Battling Infertility for 6 Years Now

by Molly E.

Every since I was in my teen years, I knew I wanted a big family. A perfect husband, a nice house, and 4 or 5 kids running around; that was my dream.

Well I found the perfect boyfriend early, when I had just turned 18, he turned into the perfect fiancé by the time I was 20, and we were perfect married a little after my 21st birthday. My life at that time was perfect.

My husband and I had finished college, we had a generous amount of money saved up and put a down payment on a house. At that time I felt that life was only going to get better. Somewhere in between moving into our new house and my husband starting his new job, we started trying to a baby.

I was under the impression that I would become pregnant right away. That is what I thought happened with everyone. During high school teens are taught that without protection girls will get pregnant, so that’s what I thought.

My 23rd birthday reared it’s head, and I was still childless. I realized how much time had passed by and started researching fertility specialists. My husband thought it was pointless and assumed that nothing was wrong.

I made an appointment with an OB/GYN that also specializes in fertility treatments. On my first appointment I had an ultrasound done due to an enlarged uterus felt during the initial exam. Right away the doctor noticed a mass that was attached to one of my ovaries. The doctor told me that he could try and remove the mass without taking the ovary with, but he couldn’t guarantee it.

After my laparotomy I was informed that the ovary couldn’t be saved, but my other one was healthy and my tubes looked good. I was in panic mode. I wanted a lot of children, and if not, at least 1. I felt like I was being punished and I couldn’t understand why.

The doctor tried to calm me by letting me know that the chance of becoming pregnant with just one ovary is the same with have both. I was still worried though because I felt like something might happen where I would have to have the other one removed.

My doctor had also diagnosed me with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) in which the ovaries have small cysts and don’t function correctly.

After I was healed from surgery I started taking a medication called Metformin. It’s mainly used for diabetes, but can be used to jump-start ovulation in PCOS patients. I took it for 3 months and had no results, not to mention the horrible side effects it had on my stomach.

My Dr’s next suggestion was to take the ovulation inducing drug, Clomid. I was started on it and took it for 4 cycles. I successfully ovulated during my second and third cycles, but didn’t become pregnant.

By then I was truly irritated. I was turned 24, which meant that if within 3 months I wasn’t pregnant, I would have children until after I was 25. To me it was a big deal, to my husband, not so much.

My husband’s lack of support was what took the biggest toll on me. He did want children, just not as badly as I did. To me it was the end of the world. He had told me before that he didn’t care if I was infertile, as long as he still had me. I should have taken comfort in knowing that, but I just couldn’t. It was hard for me to come to terms with the fact that while I generally spent every waking moment thinking about babies, they hardly mattered to him.

After the Clomid failed, I tried hormone injections and started ovulating with almost every cycle. But the problem still remained, I didn’t get pregnant.

Another year had passed and the doctor was convinced that we needed to try Intrauterine Insemination (IUI). Being a fairly safe and simple procedure, we tried 3 times, but nothing happened. I felt totally helpless.

I wanted to consider adoption, but a stupid mistake my husband had made when he was 18 years old had landed him a year in jail, and a mark on his record and so we were not eligible. I secretly thought about divorcing him because of it. I felt like he was holding me back and was to blame. I loved him to death, and we are still together today, but infertility does strange and unexplainable things to people.

We ended up trying Invitro Fertilization (IVF) twice, but being as infertile as I am, I never became pregnant. My doctor urges me not to give up, but the journey has taken an emotional toll on me and I have begun to accept the sad fact that I may never have children.

At times I am content with my life and am happy to have nieces and nephews that fill the void, but in the back of my mind I am always hoping that a miracle will happen. I am 29 years old and my husband is 32.

We would like to have a baby by surrogacy, but the cost involved is more than our budget will allow. I hope and pray daily that my infertility be cured and that anyone else who is suffering be cured as well.

Where do we find a surrogate please?

by Kelly Donaldson
(Ontario, Canada)

After 3 IUI and 2 IVF’s the doctor says it is surrogacy time now. We have been married for 10 years and we have always wanted children. Sadly, it has not happened. We have so much love to give.
Where do we find a gestational surrogate please?

Reply from Rayven:

It will all work out in the end, and you will find you surrogate.

