What Does it Take to be a Surrogate? [7 Ways to be a Great Surrogate]

“What does it take to be a surrogate?” “What do I have to do to become a surrogate mother?” These are questions you might be asking yourself if you’re considering becoming a gestational carrier. You can get the answer by contacting a surrogacy professional now – they can walk you through what it takes to be a surrogate mother.

Becoming a surrogate is one of the most meaningful and life-changing things you can do for someone else. Many of the individuals or couples pursuing surrogacy to start or grow their family are doing so because they:

  • Are struggling with infertility
  • Do not have a partner
  • Are an LGBT couple
  • Are unable to safely carry a pregnancy to term

You are choosing to dedicate your time, physical capabilities and emotional energy to giving a person or family the ultimate gift of a tiny, new life they will be able to call their own.

Because surrogacy is such a big commitment, there are a lot of steps and requirements in place to ensure a positive and successful surrogacy experience for everyone involved. Here’s how to know if you have what it takes to be a surrogate:

1. Research the Surrogacy Process 

If you’re wondering “What do I have to do to become a surrogate mother?” one of the best things you can do is educate yourself.  When it comes to being a surrogate, the more you know the better! Before you take steps towards becoming a gestational carrier it’s important that you understand the surrogacy process. If you’re new to surrogacy, doing your own research ahead of time will allow you to prepare for the journey ahead. 

The best way to get the information you need is to contact a surrogacy agency. Your surrogacy professional will be able to walk you through the surrogacy process and answer any questions you may have. They’ll also be able to go more in-depth about their own set of requirements. If you feel that surrogacy is right for you or you still have questions, contact a professional today. 

2. Familiarize Yourself with the Requirements 

A good way to answer the question of “Do I have what it takes to be a surrogate?” is by checking to see if you meet the requirements. Every surrogacy agency has a set of requirements that all applicants must meet before they can officially become gestational carriers.  These qualifications ensure that all surrogates are physically, mentally and emotionally prepared to be the best surrogate they can be.  Most agencies have requirements such as:

  • An age limit
  • Preferred BMI
  • You must have had at least one pregnancy free of complications
  • No tobacco or drug use
  • You must be off antidepressants for at least 12 months

Requirements may differ from agency to agency, so it’s important to reach out to a surrogacy professional to brush up on the requirements of your chosen agency. 

3. Have a Strong Support System

Being a gestational carrier will not only impact your and the intended parents’ lives but the lives of your family too. If you’re not sure about what to do to become a surrogate mother, one of the key pieces to a successful surrogacy journey is the support of your significant other and children.  Being a surrogate is a big commitment that will require you to dedicate a lot of time and energy to attending doctor’s appointments, meetings and changing your overall lifestyle to accommodate your pregnancy.

This might require you to put certain aspects of your life on hold until the baby is born. Having a strong support system to help you accomplish tasks and provide you with encouragement can make all the difference.

4. Check that You’re Healthy Enough to be a Surrogate

This will be something that will be determined before you can officially become a surrogate. You will go through a medical screening process and will need to provide a letter from your OB/GYN stating that you are healthy enough to carry a pregnancy to term.

If your previous pregnancies and deliveries were free of any major complications, this is typically a good indicator that you will be able to become a gestational carrier. In addition to medical screening, you will also need to provide documentation of your previous pregnancies and deliveries as well as any other relevant medical records. Your surrogacy professional will help you find and organize your information to ensure that the surrogacy process stays on track.

5. Be Adaptable and Keep an Open Mind

Your surrogacy professional will help you create a surrogacy plan that details your expectations and goals as a gestational carrier. While surrogacy may follow certain steps, such an intricate process will always have its twists and turns. It’s important that you go into the process with an open mind and are willing to be flexible with your plans if need be.

Of course, this doesn’t mean you will be asked to overlook your needs and goals. Surrogacy is a team effort and requires cooperation and understanding on both sides. The key to a positive surrogacy experience is making sure that everyone is communicating their needs and listening to one another. So if you’re asking, “What do you need to do to be a surrogate mother?” just remember to stay open to the possibilities that surrogacy can bring.

6. Stay Organized

Being a surrogate comes with a lot of responsibilities. Between doctor’s appointments, meetings with your surrogacy professional and family responsibilities, you have a lot to keep track of. Staying organized during surrogacy ensures a smooth process and that all your bases are covered. While you will want to organize things to your liking, your surrogacy professional can help you create a surrogacy plan that will keep you on track.

7. Be Prepared to Commit to the Surrogacy Process

 “What do you need to do to be a surrogate mother?” It cannot be overstated enough how big of a commitment surrogacy is. You will need to be prepared to dedicate yourself physically, emotionally and mentally to the surrogacy process for at least a year.

The timing of when you decide to become a surrogate is everything. Are you at a point in your life where you are able to commit your time and energy to be a gestational carrier?  Do you like being pregnant enough to do so for someone else? Being a surrogate means daily fertility drugs via injection, undergoing invasive procedures and possibly being put on bed rest during your pregnancy. It’s important that you know you enjoy being pregnant enough to commit to doing so for another person.

If you have questions about what it takes to be a surrogate, you can reach out to your surrogacy professional to get the guidance you need.