Personal Development tips for Surrogate Mothers

Working on your personal development may be a tasking for a surrogate mother. The reason behind this is because the psyche has a number of elements which makes it even harder to pinpoint where exactly to start. This guide is created to direct you in the path that will enrich your personal development goals as a surrogate.

For starters, adopt a positive attitude. This will keep you targeted on the more important things in life. It will help you to let go of any negative feeling or experience that you can no longer change. Thinking positive helps you move forward, to not focus on what you may have lost, but look at what is to come in life.

It also helps to be with optimistic and contented people. As a surrogate mother, make friends with those who are positive-minded and provide happiness to your life. They’ll help you stay on track by being good role models and will help you balance out any negative emotion that you may get from people who aren’t as supportive of your self-improvement objectives.

Keeping a journal is another great tip to help with your personal development goals. As a surrogate mother going through many life changes, maintaining a journal is ideal to keep track of developments and experiences. Always have a notebook with you so that wherever you are, you will be able to write down ideas in detail and then go back to it at a later time when you feel like it.

When busy at work, know when to take breaks. Taking breaks may seem counterproductive, but will actually help you recharge your mind, so when you resume work, you’ll be able to get more done.

Learning how to be a leader is another great personal development tool. Leadership may have many meanings, but all stem from one common theme- influence. Look over your own past as a surrogate, or the things that have impacted your leadership potential. Which events had the most impact on the way you live your life? What transformations have occurred thanks to these events? How did your leadership skills come into action during these experiences? Thinking deeply about these experiences will help you become a better surrogate mother and a good influence to others.

Exercising is suggested not to just to lose weight, but also to improve on how you feel about yourself. There are known physiological benefits associated with exercise, particularly for surrogate mothers. Not only does it keep your body in good shape, but it also causes your body to produce chemicals that will enhance how happy and satisfied you feel.

Showing a little humility helps you to focus not just on yourself, but other people as well. When you realize the value of others, you are sure to strengthen your relationship with yourself and your loved ones.

Last but not the least, try to sit back and relax. Don’t sweat the small stuff and over complicate things that can no longer be changed. If you overreact you might be stressed for no reason and that is a big no-no for surrogate mothers. Looking at the bright side of life will most certainly help you on a personal level.

Tips for Gestational Carriers

From enhancing your mood to decreasing your risk for various health concerns, choosing your food prudently has numerous benefits. Listed below are some pointers on how you can maximize your health by means of the food that you eat while being a gestational carrier.

As a gestational carrier, make sure to mix protein and carbohydrates when you sit down to eat. You’ll still get energy from the carbohydrates, but the protein will keep you full. Eating a mix of the two will keep your blood sugar consistent and your appetite in check.

When it comes to your nutrition, it is best to keep the intended parents included throughout the whole process. This will make them feel enthusiastic and bring about a feeling of value and importance. Bring them to the store with you and have them help you pick out foods that they like and that are healthy for you and the baby.

One of the ideal things you can do to ensure proper nutrition as a gestational carrier is to include a good multi-vitamin in your day-to-day regimen. A good multi-vitamin for a gestational carrier should be balanced and prescribed by your physician’s endorsements for you, not the RDA. These multivitamins supply your body with the essential levels of diverse minerals and vitamins that you might not be getting in your diet. This will act as a nutritional supplement and will also aid in the growth of the baby that you are carrying.

As a gestational carrier, you must pay attention to the labels at the back of the food that you purchase in the store. Take the time to review the nutritional values on the packages before you make your purchase. Doing so will enable you to make educated decisions on your food options.

When considering your nutrition as a gestational carrier, be certain to watch out for foods that may look like nutritious snacks but are actually quite the opposite. There can be a lot of fats and sodium in healthy looking treats. Smoothies for instance, may end up having a lot of calories from fats and sugar depending on the ingredients they used. You are, after all, eating for two so it is vital for you to be attentive with what you put in your body.

Improving on your eating habits are critical to a lasting plan for healthy nutrition not just for you as a gestational carrier, but also for the child that you are carrying. The overall effectiveness of a healthy diet, revolves around entirely on whether or not you can stick to it.

Surrogacy’s Top Questions

 

In many parts of the U.S., Surrogacy is very much legal, with some states having created laws on the procedure. In spite of its emerging popularity and appeal, there are actually a lot of people who are still puzzled by this process.

 

Exactly what is Surrogacy?

