Archive for the ‘Parenthood’ Category
October 24th, 2013
In light of the new Nevada bill, passed into law October 1, 2013, expanding parental rights to the LGBT community and to unmarried individuals, The Surrogacy SOURCE recently began actively recruiting gestational carriers in Las Vegas and Reno.
“This is a very exciting milestone in the fight for equal parenting rights within the LGBT community. We are finally able to assist Nevada LGBT intended parents with Nevada gestational carriers.” Says Susan Bloom, Director of Donor Recruitment and Marketing
In addition to expanding parental rights, the new law allows for compensation to be paid to gestational carriers, and also permits pre and post birth instructions for surrogate mothers. The bill also includes modifications to the rights of donated egg and embryo recipients.
The new law, written and lobbied by Kimberly Surratt of Surratt Law Practice in Reno, NV, includes neutral language regarding the gender and marital status of intended parents through the use of Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART). While the state’s previous law narrowly defined intended parents as legally married heterosexual couples, the new law recognizes the rights of single individuals, unmarried couples and domestic partners, paving the way for the LGBT community to realize their dreams of becoming parents!
For more information or to fill out an application to become a surrogate mother, please click here: http://www.thesurrogacysource.com/sg_about.htm.
The Surrogacy SOURCE has available surrogate mothers ready to match. To search our roster, please click here: https://www.thesurrogacysource.com/search_results.php
For information on our LGBT Surrogacy Program, click here: http://www.thesurrogacysource.com/lgbt_surrogacy.htm?type=Intended Parent
For more information and the full text of the new law, go to http://www.leg.state.nv.us/Session/77th2013/Bills/AB/AB421_EN.pdf.
October 4th, 2013
Whether you are a pregnant intended mother or a pregnant gestational surrogate carrying for intended parents it’s important to be in the best shape you can be during your pregnancy.
• See your care provider regularly – this one is a no brainer right? Regular prenatal checkups are key to a healthy pregnancy. If you suspect you are running any kind of fever, or have any sort of infection call your care provider right away. Same goes if you spot, bleed, have any sort of discharge that isn’t normal to you, or pain.
• Eat well — that means a balanced diet with enough folic acid. Eat from the four food groups and drink 96 ounces of water a day. Stay hydrated! If you aren’t sure what you should be eating ask your care provider about the right kinds of foods to eat in pregnancy.
• Be active! It used to be thought many years ago that pregnant women needed to lay around and stay quiet – no so anymore. Women who have no complications in their pregnancy are encouraged to get regular exercise – walking, swimming, strength conditioning. Stay hydrated, don’t exercise if you aren’t feeling good or if it’s really hot. Talk to your care provider about those sports and exercises you can safely participate in.
• Don’t scrimp on the Z’s (get plenty of rest) – the baby inside of you is going to increase in size 6 million times! It’s going to take from you to grow that means you need to maintain your rest. Go to bed earlier, get up later, and the best part – take naps! If sleep evades you like it can just lay down and try to be quiet putting your feet up as whenever you can. This is a great time to begin to share housework or other household chores with your partner if you have one. The bigger you get (as your pregnancy advances) begin lying on your left side – and be generous with pillows. One under your belly, one in the small of your back and maybe one between your knees.
• Before you take any medicine talk to your care provider even if they are over the counter. Some OTC meds have been linked to birth defects its always better to be safe than sorry.
• Be proactive and avoid all harmful substances. We know the usual suspects – no smoking, no drinking, and things like paint, varnish, glue, fumes, and some hair dyes are dangerous.
• This isn’t a time to be a dare devil or an acrobat – you are bigger now, your joints are not as stable as they were when you were not pregnant, your belly is ever expanding. Your center of gravity has changed – you won’t be as solid on your feet. Think twice about biking or roller skating – your risk of falling has increased. And please avoid climbing ladders okay? For that matter stay off chairs to hang curtains – ask for help.
Always wear your seat belt when driving or riding in a motor vehicle or plane.
September 16th, 2013
After selecting a surrogacy or egg donor agency, the knee jerk reaction might be “Sure why not” However, that isn’t correct. The answer should be – You always need a lawyer who specializes in third party reproduction to create a legal agreement between you and your egg donor or gestational surrogate.
It makes common sense – no two lawyers are created alike. Granted all lawyers go to law school to earn a Juris Doctorate. However, each lawyer chooses a specialty to practice. Some lawyers choose family law, while others choose things like patent law, business law, real estate law, international law, criminal lawyers, tax lawyers, insurance lawyers, divorce lawyer, etc..
You get the idea.
Catherine Tucker from The Law Office of Catherine Tucker shared with us:
“I get asked this question a lot, and I definitely do not recommend trying to handle the legal piece yourself. A properly constructed legal agreement is simply the best way to protect yourself and your family. Egg donation is an extremely complex and technical area of the law that draws upon concepts from many different legal areas, such as presumptions of maternity and paternity, property law, general contract principles, medical malpractice and liability, and choice of law principles. Unless you are well-versed in how all of these specific areas of the law interplay with regards to an egg donation arrangement, you cannot competently prepare a comprehensive egg donation agreement, nor can you competently review an agreement prepared by the other party. While I absolutely understand that egg donation is a very expensive undertaking, the legal fees are relatively reasonable in the grand scheme of all the expenses involved.”
Let’s translate this into finding a physician. You are seeking the assistance of a Reproductive Endocrinologist to help you have a child via egg donation. Would you see a brain surgeon, an internist, a psychiatrist, or a cardiologist to help you have a baby?
No, of course not. They are all doctors but they all have their own specialties just like lawyers.
You wouldn’t defend yourself in court regardless of whether you are a trial lawyer or not. Most lawyers will tell you that the conventional wisdom dictates that representing yourself in court which is known as pro se representation, is a bad idea. There’s a really old saying that a person who represents himself in court has a fool for a client. In fact, The Supreme Court quoted a law professor’s statement that “a pro se defense is usually a bad defense.
The same thing goes for physicians – they don’t treat themselves or their family members they go to other doctors for things like that.
July 16th, 2013
Regardless of whether you are carrying a pregnancy yourself or your gestational surrogate is carrying your baby for you the two week for a positive pregnancy result wait might as well be the two year wait! Everyone involved is always on pins and needles waiting!
Also, it doesn’t matter if this is your first two week wait or your fifth to manage it, to get through it, to survive you have to develop a strategy – better yet a system.
I know, I know, some might say – “Oh gosh it’s just two weeks out of your entire life” and my reply to that is – “Two weeks is a really long time to wait to find out something that is so incredibly important to you and your partner.”
There are lots of ways you can survive. Some create systems that are complicated with lots of rules. Some intended parents or gestational surrogates take fastidious notes regarding symptoms or lack of symptoms. Then many intended parents or their GS’s often POAS (Pee on a stick). That decision can be excruciating and it’s incredibly controversial. Many test early and often – I am an early tester. There is no way I want the nurse on the other end of the phone to be giving me the bad news – I want to already know it and get the ugly cry out of the way. Because we take so many drugs during this time we can drive ourselves nuts with symptoms and that’s a reason why some intended parents just don’t test and wait for the beta.
My first tip:
DISTRACT YOURSELF (Sung to Madonna’s Respect Yourself).
It doesn’t matter what the activity. Sort a sock drawer. Alphabetize and categorize your movie collection. Clean your silver. Clean your home and all of the closets. Keep your daily routine. Go to the gym if your doctor says yes. Start a new craft project. Play games. Organize anything you can get your hands on – (photo’s, books, CD,’s). Start a new book – something funny and light that can sail you through the next two weeks. Talk on the phone, call friends you haven’t talked to in a while but have been meaning to. Email all your friends.
What else –
• If you aren’t undergoing acupuncture go now it’s can’t hurt. Go for a long drive – go check out the part of town or the city or country you have been
• Listen to your favorite music or meditations on CD
• Read something light and funny
• Watch a video or go to the movies
• Chat on the phone, email all your friends
• Sit on a park bench and people-watch
• Make a list of things you’ve never seen in your town (stores or tourist sites you haven’t been to) and then go see them
• How about the zoo? Been there in a while?
• Museums are great time wasters.
• Start an online game –those can pass the time quickly.
• Walk a dog (yours, a friends, or volunteer at a local rescue)
• Get a pedicure
• Retail therapy – GO SHOPPING!
• Cooking! Make that dish you have been meaning to.
• Watch all of the past episodes of The Barefoot Contessa, Master Chef, or Hell’s Kitchen!
• For that matter go on a trash TV marathon!
• Invite a friend over for decaf coffee or tea. Serve fresh Pineapple for the fresh bromelain…
• Check out your local bookstore or library
• Research a place you’d like to vacation
Try going to brunch, or a picnic. How about a club that is smokeless? Garden, plant flowers, go sunbathing! You can always rough it and go camping, take in a lovely sunset, go to the beach—are you looking for a new church or synagogue? I know for me, ice cream makes everything better.
The ideas are endless – the message is, stay busy! And before you know it your beta test or your gestational surrogates beta test will be here.
And then you are on to your next milestone! The first ultrasound!
Hang in there – we are by the sidelines cheering you on!
August 3rd, 2012
How many times have you heard, as a surrogate, that “you are playing God!”? The common phrase here is “Basically if God wanted intended parents to have children they would get pregnant on their own. If that wasn’t a possibility then they should adopt.” ‘Surrogacy’ was preventing them from looking at adoption as an option by offering a healthy body to carry their child. Some child out there would be homeless because of surrogacy! A stunning conclusion, I know. Comments like that may make you think…but often it will not change minds.
So here are some personal views on the GOD issue. Surrogate mothers are not playing God. Egg donors are not preventing adoptions from taking place. Reproductive endocrinologists and embryologists are NOT pretending to be God (although some may act God-like).
We are all using the gifts that God gave us. We are using our brains and our bodies to make and give life. If you are really, REALLY, religious then are we not making another follower of God? A Catholic? Baptist? Jew? Methodist? Add your religion here_______! What about all the other medical marvels happening in the world? Heart transplants? Kidney donations? Bone marrow donations? How about blood transfusions? Are these not prolonging life; enhancing life? Doesn’t a new human being, a very much wanted baby, make a life complete for those parents who desire to enhance THEIR own existence?
One last thought…would any God really allow anyone to take the credit for our own creation? I think not!
These are just personal views of the writer, and are not by any means meant to offend anyone with different views.
Please feel free to comment on this blog post with your own views.
June 28th, 2012
Gay couples could lose surrogacy rights under move flagged by the Queensland government, despite Campbell Newman ruling out changes to the law before the election.
The Queensland government will ban single people and same-sex couples from having a child through surrogacy, in a bombshell move announced during a fiery overnight debate on watering down same-sex civil unions.
In a move that will further inflame the anger of Queensland’s LGBT community, Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie announced about 10.20pm that the government would introduce in the future a bill to reshape the altruistic surrogacy law.
Mr Bleijie said the Newman government’s law would be similar to the one proposed by the Liberal National Party’s Lawrence Springborg several years ago, and would repeal Surrogacy Act provisions dealing with single people, same-sex couples, or any de facto couple that had been together for fewer than two years.
“That was a clear commitment many years ago when that debate originally took place,” Mr Bleijie said of the future surrogacy changes.
Altruistic surrogacy is the process by which a woman carries a baby for another person or couple, for no payment. The changes would restrict access to heterosexual couples only.
Read more: http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/gays-face-surrogacy-ban-as-lnp-pushes-civil-union-changes-20120621-20q9j.html#ixzz1z9W2XdTy
June 28th, 2012
You read right!
The Surrogate Mother’s Husband…or ‘YOUR’ surrogate Mother’s husband plays an important, if not understated, role in the entire surrogacy journey. From the start he must get his mind wrapped around the fact that HIS woman wants to carry another man’s child. The same woman who may have stated “That’s IT! We are NOT having any MORE CHILDREN!!” (this often happens when 2 children under the age of 4 are hanging on her legs screaming for a snack and the one in her arms is spitting up formula) Once he understands that her statement perhaps meant that she doesn’t want to raise any more children of her own but carrying one for 9 months is fine, then he may relax a little…until he finds out that HE needs to be psychologically tested…and tested for STD’s (how long IS that cotton swap for a Chlamydia test?) AND sign a contract agreeing to all sorts of things that he wouldn’t normally think about..(allowing Intended Parents (IP’s) to put HIS partner on life support if necessary?) He may not realize that although he agreed to support his wife/significant other in her quest to be a surrogate mother, that HE may have to step in when the IP’s call when she isn’t feeling well, that HE will have to take care of their children when she is on bed rest after her egg transfer, or at appointments, that HE will have to give multitude of shots loaded with hormones that turn HER into a Witch (whom he has to actually live with!), that HE will have to miss work when she is in the hospital giving birth, that HE will have to hold her when she is sick, tired, scared, crying, that he can’t have any sexual intercourse (for HOW long??)…all because of this surrogacy that SHE wanted to do! Ahhh the unsung heroes!
Intended parents out there….Intended DAD’s especially, should step up NOW and thank the God above for these men who are the main support of your wonderful surrogate mother. Without them, these surrogate mom’s may end up on YOUR door step at 2 am for ice cream and pickles and a foot rub….or just to complain!
If you have a story about a special surrogate Dad who rose to heights you never imagined during your surrogate journey, please share with us!
May 22nd, 2012
this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Dr. Samuel Pang the Medical Director of the Reproductive Science Center of New England. A pioneer in helping lesbians and gay men become parents, RSC has been serving clients throughout the United States and Europe. Gay couples can become parents by the same assisted reproductive technologies that enable infertile heterosexual couples to have babies and the good news is that it is possible to have your own biological child. Dr. Pang and his husband have two sons through IVF with donor eggs and gestational surrogacy. We talked to Dr. Pang about these procedures and issues facing our LGBT community.
