Building Relationships with International Intended Parents

International Intended Parents

Embarking on a surrogacy journey – whether you are a surrogate mother or an intended parent – is one of life’s most momentous and personal experiences. When our surrogates are matched with international intended parents however, they sometimes worry that it will be tougher to bond or communicate. Luckily, at Circle, we have an abundance of experience with this and plenty of tips to make the process more seamless! 

The relationship between a surrogate mother and her intended parents is a special bond that not many people will ever experience. Circle Surrogacy & Egg Donation has been matching gestational carriers and intended parents for almost 25 years. “Our relationship-based model that we have cultivated at Circle helps to create strong bonds between surrogates and parents, and aids in ensuring smoother, more successful surrogacy journeys,” says Gina-Marie Madow, Circle’s Matching Manager.

Circle’s focus on building strong bonds means regular communication between surrogate mothers and intended parents. The more communication that happens, the stronger the relationship will be, and the more included intended parents will feel in the process. Plus, our gestational carriers love to share their journeys with their intended parents!

How can surrogate mothers and international intended parents stay connected across different time zones, languages and cultures?

Video chats make all the difference.

Circle strongly encourages weekly video chats between surrogates and intended parents, on the platform of their choice. Surrogates and IPs will use Skype, as well as WhatsApp (which is free). When you’re building a relationship with someone, having that face-to-face communication – even if only weekly for a short period of time – helps you to get to know one another on a deeper level.

 

Navigating time zones.

It goes without saying that when international intended parents and US surrogates are matched, they will be communication across multiple time zones. What’s the best way to communicate when you’re continents apart? Find a day and time that works best for both parties each week and schedule your video call on your calendars. Circle has found that putting a specific day/time on the calendar helps all parties adhere to their weekly video chats, even among busy schedules. Depending on where everyone is located, this may mean a surrogate is video chatting with surrogates first thing in the morning for her, and right before bed for her intended parents. Make your video chats fun: perhaps you are sharing a meal while chatting…even if that is breakfast and dinner!

One journey, multiple languages.

Some international intended parents may speak English, or be able to communicate written English. Other IPs may not speak English, however, it doesn’t mean that intended parents and surrogates can’t communicate with one another. There are plenty of platforms that enable effective communication. 

  • Enlisting a translator. As mentioned above, video chats are an integral part of developing a strong relationships. Circle will encourage intended parents who do not speak English to have a translator available for communication with their surrogate.
  • Google Translate. While the translations are not always perfect, using Google Translate can be a great tool for communication between surrogates and intended parents. Plus, the Google Translate App enables one-tap translation in certain apps on Android phones.
  • WhatsApp. This free app enables seamless messaging, photo sharing and video chatting across the world, in any language.

Over the years, surrogates and international parents have shared amazing stories of how they connected throughout their journey.

One set of international IPs started taking English classes to help prepare them to better communicate with the surrogate, as well as the doctors and hospital personnel in the US. 

Surrogates have shared the special gifts that they have sent to their intended parents that represent the state in which she lives to help them understand her background and where she’s from (and where their baby is growing!)

Depending on the level of relationships, surrogates have often visited their intended parents in their home country after the birth of their baby(ies) with their families.

Surrogacy is a wonderful adventure, one that creates life-long bonds between surrogate mothers and intended parents, no matter where they live and the language they speak.

If you’re interested in learning about becoming a parent through our international surrogacy program, you can click here.

If you’d like to help a family as a surrogate mother, you can learn more here.