Becoming a surrogate is one of the most meaningful things that a woman can do for fertility-challenged and LGBT+ people who are looking to start or grow their families. Every year, hundreds of babies are born with the help of a surrogate. If you’re thinking about becoming a surrogate, you likely have a lot of questions about the process, including whether you would be eligible.
Before you begin the application process, it’s critically important that you explore and understand the various requirements that are necessary for becoming a surrogate. Although the requirements may seem strict, they’re in place for a reason, and serve as a way of ensuring the safety and well-being of all participating parties.
Some of the requirements deal with the surrogate’s personal natal history. For example, women who have had pregnancy complications in the past are not considered to be ideal candidates for surrogacy. This is because women who have experienced complications in the past are more likely to go through complications again in the future, which could potentially endanger the health and safety of both the surrogate and the child.
Other requirements are centered around the surrogate’s general health and lifestyle. For example, candidates must be smoke-free for at least six months in order to be considered eligible. The negative impact that smoking has on a fetus’s health has been thoroughly documented, and as such it’s crucial that gestational surrogates are tobacco-free.
The requirements also touch upon legal factors. For instance, surrogates must reside in a surrogacy-friendly state. Because surrogacy laws vary from state to state, the process can be very complicated. Some, like California, are very favorable toward surrogacy, whereas others, like New York, have legislated against it. Building or expanding a family shouldn’t be hindered by red tape—at the end of the day, it’s simply easier for everyone involved if the surrogate lives in a state that generally supports the practice.
In addition to checking all these boxes, potential surrogates are required to undergo background checks, psychological evaluations, and medical examinations. These processes are necessary in order to determine whether a potential surrogate is physically, emotionally, and socially healthy enough to handle the unavoidable stresses that come with carrying and delivering a baby, as well the potential emotions that may arise when it’s time to give the child to the intended parents.
Although the surrogacy process is often rewarding and joyful, it’s also physically, legally, and mentally demanding. As such, these requirements are crucial for ensuring the health, happiness, and safety of everyone involved.
To learn more about the requirements for becoming a surrogate or to set up a consultation with one of our specialists, reach out to Fertility Source Companies today.