One of the more daunting tasks in the surrogacy process is selecting a surrogate. For many parents there is the worry that “the perfect match” is around the corner. It can be difﬁcult for some parents to make the decision to go forward with a particular surrogate not knowing what proﬁles might come available in the next day or week. This can be a nerve-wrecking game to play with oneself though. It is true that you may miss out on a surrogate that you “click with” even more than the surrogate you have selected, but you could also pass up on some amazing surrogates in the meantime.
My recommendations for the parent that I am working to match are to sit down and think about your nonnegotiable and negotiable criteria. Some nonnegotiable criteria might be her willingness to transfer two embryos, her willingness to terminate the pregnancy for genetic issues or reduce the number that she carried for high order multiples, etc. Some negotiable criteria might include her geographical location, marital status, etc. Knowing your negotiable and nonnegotiable criteria can make the matching process a lot less stressful.
When you do look over a surrogate proﬁle, if you connect with her on paper, this is a great sign that it will be a good match! During your match meeting with your selected surrogate, we will go over all major issues that might come up during the pregnancy—expectation for level of communication during and after the pregnancy, whether the surrogate is open to you being in the delivery room, whether she is open to pumping breast milk, in what event she would be open to terminate or reduce the pregnancy, etc. If everyone’s views are in line on these important issues the match will likely be a success!
One thing that I recommend to parents that I am helping to match is to be open to the surrogate’s geographic location. Many parents feel that they need to have a surrogate who is located close to them or one that is close to their fertility center. It is entirely possible to have the surrogate travel to your fertility center and with technology being what it is today, it is possible to feel connected, even when you are far away. Many of our surrogates will video call the parent during major appointments so they can “be there”. Holding out for a speciﬁc location is the one factor that can delay the matching process the most.
Choosing the right surrogate can be an easy process if you are clear on the criteria for a surrogate and can be open to being ﬂexible on some of nonessential points.
This article was composed by Theresa Ferrara, Fertility Source Companies Senior Regional Manager-Southwest Region.