There are basically two kinds: Traditional and Gestational. The more acceptable type of the two is Gestational Surrogacy, in which the pregnancy is a result from the transfer of an embryo through the process of in vitro fertilization or IVF. In this process, the surrogate does not have a genetic relation to the baby. Meanwhile, Traditional Surrogacy makes use of the surrogate’s fertilized eggs resulting to a genetic relation between the baby and the surrogate.

 

Are there instances in which a Surrogate claimed the baby after delivery?

Before a Surrogate, whether Traditional or Gestational, is chosen, she must pass a series of examinations that will ensure that she is physically and psychologically healthy and capable to carry someone else’s baby. Legal documents are also created and signed by both parties to ensure that everyone is on the same page and agree to the procedure.

 

How much will this procedure cost?

This process is very expensive. Financing programs are made available to intended parents where this procedure is widely accepted and practiced.

 

Is this procedure legal?

In a lot of states, Surrogacy is legal. An example of such states are Oregon and Illinois. On the other hand, New York and New Jersey have a different view of the procedure.

Communicating with your gestational surrogate.

Intended Parents 101: Communicating with Your Gestational Surrogate

Communicating with your gestational surrogate during the surrogacy journey is very important to its success. The surrogate agency you work with will make sure that all of your preferences are met in finding an ideal gestational surrogate to assist you. The degree of communication and relationship you want with a gestational surrogate will really depend on you and your partner’s preferences. So it is very important to be truthful with your agency when disclosing this information.

After you have disclosed your personal preferences on the type of relationship and communication you want with a gestational surrogate, your surrogate agency will match you with a gestational surrogate who shares the same preferences with you and your partner. If you would like to keep your relationship with your gestational surrogate on a more personal level – meaning you want to have a close working relationship with open communication – your surrogate agency will find you a gestational surrogate who wants the same type of relationship.

If you prefer a more “business like” relationship with your gestational surrogate, your agency will pair you up with a suitable gestational surrogate who shares the same preferences. In this scenario, your agency will be doing most of the communicating with your gestational surrogate and will be informing you of any doctor’s appointments or checkups that you may want to attend with your gestational surrogate.

Communicating with your gestational surrogate is now easier than ever thanks to the services of a reliable surrogate agency. Remember, a good surrogate agency should be able to provide excellent services and support all throughout your surrogacy journey. They should be able to assist you in any way possible to make the journey a lot easier and more stress free for you and your partner.

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The relationship between surrogates and their intended parents.

Surrogates in California and Their Relationship with the Intended Parents

Surrogates in California and their rapport with the intended parents is exclusively unique in its own way. Mounting a rich understanding of your expectations of the relationship and allocating those specifics with your surrogacy agency and each other is important.

The prime areas to focus discussions about your surrogate relationship concerns are regularity of communication, types of communication, and the overall tone of your personal relationship. This relationship can be reflected many different ways or you may indicate that you do not wish to have a relationship. Every intended parent’s approach will be different, as will that of the surrogates in California.

Relationships evolve and change over time. Being aware of this creates a balance with your surrogate mother, enabling a healthy relationship to develop and grow.

Surrogates in California must have a balance of communication between themselves and intended parents. It can be a delicate process involving each of you. Determining the amount of communication and gaining an insight into the surrogate’s expectations should be carefully considered. Some intended parents like high levels of interaction, regular updates via e-mail or phone, and the expectancy of attending the doctor appointments.

It is extremely essential to some intended parents to be included in the pregnancy. Similarly, some surrogates in California also desire this close bond with their intended parents and may be disappointed if the intended parents choose not to engage in regular contact throughout the journey and beyond. Many choose to have a life-long friendship even after the birth.

A small percentage of intended parents and surrogates in California feel compelled to have a small dose of contact such as quick updates and texts or phone conversation. Before entering into a surrogacy agreement together, it is important that several discussions take place as to the desirable amount of communication that will take place throughout the pregnancy and beyond.

It is important to talk with your partner about what type of relationship you would like to have with your surrogate before, during and after pregnancy. There are so many advantages and disadvantages to both options. The final decision ultimately rests on your shoulders and your personal preferences.

