Surrogacy may be a viable option to couple’s suffering from fertility issues. Nevertheless, there are still some controversy using surrogate mother for having a baby. Legal process is tricky and differs from one state to another.
Who uses surrogates?
Several reasons to use surrogates include –
- Uterus issues
- Had hysterectomy surgery [uterus gets removed]
- Severe heart disease or other medical issues that can make pregnancy risky or impossible
- You tried IVF and it failed
- Child adoption is impossible because of marital status or age
- Gay couples find surrogacy helpful
Surrogate mother can be found via an agency, where free consultation for international patients is offered. You will need to choose between two kinds of surrogate mother.
Traditional surrogate [termed as Biological mother]
When a woman is artificially inseminated with father’s sperm, the woman carries the baby for nine months and then gives birth to a child. She is actually the biological mother of the baby because it was her egg, which was fertilized with the father’s sperm. Even donor’ sperm can be used, if doctors suggest.
Gestational surrogates [Called ‘birth mother’]
Today, IVF or in vitro fertilization technique has made it possible to fertilize the mother’s egg and father’s sperm in a lab environment. The embryo is then placed in the uterus of gestational surrogates. Baby is carried by the surrogate until birth. There are no genetic ties with the child because her egg was not used.
Legally, gestational surrogacy is less intricate. Genetics of mother and father are tied with the baby. Therefore, this is the best option couples choose.
How to choose surrogate?
- Choose a surrogate, who is 21+ and has given birth to minimum one healthy baby.
- This helps her understand the risks associated with pregnancy and childbirth as well as emotional problems of attachment with the newborn.
- She needs to pass psychological screening and infectious disease tests.
- Sign an agreement defining the role and responsibilities of the surrogate during pregnancy like prenatal care and approval of giving the baby after birth.
Legal problems with surrogates
Law related with reproductive technology fluctuates, so parental rights are not guaranteed for surrogacy. In some states, after surrogacy pregnancy, there may be need to undergo adoption proceedings for gaining legal child custody. On the other hand, in remaining states, ‘declaration of parentage’ prior birth avoids having the baby adopted.