When a reference is made to "surrogate parenting" most people assume this to mean the surrogate mother who offers to carry a pregnancy through to birth and then give the baby to the “legal” parents.
For our purposes here, though, the reference is to the surrogate mother and her partner. They are the parents during the pregnancy.
Parenting begins at conception. While carrying a baby in the womb, parents are responsible for the health of the baby--that baby is a person. The prenatal care is considered an aspect of “parenting!”
Most surrogacy agencies prefer that the surrogate has already had a healthy pregnancy and delivered a healthy baby without complications. The agency and the future parents assume that your future pregnancies will also be healthy.
If you can begin to think like a mother, you will make a better impression at your interview because the agency and the potential parents want to feel confident that you will be responsible during the pregnancy. They want to know that you will do everything in your power to take care of the baby while you are carrying him or her.
The surrogate mother will testify that she has an agreeing partner who is willing for her to undergo the pregnancy. He (usually a “he”) also agrees that his partner/wife has a stable living environment and reliable transportation. He will be willing to assist his partner/wife in maintaining her pre-natal care, including timely arrival to all doctor’s appointments.
Most surrogacy agencies want their surrogates to live in a stable environment with a husband. Unless you are a member of the family, acting as a surrogate for a family member, an agency is not likely to accept you as a surrogacy candidate.
Surrogate parents need to understand their responsibility to refrain from drinking alcohol, smoking, taking any drugs other than those prescribed by the obstetrician, and refrain from any activities that would place the baby in danger. Your partner should also refrain from smoking so that you are not breathing secondary smoke.
A surrogate mom must take into consideration her spouse’s undesirable habits or addictions. And, a spouse must fully recognize the huge responsibility of carrying someone else’s child. For this reason, agencies provide counseling to prepare couples for surrogacy.
Dr. Christine Strong, NMD
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