Surrogate Stories: The Preliminary Stages


You want to become a surrogate. You’ve toyed with the idea. You’ve researched the topic and agencies. You’ve read blogs from start to finish. You’ve completed the application. You’ve gotten your pre-approval email. Now what?

When I started my surrogacy journey, I was very surprised by how quickly the process moved. I was contacted within 24 hours of my application, pre-approved within a week, passed the psychological screening within two weeks, and officially matched with my intended parents two days shy of a month.

When I was in the preliminary stages of this process, I found myself ending almost every email to Circle with, “What’s next?”

[Read more…]

6 Must-Read Blog Posts about Surrogacy

Whether you follow our blog or are just stopping by (psst! subscribe here), we wanted to share some of our most popular reads. Without further ado, and in no particular order, here is a selection of highly read posts.

1. How to Become a Surrogate Mother: A Brief Overview
In this guest blog post, Jeni Denhof gives prospective surrogates a firsthand account of the process. As a surrogate outreach coordinator for Circle and a former surrogate, Jeni lends insight on the research phase, the application process, pre-screening, screening, and matching.

2. Covering the Cost of Surrogacy: 6 Tips for Intended Parents
The financial aspect of surrogacy can be overwhelming for intended parents. That is why we put together surefire ways to help you pinch pennies and save for parenthood through surrogacy. One such tactic is to share your story with friends and family in an effort to raise funds.

[Read more…]

A Surrogate Mother’s Pay Explained

You’re thinking about becoming a surrogate mother to help a deserving family. Great! However, you’re still a bit unclear how the financial part works. After all, there’s no one price fits all when it comes to surrogacy.

For those considering becoming a carrier, A Surrogate Mother’s Pay: A financial guide to surrogacy breaks down common expenses and provides an overview of Circle’s base fees. Read on to learn more.

What else does the guide cover?

  • Who can become a surrogate
  • How base fees are determined
  • How payments are distributed
  • Why an agency protects your best interests
  • and more

Have additional questions? E-mail our Surrogate Outreach Coordinator Jeni Denhof at

Which States are Best for Surrogacy?

We get this question a lot and it’s a difficult question to answer. Let’s begin with some basics:

  1. Surrogacy laws differ from state to state. There is no national law in the United States concerning surrogacy. Instead, each state has its own laws and procedures to secure intended parents’ parental rights of any child[ren] born through surrogacy.
  2. What matters is the state where the surrogate delivers. More often than not, intended parents and their surrogates live in different states, if not different countries. Because of that, there is an intersection of legal frameworks. At least initially, for the purposes of finalizing a surrogacy arrangement, the state where the surrogate delivers the child is the state whose legal framework usually applies.
  3. Everything depends on the legal requirements/preferences of the intended parents. Any given state (except the five listed in “Places to Avoid”) may be favorable or unfavorable depending on what the intended parents need to accomplish to secure their parental rights at home, or their preferences for doing so.

best-states-for-surrogacy All of this is a way of saying that there are many factors that determine what will be a good state for a surrogacy arrangement. While it is tempting to hone in on the few states that have passed surrogacy statutes, that is often not the best strategy for identifying a favorable state for you.

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Circle Surrogacy Heads to New York!

Maybe you’ve looked into adoption and felt it wasn’t the right fit. Maybe you’ve tried conceiving the natural way to no avail. No matter what your circumstances are, you’re likely reading this post because you have some interest in surrogacy. This is why we at Circle are offering intended parents in the tri-state area the chance to learn about our programs.

On August 24 and 25, we are headed to New York City and Southampton, respectively. We’ll be offering free private consultations to couples and single individuals who would like to learn about becoming parents through gestational surrogacy and egg donation. The sessions last two to three hours and provide information on the following aspects of surrogacy:

  • NYC Surrogacycosts
  • legal issues
  • matching
  • surrogates and egg donors
  • LGBT parenting
  • agency services
  • and much more

Plus, we’ll answer any questions you have for us and about the process. Remember, the appointment is tailored around your wants and needs.

