Originally Posted by jbk21
That's so cool that you were a surrogate!! Have you shared that story anywhere? I always wonder if I could do it (I don't necessarily *love* pregnancy). I have some dear gay friends whom I would consider carrying a baby for. Would love to hear about your experience!
Thank you! I recently posted my birth story: http://www.mothering.com/community/t/1325171/the-birth-of-surrogate-baby-mb
It focuses more on the birth than the surrogacy experience as a whole, though. Let me know if you have any questions!
Originally Posted by 2011mama
That's cool you were a surrogate. That is something I've been really thinking about lately and in fact, I just mentioned it to DH before I logged in and saw that! His only response was, "You know most people would want you to have the baby in a hospital." And I understand. I do love being pregnant (although I have to say the third trimester is getting tough). I have no idea if I'd be a good candidate though. I had fertility issues of my own and I'm overweight. I have no idea what makes a good candidate. I'm also already 32 years old and want to BF this LO for awhile and getting pregnant again would interfere with that, plus we'd like to have a second. So I don't know if I even could but it's definitely something I'd consider. I have to get through this birth though and see how I do.
The guidelines really vary depending on if it's a private arrangement or through an agency. Some agencies have strict guidelines about age/bmi/previous history, etc. Others are more lax. And if you have an arrangement directly with the parents, it's all up to their doctor and how comfortable s/he is with your history. Same with birth. I know of lots of surrogates who birth at home. You just have to find a couple who is comfortable with it. But your DH's right, MOST people will want a hospital birth, just like most regular moms will want one. I think most surrogates are under 38-40, but there's a much wider acceptable age range than with egg donors, obviously.
I went through a large, well-known agency because I wanted to make sure all bases were covered and everything panned out the way we all wanted it to. I would not go with the same agency again. I felt like I was being "handled" a lot of the time, and that they were pressuring me to conform to the agency's views and preferred way of doing things. Smaller agencies are often much more flexible and personal. I also had to be under an OB's care (which I hated, even though my OB has a reputation for being very "midwifey") and give birth in a hospital, no exceptions, due to their policy and the specific insurance they required every set of parents to purchase for their surrogate (which sucked big time...it took me over a year to get a couple claims paid).
Overall, though, it was a great experience and I'm really glad I did it. If you're looking into it, I would recommend the message board: surromomsonline.com. There is tons and tons of information about every aspect of surrogacy and you can place/read ads as potential surrogates or intended parents. There are some weirdos on there, just like with every message board, though. Women who have done 8 or 9 surrogacies, start a new surrogacy 3 months after giving birth, and hope for high-order multiples...I've also seen horrible scam situations. One woman matched with a couple privately, had semen sent to her for insemination, and pretended to be pregnant, then went through this whole charade where she lost the baby and would not send said fictional baby's ashes to the parents...all for attention. Awful. Also, don't visit the parenting forum there. Just don't. Otherwise it's a great resource, lol.