Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Why I'm Choosing to Be a Surrogate *An Open Letter to Skeptics

After the birth of my daughter, my first child, I felt something I never could have imagined existed. It's different for everyone, that feeling you get when you hold your child in your arms for the first time. When you realize you are a parent and from that moment on, no matter how you choose to use that time, you are that baby's parent forever. 

I was overcome with the want and the need for every woman and man out there who wanted to be a parent to have the opportunity to feel that joy and to experience that gift. Now don't get me wrong, I'm a firm believer that children are a major responsibility and that the choice to have children shouldn't be made lightly. But for those people who, for whatever reason, are unable or unwilling to have a child the old fashioned way, why can't they be given the chance for a biological child?

Of course there is the debate that there are endless amounts of babies and children in need of families who are up for adoption, and I commend any and everyone who has started or built their family this way. But what if the option to have a biological child was there? What if the option for those 'He has your eyes' and 'She looks so much like her sister' moments were available through means of a surrogate?

I had pretty easy pregnancies and even though childbirth is hard and has it's unexpected moments, I loved every painful minute of it. I loved being pregnant. I felt like I had the greatest superpower on Earth. I can produce children...and milk. And yes, so can millions of other women and truly I'm not any better than them. Mostly, I'm just willing to go through getting pregnant unconventionally and enduring pregnancy for someone else, something not every woman is willing to do. So why not use this need and ability for good now that I'm finished having my own children? Like a human oven? Being a surrogate and providing someone the gift of parenthood (the best thing I ever did) would be a gift for me in return. 

I've had some people, mostly men, ask me about the emotional attachment I'd feel for the baby and ask if I could really just hand over the baby and walk away? My response is simple: it's not my baby {and I'm hoping to not just be walking away}. There would be no DNA linking me to this child. Sure, I will feel some emotions having grown an attachment towards the baby over the course of my pregnancy. But I understand that this is not my child (I'm not donating my eggs). It is someone else's gift. I'm just helping them on their journey to becoming parents and to experiencing that feeling they never could have imagined existed. There is no better gift then creating life. And through science the options for deserving people to become parents are possible. 

I've started my journey at being a surrogate and carrying a child for someone else. I will be writing along the way about every exciting new thing that pops up, from the insemination preparation, the insemination process, and the pregnancy. This will not be simple and it will not be short. This is a journey for the intended parents and my family. I will be as honest as I can be and will answer any questions along the way. Overall, I'm so excited for this next chapter in my life and fulfilling the dream for a deserving couple. 

I'd love to hear what you think and hear other stories of surrogacy. Please share with me. 

45 comments:

  1. You are a truly amazing human being. You are going to make someone so happy. All the very best, x

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    1. Thank you! I hope all goes well! Have a wonderful day! xx

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  2. I think that is incredibly selfless of you. Best of luck!

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  3. I love that you are doing this. Such an incredible gift.

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  4. This a beautiful, thank you for sharing! You are truly giving the best possible gift to deserving families. What a wonderful thing.

    I stopped by from the Not Just Homemaking Party.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by! Have a great week! xx

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  5. Lovely post - thanks for sharing! :)

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  6. What an incredible gift you are giving. I pray that you are allowed to continue a relationship with the parents and child.

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    1. I pray for that too! I'd love to be a part of the child's life, even if just through writing. Have a nice day! xx

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  7. You are doing an amazingly selfless act by being a surrogate. I wanted to be a surrogate prior to my third child, but medically I cannot. I remember telling my office mates that I wanted to be a surrogate, and the one person that did not look at me in disgust started saying how lowly that is, etc. It was very hurtful. I do not see what is wrong with it.

    Thanks for sharing at Inspire Me Mondays.

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    1. How strange that they would tell you that...and I'm sorry you don't have the chance. Everything happens for a reason though. Thank you for stopping by and have a wonderful week xx

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  8. This is beautiful and amazing. If I could be a surrogate parent, I would.

    Such a blessing you are to this family.

    Thanks for sharing and for linking up to the #SHINEbloghop.

    Wishing you a lovely weekend.
    xoxo

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    1. Thank you, and thanks for hosing #SHINEbloghop!! One of my favs!! xx

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  9. I don't think I would do that. But, it is great that you are willing to go through pregnancy so another couple can start a family. You are giving them a gift.

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    1. It's def not for everyone and no one should take it lightly. I had some reservations, some I'm still dealing with (more on that another day) :-) Have a great week! xx

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  10. Lovely post. Thanks for linking up to Share A Smile! x

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  11. What a lovely gift to give. I'm sure it will be a difficult and emotional journey, but I pray you'll stay strong.

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    1. Thank you for that and I also hope it's not too difficult. It's all a great learning experience. Have a nice week! xx

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  12. This fascinates me... as someone who did not love being pregnant I am always very interested to learn about women who do love it... It's a gift... and bravo for using your gift for serving others in this grand way.

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    1. Thank you... I do get very sick while pregnant and always find it interesting when I meet a woman who can go through pregnancy without any form of illness. I'm hoping it will be different this time around. Have a great Monday!! xx

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  13. What this is something big! I support you on this decision as this is your body and I am looking forward to reading about the journey here in your blog =)

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  14. Hi, I think that is such a lovely thing to do. We tried IVF years ago, did not work for us. I donated eggs to help someone else dream come true, hopefully.