Before you get started looking though, make sure you have done all the research about surrogacy that you need to do. If you haven’t had a chance yet, make sure to look over the following sections:



Legal and Insurance

Now, onto finding your match!

There are several ways to do this. First, put the word out among family and friends if you are comfortable with this, asking if they know of anyone. You’d be surprised how often this works! Often, someone knows someone who knows someone looking to become a surrogate, and since this is such an interesting topic of conversation, word gets around.

Second, explore different surrogacy attorneys. For example, my attorney, often refers his clients to various surrogates in Florida and Georgia that he works with. If you have an attorney, check with him to see if he knows of any surrogates. If you don’t have an attorney yet, but know where you would want the baby to be born, find a surrogacy attorney in that area and check with them.

A third option is posting an ad or answering an ad on our free online message board:

Information on Surrogacy Classified Ads

And finally, if you would like to easily find a match and saving money is not your motivating force, you can go through a surrogacy agency.

I will caution you to make sure that you have exhausted all your research into the process BEFORE you begin matching. You want to know what is going on and how things work so that you do not inadvertently get taken advantage of, or feel as though you were taken advantage of (by a lawyer, clinic, agency or surrogate) at a later time.

Good luck with your journey! Best wishes!

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Pros and Cons to Independent Surrogacy

When making the choice to enter into a surrogacy relationship (either as a surrogate mother or an intended parent), one critical decision you will have to make is whether to conduct your surrogacy matching through an agency or whether to do so through independent matching. Surrogacy matching is a very important step in this process and should not be taken lightly. Read on to learn about some of the pros and cons of independent surrogacy arrangements.

Independent Matching Pro #1: It is free
Unlike the high costs of surrogacy agencies, independent surrogacy arrangements can be made for free. Many intended parents choose this method for that reason alone.

Independent Matching Pro #2: You can find traditional surrogates
A traditional surrogate is one that becomes pregnant via artificial insemination as opposed to IVF treatments. Most agencies will only work with those who do IVF treatments, so if your preference is to work with a traditional surrogate mother, perhaps independent surrogacy arrangements are the best option for you.

Independent Matching Pro #3:  Compensation is negotiable
With many agencies, their compensation rules may be strict. This does not allow for any compromises to be made between the surrogate mother and the intended parents. If the ability to negotiate your contract is important to you, independent matching is probably going to be the better option.

Independent Matching Pro #4: There aren’t any rules set in stone
With surrogacy agencies, they may have other strict rules concerning age, weight, and other characteristics of the surrogate mother. If, however, these things are of little concern to you and want a larger pool of potential surrogate mothers to choose from, the independent route would be best.

Independent Matching Con #1: There would be no escrow agent
In independent surrogacy arrangements, there is not going to be a third party that handles all financial transactions. This can be risky business and open yourself up to possible legal disputes. Without a surrogacy agency, you will have to find a third party do serve in this role.

Independent Matching Con #2: You will have to conduct your own background check
While this is a part of the services provided by surrogacy agencies, if you go the independent route, you will have to procure a background check yourself. Either that or forego one altogether (which is not recommended).

Independent Matching Con #3: You will need to set p all appointments and travel arrangements
Whereas a surrogacy agency would handle all of this (something that is of great benefit to first-timers) if you go the independent route, you will be left to make all of these arrangements on your own, which can be stressful and overwhelming.

No two surrogacy journeys will be the same. Therefore, there is no right or wrong answer as to which option would be best for you. It simply boils down to what is best for you.

How will the clinic sync the surrogate and egg donor’s cycle?

by chelsea schoettgen

Have you ever worked with Surrogenesis in California? I’m suppose to fly down to La Jolla to have my first apt. I don’t really know what to expect on my first apt. How will they control my menstrual cycle to be in sync with my Ip’s egg donor? thanks

Reply by Rayven
Hi Chelsea,

I have not worked with Surrogenesis. There are hundreds of surrogacy agencies. Maybe another viewer has worked with them and can give you some feedback.

As far as how the clinic will sync you and the egg donor, you should already have been put on birth control pills. They will have you take these for several weeks/months and will have you “skip” certain days as you are approaching the transfer. You will also need to take daily injections of Lupron which will suppress your cycle. (You will give yourself the shots into your tummy area; the needles are small like a diabetic needle. This may be in combination with an estrogen shot into your hip every few nights, again, self administered.)

