Surrogacy for Gay Men

5 Questions Gay Men Should Ask A Surrogacy Agency

Choosing a surrogacy agency to work with is not an easy decision; it’s one that will impact your life for years to come. Prior to signing on the dotted line, you should conduct thorough research to make sure your needs can and will be met by the agency.

Here are five basic questions every gay man or couple should ask before enlisting with a surrogacy agency:

  • Is the surrogacy agency LGBTQ competent? Surrogacy is an increasingly popular path to fatherhood among gay men, and dozens of agencies now offer their services to the LGBTQ community. Some, however, have more experience working with gay men than others. It’s important to ask your agency about this experience before you sign any contract. How many of their previous clients have been gay men? Are they willing to let you speak to some of their previous gay dad clients for reference?
  • What is the screening process like for gestational carriers? Most surrogacy agencies will screen gestational carriers based on a number of set standards set by the American Society for Reproductive Medicine. You should make sure that, at a minimum, your agency is meeting those standards. As a gay man or couple, however you should also inquire into how the agency manages discussions around sexual orientation with their gestational carriers.
  • What services does the surrogacy agency provide? Not all agencies provide the same set of services. At a minimum, all surrogacy agencies will help match you with a gestational carrier for your journey. But you may require or want additional services, such as having an in-house lawyer and psychologist to conduct screenings.
  • How much will a surrogacy journey cost me and what is included in the fee? A surrogacy journey is not cheapBut a reputable surrogacy agency should be able to break down all the moving parts so you have an understanding of where your money is going, and what factors might impact the overall cost, such as the state you live in and whether or not your gestational carrier has health insurance.
  • How long has the agency been in business? In addition to the information you can find online, you should also ask your agency professionals to share some of its history with you. How many years has the company been in business? How large is the staff? What is the agency’s success rate?
  •  

    For more articles on surrogacy:

    Surrogacy Terms Every Gay Dad Should Know.

    How Much Does Surrogacy Cost Gay Men?

    Which States Allow Gay Men to Use Traditional or Gestational Surrogacy?

    Show Comments ()
    Surrogacy for Gay Men

    What Professionals Will I Work With on a Surrogacy Journey?

    There will be LOTS of people involved in your surrogacy journey. Kristin Marsoli of Circle Surrogacy breaks down the team of people you can expect to work with.

    A surrogacy journey, while monumental, is also a complex process with multiple milestones, many of which are new territory for intended parents. You will likely form the strongest relationships with your egg donor and surrogate, however there are many other professionals who you'll encounter on your journey who will educate and support you on your way to parenthood.

    Here are the types of professionals you can expect to work with on your surrogacy journey working with an agency such as Circle Surrogacy & Egg Donation:

    Parent Outreach Team

    When you start your research on surrogacy and surrogacy agencies, if you contact Circle Surrogacy, your first point of contact will be a member of our Parent Outreach Team. This person solely supports intended parents at the very beginning stages of their journeys, before they've signed on with an agency. The Parent Outreach Team is a wonderful resource to answer questions about the surrogacy process, surrogacy costs, how to choose an agency and more. At Circle, many of our Parent Outreach Associates are also parents through surrogacy, so they can share their experiences and understand exactly what it's like to be in your shoes. When you have your surrogacy consultation, you'll meet with a Parent Outreach Associate and a Lawyer to discuss your personal surrogacy needs and journey. Your Parent Outreach Team will support you through signing on with the agency.

    Circle's Parent Outreach Team

    Egg Donation Matching Coordinator

    It's time to match with the first of two women who will be very important in your journey to parenthood: your egg donor! Selecting an egg donor may come easy to some, but others may take more time determining their perfect match. Our egg donor coordination team will help you find the right egg donor to meet your needs. They will help you navigate the egg donor database and coordinate your egg donor match.

    IVF Doctor and Clinic Coordinators

    You'll work closely with your IVF clinic professionals, including coordinators and, especially, your doctor. Your IVF doctor will advise you on your IVF journey and embryos, evaluate your egg donor and surrogate to determine they are ready for the process medically, and perform the egg retrieval and embryo transfer. Some intended parents come to surrogacy having already identified a clinic, others look for guidance in choosing a clinic that will best suit their needs.