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Gay Intended Parents 101: Simple Ways to Bond with Your Newborn

Intended Parents 101: Simple Ways to Bond with Your Newborn

One of the major fears gay parents face is whether they will bond or connect with their newborn, but most intended parents don’t realize that this is a very common worry amongst all types of parents. Here are some helpful tips and ideas to help gay parents bond with their newborn baby:

  • Before your newborn arrives, it is best to join a support group or a network with other gay parents that have tried surrogacy. The more you are able to talk through your fears, learn suggestions and hear stories from other parents, the more you will be prepared and have reasonable expectations of the initial months with your newborn. Reading books on parenting and watching DVDs or TV programs will help you feel ready when your newborn is placed in your arms.
  • Once your newborn arrives, it is best to focus on nurturing and meeting the baby’s needs. This is one of the main ways that parents and children bond to each other. You and your partner need to pay close attention to the nurturing tasks you are doing for your newborn, like feeding, changing, dressing and holding. By coming to your child when called and when you are needed, you will build trust and a feeling of safety which is at the basis of bonding. Responding to your baby’s cries or perceived “neediness” with consistency, love, and gentleness will let them slowly know that you are the parent and you can be depended on. For babies, dependency is a good thing.
  • Talk to your newborn. Language is a key element of connection and will help your baby in his development. Even with a newborn, it is important to talk and sing and coo and use your voice to share information and emotion. You can talk while you are doing care-taking tasks, talk about what you’re doing, and talk while you’re taking a walk. Even though you may think your child doesn’t understand you, you are conveying attachment and sharing information when you talk to him or her.
  • Play. Play is one of the joys of both parenthood and childhood. Before you know it, your newborn will be in the terrible teens and you will miss the days when you were his or her favorite playmate. For infants and babies, traditional games like peek-a-boo and singing games are wonderful ways to interact and bond, as well as teach your baby.
  • Touch. This may seem like a no-brainer, but touch is a key element in attachment and bonding. With an infant or baby, you will be holding your child to feed, rock, and comfort. A thousand words of comfort and security can easily be conveyed to your newborn through touch.

These are just some of the simple ways gay parents can bond with their newborn. By learning all the important skills new parents need to care and nurture for their child, you can easily build a lasting bond with your newborn baby.

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7 Critical Personality Traits A Surrogate Should Possess

7 Critical Personality Traits A Surrogate Should Possess

As intended parents, you want to find the best surrogate mother for your surrogacy needs. Due to the growing number of people experiencing infertility in the United States, surrogacy has become more widely recognized, and more women today understand the concept of surrogacy and want to help others by choosing to be a surrogate. But with the increasing number of surrogates, it gets difficult to choose the right one for you. To help you get started on this wonderful surrogacy journey, here are a few characteristics you need to look for in a surrogate mother:

  • Honesty. Intended parents need to be able to trust their surrogate completely. A surrogate mother should be honest with the intended parents that chose her to work with them. All questions intended parents might have should be answered truthfully. Honesty is the most important part in any surrogacy relationship and greatly helps with its success.
  • Reliable. A good surrogate should be reliable with the intended parents. The surrogate mother should always make herself available for her intended parents or surrogate agency. Since the surrogate plays an important role, intended parents need to know that they can depend on their surrogate. To be a surrogate means being both reliable as well as professional.
  • Healthy. A good surrogate mother should not just be healthy enough to carry a child to term. She should have a good medical history meaning she has no chronic illnesses like cancer, diabetes and heart disease. In order to be a surrogate, she should have a good mental history meaning she has no history of mental illnesses such as depression, chronic anxiety and bipolar disorder. She should also maintain a healthy lifestyle by not smoking, drinking or using drugs.
  • Good Communicator. Surrogate mothers should be very vocal when communicating with all involved parties including intended parents, the surrogate agency and the medical personnel. She should provide regular medical updates to the surrogate agency and to the intended parents. She should also alert them if she has concerns about her health or the status of her pregnancy. The surrogate should be able to respond honestly and promptly to both the surrogate agency and the intended parents during the process of surrogacy.
  • Intelligent. A surrogate should be smart enough to understand all the processes involved with surrogacy. She should be able to comprehend all the important legal aspects like the surrogacy contract and relinquishing of all her legal rights to the child. She should also be smart enough to understand all the medical procedures that she will undergo and follow the medical instructions precisely rather than making her own decisions. An intelligent surrogate knows all her responsibilities and understands the gravity of what she will be doing for the intended parents.
  • Nurturing. A good surrogate mother should be nurturing, which means choosing what is best for the baby over what she may want to do. Since the surrogate mother will be carrying the intended parent’s child she should give it the same care as they would during the pregnancy. She should know how to take care of herself and the child she is carrying for the intended parents. A nurturing surrogate mother should be eating healthy, getting enough sleep and making choices that are best for the baby.
  • Responsible. A good surrogate mother should be responsible in her actions. She should follow through with instructions that she is given and be able to complete any tasks that are assigned to her by the intended parents, the surrogate agency or the doctor’s office. A responsible surrogate does what she is told without needing to be reminded. She should act responsibly in informing everyone involved if she has medical concerns.

