future family starter



If you’re an intended parent considering surrogacy but without the slightest clue of where to begin, don’t worry. You’re certainly not alone.

With its complexity of laws, different definitions and types (e.g. gestational surrogacy vs. traditional surrogacy), and a regulatory framework which varies so widely between individual states, surrogacy’s process can be intimidating even to professionals who work in the field, let alone a busy prospective parent who’s simply trying to explore potential alternative parenting options.

Because of the differences in individual needs, no two surrogacy journeys are ever exactly the same. That said, here’s a brief overview which can help give you a better sense of what the experience looks like:

Step 1: Connect with a surrogate or egg donor, depending upon your needs.

Some parents – and surrogacy professionals, for that matter — think this means conducting an online search and trading emails. Whenever possible, you should sit down, face-to-face, and connect in a real way to determine if there’s a physical, psychological, and emotional match. You’ll also need to conduct an extensive medical and psychological screening to determine rightful candidates. A surrogacy agency can be a great resource to find your surrogate or donor.

Step 2: Execute a legal agreement

Once you’ve found your surrogate, it’s time to consult with legal professionals and draw up an agreement which you understand, which properly protects you and your child, and which establishes a sound framework to move forward.

Step 3: Medical Processes

Once an agreement has been reached, the fertilization and implantation medical processes begin. Again, depending upon your individual needs, this phase of the process will take different forms.

Step 4: Supervising and Supporting Your Surrogate

From here, your role moves into a supervisory one – staying on top of your surrogate to ensure they are keeping all medical appointments and leading a lifestyle which supports a healthy child. Sadly, many parents often disappear at this stage and show up again after delivery. When selecting a surrogate, you should make clear the extent to which they want you involved throughout the pregnancy (link to blog) At Future Family Starter, we urge you to keep in close contact with your surrogate throughout the process, or, if you prefer, will do so ourselves and inform you of updates and opportunities to join your surrogate at medical appointments.

Step 5: Start Your New Life as a Family

After a healthy birth, the process is close to formally concluding. Depending upon your contract, you might still need to obtain legal determination of your status as the child’s parents, and you may wish to obtain corrected birth certificates. You’ll also need to decide whether or not you’ll continue to keep in contact with your surrogate, and how and when to share with your child that they were brought about through surrogacy.