Written by Stacey Ashe
The thought of carrying and delivering twins is exhausting, but the idea of carrying those twins and handing them over to another family is emotionally and physically overwhelming. But that's what Charlotte mom Stacey Ashe did - 3 times - as she worked as a surrogate. In this 8-part series, Ashe dispels the myths and and shares the truth about being a surrogate and how someone becomes a mom.
Part Four: Picking Parents
Questions swirl surrounding surrogacy, and once the obvious wow factor has worn off, people are often curious about how a potential surrogate gets matched up with a potential family.
To ensure a successful process, surrogates and families need to be on the same page when it comes to the pregnancy, delivery, and important decisions. Topics that a normal pregnant woman probably doesnt really consider before, or even during her pregnancy are discussed and decided upon.
So, did I get to pick the parents of the babies I carried? Yes .in a sense.
This is something that depends on the route you go to find parents. Each time I used an agency, and they did the initial matching process. It went something like this: I fill out a paper and answer around 100 questions covering topics that I never would have thought about on my own. Each couple (intended parents, as they are called) do the same.
The agency then gives my information to a couple they feel like could be a good match. If the couple agrees, the agency gives their information to me to review. If we also decide that it could be a good match, we get phone numbers and talk, and go from there. Each time I also met the intended parents in person before a final decision was made, but after the phone calls it was pretty much decided.
At this point in the process I was always most happy to have gone through an agency.
Some things in the process are kind of difficult to talk about, but really need to be brought out in the open before a contract is drawn up and the process is set in motion.
Topics the agency covers include: If there are health concerns for me or the baby, who gets to make decisions about what happens? If the baby has an abnormality, what will happen? When the delivery happens, who gets to be in the room?
Its really important that both parties are on the same page, because you definitely dont want to find out you arent if a tough situation arises. Therefore, these are things that the agency had us the potential parents think about and answer before matching us based on similar wants and needs. So its a little more than us just picking the parents.
We have been very blessed to really get along with the parents we had the opportunity to work with, and have even been able to see the kids grow up! This isnt the case with all arrangements, and its just another example of the benefit of having things worked out ahead of time.
Luckily, we found parents who really wanted the same things we did, and were able to have a great experience!
Coming next week: Part five - Sharing the good news
Stacey Ashe has been a surrogate three times (delivering twins with each pregnancy!) and is the mother of three amazing children of her own - two boys, and one girl. Stacey and her husband recently adopted their daughter from China, id a Registered Nurse, and is studying to be a Nurse Practitioner. She's not your average mom, and likes to stay busy all the time.