Surrogacy & Your Partner

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You’re a surrogate? How does your husband feel about that?”

It’s just another one of the invasive questions that surrogates will commonly field during their journey. As with many of the questions that can catch a surrogate off guard, this one is likely founded in ignorance of gestational surrogacy. Many people assume that if a woman is pregnant, she must have slept with the baby’s father or, at a minimum, provided her egg to create the child.

Bearing in mind that you don’t ever have to answer invasive questions that make you uncomfortable, perhaps the easiest way to address this question is through education. You can begin by explaining that, as a gestational carrier, the child inside of your uterus has no biological relationship to either your husband or to you.

Reminding them that neither the sperm nor the egg have DNA from your partner or from you can clear up some of the confusion. It removes the immediate assumption that any pregnant woman must have a biological link to the child, or that she may have been intimate with another man to create a surrogate child.

Next, feel free to remind them that with Growing Generations, your husband or significant other has to be supportive and on board in order for you to become a surrogate. This will answer their underlying question- does your husband/partner object to or dislike this choice?

 

Many of our surrogates tell us that their significant others have played a first-hand role in the journey as well. From managing the financial and paperwork aspects to administering the nightly injections, many spouses find themselves actively involved in the process. Illustrating these acts of involvement can help show that this is a decision that is made by an entire family.

Finally, if your partner is comfortable with the idea, invite the person asking the question to talk with your spouse directly. Opening the door to one on one communication can help with education and lead to a deeper understanding of surrogacy as a whole.

Remember that you don’t need to defend the choices or emotions of your family to anyone. This is a life-changing choice and can be difficult for others to accept. Know that you’ve made the choice to grow a family and that doesn’t need justification.

Dr. Kim Bergman

Kim Bergman, PhD, a licensed psychologist of 26 years, has specialized in the area of gay and lesbian parenting, parenting by choice and third party assisted reproduction for over two decades. Dr. Bergman has created a comprehensive psychological screening, support and monitoring process for Intended Parents, Surrogates and Donors. She is the co-owner of Fertility Counseling Services and Growing Generations and is a member of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, the American Psychological Association, the Los Angeles County Psychological Association, the Lesbian and Gay Psychotherapy Association, and the Gay and Lesbian Medical Association. She is on the national Emeritus board of the Family Equality Council. Dr. Bergman writes, teaches and speaks extensively on parenting by choice. Along with co-authors, she published “Gay Men Who Become Fathers via Surrogacy: The Transition to Parenthood” (Journal of GLBT Family Studies, April 2010). Dr. Bergman’s is the author of the upcoming book, Your Future Family: An Essential Guide to Assisted Reproduction (Red Wheel Press 2019). Dr. Bergman created her own family using third party assisted reproduction and she lives with her wife of 35 years. Her two daughters are in college.