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  #1  
March 10th, 2011, 05:25 PM
4seasons's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: NH
Posts: 1,759
Hello, my name is Rachael, and I wanted to introduce myself and ask some questions. I recently offered to be the surrogate for my step-sister and her husband, and realized I should do some research, ha. My sister (she feels like a "real" sister, so I'll refer to her as that) had cancer as a child and the chemo and stuff wrecked her heart to the point where pregnancy and childbirth would be life threatening to her and a baby. I've always wanted to offer to carry their child but didn't think I could handle it since I have pretty miserable pregnancies. However, I just had my 3rd and final child, and have been reminded just how precious these little creatures are, and I really want my sister and BIL to feel that love, no matter what I have to go through. So, here are my questions so far:

*What do I have to do on my end? I think I'll technically just be a gestational host, or whatever. As we like to joke, "their bun, my oven"... so who will have to do the injections for the IVF? My sister, since they'll be harvesting her eggs, or me since I'll be the one getting implanted?

*Will my health insurance cover the prenatal care/birth since *I* will be the pregnant one, or will my sister and BIL have to pay out of pocket??

*for BTDT surrogates- is a surrogate pregnancy any different than your natural pregnancy? With my children I get hyperemesis gravidarum, and I'm really dreading going through that again. I have this weird hope that since the fetus won't be my DNA that somehow that will alter how my body responds to it....?

*Since my family is complete, I had wanted to get my tubes tied ASAP. Can I still do that now? I would think so, since all a tubal does is block my eggs, which we won't be needing anyway for this process, but I'm not sure if that messes up my hormones, or something...?

Sorry this is so long, but I'm totally new to this whole issue, and am lost as to what I should know or be doing... Thanks in advance for any feedback!
__________________
~Rachael
*Proud Mom to Adara (6), Carter (4), and Everly Rose, born 1/6/11 *


Last edited by 4seasons; March 10th, 2011 at 05:29 PM.
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  #2  
March 12th, 2011, 08:44 AM
Member
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4seasons View Post
Hello, my name is Rachael, and I wanted to introduce myself and ask some questions. I recently offered to be the surrogate for my step-sister and her husband, and realized I should do some research, ha. My sister (she feels like a "real" sister, so I'll refer to her as that) had cancer as a child and the chemo and stuff wrecked her heart to the point where pregnancy and childbirth would be life threatening to her and a baby. I've always wanted to offer to carry their child but didn't think I could handle it since I have pretty miserable pregnancies. However, I just had my 3rd and final child, and have been reminded just how precious these little creatures are, and I really want my sister and BIL to feel that love, no matter what I have to go through. So, here are my questions so far:

*What do I have to do on my end? I think I'll technically just be a gestational host, or whatever. As we like to joke, "their bun, my oven"... so who will have to do the injections for the IVF? My sister, since they'll be harvesting her eggs, or me since I'll be the one getting implanted?

*Will my health insurance cover the prenatal care/birth since *I* will be the pregnant one, or will my sister and BIL have to pay out of pocket??

*for BTDT surrogates- is a surrogate pregnancy any different than your natural pregnancy? With my children I get hyperemesis gravidarum, and I'm really dreading going through that again. I have this weird hope that since the fetus won't be my DNA that somehow that will alter how my body responds to it....?

*Since my family is complete, I had wanted to get my tubes tied ASAP. Can I still do that now? I would think so, since all a tubal does is block my eggs, which we won't be needing anyway for this process, but I'm not sure if that messes up my hormones, or something...?

Sorry this is so long, but I'm totally new to this whole issue, and am lost as to what I should know or be doing... Thanks in advance for any feedback!
Hello.....New Hampshire.
This forum is not that active but one of the experienced surrogates can answer your questions. Just be patient. Let me just mention a few things that I do know.

Alot of your questions can be answered by one visit, or consultation, with a reproductive specialist.
Maybe look into one in your area.

The insurance you have now, either excludes surrogacy or it does not. You need to find out.

If it does exclude it, then, in a normal (through an agency) relationship between surrogates and intended parents (that are not friends, etc. as friends and family can come up with various agreements that are not the same as with a match through an agency) the intended parents paid for a new policy and the surrogate lowered their fee to cover this extra expense. Most surrogates try to find insurance that does not exclude surrogacy. Some agencies will not accept a surrogate without the insurance inclusion. I know one lady that applied at 3 agencies and rejected at all 3. Once she got insurance she got accepted on her 4th try.

