How To Find Your Surrogate Mother

Few things in life, if any, can compare to the life changing joy of bringing a child into the world and into your family. Choosing to become a parent is one of the most gratifying experiences that I have ever made in my life. When I look into my baby girls’ eyes, few things seem to matter. Even the hardships that we went through to get her into this world. If you’ve decided to use a surrogate mother for your child, the process is no less wonderful, but there are some key elements to keep in mind. There are so many things I wish I would have known before finalizing my plans for surrogacy, even though I wouldn’t change anything for the world. In the end we went with the surrogacy USA program available from an agency overseas, but I still find it important to have as much information possible before you can make your choice.

Choosing Your Surrogate

First things first, you have to choose who will be your surrogate. Seems simple and pretty obvious! But making this choice can be much harder than you’d expect. Making the choice between going through an agency to find surrogate mother or choosing a friend or family member to be your surrogate is the first step in starting the process. Both the familial route and the agency route have their pros and cons. “Shopping around” and asking a million questions is absolutely encouraged! We spoke to many different agencies as well as multiple friends and family members before we were able to settle on exactly the right fit for us.

Make sure you get to know your surrogate mother. This is super important whether you go through a friend or an agency. Once you have a potential candidate narrowed down, spend some time with them. Talk to others that know them personally and try and get a full perspective on who they are as a person. I think you’ll be surprised to find how quickly they become a part of your life. Try and take time to understand the type of relationship that you will want with your choice in surrogate mother. This person will have the potential to be a part of your life during the pregnancy and you’ll need to consider what sort of role you’ll expect them to play in your family once they have given birth to your child. For some potential parents, the choice to not be involved in the pregnancy, or the surrogate, is the most comfortable. It can streamline all of the emotions that could potentially blur the lines of relationships and paternal rights in the future. This is a perfectly acceptable route to take, and one that many people choose! Many agencies offer this option. When we spoke with a consultant at Ilaya, she told us that it’s perfectly acceptable for potential parents to be involved with the surrogate mother at a distance as well, using an agency as an intermediary party. Also, we were able to be present during the birthing process even though we chose to be uninvolved directly during the pregnancy. Essentially, your level of involvement with your surrogate mother is absolutely up to you! What feels right for your family will be the best choice.

Choosing a friend or family member can seem like an easier choice. And for some, it absolutely is. You already have these people in your life and you are comfortable with them, but it can also complicate many things as well. Just like choosing a life partner, choosing a surrogate involves really getting to know a person. PERSONALLY. If you choose to go the familiar route, you have to get down and dirty with your friend/family member about their health. Not just their physical health, but mental, habitual, and nutritional health as well.  Other important factors to discuss with yourself, your spouse/partner, and your potential surrogate include all of the legal considerations and the ethical situations as well. I’ll outline a few of the major ones that came up for us.

Health Considerations

Some important information that you will need on any surrogate candidate you choose  and C, vaccination history, x-ray tests, electorcardiograms, annual pap smears, and familial history is just a start. It’s also crucial to find out about any drug or alcohol use, mental illness or instability, depression, self-harm, smoking history… some of these questions can not only be difficult to ask of friends and family, but also difficult to accept the answers if they’re found to be less than exactly what you want for your child. Don’t get discouraged. Remind yourself that there absolutely is the perfect surrogate mother out there for you!

General Legality

Also be aware of the surrogacy laws in your state, and whatever state your surrogate mother lives in. In some states, surrogacy is a crime and there could be some severe legal complications resulting from not educating yourself early. Parental rights and custody, surrogacy contracts, and advertising laws all differ from state to state. Once state statutes are dealt with, you can then move on to some of the ethical choices that will need to be agreed upon in the initial surrogacy contract. Within a great surrogacy contract, all of the rights and responsibilities of the parents and the surrogate should be clearly outlined. Make sure that both yourself and your potential surrogate are happy with all of the information that is being agreed upon! I know the process is so exciting and that as a soon to be parent, you’ll be chomping at the bit to get started, but these points are essential in creating a comfortable and enjoyable surrogacy experience for everyone involved

Ethical Considerations

Remember, just because you’re not carrying this pregnancy personally, doesn’t mean that you won’t have ideas and expectations of how the surrogate that’s carrying your child will behave, or react to certain situations that can’t be controlled or even forseen. Being aware of your expectations at an early stage is incredibly important. Outlining these expectations legally can sometimes help remove future stumbling blocks. There are some really difficult ethical questions that come with the decision to bring a child into this world, like will there be an amniocentisis? Your choices regarding implantation procedures, guardianship in case of paternal death, what fees and expenses will be paid, and who will pay them, and whether or not there will be any indemnification given to you the parent should the surrogate mother change her mind. If there are complications like down syndrome or multiple births, how  will these complications be handled? Ensure that your surrogate understands the risks associated with the sacred task she is about to undergo.



The costs associated with surrogacy vary depending largely on you and your partner, your intended surrogate mother, and whether or not you choose to use a surrogacy agency. Some AGENCIES will cover the cost of living expenses and even pre/post natal care for the surrogate mother through the packages that they offer. Expenses like travel compensation, medical care, legal fees, insurances, and any other potential costs should be outlined thoroughly and agreed upon by all parties.

Even though it can seem really overwhelming, I PROMISE that once you start your family, it will all be worth it. There will be hours upon hours spent dealing with hassle and nervousness, but that will all be washed away by the bright memories your family will create. It’s absolutely necessary that you’re choosy, even a little nit-picky! Trust me, no one will mind and being thorough in the beginning will give you amazing results in the end. I wish you all the best of luck and hope you have all of the joy we have been fortunate enough to experience ourselves!