Becoming a Surrogate Mother: Does an agency’s location matter?

surrogacy agency location Whether you are researching surrogacy agencies as a prospective surrogate mother or are an intended parent looking for the right agency to help your family grow, you’ve most likely come across location information listed on different agency websites. You may not know this, but you do not need to choose your agency based on its locale. Circle’s main office is located in Boston, Massachusetts. However, our surrogates and egg donors come from all across the country, and our intended parents are both domestic and international. The majority of the surrogates and intended parents we work with will never even visit our Boston office, although they are more than welcome to do so.

With our agency’s comprehensive, in-house framework, all of your needs are handled without requiring your physical presence. Circle is vigilant when it comes to screening our surrogates. We only work with surrogates who live in surrogate-friendly states. For a list of our surrogate requirements, click here.

How can you work with an agency in Boston, Mass., if you live in another state? Any traveling associated with being a surrogate at Circle would be to and from your intended parent’s clinic. All of the costs for medical travel would be covered by your intended parents. Other travel may include trips (all costs covered) to visit the intended parents. Depending on the nature of your agreed upon relationship with your IPs, this could happen once after you deliver or numerous times before and/or post- delivery.

What do the other locations listed on our website indicate? You may have noticed additional locations listed on our site. These are places in which some of our staff members live and work remotely. Again, there is never a need for you to travel to our offices, so these locations exist to provide you with a sense of just how global our agency is in terms of where our staff members live and work to keep Circle going and growing.

What if you are matched with intended parents who live in a different part of the country or world? Part of the beauty in the relationships formed between surrogates and intended parents lies in their lasting and durable qualities. While each surrogacy arrangement is unique, the opportunity for establishing and maintaining meaningful relationships is available to all surrogates and intended parents, regardless of their locations. With the aid of modern technology, our surrogates and intended parents can keep in touch and feel present both throughout the surrogacy journey and years after a child is born. Read one of our surrogate’s wonderful stories here.

Interested in learning more about becoming a surrogate? Click on our free guide below. 

Surrogate Mother

 

photo credit: Location based via photopin (license)

Unexpected: What Led Me to Become a Surrogate Mother

stacy lucky Tears ran down my face, as I sat closely to my husband and grabbed his hand. With pain in my heart and my head held in shame I softly whispered, “I failed again.”

Feeling discouraged and questioning God’s purpose for my life, I had just graduated with my degree in Elementary Education and had absolutely no intention of becoming a teacher the following school year. I felt as though I wasted my family’s time, misused their trust and encouragement, and dug our family into a deep financial hole. But the truth was, I did not feel fit enough to run my own classroom. I struggled with low self-esteem and had little confidence in my abilities to guild children into becoming valuable members of society. I had several pity parties and full-on yelling matches with God, until a friend presented the idea of surrogacy. That day, my friend would have no idea how the small seed she planted would change my life in unexpected ways.

The Surrogacy Journey
I stepped into this journey a bit different than most, as I was at a wonky place in life and felt like I still did not know my purpose. When presented with the idea of surrogacy, I literally thought, “Well I know I can carry babies, let’s see how this turns out!” Little did I know that God had a much bigger plan for me than “just carrying another baby!”

Continue reading “Unexpected: What Led Me to Become a Surrogate Mother” »

Book Review: Welcome to the Family

Welcome to the Family Family. It’s a simple word—with a lot of different, sometimes complicated, meanings. People have many ways of defining just what constitutes a family, and what being a part of a family means to them. As such, Mary Hoffman decided to take a closer look at the many different kind of families, through a children’s lens. Enter: “Welcome to the Family” (Frances Lincoln Children’s Books).

The book’s vibrant illustrations depict a rainbow spectrum of families, including same-sex, blended, and single-parent. A green teddy bear serves as the book’s relatable narrator, thoughtfully guiding young readers through the brightly illustrated pages as they learn that  there are many different configurations of the modern family—and that no one family is better or worse than any other. The hard-to-broach topics of adoption, IVF, and other ways a baby can become part of a family are explained by Hoffman in words that children can understand, starting an important conversation without wandering into heavy-handed or overbearing territory.

Among the many topics the book broaches are natural birth within a nuclear family, adoption, fostering and same-sex families. Moreover, it offers information to both parents and kids that is currently underrepresented among today’s literature on similar topics.

A charming, whimsically illustrated tale for children, with a positive message parents will be happy to impart, “Welcome to the Family” is a must-add to your particular family’s bedtime story roster.

To purchase a copy of the book, click here.

State Spotlight: Surrogacy in Illinois

Circle is dedicated to informing intended parents and surrogates as much as possible about surrogacy, including the state laws addressing the practice.

Here we break down the legal framework on assisted reproduction in Illinois.

Illinois Law
Illinois is one of the only states in the nation that passed laws specifically addressing the surrogacy practice. The Illinois Gestational Surrogacy Act was passed in 2005 and provides a framework for surrogates and intended parents to pursue the least complicated processes possible.

Prior to a child’s birth through surrogacy, the gestational surrogate, intended parents, and an Illinois physician all sign consent forms to assign parentage to the intended parents. All parental rights of the intended parents have been established before a child is born so that the child’s birth certificate reflects the correct information. The courts are not involved in the process, which makes for an efficient and low-stress experience for surrogates and intended parents.

