Surrogacy has risen in popularity as an alternative family building method. It’s a great way for couples struggling with infertility, LGBT couples and hopeful single parents to start a family. This has resulted in an increase in surrogacy professionals.
Two such professionals are surrogacy agencies and fertility clinics. Both play integral roles in the surrogacy process. With fertility clinics shifting their focus towards surrogacy, the lines between what sets these professionals apart have blurred.
That’s not to say you have to choose one or the other. In fact, it’s best to work with both.
Often times if you work with a surrogacy agency, they will connect you with a fertility clinic when you reach the medical part of the surrogacy process. This article is meant to inform those who are considering only going through a fertility clinic for your surrogacy needs.
Listed below are pros and cons of surrogacy agencies and fertility clinics. You can also reach out to a surrogacy professional to get the guidance you need.
Advantages of Surrogacy Agencies
Because surrogacy agencies are so well-versed in various areas of the surrogacy process, there are many pros of going through an agency to coordinate your surrogacy journey. Here are just a few:
Surrogacy agencies are equipped to help you through every step of the surrogacy process. Surrogacy requires a lot of collaboration, and these agencies are staffed with professionals who specialize in helping surrogates and intended parents work together.
Surrogacy professionals understand that surrogacy is a complex partnership, and they know what goes into making it work. As intended parents, your surrogacy professional will be able to work with you one-on-one to help you find a surrogate that you feel is perfect to carry your child. As a surrogate, your surrogacy professional will make sure you’re getting everything you need throughout the surrogacy journey.
It’s common for surrogates to remain a part of the intended parents’ lives after the baby is born. After forming such a strong and unique bond, the intended parents sometimes come to see the surrogate as part of the family. Your surrogacy professional can help you establish boundaries and figure out post-birth contact arrangements if needed.
Surrogacy is a complex process. Surrogacy agencies can help you create a surrogacy plan so you have an idea of what to expect from your surrogacy journey. Once a plan is created, your surrogacy professional will be by your side every step of the way.
Having consistency can help you feel confident and supported in your surrogacy process. You will never be without a shoulder to lean on.
Even with all the feelings of joy and excitement the surrogacy process can bring, you may find yourself feeling overwhelmed at times. There’s a lot to think about. Balancing your everyday responsibilities with your surrogacy responsibilities can generate a lot of stress.
Surrogacy agencies offer counseling for surrogates and intended parents. Your surrogacy professional will be there for you to guide you through the emotions you’re experiencing and to just be a person who you can vent to.
Your surrogacy professional will help you create a surrogacy plan that will act as a sort of roadmap for your surrogacy journey. From connecting you with an attorney to making arrangements with fertility clinics, your surrogacy professional can coordinate everything on your behalf.
One of the most important services a surrogacy agency can offer is providing matching opportunities. Your surrogacy professional will show you potential surrogate profiles that match your preferences so you can find the surrogate you want to carry your child.
While fertility clinics may have lists of potential surrogates and intended parents, they are unlikely to offer the same type of matching services of a surrogacy agency. For example, agencies often have stringent screening requirements, so you can be sure you are in a good match.
Many surrogacy agencies have a network of surrogacy attorneys that they will be able to connect you with. These attorneys are well-versed in your state’s surrogacy laws and will ensure that your rights are protected throughout the surrogacy process.
Disadvantages of Surrogacy Agencies
Fertility And Embryo Transfer Services
Some surrogacy agencies do have egg donation programs, but many don’t. Your agency might not have a fertility clinic of their own, but they can connect you with a fertility clinic that can assist you with the medical portion of the surrogacy process.
This is the ideal way to navigate the surrogacy process, with each professional playing their part. However, if you have recently heard from a fertility clinic offering similar services to a surrogacy agency, you may be wondering what the cons of this option are.
Let’s talk about that now.
Advantages of Fertility Clinics
While they may not be able to meet all of your surrogacy needs, fertility clinics play a pivotal role in process by providing the necessary medical services.
Surrogates will undergo fertility testing to ensure that they will be able to go through the embryo transfer process.
Egg And Sperm Donation
For intended parents who are in need of an egg or sperm donor, fertility clinics will be able to help you find a donor that fits the specifications you want.
Egg Retrieval and Embryo Transfer
Fertility clinics specialize in facilitate the IVF process. This involves retrieving the egg from the intended mother or egg donor, and then transferring the embryo to the surrogate.
Disadvantages of Fertility Clinics
When fertility clinics fulfill the roles listed above, they are an incredible part of your surrogacy journey. However, there can be pitfalls when a fertility clinic becomes your sole provider of surrogacy services.
Fertility clinics are a necessary resource when you reach the medical stage of your surrogacy process. But beyond that, they may not have the expertise on the inner workings of the relationship between surrogates and intended parents. They may not be able to support you in ways that surrogacy agencies can.
It takes time to establish good practices. Fertility clinics are experts in their field. But when it comes to matching services, surrogate and intended parent screening, mental health counseling and more, clinics are often very green. An established surrogacy agency is likely to have more developed, tested programs to support you.
Plays A Specific Role
Fertility clinics play an important and specific role. Beyond their fertility services, clinics may not be able to support you throughout the entirety of your surrogacy process. That’s why its recommended that you work with a surrogacy agency in addition to utilizing the services of a clinic.
If you have more questions about the differences between surrogacy agencies and clinics, you can reach out to a surrogacy professional today.