Do ovaries matter for the surrogate?

by Nicole
( Hesperia ca)

Can I be a surrogate mother if I have had one of my ovaries taken out ? And I have a lot of mental illnesses in my family but I don’t have any

Reply by Rayven
In gestational surrogacy, ovaries do not matter. Many surrogates have had a tubal and no longer have access to their ovaries. Because their eggs are not used, they are not needed.

But the important issue here is not that you are missing an ovary, its the fact that you had one removed. Why was it removed? The answer to that question will more than likely determine your eligibility to become a gestational surrogate mother.

If your pregnancies were healthy, you’ve delivered full-term babies, and the removal didn’t have anything to do with fertility, its quite possible you will still qualify for gestational surrogacy.

Of course, traditional surrogacy would be an entirely different situation. Though theoretically, if you had one functioning ovary and intended parents who really wanted to use you, it would be possible as well.

As to the mental illness in your family, you will need to discuss this with your agency and have them determine their willingness to work with you.

Best wishes!

Did you have trouble giving the child to its biological parents?

by Dana Stevenson
(San Bernardino, California, America)

Were there emotional feelings involved?
Did family and friends oppose your decision to be a surrogate?
When people noticed you were pregnant, did you quickly explain your situation?
How long were you able to send with the child after it was born?
Did you have a close relationship with the biological parents?
Does the child know who you are?
Are you able to visit the child, or is this strictly business?

Reply by Rayven
Each surrogacy arrangement is completely different, as is each surrogate mother. I can answer these questions for you, but understand they come from a personal perspective, not a perspective of surrogate mothers at large. Every experience is different.

Did you have trouble giving the child to its biological parents?
None whatsoever. It felt like a very long, very involved babysitting project to me, and the weekend had finally arrived. I was happy to be a part of helping this couple create their family. Never, in the 5 yrs since I first started my first surrogacy journey have I felt sad or bad about the children I have helped into this world.

Were there emotional feelings involved?
I am not an overly emotional person, so in my particular case, while I cared for my surrogate babies and would have done anything to keep them safe, I was not emotionally attached in any way.

Did family and friends oppose your decision to be a surrogate?
Friends were all supportive. My mother was against it in the beginning because she worried about me. I think she irrationally feared that I would die or something. Once we worked through these fears and once she had a chance to meet the twins I gave birth to, she came around. She still is not thrilled that I have done 3 surrogacy journeys, but she is not overly negative anymore.

When people noticed you were pregnant, did you quickly explain your situation?
I am currently pregnant for my third surrogacy. Sometimes I explain, sometimes I don’t, depending on my mood and the situation. If I know I will be seeing these people again, like they are neighbors, I always explain. (They’d just have more questions when there was no baby later.) Often, my husband or kids will do the explaining. My husband thinks its hysterical to tell strangers the baby is not his. He quickly explains that it is a surrogacy, but it is one of his favorite things to do. Men.

How long were you able to spend with the child after it was born?
The twins and the boy I delivered after them were international surrogacy arrangements. In both cases, the parents stayed for several weeks in the US to get the paperwork and their passports arranged. We saw each other 2-3 times per week during that time.

In the hospital, I got to hold them as much as I wanted. With the boy, the parents were not there at the birth and arrived two days later, so he roomed in with me. (I felt like he shouldn’t spend his first couple days on Earth in the nursery, which was an option.)

Did you have a close relationship with the biological parents?
Over time, a close friendship was formed. It did not exist prior to the surrogacy.

Does the child know who you are?
The oldest surrogate babies I have delivered are 4 yrs old. It will be years before they can comprehend how they arrived on this earth.

Are you able to visit the child, or is this strictly business?
As my surrogate babies are international, visiting is really not something that can occur often. We have a “when you’re in town, stop by” arrangement with the parents, which I am sure eventually we will do.


by melissa

i have three beautiful biological children when my youngest was born the doctor said that he has to tie my tubes because i have been pregnant a total of six times and i have thee live children and i have miscarries five. would an agency ever consider me even if i already have children??

Reply by Rayven

I don’t know of any agencies that would disallow you simply because you already have children. There are some surrogates, however, who prefer to work with couples that do not have children of their own.