Knowing for yourself these 7 important characteristics to look for in a surrogate will greatly increase your chance for a successful surrogacy journey. To be a surrogate mother, they should be professional and have the integrity that is embodied by these 7 characteristics. It is vital to identify them in a potential candidate prior to selecting her as your surrogate. A surrogate who possesses these qualities will not only give the intended parents a healthy baby but also a wonderful surrogacy journey.

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Your Top 5 Surrogacy Questions Answered

Intended Parents 101: Your Top 5 Surrogacy Questions Answered

Surrogacy can be a challenging process to comprehend. There are many aspects to this process that need to be understood. As intended parents, you need to know as much information as possible to ensure a hassle free surrogacy. If you happen to be new to surrogacy, here are the top questions and answers:

Top Question 1: What are the types of women that become surrogates?
Generally, surrogate mothers would have to be between 18 to 38 years old. This is one of the most important requirements surrogacy agencies and intended parents look for in a surrogate mother. Another important characteristic is that the surrogate mother should have at least conceived one child to ensure that the surrogate mother can carry pregnancy to term. Finally, the surrogate mother’s top goal should be helping others rather than the monetary compensation involved with surrogacy. In most cases, surrogacy agencies conduct a screening process on surrogate mothers to assure intended parents that they are getting a well-suited surrogate mother. Surrogacy agencies check medical records, financial history and criminal records of surrogate mothers.

Top Question 2: What do Intended Parents look for in a surrogate?
Intended parents normally base their decision on several factors like location of the surrogate mother, level of responsibility, intelligence, health and ability to carry a healthy pregnancy. These are some of the main characteristics that intended parents look for in a surrogate mother. Then there are those intended parents that are very meticulous when choosing a surrogate mother. These intended parents need a surrogate who is in agreement with the level of communication they prefer and someone who agrees to their type and style of relationship during and after the surrogacy. They prefer a surrogate who is not only physically and mentally in line with their expectations but also emotionally.

Top Question 3: Is the surrogate mother properly screened?
It depends. If the referral is coming from an IVF clinic then maybe not, as they generally do not perform the same amount of screening as surrogacy agencies will. If the referral for a surrogate mother comes from a reliable surrogacy agency then the surrogate has passed several mental, emotional and physical screening processes. Surrogacy agencies check medical records from previous pregnancies and conduct psychological and emotional tests on the surrogate mother. If the surrogate is married, her husband will also undergo psychological and medical screening

Top Question 4: Will the Intended Parents and surrogate meet?
It depends on the preference of the intended parents. There are intended parents that prefer not to get emotionally involved with their surrogate. The majority of intended parents however, prefer the “open surrogacy” policy, which means that the intended parents would meet and get to know the surrogate. Meeting the surrogate reassures intended parents that the surrogate’s primary motivation is not the money she earns but rather her desire to help. If the surrogate and the intended parents meet, they can get to know each other and get a better idea if the arrangement will work out.

Top Question 5: As Intended Parents, what are the chances of a successful surrogacy?
In medical terms, a “successful” surrogacy simply means that intended parents end up with a biological child. Since surrogacy involves a complex process like In Vitro Fertilization, the success rate will greatly depend on several factors like the health of the intended parents’ sperm and eggs, ability of the surrogate mother to carry a child to term and health of the surrogate. With these factors taken into consideration, the overall success rate of surrogacy in the US ranges from 70 to 80 percent. Your fertility doctor can give you the rate of success on your surrogacy.

Getting a better understanding of surrogacy before you begin your journey will definitely help you have a successful surrogacy, and understanding these top 5 questions on surrogacy will help you decide on the right thing to do before you start on this very important process. Surrogacy agencies can stand by your side and make the journey a lot easier because they can give you a better idea of what to expect and guide you throughout the whole process.

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Baby Shower Ideas for Intended Parents

Baby Shower Ideas for Intended Parents

Intended parents can find it difficult and confusing to throw a baby shower, since questions like ‘Should we invite the surrogate mother?’ and ‘How do we tell our families and friends about this occasion?’ can arise.