To learn more about pursuing surrogacy in Illinois, click here.

Photo credit: commons.wikimedia.org

Group Skype Session: Becoming a Surrogate Mother

Group Skype with a Former Surrogate

Join us for a live face-to-face group Skype session on March 9, 2014, 4:30pm EST, with former surrogate, Jamie G. Jamie is the perfect person to answer your questions about becoming a surrogate. The focus of the group discussion is what key things to look for when choosing an agency. Plus you’ll get to connect with other women who are also considering this incredible act of kindness.

Click here to register!

 Image courtesy of Skype

 

Save the Date: New Surrogacy Video!!

Circle Surrogacy is proud to announce the addition of videos to its repertoire of digital content. On March 9, 2015, 10am, EST, we debut our first-ever Intended Parent Video thanks to 5th Street East! Viewers get to meet couples who became parents through Circle’s surrogacy and egg donation programs. They share their thoughts on the entire process and let us in to their homes to see their beautiful children.

Visit www.circlesurrogacy.com/parents on March 9, 2015, 10am EST to watch!!!

savethedate


 

Circle Surrogacy to Hold Informational Meeting and Consultations in Switzerland

zurich surrogacy information Circle Surrogacy travels around the world giving prospective parents the opportunity to meet with us in-person, either by a private consultation or attending an information session.

Our next scheduled trip is to Zurich, Switzerland, where we will be holding a free information session on surrogacy in the United States for prospective parents this Saturday, February 21st, 2015, at 6:30pm. For those that are interested in attending, we ask that you please register by clicking here. Location details will be given once registration is completed.

What is the difference between a private consultation and the information session? Our consultations are geared at those who have done their research and are ready to start their surrogacy journey within the next 12-18 months. Circle Surrogacy consultations are more focused on the individual’s or couple’s needs and questions, whereas the information session covers a broader range of topics— they are designed for those in the early stages of discovery (gathering information).

Who will be at this information session? The president and founder of our company, John Weltman, who is an expert in reproductive law will lead the discussion. He will be joined by Brett Griffin-Young, our International Outreach Associate, who is himself a parent through surrogacy. At the end there will be time dedicated to a question and answer session. More details will be given about the topics of discussion once registered.

To find out when our next European trip is scheduled, please visit our events page located on our website.  If none of these dates are convenient for you, Skype appointments are always available.

photo credit: Zurich via photopin (license)

Ireland to Consider Surrogacy Laws

surrogacy in ireland Ireland’s Cabinet has just authorized the country’s first drafting of assisted reproductive technology (ART) and surrogacy laws. The Child and Family Relationships Bill, created by former minister for justice, Alan Shatter, no longer includes his proposed provisions on surrogacy. The proposed Bill for Assisted Reproduction and Stem Cell Research would now consider surrogacy and ART arrangements and practice under the watch of the Department of Health.

While Shatter’s concerns are worthy of consideration, the news from Ireland opens up the exciting possibility for surrogacy to soon be recognized by law. Among other things, the proposed bill would consider the transfer of parentage from a surrogate to an intended parent and would require at least one of the intended parents to be genetically related to the child born through surrogacy.

Frances Fitzgerald, Alan Shatter’s successor, describes this reform of family law “…[a]s a major step forward. It is a substantial and detailed response to the reality of family life in Ireland today.” While many steps will follow, the first has made a monumental stride in the right direction.

 

Are you living outside of the U.S. and interested in surrogacy? Learn more from our free guide.


international surrogacy

photo credit: Irish Tricolour via photopin (license)

The Surrogate Application: What is the Surrogate Portal?

surrogate application portal Let’s face it—Applying to become a surrogate requires submitting a lot of information. There are questionnaires to complete, covering your health history; matching preferences and personal background; insurance intake forms; photos; and medical records. While there are a lot of things we ask potential surrogates when they apply, the answers to these questions help us make matches with intended parents who we think will be a good fit. All of this helps Circle maintain its unique relationship-focused surrogacy agency model.

The good news is we’re making things easier. Based on feedback from experienced surrogates, we’ve created Circle’s new Surrogate Portal. The Portal is a website where surrogate applicants can log in with a password and complete application forms online and at their own pace. So there’s no more need for printing forms, filling out PDFs, scanning, or faxing.

Prospective surrogates who complete our online surrogacy application now have automatic access to our portal. In addition to the ability to submit information with ease, the portal also includes:

  • Access to informational guides and resources about the surrogacy process
  • Support to help you complete the forms
  • A tracker to view your progress and see status updates
  • In the future, surrogate applicants will also have the ability to connect with other Circle surrogates who live near you

Apply to become a surrogate mother today and take advantage of our new, streamline Surrogate Portal application process. And be sure to let us know what you think!


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photo credit: A Month of Hands: 7/31 :: Facebooking via photopin (license)

Watch Circle’s New Surrogate Mother Video!

Circle’s NEW Surrogate Video is officially live on our website. We are so thrilled to have one of our surrogates thoughtfully describe her experience being a surrogate and helping intended parents bring life into this world. Click below to watch!!!

Surrogate Mother

Have questions about applying to become a surrogate? Email Mariya at mkubishyn@circlesurrogacy.com.