The true sisterhood of women is showcased when one woman carries a child for another.
The true sisterhood of women is showcased when one woman carries a child for another. Domestic and international adoptions may be the most common ways families introduce nonbiological children into their lives, but last year's movie Baby Mama
and Sarah Jessica Parker's
recent addition of twins have made surrogacy
a common topic. Though there are no national statistics on the practice, it is estimated
that approximately 1,000 such births occur each year.
After dealing with infertility and still desiring a family, some couples turn to another woman to carry their baby. In traditional surrogacy, the surrogate is artificially inseminated, by either the child-to-be's father or an anonymous donor, while in gestational surrogacy, an egg is removed from the future child's mother and fertilized with sperm from either the father or an anonymous donor. The fertilized egg is then implanted in the carrier via IVF. Similar to the adoption process, families interested in surrogacy often work with an agency to help them find a suitable surrogate, handle the legal issues that the transaction involves, and help them through the process.
Qualifications: Similar to adoption, families meet and register with an agency to learn about the process. and to find a carrier. In general, agencies require carriers to be between 23-38 years old, have previously had at least one child on their own, be married or in a serious relationship, undergo a complete medical and psychological evaluation, and be financially stable.
To see the rest of our look at surrogacy, including a chart of the states where it is legal, read more