Don’t wait to register, though! There are only a limited number of these free private consultations available. Can’t make the in-person consultation? Not to worry. Our outreach coordinator is happy to discuss surrogacy and egg donation options with you via Skype or telephone. Simply email


HIV and Surrogacy: Exploring the SPAR Program

Over the past decade, extensive progress and developments have been made in the field of HIV treatment, helping HIV-positive individuals lead active lives. One such development is the Special Program of Assisted Reproduction (SPAR) program, which allows people living with the virus to safely become parents without transferring the virus to the baby or to the surrogate.

What is SPAR?
HIV and Surrogacy SPAR is a world-renowned program that combines PCR HIV Semen Testing and Sperm Washing to screen and prepare semen from HIV-infected men for safe IVF procedures. It is the only program in the world that uses highly sensitive PCR tests for HIV in semen to minimize the risk of cryobanking sperm that could transmit HIV to the carrier of the child during surrogacy.

What steps are involved?

  • Evaluation of both partners (A physician examines the parties who are interested in becoming parents through SPAR and discusses the length, severity, duration, and treatment of HIV with the infected person.)
  • Collection of specimens (Semen may be collected at home or in a lab.)
  • Sperm is tested for HIV, “washed,” and cryopreserved
  • Treatment at a collaborating infertility clinic (There are currently 76 infertility centers in the nation that collaborate with the Bedford Foundation with infertility procedures.)

[Read more…]

Memorable Moments in Surrogacy

in vitro fertilization

There’s no denying that surrogacy has gained popularity in the past decade. That is why we decided to take a look back at the biggest moments in this pathway to parenthood.

The First Test Tube Baby
In 1978, Louise Joy Brown was born through in vitro fertilization (IVF). The procedure was performed by Doctors Patrick Steptoe and Robert Edwards, both pioneers in their fields. The birth of Baby M through this groundbreaking procedure paved the way for gestational surrogacy.

Its Importance: IVF provides treatment for infertile couples/individuals as well as the option for gestational surrogacy. IVF also means the potential genetic testing for genetic abnormalities.

[Read more…]

Queen Gives Approval: Marriage Equality Official in England and Wales

Gay couples can get married next summer in England and Wales.

queen-marriage-equalityIt was not a surprise when Parliament officials announced that Queen Elizabeth II had signed the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act today—the process of “royal assent” is just a formality in Britain’s modern monarchy. But the Queen’s approval marks the last step in the process of the bill becoming law.

Bringing marriage equality to Britain

There were a few bumps along the way. The bill first passed Britain’s lower House of Commons in early February by a vote of 400 to 175. Despite Prime Minister David Cameron’s support for the measure, many members of Parliament from his Conservative party voted against the bill.

Later, a member of the upper House of Lords attempted to introduce a “wrecking amendment” that would have killed the bill. That tactic failed and the bill passed the House of Lords on Monday evening, before returning to the House of Commons, where it was finalized yesterday.

[Read more…]

Bonding with Your Baby

bonding with babyDuring a typical pregnancy, a mother gets to know her baby. After all, he or she grows in her belly for nine months. Ultimately, a relationship begins and the two develop a natural bond.

But what happens if your circumstances are different and you didn’t carry your child? Are you behind on fostering a relationship with your kin? Certainly not! With the following advice in tow, you’ll be bonding with your baby in no time.

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How to Be a Successful Surrogate

What does it take to become a surrogate? For starters, you have to be a woman with proven fertility. But there’s much more to it than that. To find out if you have what it takes, check out the following rules successful surrogates play by.

Get organized. Becoming a surrogate requires multiple appointments that start on day one and continue until the baby is born. To avoid mixing up appointment times, dates, and locations, it’s best to use a planner. Make things even easier by downloading a schedule app to your phone, such as Schedule Planner. If you’re more old-school, go for a notebook style planner. For added fun, color code appointments by type for more manageable viewing. Use red for OBGYN visits, blue for Skype updates with intended parents (IPs), green for IVF clinics, and so on. [Read more…]