Traditional surrogacy came first, then the modified version called gestational surrogacy was developed. Traditional surrogacy occurs when the surrogate not only carriers the baby, but also provides her egg or her DNA to create the baby. This can be accomplished by inseminating the surrogate with the chosen sperm and then the surrogate carrying the baby to term and delivering the baby, after which she surrenders the baby to the intended parent.
In traditional surrogacy, there is no need to take drugs to sync cycles, and no need to grow the embryo outside the uterus in a Petri dish. It is far more akin to a regular pregnancy than gestational surrogacy. In both traditional surrogacy and a typical pregnancy millions of sperm race toward the egg which is making its way down the Fallopian tube or has made its way into the uterus. Once the egg is penetrated by the sperm, it becomes an embryo and begins to divide. It then attempts to implant in the uterine wall, which is filled with blood and ready to sustain the embryo. With luck the embryo will stick and become a fetus and then some nine or ten months later give rise to the birth of a baby.
Overtime, intended parents discovered that there were inherent legal risks to traditional surrogacy. Should the surrogate change her mind, the intended parent could be in quite a legal battle. Despite legal documents, courts have at times ruled in favor of the traditional surrogate. After all, she not only carried the baby but also provided her DNA to create the baby.
This is why gestational surrogacy was created. In gestational surrogacy, the intended parents choose an egg donor, a sperm donor and a surrogate. In this case, the cycles of the egg donor and surrogate are synced hormonally, such that when the eggs are released and ready for extraction from the egg donor, the surrogate’s uterine wall is lining up with blood and will be ready to receive the embryos 5 days later, after they have had a chance to mature a bit.
In gestational surrogacy, their is less risk of the surrogate successfully changing her mind and the courts opting in her favor to take the baby or babies away from the intended parents and give him, her or them to the surrogate. In gestational surrogacy, the court sees the DNA of both the egg and sperm, as belonging to the intended parents. This is why, more often then not, the court awards the baby or babies to the intended parents after a gestational surrogacy. However, there have been rare instances, in which the surrogate has changed her mind and won in court, even in the case of gestational surrogacy.
Most Lawyers today would advise you to engage in gestational surrogacy, but as you can imagine traditional surrogacy could be far less expensive. If you opt for traditional surrogacy, be aware of what you are forsaking.
Which option is right for you? Traditional surrogacy or gestational surrogacy? Make a case for why the option you chose is right for you. Commit those thoughts to writing.
Lisa J Lafave, PhD, MBA, ACC
The Surrogacy Coach at Surrogacy Rocks
CEO & Founder of Coaching Rocks, LLC
A Single Mom By Choice of Surrogacy Twin Boys
Written in My Little Brick in University Heights, Ohio
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