is the way to go.choosing-surrogacy

Gestational surrogacy opens up a world of opportunity to gay couples and individuals and those experiencing infertility. If you’re exploring the possibility of working with a surrogate to start your family, but aren’t quite sure if it’s the best option, you’ve come to the right place. Heed the following advice to confidently make your decision.

Ask questions. The first step on the path toward choosing surrogacy is to ask yourself a number of important questions.

  • Have I explored all my options?
  • How do I feel about another woman giving birth to my child?
  • What will other people think, and do how much do their opinions weigh upon my decision?
  • Do I have the support of my family?
  • Is my partner open to surrogacy?
  • What happens if my gestational carrier miscarries?
  • Can I afford it?
  • Would I be OK with multiples?
  • Am I emotionally ready for this? [Read more…]

New Zealand Agrees to Marriage Equality

new-zealand-marriage-equality Add one more to the list! According to the Huffington Post, the nation became the 13th in the world and first in the Asia-Pacific region to legalize same-sex marriage. In a country where two-thirds of the population supports marriage equality, it comes as no surprise that the Marriage Amendment bill passed.

Last night, politician Maurice Williamson delivered an uplifting and hilarious speech to parliament regarding marriage equality.

I’ve had a reverend in my local electorate say the ‘gay onslaught will start the day this law is passed’. So, we are struggling to know what the gay onslaught will look like. We don’t know if it will come down the Pakaranga highway as a series of troops or whether it will be a gas that flows over the electorate and blocks us all in.

Fittingly, Williamson concluded his address with a verse from the Bible, Deuteronomy 1:29, Be not afraid.

Such a remark lifted the spirits of those who were present. As such, after the bill passed, lawmakers and parliament broke into a celebratory melody, singing the nation’s love song “Pokarekare Ana.”

gay-rights

Since 2005, New Zealand has only permitted civil unions, which come with limited legal rights for LGBT couples looking to become parents. In addition to legalizing gay marriage, the new law allows same-sex couples to jointly adopt children. This means that gay couples looking to become parents through international surrogacy can legally use second-parent adoption to gain full parenting rights over the child. (Commercial surrogacy is illegal in New Zealand, while altruistic surrogacy is legal.)

Couples from other countries can marry in New Zealand, as well. This is good news for Australia where an attempt to legalize same-sex marriage failed last August.

New Zealand’s new law takes effect in late August. The nation will then join Argentina, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Iceland, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, South Africa, Sweden, Uruguay (France’s bill heads to the Lower House this week).

photo credits: erjkprunczýk via photopin cc and EssjayNZ via photopin cc

5 Benefits of Working with a Surrogacy Agency

You’ve done your research and know you’re ready to participate in the surrogacy process. Whether you’re getting ready to join forces with a gestational carrier —or want to become a surrogate yourself—you may be asking How can I make this a reality? The answer is with the help of a full-service surrogacy agency, which can safely and efficiently navigate you from conception to birth.

Here are five reasons why working with an agency trumps going it solo. surrogacy-agency

1. Support. Surrogacy is a journey, and working with an agency can provide you with support and guidance throughout the entire process. All aspects of surrogacy are handled by a team of professionals, from matching and screening, to legal work and social work support. If any issues arise, rest assured you’ve got a team behind you.

2. Relationships. Building relationships between intended parents and surrogates makes the process more rewarding. Circle Surrogacy also believes in the importance of known egg donation, which makes the process more fulfilling for everyone involved, including the children who can later meet the women who helped bring them into the world. [Read more…]

France Gay Marriage, Adoption Bill Advances

It’s been a busy week for marriage equality and LGBT parenting rights. Two day after Uruguay approved same-sex marriage and gay adoption, France’s “Marriage for All” bill is one step closer to becoming a law. The country’s senate voted to approve the legislation today.

The path so far

Late Tuesday night, the French senate approved Article 1—the section of the bill that extends marriage to same-sex couples. (The country’s lower house had approved a draft of the bill in February.)

france-gay-marriage The remainder of the bill, which also allows gay couples to adopt, was approved today. Some of the provisions were approved as passed by the lower house. Others went through a few modifications.

Notably, the lawmakers rejected amendments which would have addressed surrogacy and assisted reproductive technology, noting that they should be addressed separately.

Gay and lesbian couples will soon be able to marry in France, but a few steps are left.

How things will likely go down

President François Hollande’s administration has fast-tracked the bill so that it will return to the National Assembly next week instead of in May, as originally planned. A representative explained that the debate has gone on for more than 6 months and has occupied involved more than 100 hours of debate in each house.

Under the new schedule, the National Assembly–the lower house of parliament—will have a “second reading” of the bill on April 17 to address the Senate’s amendments.

If the National Assembly approves the bill conforme—that is, without any changes to the Senate’s text—it will pass the French parliament. Hollande will sign the bill, since he campaigned on a platform that included marriage equality.

Not done yet! Opponents of the bill have promised to bring it before the country’s Constitutional Council. All told, it is expected the law will go into effect so that gay couples will be able to marry and adopt in France by this summer.

Phew! We’ll have more on this next week.

Uruguay Passes Progressive Same-Sex Marriage, Gay Parenting Bill

As expected, Uruguay’s gay marriage bill has passed both the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies, and will become law once it is signed by the President.

Uruguay becomes the third in the Americas to pass marriage equality legislation, and becomes the 12th nation worldwide to legalize gay marriage. The first gay couples should be able to be married by mid-July.

The Huffington Post notes that the bill goes farther than similar laws in other countries:

While some countries have carved out new territory for gay and lesbian couples without affecting heterosexual marrieds, Uruguay is creating a single set of rules for all people, gay or straight. Instead of the words ‘husband and wife’ in marriage contracts, it refers to the gender-neutral ‘contracting parties.’

 

The law will also grant same-sex couples the right to adopt or conceive children by in vitro fertilization. Couples would have to sign an agreement before an adoption or before an IVF procedure, which would grant them the rights of parenthood.

Spectators in the balcony above the Cámara de Diputados chanted Igualdad! Igualdad! (“Equality, equality!”) once the bill passed. See the video below: