Q: What does the term surrogacy means ?
A: A woman who is ready to carry a pregnancy for a couple (intended parent(s) or a different person is called a surrogate. This is the more accurate and the latest term for a Surrogate Carrier. Gestational surrogacy is a condition in which the woman who agreed to be a carrier is implanted with an embryo that is created either from egg/or sperm from the couple intended to do so or even a donor. The baby given birth by a surrogate mother will have no genetic relationship with the carrier and she will be responsible only for gestating the embryo or baby till birth.
Q: What is the major difference between traditional surrogacy and gestational surrogacy ?
A: The term gestational surrogacy is a process in which the fertilized embryo gets implanted in a gestational carrier who will be responsible to carry the resulting child/children to the complete term, but at the same time doesn’t bear any genetic relationship with the carrier. When it comes to traditional surrogacy the carriers are both genetic as well as gestational mothers, who undergo the process of artificial insemination and take custody of the resulting child/children upon their birth.
Q: Why would a woman agree to be a carrier for someone else’s baby, just to give it away ?
A: Most of the women who agree to be surrogates enjoy the feeling of being pregnant and genuinely interested in helping another couple who want to experience the joy of parenthood. Another important reason is financial incentive. They don’t see the process of giving the child to the intended parents after birth as “giving away” but as “giving back” to the child’s parents (as they are the actual parents who have conceived the child through the IVF procedure or with their own intent). And this is the reason you often hear a surrogate stating that she is a babysitter for 9 months.
Q: How do the intended parents can bond with their child without experiencing pregnancy and child birth on their own ?
A: Just like any other child that gets fostered or adopted, children born to surrogate mothers are also loved and wanted. They may not have grown under their own mother’s heart, but they have grown in it. Children should feel that they are loved and wanted and they should thrive in a nurturing environment. A child who is born through a surrogate mother have got contribution from many people in their creation just not their parents, but a carrier mother and her family, nurses, doctors, lawyers and sometimes even donors who donate the egg or sperm. Doesn’t that child get much more special than other children ?
Q: Why do couples prefer surrogacy when they can just adopt a baby ?
A: Most couples who decide to go for surrogacy must have already tried for an adoption and already have adopted a child. They must have gone for adoption without knowing that there is an option called surrogacy until or afterwards they want to add a member to their family. Some couples have had enough by going through the process of adoption as many birth mothers decide to have their baby after child birth, even after the poor intended couples has already formed a bond with the baby at the time of pregnancy. A failure adoption can be both devastating as well as wrenching for a couple and some couples go for it several times before they final decide not to attempt again for the fear of getting hurt again in life. Couples who decide to go for adoption have to undergo a lengthy process to get qualified for adoption with background checks, applications, home studies and even references. The process of adoption is quite expensive and time of waiting is about five to ten years which is very long. Another issue is that the children available for adoption mostly are severely neglected, with malnutrition, abuse and also can have physical as well mental handicaps and serious medical issues. Most adoptions happening today are open adoptions and many couples strongly feat that they will lose custody of their own child of the birth parents happen to change their minds.
Q: How soon can I get matched ?
A: There is no waiting period at all as IFC has a huge database of both Surrogates and Donors. Hence, we are ready to go as soon as a patient commits to the program.
Q: Is the process of surrogacy legalized in India ?
A: Yes, commercial surrogacy is legalized in India and is recognized by the Indian Supreme Court in the year 2002.
Q: Can I choose my child’s gender ?
A: No, it is not possible to choose the gender as it is against the Indian Law.
Q: Is it possible to try to have multiple births ?
A: Taking into consideration the health as well as the well being of the surrogate mother and as a part of protection, only two babies are generally attempted in a single pregnancy.
Q: Once the pregnancy gets confirmed what all information will I receive throughout the period of pregnancy ?
A: You will receive regular updates on the well-being and health of the surrogate mother and the baby throughout the entire pregnancy. All results of all the tests as well as evaluations from the medical clinic will be passed on to you soon after the tests.
Q: Should I carry any particular travel documents ?
A: Yes, you need to but which documents basically depends on the country of your origin. At minimum, intended parents will be asked for a valid passport, original marriage certificate and medical visa which you can obtain with our help.
Q: Whose name normally goes on the birth certificate of the child ?
A: In the point of law, commissioning parents names will go on the child’s birth so that no surrogacy is mentioned on the birth certificate. In India as there is no definite laws that have put down for surrogacy, the clinics who conducts such processes follow the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) guidelines for the Accreditation and Regulation of ART clinics in India.
Q: How long does it normally takes to get the birth certificate ?
A: Generally, it takes one or two days after the birth of the child to get the original birth certificate. Once you get this you can apply to your Embassy for the child’s passport or any kind of travel document. It normally takes two to about four weeks to receive the child’s passport or the travel document. In India the surrogacy procedure that you undergo is gestational surrogacy, therefore the surrogate mother will have no genetic relation to the baby that she bears. And as per Indian law such a mother is not considered to be the baby’s legal mother.
Q: How can I get my baby’s passport ?
A: You will visit your concerned embassy, and then present the original certificate of the baby along with two passport size photographs of the child/children and request for your travel document or the passport. Please note that if there is No Law or Policy for surrogacy in your respective country, then we will ask you to get a NOC (No Objection Certificate) in such a case. So at the time of baby passport and exit, you do not face any issues.