When you hear the word “surrogate mother”, what is the first thing that comes to your mind? Many people do not know for sure what a surrogate mother is. However, this is a common practice in many countries.

The development of increasingly advanced medical technology makes this very easy to do. When medical technology advances rapidly, with the discovery of ways to preserve sperm, in 1970 the era of in vitro fertilization, which is still known as the IVF program, began.

The IVF program is carried out by a legal partner, where the results of fertilization outside the uterus (zygote) will be returned to the woman who has an egg (ovum), namely the biological mother. But the side effect of IVF is used by couples who do not have children (primary infertility) with the wife is unable to conceive or raise her fetus in her own womb.

Therefore, the wife needs another woman’s womb to raise the fetus by providing a number of material rewards based on an agreement: when she gives birth, the child must be returned to her. This is what is known as a surrogate mother. However, this practice is not permitted in many countries.

The contract of surrogacy must contain:

Personal roles and responsibilities of each party

Things to do to make sure the baby gets good care while in the womb

    Custody and legal rights over the baby

    Compensation for the surrogate mother

 Place of birth

The relationship between the two parties in the future

Health costs for the whole process

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Health insurance for the surrogate mother during pregnancy until delivery

All the possibilities that can happen, such as the unexpected birth of twins or triplets

Possible complications and risks:

Emotional aspect

The process of using a surrogate can be time consuming and complicated; parents should understand what to expect before starting the process. Sometimes, it can take parents months or years to find a suitable surrogate. Not all IVF processes can lead to a successful pregnancy, therefore there is a possibility that parents will have to repeat the same process 3-4 times. This process can take up to several months because the IVF process takes 4-6 weeks.

Level of success

The success of pregnancy cannot be guaranteed, especially if the pregnancy uses eggs from the biological mother because the possibility of the mother to produce good eggs will depend on her age.

Side effects

Fertility drugs used during the process can cause some side effects for the mother and the gestational surrogate. The surrogate mother will also experience side effects that are commonly experienced during pregnancy.

Law problem

There are many factors that can hinder the success of the process of using a surrogate. It is possible that the surrogate mother will resign and decide not to carry the baby, or she may suddenly change her mind and decide not to give up the baby. 

Custody

Possibly, the biggest problem with surrogacy is the legal aspect, which is complicated because the laws in each region regarding surrogacy can vary. In some places, parents still have to go through the adoption process to get custody, while in other areas, parents can go through a simple procedure that is “declaration of custody” before the baby is born so they don’t have to go through the adoption process. Biological parents must understand all the surrogate mother processes and laws in their area, so that they can protect their rights as legal parents. Vice versa, if a woman, say, wants to become a surrogate in California 2021 she must understand all the relevant laws in California.

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Medical and health concerns

Before the process begins, the gestational surrogate mother will undergo a psychological examination to ensure she will be willing to give up the baby she gave birth to, as well as undergo a medical examination to check for certain health risks.

Surrogacy is a fairly complex process. Each party involved must fully understand and agree to the “rules of the game.”

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