    Program Manager and Coordinator

    Perhaps the professionals you will work the closest with will be your Program Manager (PM) and Program Coordinator (PC). As your journey support team, your PC and/or PM will be your day-to-day contact during your entire journey, from the moment you sign on with the agency, until the birth of your baby and beyond. Your PC and your PM ensure that you are meeting every milestone, having a smooth journey, and preparing for the arrival of your baby(ies).

    Social Workers

    Early on in your journey, you'll have an intended parent support call with one of the agency's social workers. During this call, you'll speak with the social worker about your upcoming journey, setting up expectations, talk about matching preferences and more. Social workers are also available to intended parents throughout their journey should they have a bump in the road, or if they need help navigating and talking through a situation.

    L-R Alicia Abdella, Manager of Intended Parent Support and Social Worker, Jessica McCaffrey, Intended Parent Attorney and Scott Buckley, VP of Client Services

    Lawyers (both at Circle and local attorneys)

    During the surrogacy process you will work with a lawyer for the following milestones:

    • Drafting, negotiating and finalizing your surrogacy contracts
    • Establishing your parental rights
    • Safely returning home

    Intended parents will be assigned a Circle attorney who will be part of the Coordination team. Parents can also expect to work with local counsel – lawyers who work out of the state from which their gestational carrier resides. Local counsel will help with establishing parental rights.

    Surrogate Matching Team

    A key milestone during your surrogacy journey is matching with your gestational carrier. At Circle, the Matching Manager – who is also a lawyer – presents intended parents with the profile of a gestational carrier whom she believes will be a great match. The match is based on a few criteria: legal fit, personality fit, geographic location and views on surrogacy. The Matching Team will help coordinate your first call with your potential surrogate, and work with you to find the most suitable match.

    Trust Accountant Team

    Each surrogacy operates a little differently; however if you work with a full-service agency such as Circle Surrogacy, a Trust Accountant will manage any outgoing payments to surrogates, egg donors and third parties. Upon matching, trust accountants keep intended parents informed of the monies needed to fund all expected expenses up until 6 months post delivery. They can also answer any financial questions intended parents may have.

    Medical Billing Team

    Intended parents will interact with the Medical Billing Team when they are matched with their gestational carrier. The team determines what intended parents can expect to pay for medical expenses from local monitoring, pregnancy and delivery, based on their specific case. The Medical Billing Team also reviews each medical bill from monitoring, physicians and the hospital prior to payment to ensure accuracy, and advocate for intended parents should medical facilities need to be called for any discrepancies.

    Gestational Carrier's OBGYN

    Around the 10th week of pregnancy, the IVF clinic will discharge your surrogate from their care and she will start seeing her OBGYN. Your surrogate will select her OBGYN that is local to her, and usually the same doctor she saw for her own pregnancies. Many intended parents attend the 20-week ultrasound with their surrogate, at which time they meet the OBGYN in person (in some cases, IPs have been "attended" ultrasound appointments via video on their surrogate's phone!).

    The entire team at Circle

    Hospital Staff

    Your baby will be delivered at a hospital in your gestational carrier's home state; many times, it's the hospital where she delivered her own children. Circle recommends touring the Labor & Delivery section of your surrogate's hospital to help familiarize yourself with its staff and layout in advance. Many intended parents combine their visit for the 20-week ultrasound and the hospital tour. Touring the hospital with your surrogate enables you both to ask questions of the hospital staff and prepare for baby's delivery.

    Embassy personnel (international intended parents)

    International parents will work with their agency's legal team as well as local counsel to ensure they can return home safely. Some intended parents will need to travel to the embassy to secure travel documents for their baby(ies).

