Deciding to become a surrogate mother in Alabama is a life-changing choice — for yourself as well as for everyone whose life could be touched by the child you would help bring into the world. By being a surrogate mother in Alabama, you could help people become parents.
If you’re interested in how to become surrogate mother in Alabama, the following seven steps will guide you through the process.
Step 1: Decide if You’re Ready to Commit to Surrogacy
Deciding to become a surrogate in Alabama is, of course, a major decision. Is it right for you?
The process to become a surrogate mother in Alabama requires your full commitment for about a year or more. Becoming a surrogate in AL requires your physical, emotional and mental investment, as well as sacrifices to your time, career and family.
If you’re married, your spouse will need to commit to your surrogacy decision, as well, for legal purposes. They’ll also be an important source of emotional support for you throughout your surrogacy journey.
You should also be certain about why you want to become a surrogate. Although the desire to be compensated for your time and effort is understandable, monetary gain should never be a main motivator. If, however, your primary goal is to help families to have the children they’ve been longing for, then you’ll probably make a great surrogate mother.
Step 2: Choose the Type of Surrogacy and Professional
- Traditional surrogacy: Although traditional surrogacy is not prohibited in Alabama, it’s very rarely practiced, and even fewer surrogacy professionals will complete this type of surrogacy. Because traditional surrogates are the biological mothers of the children they carry, there are additional legal and emotional risks involved — making this an unpopular choice for most surrogates in Alabama (and throughout the U.S.).
- Gestational surrogacy: Although there are no surrogacy laws in Alabama governing the process, gestational surrogacy is common in this state. Gestational surrogates, also called gestational carriers, are not biologically related to the intended parents’ baby. Instead, an embryo made through IVF with the egg and sperm of donors of intended parents in a fertility clinic is transferred to your uterus to carry.
It’s important that you work with an experienced professional to complete your surrogacy process, for your safety as well as that of everyone involved, including the baby. There are two different types of surrogacy professionals:
- Surrogacy agencies: These professionals match you with waiting intended parents who have already been screened and signed on with the agency or program. They provide most, if not all, of the services needed to complete the surrogacy process. They’ll also serve as the primary point of contact, so you won’t have to juggle multiple surrogacy professionals on your own.
- Surrogacy attorneys: These professionals handle the legal surrogacy process. Although they’re not always able to help with searching or matching, they may be able to offer you some tips about safely finding intended parents on your own. They’re usually a standalone service.
Step 3: Meet the Screening Requirements to Become a Surrogate Mom in AL
When you’ve decided the method in which you’re going to become a surrogate in Alabama, you’ll next need to be sure that you meet the requirements of your surrogacy professional. Although every surrogacy professional will have slightly varying requirements, most will include:
One of the first steps in the process to be a surrogate mother in Alabama is a medical evaluation. A doctor must verify that you’re healthy enough to complete the surrogacy process. You must also have given birth at least once, and you must not have had any pregnancy complications in the past. Surrogates must have a health BMI range of about 19 to 33 and be smoke- and drug-free in addition to meeting other health requirements important to your safety.
As you’re learning how to become a gestational surrogate in Alabama, you’ll need to meet several legal requirements. For example, you must be at least 21 years old, not be receiving financial assistance from the government, be a permanent resident or citizen of the U.S. and more as you begin the process of how to be a surrogate mom in Alabama.
One of the emotional requirements of being a gestational carrier in Alabama is a mental health evaluation, where you’ll usually discuss the emotional journey that you may go through as a surrogate. Ideally, you’ll also have a strong support system at home as you learn how to become a gestational surrogate in AL.
Step 4: Find the Intended Parents You Want to Carry For
An exciting part of learning how to become a surrogate mother in Alabama is choosing the intended parents you want to carry for. Finding intended parents you feel you can emotionally connect with is important when you become a surrogate mother. Alabama families are out there, waiting for the opportunity to match with you. There are three different ways you can connect with them:
- Partner with someone you already know: Women will often learn how to become a surrogate mother in Alabama because they personally know someone who needs their help to have a baby. If you’re already matched with someone, your next step will be to call a surrogacy professional to make sure you’re eligible to become a surrogate and to then complete the necessary legal and medical steps.
- Match through an agency: If you don’t already know of any intended parents you’d like to carry for, but you’d like to help a family by becoming a surrogate, an agency or program can help you match with someone. They’ll show you profiles of waiting parents who are already signed on with the agency and are pre-screened.
- Search on your own: You would work with an attorney if you’re becoming a surrogate without an agency in Alabama, and you would search for intended parents through advertising, personal connections or word-of-mouth.
Step 5: Finalize the Legal Surrogacy Contract
Once you’ve been matched with intended parents, you’ll move on to the legal process together. This must be completed before you can take any medical actions. Your spouse will also need to participate, if you’re married. You’ll need to have legal representation that’s separate from the intended parents’ attorney, to make sure you’re both equally advocated for throughout your surrogacy journey.
You’ll create a surrogacy contract together with your attorneys, which covers a range of important topics, like compensation, legal parental rights for the intended parents, what you would all want to do in the event of things like pregnancy complications and more.
When you’ve all finalized your contract, you can move on to the next steps to becoming a surrogate in Alabama.
Step 6: Complete the Embryo Transfer Processes
If you’ve completed all the health requirements and medical screenings, then you’ve been confirmed as healthy enough for the medications, fertility treatments and procedures that will ultimately culminate in an embryo transfer.
Multiples cycles of embryo transfers may be needed for successful implantation. But if the doctor has confirmed that you’re stably pregnant, you can see your preferred OB-GYN for your regular prenatal care.
As the pregnancy progresses, you’ll likely want to keep in touch with the excited intended parents about the growth of their baby and prepare for the big day together.
Step 7: Celebrate the Baby’s Arrival with the Intended Parents
One of the most anticipated moments of becoming a surrogate in Alabama is the opportunity to place the baby into the arms of his or her parents for the first time. A surrogacy birth is an exciting experience for everyone involved. Surrogates and intended parents can plan for it together, even if your match is long-distance, as many surrogacy partnerships are.
Becoming a surrogate in Alabama is one of the most rewarding journeys that a woman can undertake for another person. If you’d like to learn more about how to become a surrogate mother in Alabama, contact a surrogacy professional now for more information about getting started.