Finding a Surrogate: Communication is Key
By: Kelly Rummelhart
One thing discussed by the potential Surrogate and the “Intended Parents” in both their profiles and during the “Match Meeting” is communication. How often do you want to hear from each other before the pregnancy, during the pregnancy, and after the birth? Daily? Weekly? Monthly? Annually? Never? These are very important things to talk about honestly so that everyone is in agreement.
For me, I would never match with someone who doesn’t want to be involved for the entire journey. And by “journey” I mean from the moment we agree to move forward as a team to long after the birth of their children. I am in it for the long haul and I make sure they understand that. If the Intended Parents are looking for just a “womb for rent” I am NOT the Surrogate they are looking for.
If you were to ask George and Sanj, the parents of my first set of surrogate twins, they will tell you that they expect me to be at Natasha and Anjali’s weddings. Perfect! Is it too early to RSVP for the chicken selection? Seriously, I’m not sure what I’ll be doing in 25 years, but I’m pretty sure I will make it a priority to be there.
In talking with other Surrogates online, I have noticed that the relationship I have with my first set of Intended Parents is a little different. We are very close and I think that this started with a great “Match”. However, I think our relationship has continued to evolve because we choose to still be a part of each other’s lives, even when we are as busy as hell raising the five kids we have between us. I believe the awesome way we communicate started right after the Match Meeting.
At our Match Meeting we discussed how we would like to communicate on a weekly or bi-monthly basis (at the very least) before and during the pregnancy. We were officially matched in December of 2007 and for the next three months, we got to know each other. I remember that February, when George and Sanj drove up to meet my kids –we had such a great time. They gave my children little red envelopes with coin candy in celebration of The Chinese New Year. Ruby, Preston, and Sawyer instantly loved them.
We played “catch-up” about the first 30-40 years of our lives. We really tried to get to know each other on a deeper level. I made a huge effort to really open up to them; after all, they were trusting me to take care of their fetuses for 9 months and to deliver healthy babies. I wanted to make sure they had no doubts about my ability and commitment to making them -finally – a family.
In those months leading up to our IVF transfer, we talked on the phone, emailed, and sent text messages to each other. I decided to keep a blog. I thought it was a great idea so that George, Sanj, our families, and friends could journey along with us. It was a site that connected us all. Through posts, I could fill everyone in on my experience not only in this pregnancy, but also on what it’s like to be a Surrogate. Little did I know that this blog would serve as a diary of sorts and would soon get the attention of even those not directly involved in our journey.