    There are so many experienced professionals involved in a surrogacy and egg donation journey. It's important to understand with whom you'll be working throughout each milestone. While every agency operates differently – and an independent surrogacy journey will involve fewer agency professionals – these are the professionals intended parents can expect to work with on a journey with Circle Surrogacy. And because Circle is a full-service agency, many of the professionals mentioned above – outside of IVF clinics, local attorneys, hospital and embassy personnel – are all under one roof, making the management of your journey smooth and secure.

    Surrogacy for Gay Men

    'Broadway Husbands' Meet Potential Surrogate for First Time

    Bret and Stephen talk about meeting their potential surrogate for the first time, and their second "team day" at RMA of Connecticut

    In their latest video documenting their surrogacy journey, Bret and Stephen talk about meeting their potential surrogate and her husband for the first time.

    Bret played tour guide for the couple, he said, who had never been to New York.

    "It was super exciting, I think we were a little nervous," Bret said. "Would we even recognize each other even though we'd FaceTime'd each other? Would there be weird things, ticks we didn't catch? I was worried that I would weird them out, which I think I did."

    "He did," said Stephen with a smile.

    In the rest of the video, Bret and Stephen talk about their second "team day" at RMA of Connecticut, where the husbands had another opportunity to meet and greet all the professionals involved in their journey.

    Check out more videos from the Broadway Husbands here!

    Broadway Husbands Talk Second Team Day

    In this video you'll hear Bret and Stephen discuss:

    Bret and Stephen discuss meeting their potential surrogate for the first time in person (0:43)

    The dads-to-be chat about about their emotions around meeting their potential surrogate for the first time (1:15)

    Recap of their first Team Day with RMA of Connecticut (watch the video about their first Team Day here) (1:38)

    Bret and Stephen describe what's involved in their second Team Day and the medical side of matching with their surrogate (2:25)

    They discuss the group therapy session with their surrogate and her husband (3:18)

    They husbands wrap up by talking about their overall experience with RMA of Connecticut (4:51)

    Gay Parents To Be®

    Gay Parents To Be® is the leading international fertility program serving the LGBTQ community. Our full-suite of fertility services was founded by our Medical Director, Dr. Mark Leondires, a gay dad through surrogacy and egg donation, and leading advocate for the LGBTQ family-building community. Gay Parents To Be® is a single-source destination with a trusted partner network, including surrogacy and egg donation agencies and reproductive attorneys. We are the only East Coast IVF Clinic designated as a fully-inclusive LGBTQ Healthcare Leader by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) .

    When you're ready, we're here to welcome you: https://www.GayParentsToBe.com




    Surrogacy for Gay Men

    Gay Dads Ask: Can We Make Surrogacy Cheaper?

    The guys behind Daddy Squared are back with the second season of their podcast! And they're starting by tackling a common question: why is surrogacy so expensive?

    Through our podcast we have met so many dads in various stages of the parenthood journey. But whether it's in gay dad Facebook groups or in face-to-face interaction, there's no doubt that the biggest issue gay dads tackle is the cost of surrogacy.

    Bringing a biological baby into the world can cost $180,000. For twins it can be around a quarter million. The biggest question is: Can we make it cheaper?

    Keep reading... Show less
    Entertainment

    How Fatherhood Has Impacted Tom Daley's Diving Career for the Better

    British diver Tom Daley, and new-ish gay dad, is looking to qualify for the 2020 Olympics in South Korea.

    British diver Tom Daley is currently in the running to qualify for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics in South Korea, his fourth if he competes, at the young age of just 26.

    But he also has another concern that most young gay men his age couldn't fathom—fatherhood. He and his husband, filmmaker Dustin Lance Black, recently welcomed Robbie Ray via surrogacy in June 2018.

    In an interview with the Independent, Daley explained how fatherhood has changed his routine and training, which he says is often for the better.

    "It has changed my life completely in all of the best ways possible," Daley said. "It has changed my perspective, the way I think about things. [My son] is the most important thing in my life, everything I do is for him, everything I think about he is at the forefront of everything."

    With respect to his diving career, Daley continued, "if you have a bad day at training, or a good day, you are grounded immediately when you get home through the door because you are having cuddles or you are having to change a dirty nappy. It is the first time that I have been able to leave diving at the diving board and not think about what I need to the next day in the pool."