The combination of these two things will put you in sync with the egg donor.

Most clinics follow this or a similar protocol, though your experience may vary slightly.

Best wishes!

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What’s Hot – Sofia Vergara Expecting Baby via Surrogacy

Actress Sofia Vergara of Modern Family fame has something huge in common with her character, Gloria – they are both expecting an addition to their family. Vergara and her fiancé, Nick Loeb have recently reported that they are using a surrogate mother to bring a child into this world. It is reported, though not confirmed that a close friend of Vergara’s will be serving as the surrogate and that the child will biologically be Vergara’s and Loeb’s, but will be carried by the surrogate.

Vergara is already the mother to 21 year old Manolo, her son from a previous marriage to her childhood sweetheart, Joe Gonzalez. Vergara has wanted to have another child for a while and it is believed that she has opted for surrogacy as a way to fulfill this desire without having to completely halt her skyrocketing career.

It is reported that Vergara felt uncomfortable with the idea of hiring a stranger to carry her child, so she, instead, decided to ask one of her closest (and healthiest) friends to do the honors. The couple and their surrogate recently had a health scare in which the life of the unborn baby was feared for. The surrogate mother reportedly felt pains and, out of fear of miscarrying, decided that a trip to the emergency room was necessary. However, after several hours, it was found that both the surrogate mother and they baby were fine.

Vergara and Loeb are not the first celebrities to opt for surrogacy. Read on to learn about other celebrities who have had their own surrogacy journey.

Giuliana and Bill Rancic
After struggling to become pregnant, suffering a miscarriage, being diagnosed with breast cancer, and undergoing a double mastectomy, Giuliana Rancic (along with her husband, Bill) decided to pursue surrogacy to make their dreams of parenthood come true. In August of 2012, the happy couple welcomed their son Edward Duke into the world.

Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban
Already the mother to two adopted children (Isabella and Connor) as well as a birth daughter (Rose), Kidman and her second husband decided to pursue surrogacy. In 2010, they welcomed their daughter Faith into the world who (though carried by a surrogate) is biologically theirs.

Sarah Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick
After giving birth to their first child, James, Parker decided to pursue surrogacy. The result – twin girls name Loretta and Tabitha who are both biologically theirs.

Neil Patrick Haris and David Burtka
This acting couple chose to use an anonymous egg donor as well as a separate surrogate to bring their fraternal twins, Gideon and Harper, into the world. Although it has not been confirmed, it is reported that one of the children is biologically Harris’s while the other is biologically Burtka’s.

Elizabeth Banks and Max Handelman
Banks and her husband tried to conceive naturally for years to no avail. After IVF treatments failed, they turned to surrogacy. Now they have not one, but two sons. Felix was born in 2011 and his brother, Magnus was born less than 2 year later.

Elton John and David Furnish
After being rejected for adopting a Ukrainian boy (due to legislation against same-sex adoption) John and his partner turned to surrogacy—twice. Using the same surrogate mother, they are now the proud parents of two sons – Zachary and Elijah. Zachary is believed to be biologically Furnish’s.

Angela Bassett and Courtney B. Vance
After 7 years of trying to conceive, this couple turned to surrogacy to make their parenting dreams a reality. They are now the proud parents of their biological twins, Slater and Bronwyn.

Ricky Martin
After working with orphanages, Ricky Martin decided that he wanted to be a father. Though he is open to adoption in the future, he opted to pursue surrogacy and is now the father to twins Matteo and Valentino.

Joan Lunden and Jeff Konigsberg
Former ‘Good Morning America host’ has three birth children from a previous marriage.  However, after going through several unsuccessful IVF treatments with her current husband, they decided to pursue surrogacy – twice. Both times they used the same surrogate mother. Both times they had twins – Kate and Max in 2003, followed by Kimberly and Jack in 2005. All four are biologically Konigsberg’s.

Robert De Niro and Grace Hightower De Niro
De Niro and his wife (aged 68 and 56) turned to surrogacy to add to their family. In addition to their 13 year old son, Elliot, and 4 children from De Niro’s previous marriage, they are now proud parents of a daughter. And this is not De Niro’s first experience with surrogacy. Two of his children from his previous marriage were also conceived and carried by a surrogate.