And since surrogacy is a relatively new process, there’s no established tradition in how to throw a baby shower. So to help get you started in planning the perfect baby shower as intended parents, here are some ideas:

If you’re planning a baby shower, consider inviting the surrogate mother – if you have a close relationship with her. If your relationship with her is more on the ‘professional’ level, it might not be so appropriate to invite her – after all, you don’t have a close or a personal relationship.

If you do have a close relationship with her, consider including her name on the invites you send out. It might read something like: “You are invited to attend a baby shower of (baby’s name), Proud parents to be (your names), proud surrogate mother (her name.)

If you invite your surrogate mother to the baby shower, it’s a good idea to suggest that your other guests bring her some small gifts, so that she doesn’t feel left out of the party. Small tokens are just fine – the important thing to remember is to credit her, to make her feel appreciated for all her efforts.

If your relationship with the surrogate mother is close, inviting her to the baby shower is a really good idea; she’ll feel touched to be recognized in this way, and the baby shower may become a treasured memory for her, a highlight of the surrogacy experience.

On the other hand, if your relationship isn’t especially close, and it would therefore be awkward to invite her, you could instead consider throwing her a surprise party after giving birth, or simply give her some presents as a token of gratitude for her contribution to your family.

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3 Helpful Tips Every Intended Parent Should Know About Surrogacy Contracts

Surrogacy Contracts: 3 Helpful Tips Every Intended Parent Should Know

Intended parents can face a lot of confusion regarding the legal aspects of surrogacy, and one of the biggest sources of confusion in the surrogacy process is the surrogacy contract. The surrogacy contract refers to the legal agreement between the intended parents and the surrogate. The contract lists all legal provisions and agreements related to the process of surrogacy. Having a legal contract between a surrogate and the intended parents is very important to avoid any future legal conflicts. In the event of unforeseen circumstances, the surrogacy contract will act as a legal guide for both intended parents and the surrogate.

In order to get a better understanding of surrogacy contracts, here are 3 of the most important things every intended parent should know:

Tip 1. Surrogacy contracts differ from state to state.
Every state recognizes surrogacy as a reproductive option, but while some states have passed laws and statutes defining the surrogacy process, others do not have specific laws addressing surrogacy. In most states where surrogacy is recognized, there are laws and statutes that define the paternity of the child, the financial obligations and the rights of the intended parents and the surrogate. It is very important to know what the local laws and statutes are before getting into any legal contract with a surrogate. Reproductive specialty lawyers who specialize in surrogacy can help intended parents better understand all the different laws and statutes on surrogacy. Surrogate agencies will employ reproductive specialty lawyers for intended parents and surrogates in order to ensure that each party is legally protected.

Tip 2. The surrogacy contract is essential.
The surrogacy contract is very important to avoid any future legal conflicts that may arise during the process of surrogacy. A surrogacy contract is a binding and enforceable legal contract for the intended parents and surrogate. It pre-defines the paternity of the child and both the financial and behavioral responsibilities of each party. The surrogacy contract allows each party (meaning the intended parents and the surrogate) to state their own intentions and responsibilities to one another, and it establishes guidelines for what actions will be taken in the event of medical complications such as the number of embryos to be transferred at one time, if selective reduction is an acceptable option, and which type of delivery method will be used. All of these agreements and conditions are very important to avoid any legal conflicts that may arise during and after the surrogacy process. Surrogate agencies can provide helpful information on the different aspects included in a surrogacy contract.

Tip 3. The surrogacy contract should be reviewed by reproductive specialty lawyers representing each party.
Neither the intended parents nor the surrogate are required by law to use a reproductive specialty lawyer’s services for the surrogacy contract. However, it is highly advisable that the surrogacy contract be reviewed by a reproductive specialty lawyer in order to be certain that the child’s paternity is pre-established, and to properly identify the financial and medical obligations of each party. It is also recommended that both the surrogate and the intended parents have their own reproductive specialty lawyers review the surrogacy contract. Each reproductive specialty lawyer will review the surrogacy contract to ensure that the client’s responsibilities, rights, and paternity are properly identified. In most cases, surrogate agencies will provide both the intended parents and the surrogate with their own reproductive specialty lawyer.

The surrogate process can be confusing for intended parents, and reviewing and understanding the surrogacy contract is one of the best ways to clear up that confusion. The structure and clarity the surrogacy contract provides can help intended parents to feel comfortable and confident throughout the surrogate process.

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