    Whatever the challenges he faces while training, he said, "I can leave it there because you don't have time to think about diving when you are looking after a kid under one."

    The strategy seems to be working in Daley's favor. He recently enjoyed his most successful FINA Diving World Series ever this past Spring in Canada, winning 12 medals across five events. And barring any major catastrophe, he is overwhelmingly expected to qualify for South Korea 2020.

    And we can't wait to cheer the young dad on!

    Change the World

    One Gay Dad's Fight Against Hate in Superior, Nebraska

    Brian Splater is refusing to let homophobic and transphobic elected officials in his town go unchecked

    Millie B. Photography

    Guest post written by Brian Splater

    No one ever should feel they will have a very lonely and secluded life as a child. But that is something me and many other gay kids believe as they are growing up.

    The truth of the matter is there are people who will try everything in their power to have our rights go back in time instead of forward. It is very disheartening when these people are elected officials, or they are people who use their place of employment to spread their disgust and hate.

    Keep reading... Show less
    Politics

    America's First Gay Dad Governor Heads Into the Lion's Den

    Colorado Governor Jared Polis recently became the first elected Democrat to speak at the annual Western Conservative Summit in Denver

    Last Friday, American's first gay dad Governor, Jared Polis, became the first elected Democrat to speak at the Western Conservative Summit in Denver, where he urged the Republican crowd to help him build a "Colorado for all."

    "While we should never gloss over the things that divide us, there is a lot more that unites us," Polis said. "When we close ourselves off from discussion or debate, and we reject the possibility of hearing and understanding other perspectives, it threatens the fabric of our democracy."

    If he was hoping for a Kumbaya moment, he didn't exactly get it. As he was called to the stage, he was greeted with a smattering of applause—while others booed and shouted for a "recall" of the Governor.

    "It was almost unbearable for me to sit there to listen to his talk," Abby Johnson, one of the event's attendees, told the Denver Post. "And I'm going to tell you why. He kept talking about equality for all persons, yet we live in a society where 60 million innocent human beings have been slaughtered in the name of choice. Where is their justice? Where is their equal rights?"

    Polis was also criticized from his left flank for attending the same event that refuses to let the Log Cabin Republicans, a group of gay GOP members, participate—and that featured Donald Trump Jr. as a speaker the same day. "To me it feels like vanity," Katie Farnan, a staffer with progressive group Indivisible, told the Denver Post. "He can go and be a hip Democratic governor who isn't afraid to go into GOP sanctuary. Or maybe it's recall insurance. But unless he was there to hold them accountable for their support for fascist and racist policies, what's the point?"

    In response to the criticism from both sides of the political aisle, Polis told the Colorado Sun: "I think it's very important that Coloradans of different ideologies, different races, different geographies, different orientations and gender identities all really celebrate that we're all part of what makes Colorado great."

    The event is hosted each year by Colorado Christian University to bring together conservatives from around the state, and the larger West.

    What do you think, dads? Was Polis's decision to speak at the event a savvy political move or mere pandering?

    Entertainment

    Hate Group Boycotts 'Toy Story' for Featuring Lesbian Moms—Hilarity Ensues on Twitter

    "One Million Moms" announced a boycott of the latest Toy Story movie for *very briefly* featuring lesbian moms. Twitter's response was swift and hilarious.

    One Million Moms, which is affiliated with the anti-LGBTQ American Family Association, recently called for a boycott of Toy Story 4 for (very, very briefly) featuring (interracial!) lesbian moms in the animated film. The angry, hateful moms affiliated with this group must have watched the film VERY closely because you could easily blink and miss the moment that apparently "blindsided" viewers.

    The Internet reacted with a collective facepalm to the ridiculous boycott. Here are some of our favorite hilarious Twitter reactions to the hateful group:

    Keep reading... Show less

    Fatherhood, the gay way

    Get the latest from Gays With Kids delivered to your inbox!

    Follow Gays With Kids

    Powered by RebelMouse