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Six Elements Your Family Creator Facilitator Should Have

Updated: Nov 3, 2021

Family creation is not simple matter. You want experienced professionals on your side.

1. There is no substitute for experience. Every agency needs their first client, but nobody wants to be that first client. Experience is important in having mastered the minor and major problems that can take place along the typical one-year surrogacy journey. Many of these problems are rooted in meeting deadlines, getting to all the appointments, and managing emotional expectations of both Intended Parents and Gestational Carriers. Keep in mind both parties are emotionally charged. Anticipation, along with protocols and standard operating procedures are key to dealing with these speed bumps along the way.

2. A pool of available surrogate candidates. In any given agency, a full 20-30 percent of Gestational Carriers can fall out due to social and/or medical reasons. This adds to cost and frustration when a rematch/replacement is needed. Most all agencies in the US are short on GCs and demand exceeds supply. Also, both IPs and GCs need to match and want to work with each other. Therefore, all first-in-class agencies should have extra GC candidates to offer the IPs and minimize their journey length.

3. Dedicated staff for GC support. Support for GCs falls into two basic categories. One is helping her remember and attend the many appointments with medical professionals and legal counsel. Second is psychological support for her. Ideally, she needs a 24/7 resource to call that is not the Intended Parents. Having staff to help her schedule and give reminders better ensures compliance. Ideally, this support staff knows her medical protocols and helps her understand what and when she needs her medicine/hormones. Better agencies will keep all of her activity recorded in a database, have calendar reminders for the GC and educate her on what to expect every step of the way. Many surrogates like phone support and not just texting. We have seen strong bonding between the GC and her support person.

4. Active support functions and activities for the GCs is helpful. Surrogacy journeys should be rewarding and fun. They are even more fun for the GC when she is in contact with others undergoing the same experience. Sharing her feelings, giving her a format to ask questions with other GCs has proven successful in managing GCs psychological wellbeing. Having access to experienced GCs who have been through the journey gives even more benefit. Getting GCs together with other GCs in the same room or via video increases GC journey satisfaction. Private social media platforms also work in this function.

5. Reliable, honest and consistent payment system for the GC’s compensation and her expenses is critical. Surrogacy journey expenses and payments are defined in the gestational surrogacy agreement (termed GSA). Surrogates are often confused about what payments and reimbursements they are entitled to. Helping them with this and being timely in payments goes a long way toward reduced angst. Reducing bureaucracy makes everybody happy.

6. Readily available and known psychological support in case of problems can avert major ones. Most surrogacy journeys go trouble-free, thank goodness. However, pregnancy is a biological function and things can happen such as miscarriage, stillbirth, medically needed invasive testing, fetal reduction or even abortion. Any of these will cause major mental impact to the GC. Often, she will feel it was her fault that one of these events happens. Best practices dictate the GCs original psychological evaluation be done by a licensed doctorate level mental health professional. This way, if something happens, the psychologist already knows the GC and the GC knows them. They have an instant trust and mental health work can start immediately.

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