Defining The Surrogate Mother

Gestational surrogacy is an increasingly recommended process thanks to assisted reproductive technology. Who is involved in this process? Gestational carriers, who are often referred to as “surrogate mothers”, are the women who give birth to babies legally belonging to intended parents. While a traditional surrogate uses her own eggs and is the biological mother of the baby, a gestational surrogate uses an egg donor and is not genetically related to the child.

Some use the term “surrogate mother” as a casual short-hand; however, some believe the term “surrogate mother” conveys inappropriate intent toward the women who are helping heterosexual and same-sex couples build their families. Instead, these folks will opt to use “surrogate pregnancy“ or simply “surrogate” as to them, “surrogate mother” could mean:

  • The mother-to-be is not the baby’s mother
  • A woman is obligated to be involved in the baby’s life as a “mother” figure

As you can see, everybody’s meaning of a surrogate mother will be different, and in any case, the terminology you use matters more than you may think. You will notice that we use a variety of terms on our site, including “surrogate mother“, in an effort to educate and inform. “Surrogate mother” is a common term still used today, especially by those who are new to surrogacy and are looking to understand specific aspects of the process.

What Does It Mean To Be A Surrogate?

To us, gestational surrogates instill hope into family members, ensuring they are one step closer to fulfilling their dreams. Surrogates are critical in every stage of the family-building process, from artificial insemination to establishing parental rights for intended mothers and intended fathers. Surrogacy is a life-changing process that takes almost two years, on average, to complete, and we celebrate all who pursue it.

Why Do People Become Surrogates?

The surrogacy process promotes the gift of family, and surrogacy provides a way for women to empower this deeply meaningful experience. Whether they personally know somebody who has struggled with infertility or is a part of the LGBTQ+ community, they see themselves as fulfilling a special calling.

With several steps throughout the assisted reproduction process, including in vitro fertilization (IVF), surrogacy can be a challenging experience. As such, embarking on this journey can give women a sense of accomplishment. Other women simply enjoy being pregnant and have had positive experiences with the births of their own children. Surrogates may also love becoming part of sisterhood, a group that can answer questions, uplift them, and provide meaningful and lasting friendships.

Finding a Surrogate

Many people turn to a surrogacy agency for support, as surrogates are carefully matched to intended parents. Further, agencies conduct in-depth background checks and draft surrogacy contracts between all parties to ensure a fair and smooth experience. Fertility centers, surrogacy attorneys, online support groups and family and friends can provide recommendations.

ConceiveAbilities for Surrogates

Women also pursue a surrogacy journey with the help of an agency, knowing they receive guidance for understanding surrogacy laws and navigating potential legal issues, as well as best-in-class physical, emotional, and mental health support from health professionals. ConceiveAbilities offers all of the above.

With almost three decades of experience, we’ve developed multiple methods of supporting our surrogates. First, to ensure a safe and healthy experience, we have a thorough screening process for prospective surrogates, which includes a physical and psychological screening. Further, we have a knowledgeable team who maintains relationships with past surrogates, medical providers, and fertility clinics. All these entities provide ample aid to surrogates along their journeys.

Our agency also has a proprietary matching process, Matching Matters, which includes a proper legal contract between surrogate and parent and establishes the right matches the first time. Additionally, our program offers the highest surrogate compensation, as well as health insurance coverage for the surrogate pregnancy, which pays medical expenses and more.

We work with surrogates from across the United States and intended parents from around the world. Contact our team today to learn more about how you can help others achieve legal parentage for new family members.