When asked how he became involved with reproductive services for gay and lesbian couples Dr. Pang stated, “I joined the practice in 1993 as the Associate Medical Director and in 1997 I was appointed to be the Medical Director of the Third Party Reproduction team which specializes in treating people who need either an egg donor or a gestational surrogate or both, to become parents. Now in 1997, all of the patients who required egg donation or surrogacy were heterosexual but in 1998 we were first approached by a male couple who sought to become parents through egg donation and gestational surrogacy. At that time no other fertility clinic in the area would agree to provide them with assisted reproduction services but we welcomed them immediately. Over the next five years we went on to help this couple have a total of three children through egg donation and gestational surrogacy. And in the past fifteen years, we have gone on to help many other male couples become parents through egg donation and gestational surrogacy. With a few rare exceptions, virtually all male couples who have gone through this process have been successful and some have even returned to have a second or third baby. Now getting back to the reproductive services for lesbians we have always provided donor insemination services for lesbians since our practice opened our doors in 1988. In the mid to late 1990’s I treated a few lesbian couples in which one of them wanted to conceive but was unable to do so because of ovarian failure so her partner would provide eggs for her to conceive with through a process that mimics egg donation. While most lesbians continue to use alternative insemination with donor sperm to have children, recently, some have opted to do what I have come to refer to as reciprocal IVF where one partner provides the eggs which are inseminated with donor sperm, and the other partner gestates the pregnancy. Now this is an interesting concept because these lesbian couples are not doing it because of medical necessity but electively by choice. Because this was a new concept which didn’t have a name, I coined the term “reciprocal IVF” to describe this elective IVF process. Reciprocal IVF allows both women in the relationship to be part of the process of having their child or children together.”
RSC is holding an LGBT Open House on June 13th. This is an opportunity to learn more about the assisted reproductive services provided for gay and lesbian couples in addition to fertility preservation consultations and services for transgender persons. Open House includes a facility tour and Q&A time with Dr. Pang. This event is free but registration is required. To RSVP….
For More Info: gayivf.com
May 15th, 2012
Q: I was wondering how many times is too many to be a surrogate mother? I have a friend who is going on her 5th time and I wonder if that’s healthy especially when she has already had 4 kids of her own!
A: This is a very good question but one for the IVF clinics rather than a surrogacy agency. Needless to say there are many factors to be taken into consideration. If a woman has a great track record of easy pregnancies and births, has not had more then 3 c-sections and is not over the age of 40 then she may still be a good candidate for surrogacy. We would certainly screen her as we do all of our surrogate mothers but we would leave the health issue up to the IVF doctors to decide. The surrogate mother’s health ALWAYS comes first and we would never do anything to jeopardize that! We keep in mind that our intended parents are spending a lot of money on the surrogacy process and we want the very best, healthiest and dedicated women for our IPs.
March 20th, 2012
When a woman first thinks about becoming a surrogate mother, often times the thing that comes to mind is how easy it was for HER to have become pregnant and given birth to her own child/ren. We often hear a woman state “my husband just has to look at me and I become pregnant” or “we just talked about adding to our family and the next thing we knew, we were expecting number 4!”. But we all know that is not how surrogacy works! (and if you don’t then just read on!)
First of all a surrogate mother’s husband is not involved in getting her pregnant! His sperm has nothing to do with the process so if the intended parents are having male factor issues, that right there could mean a long haul for everyone involved. For a Gestational Surrogate (also referred to as Gestational Carrier), her eggs are not being used in this process either so if egg quality is a factor that could mean failed transfers as well. For a woman, the new surrogate mother, who has never experienced failure when attempting to become pregnant, this could be an unwelcome experience!
Second, becoming pregnant via IVF is no picnic. As many intended mothers can tell you, the pills, shots, creams, blood draws and appointments can get old fast! It is a huge responsibility to agree to become a surrogate mother for someone else and agree to put your own life and, lets face it, physical comfort on hold while you attempt to become pregnant with someone else’s child.
Third, your family also is impacted by whatever happens during the surrogacy journey. No matter if the process goes relatively smoothly or if there are canceled transfers, chemical pregnancies, miscarriages or a rift in the relationship, families are always involved and effected.
All of these issues can be minimalized by having a great surrogacy agency by your side. The initial phone call should educate a woman who wants to become a surrogate mother to all of the responsibilities that she needs to be aware of within the surrogacy process. And these responsibilities will be repeated throughout the matching and contract phase of the program. No surrogate mother should have any question about what is expected of her or where she can turn for answers and support!
This is just the tip of the iceberg and we want to hear your comments!
What were your biggest surprises when you first looked into surrogacy? What are some of the things you wish you knew when you started the process of becoming a surrogate mother?
Please share your best advice! We want to hear from you!!