The Great Surrogacy Debate

About a month before I found out I was pregnant with Kinley, I sat rocking Caitlin to sleep and I began to cry. Two important people in my life had both been struggling to get pregnant for at least a year. And both them were recently excited at the possibility of being pregnant, finally, only to have their hearts broken, once again. One struggled due to PCOS and the other, it’s a strong possibility that has not yet been diagnosed. Both of these women have children from previous relationships and wanted at least one (two, if possible) baby with the man of their dreams. Both I consider to be two of my best friends and I wanted to see them happy. And so I sat, cradling Caitlin, knowing both of these women love her very, very much, and love their own children very, very much and would love a new baby of their own very, very much. All I wanted for them was for their dreams to finally come true, they deserve it so much. I wanted to help them as much as I could, but I could do little more than offer words of support. That’s when it occurred to me. I wanted to be surrogate for one of them.

I sat there, in the darkness of the nursery, feeding Caitlin before bed when I called Chris into the room. “How would you feel if I became a surrogate mother?” No. “Why not?” I don’t want you to be carrying around some other dude’s baby. It wouldn’t be my baby in any sense of the word. It would be the mother’s egg, and the father’s sperm and I would just act as an incubator. No. What if it was for someone we know? For _______? Yes. No, I couldn’t do that. I would get attached to the baby in your belly and you would too. Have you considered how hard it would be to carry it around for nine months and then just give it away?? No, but it’s not like we would never see the baby again. It would be a constant part of our lives. No. But I could do something meaningful for her and him. It’s something I feel really strongly about. It’s something I feel really strongly about too. I know they want their own, but maybe this is God’s way of telling them there is a baby out there that needs their love. What about for ______? That would be even harder, because he is a Marine. They’ll be moving soon and you wouldn’t be able to watch the baby grow up, which I know you’d want to. And I stand by what I said. If they’re having trouble, maybe there is already a baby out there that needs the love they could provide.
So the conversation was dropped. He had a point. It would be hard for me to carry the baby around for nine months and then have to give it away. I hadn’t thought of that. And plus I had no idea if either one of the women would take me up on the offer and I’d probably end up looking like an idiot, but it’s the thought that counts right?

I never told anyone else about my grand idea, and didn’t mention it again to Chris for a while. A month later, I found out I was pregnant with Kinley and now had to deal with the stress of it happening at completely the wrong time, but also knowing these two best friends of mine were still struggling. I told one of them reluctantly, not wanting to hurt her, but she did what a good friend would do. She was happy for me. She was amazed at how I was less than excited. She hugged me, and smiled and talked excitedly about how if she got pregnant soon, how close our babies would be in age. It took me a little longer to tell the other, she had just had another miscarriage and I didn’t want her to be hurt. But eventually, it came out. And she was happy for me, she said “Hopefully soon there will be another one too!” referring to herself. She’s been there throughout questions I’ve had and has showed concern when things weren’t exactly going to plan. And both women loved me, and my daughter, and my new one regardless of the struggles they were having.

So I revisited the issue with Chris. I knew I couldn’t be a surrogate any time soon, and one of them would be gone before I had the opportunity to help her. I just wanted to know why. But he stuck to his guns, because if they are having trouble, maybe there is another baby that needs all the love they could give. Maybe their baby was already out there just waiting for them. And once again I didn’t have a counter argument so I left it alone.

The other night we were sitting watching TV and I don’t know why I started thinking about it but I traveled back to our conversations. And it occurred to me that carrying the baby wasn’t the only option out there to help childless women. “How would you feel about egg donation?” What is your obsession about this!? I’m just curious. No. I don’t want a child that would be yours running around and we wouldn’t know it. How would you feel about donating sperm? I wouldn’t care! You’re not using them anyway!! The eggs are just gonna die eventually. I’m not using all of them! It pays a lot (thinking that would change his mind.) Money isn’t the only thing that’s important (Although was important to him when he asked how I felt about him going to Iraq for a year…) Next thing you know, Kinley is dating a girl and it turns out it’s his sister. Kinda like that time you thought your cousin was cute? Third cousin.
I had no argument, so I dropped it, for now.

I don’t know. Maybe I am crazy for feeling so strongly about wanting to do this. I just feel like I have a fertility gift that I could share, but my partner isn’t comfortable with it. Maybe one day when we’re done having our family he’ll change his mind. Maybe not. I guess only time will tell. It’s not as if I’m looking for anything out of doing this, I just want to give someone the chance to be a mother and feel a love that only a mother could feel.

Side-note: Both of the woman who I considered surrogacy for are happily expecting. The one with PCOS is past the 12 week mark, and we’ll find out later this month if it’s a boy or a girl. We are still eagerly awaiting the 12 weeks for the other, she is about 5 weeks, I think.

I know, two posts in two days that are kind of a drag. I promise I’ll have something better later this afternoon or tomorrow…I suck.

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6 Responses

  1. I’ve actually always wondered at people who feel so strongly that surrogacy is something wrong or icky or whatever. I guess I’m just in the camp that doesn’t think it’s a big deal. One thing struck me – when Chris said “I don’t want you to be carrying around some other dude’s baby,” it seemed like he felt pretty strongly about that. One counter argument might be “They feel as strongly that they want a baby who is theirs, not ‘some other dude’s baby.'” Which is what an adopted baby might be to some people. NOT that I’m saying your friends feel that way, but some people very much do.

    Congrats to both your friends!

    • Exactly! I know an adopted baby would still be loved, but both their new partners have always wanted a child OF THEIR OWN. And although an adopted baby would still be loved, it wouldn’t be the same. I’m in the party where as long as it’s done carefully and responsible (not Octomom-ish) it’s not a big deal and there is nothing wrong. I understand there are plenty of children who need families now, but it’s not the same as seeing yourself in your baby and comparing them to family members.

  2. visiting you from SITS :)

    i have often wondered about the whole surrogacy situation. my sister-in-law didn’t know if she would be able to have children and i did offer to her that we might consider doing something like that. fortunately, she was able to get pregnant and now has a beautiful baby girl. i think it’s an amazing gift to give to someone, but i can also see how emotionally i might have trouble. so glad to see that your two friends are successfully pregnant now and hopefully things will work out!

  3. I would be up for adopting a baby. However, I am a hypocrite when it comes to that. I want a biological baby but…I am a birthmother. I don’t think I could adopt with a good concious knowing I’ve given a baby up for adoption, so adoption isn’t really an option for me. I’m just hoping my little Mother’s Day baby makes it all the way through and I don’t have to temporarily put Chris in a coma so I can get your eggs. ;)

  4. […] so completely ecstatic for her, I can barely contain myself. I’ve mentioned her before in “The Great Surrogacy Debate”. She has PCOS’ and is the only person in this world (other than my sister, of course, and my […]

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