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  15. You are certainly giving this family a gift. Even after 5 years of getting pregnant and battling infertility, I've never considered this an option. But I think it's great you understand how I feel. So many people tell me I should adopt and don't understand how sad I feel to think I may never hold a baby resembling me and my husband. It's amazing what you are doing to help someone else achieve this. I admire you! Thanks for sharing with us at Totally Terrific Tuesday!

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  16. What an amazing and selfless thing to do. Good luck on your journey.

    Thanks for linking up with our Parenting Pin It Party x

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  17. This is wonderful of you. I was told at 18 that I would never have children of my own and anyone who can give this gift to a parent who is desperate to have a child is a godsend. I have always wanted to adopt so my struggle wasn't as hard as some families. I have had offers from family members to surrogate for me and because I have been living with the idea that I cannot have a child for so long the concept seems so foreign. I commend you for what you are doing.

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    1. Thank you. Thank you for sharing your story. I support all options for families to have children. I think it's amazing what you're doing, too. Adoption is not always easy for families either.

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  18. Wow what an amazing gift you are willing to give someone! It is so beautiful! I am looking forward to following you along on your journey and wish you all the best for this big step in your life!

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  19. While I totally support you and think what you're doing is amazing, I'm not sure I could do it! Pregnancy just made me too crazy and I think I'd be sad that I didn't get to keep the baby. But I'm extremely emotional anyways and had a hard time giving a dog back that I watched for a week. I can't wait to watch your journey!!

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  20. Wow, good for you. Such a wonderful gift you're giving to others that can't carry or carry full term... I'm so inspired, I have goosebumps. You're such an amazing individual - I'm so proud of you. :)

    xoxox

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  21. Oh my goodness! Congratulations on your decision to become a surrogate. I think that's amazing. I've thought about doing this too but have heard through the grapevine that I wouldn't be a candidate because I don't have children of my own. I don't know this to be true, but I heard it was because of the "emotional attachment" and the feelings that come with handing a baby over...but like you said, there is no DNA link. I'm fascinated and I can't wait to follow you through this journey!

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  22. This makes my heart so happy! You are such a strong, inspiring woman!!

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  23. I mean, how great are you?? What an amazing gift you'll be giving, and at such a great personal commitment and some would say, sacrifice. I hope it's an amazing experience for you and wish you all the best in it. Such a blessing to families. Wow. :)

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  24. It takes a strong unselfish woman to do this...you are an inspiration.

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  25. This is one of the most selfless things you can do! You're awesome!

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  26. Wow, this is simple amazing! What a wonderful gift for a couple to receive. You are so awesome for allowing them to fulfill their dreams of parenthood!!

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  27. Girl you are awesome and what an incredible gift you are giving! I don't think I could do it emotionally but I'm in awe of those who can!

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  28. After a long struggle, I was just told that a surrogate is my best option for having a child of my own. Bless you and your generous heart. People like me hope and pray for someone like you. Do you have other posts on this topic?

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  29. All rights and obligations of surrogate mother and intended parents should be written in agreement and be protected by the law. For surrogate mother it is usually very hard to leave the baby. I have seen some surrogate mothers that were crying leaving babies. But it is like natural human reaction. During the nine month there was contact between gestational carrier and baby. It is really strong connection with a baby bearing it. But I don’t think that it would cause significant damage for birth mother and child. Surrogate mother should be prepared to leave. Surrogate mothers must have physiological consultations and support. I’ve mentioned it because our surrogate mother had it. And of course there should be strong reasons to become surrogate mothers. As we are talking about gestational surrogacy not traditional. The birth mother is not connected biologically the child. From this point of view it is more justified that traditional surrogacy. And I think traditional surrogacy isn’t used any more if I am not mistaken. And concerning the children I think it is not obligatory to tell them the truth. I understand that it would be hard to conceal it. However, here we need to choose. We need to be very careful with their psycho. It is very fragile. Once hurt, it is very difficult to restore it. We are not obliged to tell all the details of birth and bearing to our child. Maybe in some cases adoption can be alternative. But it is not always a way out. There are a lot of problems appearing with the adoption. I have nothing against it but it is really very difficult. But this process can take several years. Meanwhile it is pleasure to raise a baby since the birth. And that child will not be genetically connected neither my husband nor me. Surrogate mother and donor should be different. Maybe the legislation concerning the surrogacy can vary. But when I was treated in Ukraine.there was special legislation. That legislation did not permit surrogate mother to be a donor. Also one parent had to be genetically connected to a child. And there should be strong medical indications for surrogacy such as infertility or age.

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  30. Hello Ashleigh, your reasons for becoming a surrogate are identical to mine and reading your blog entry was like looking into my own mind/heart! I have now carried 4 surrogate babies for 3 different families and I couldn't feel more honored and blessed in my decisions to do so. My passion for surrogacy is what drives me on a daily basis as a program director for a surrogacy agency now and I truly LOVE what I do! I do wish that people would educate themselves more on the process prior to speaking out negatively on the process/ subject. The poster above is sadly mistaken about several things! While there have been tears involved when saying "see you laters' at the hospital, those tears are more from the crashing hormones and the realization that the journey is now over, as opposed to missing a baby. Someone that has not been in those shoes would simply not understand. While most of the cases of surrogacy are gestational, there are still traditional surrogacy arrangements going on too....it IS used and not uncommon.

    I pray that all is going well for you and your intended parents and I hope baby is thriving and healthy! Thank you for being awesome!

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