4 Reasons to Work With an Agency to Find a Surrogate

pregnant couple The first choice you will make when choosing surrogacy to grow your family is whether to work with an agency or to manage the journey on your own, referred to as “going independent.” While the independent route may look appealing on paper, as it often represents a misleading cost savings, there are many, many reasons why you should choose to work with an agency. Here are just a few of them. Surrogate Screening:  There is tremendous value in the layered screening process. When you entrust an agency to screen surrogates, you employ non-biased professionals to filter applicants to present you with the candidates who are the best suited for surrogacy.

Our screening process consists of many layers including a background check, financial stability check, an in depth psychological screening, and a thorough medical screening. With an agency, all of these screenings are completed by experts in the field who specialize in assisted reproduction. These experts are also non-biased to the candidate, meaning we aren’t considering them to carry our child and won’t have an interest in whether or not they make it through screening. The end result with Growing Generations is that only about 1 out of every 100 applicants will finish screening. That means when you’re presented with a profile, you can rest assured that she is the “cream of the crop.” Legal:  Having an airtight contract is vital.  Reputable agencies will work with attorneys who are experts in third party reproduction, which is crucial. An attorney not familiar with surrogacy may not be familiar with all points that are necessary to cover. While any attorney will know to say that custody goes to the IPs following delivery, many may not know how to address fetal reduction, termination, potential compensation, communication, etc.  By working with an agency you are ensuring that all information is present, and has been fully disclosed and explained to your surrogate prior to your journey beginning. Comprehensive Services:  There are so many moving parts in this process, and things can change very quickly. Having an agency to manage the process is so important.  It can be very overwhelming for an intended parent to try to manage all of the details.  By entrusting professionals who are experts in this multi-layered process to manage the “business” side of things, it gives you peace of mind to know that everything is being handled. This will allow you to grow the relationship with your surrogate on a personal level, and enjoy your pregnancy on an emotional level, not a business one. Crisis Management. While most journeys go smoothly, and we hope you never encounter any problems, there is real value in working with an agency when things do go wrong.  Miscarriage, fetal demise, relationship issues with the surrogate, and financial issues can all arise during your journey. Having an agency to intervene can be a comforting a security blanket. The choice to work with an agency is one that can help ensure a more enjoyable and complete experience through surrogacy. If you have additional questions about how an agency can enhance your experience, don’t be afraid to reach out to one of our intended parents admissions specialists.

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: The Essential Guide to Assisted Reproduction (Conari 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.