Your situation really should not be a problem. The couple I am currently carrying for has a son, and wanted one more to complete their family, so really, this type of situation occurs regularly.

Best wishes!

Teen Mom Birth – I Don’t Regret a Thing

…from a reader

I became pregnant my senior year in high school and was induced before I graduated. When I went in to have my son, I did not once regret my decision to have my baby.

I went in for a scheduled inducement at 6:00 am on March 5th, 2007, which was two weeks before my scheduled due date. I wanted to have a natural birth instead of a cesarean because my baby was still small enough to go that way.

I honestly believe that if I had waited two more weeks, then I would have been forced to have a cesarean. I wish that the nurses would have given me some more information on what I should and should not have done before going in. I waived getting an epidural, as I do not like the thought of having a needle anywhere near my spine.

Everything went well for a while. The Demerol made me go in and out of consciousness for a bit until my contractions became really close together. When they first put the drug into my system that told me that it would make me throw up. I sorta laughed it off, but of course, I threw up.

The nurses neglected to tell me that eating before an inducement would be a bad idea, so everything I ate came right back.

One of my few comforts during the birth was a stuffed frog that my best friend gave me during my labor. I held onto it the entire time.

My boyfriend at the time was little help to me. He sat in a corner the whole time because I cursed at him during labor.

My mother was terribly annoying. She was in my ear the whole time telling me to push. My son took about 11 hours to be born, but I have heard that 11 hours is not too bad for a first child.

I had a little trouble giving birth to him. I am a small woman and my son wasn’t big, but big enough that they had to use some type of plunger to help me get him out. I was terrified when he finally did come out though, because the plunger had made his head into a cone-shaped.

I remember crying and screaming, “What is wrong with my baby!”. The nurses and doctor calmed me down and told me that his head would regain its normal shape.

I was so exhausted. Just after they handed my beautiful baby to me, all my friends came into the birthing room. I was delighted to tears to see so many of them there. One friend even gave me a beautiful poem that she wrote on heavy paper in calligraphy.

I have no regrets from giving birth to my son at such a young age. The greatest joy of my life was getting to hold my new born son, and knowing that I helped to create him.

Does being a surrogate have greater risks?

by Beth

I am in the process of becoming a surrogate and i was wondering if being pregnant via surrogacy raises a greater risk for death than if I were to get pregnant by my husband naturally?

Reply by Rayven
**Please note, this answer assumes gestational surrogacy; traditional surrogacy without fertility drugs is the same as natural conception**


Before proceeding with surrogacy, you need to seek professional medical advice. Please go over the risks and effects of surrogacy with your own doctor as well as the IVF clinic. Yes, the procedures that you will be subjected to have risks. Everything does. Please talk with your doctor about those risks.

To answer your over-all question in a non-medical way, yes, technically, you would have a greater risk of dying while being a surrogate mother than you would by getting pregnant naturally. It’s just common sense.

1. Medications
You will be taking tons of medications orally, via vaginal suppository, and through daily injections. They have side effects.

2. Procedures
You’ll be doing more procedures with surrogacy than you would with a regular pregnancy. You have the transfer, multiple additional bloodwork, testing such as a saline ultrasound, additional ultrasounds during the pregnancy and a higher chance of an amniocentesis.

3. Risk of Multiples
Finally, surrogacy does have high rate of multiples, twins, triplets or more. This causes more tests, more strain on your body, and more chance of complications.

Does this mean that you have a large chance of dying while being a surrogate? No. Not really, depending on your definition of the word “large”. Dying due to pregnancy is pretty rare in America in this day-and-age, though it does still happen. Being a surrogate may increase that chance, but overall, its still pretty small.

**Consult your doctor for facts about these rates before making a decision to become a surrogate mother. This information is not designed to replace medical advice.

More risky than death is the fact that while being a surrogate, you do have a chance of losing your ability to ever have another child of your own. It is not uncommon for a surrogate mother to lose her reproductive ability, to lose one or both ovaries, or even to have a hysterectomy in the attempt to help others become parents. This is a concern that does need to be examined prior to becoming a surrogate mother.