You'll have to wait for answers from others on your medication question.
I do know that IVF requires certain medications specific to IVF.

Good luck, and I am sorry I can not be of more help.
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  #3  
March 12th, 2011, 07:28 PM
MommaJones's Avatar Host of Surrogate Mommies
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 4seasons View Post
Hello, my name is Rachael, and I wanted to introduce myself and ask some questions. I recently offered to be the surrogate for my step-sister and her husband, and realized I should do some research, ha. That is a VERY good first step. Researching what you are offering is the most important step besides offering the gift of life. If you don't know what you are getting into, someone could end up hurt, either physically or emotionally. So kudos for doing some research!!!

My sister (she feels like a "real" sister, so I'll refer to her as that) had cancer as a child and the chemo and stuff wrecked her heart to the point where pregnancy and childbirth would be life threatening to her and a baby. I've always wanted to offer to carry their child but didn't think I could handle it since I have pretty miserable pregnancies. I am curious to know what you mean by miserable. If you mean you just didn't enjoy the pregnancy and were uncomfortable, that is understandable, the human body goes through alot of changes during pregnancy. But if you mean health wise you were sick and the pregnancies were unsafe, then I would say really make sure you talk to your doctor before starting the IVF process. If your body was medically not healthy during your own pregnancies, this would be a red flag that something could go wrong medically during the next.

However, I just had my 3rd and final child, and have been reminded just how precious these little creatures are, and I really want my sister and BIL to feel that love, no matter what I have to go through. I understand your willingness to help your family members out, but one of the first questions a surrogate must ask herself is "Can I do this?" Wanting to help and actually being able to help are two different things all together. If you were miserable, sick and unhealthy during your own pregnancies, this one may not be any different. And you also have to think, you have THREE children of your own at home. If something goes wrong, and your health becomes risky, are you willing to risk it for this journey? I have stipulations in the contract regarding my health and my family and options that will be chosen when or if something were to happen to me during the pregnancy that leaves me in a medical state of not being able to make decisions on my own. If your pregnancies were not medically healthy and your health was unstable during your own pregnancies, it is a risk to go through the IVF process and another pregnancy and put yourself on the line. I am not saying don't do it, I just want to throw all the information out here that I can so that you know to talk to your doctor and really make sure you are willing to risk your health and any concerns that could come about because of any issues.

So, here are my questions so far:

*What do I have to do on my end? I think I'll technically just be a gestational host, or whatever. As we like to joke, "their bun, my oven"... so who will have to do the injections for the IVF? My sister, since they'll be harvesting her eggs, or me since I'll be the one getting implanted?
Well this will all depend on the clinic you all choose. Some clinics have full blown injections and pills or patches for surrogate and some do not. Some require just simple patches and then insertable pills. And yes, if you are using their egg/sperm then you will be considered the gestational surrogate. Your sister will have to do her own meds for retrieving her eggs (sorry I don't have more info on that, I have never been through an egg retrieval process and I am not that knowledgeable on the subject.) You will have your own protocol to prepare your body for the pregnancy.


*Will my health insurance cover the prenatal care/birth since *I* will be the pregnant one, or will my sister and BIL have to pay out of pocket?? This is a very tricky question to answer only because the only one that has that information is you. If you have a health insurance plan through an employer, I would ask your HR representative for a copy of the health insurance booklet. DO NOT say anything about why you need it, just ask for it. If you are on state funded health care, they will NOT cover a surrogate pregnancy. The biggest thing you need to look for should be located in the maternity or pregnancy part of the booklet. Some will be very simple and will say no surrogate pregnancies. Others have trickier wording that say something along the line of they won't pay for a surrogate, but it doesn't specifically state that you can't be a surrogate. So get the book, read it, maybe have a lawyer take a look at it if you are unsure. If you have any questions on the wording---type what it says on here, and we can help.

*for BTDT surrogates- is a surrogate pregnancy any different than your natural pregnancy? With my children I get hyperemesis gravidarum, and I'm really dreading going through that again. I have this weird hope that since the fetus won't be my DNA that somehow that will alter how my body responds to it....?
Honestly, I don't know what BTDT means and I have no clue when it comes to the hypermesis. I may have to do some reading, but I would REALLY encourage you to call your doctor and talk to him before going through another pregnancy. Just because this is someone else's egg and sperm, it may still cause you to have issues. But, every pregnancy is different and I am not medically smart to know whether or not that can affect the gestational pregnancy.


*Since my family is complete, I had wanted to get my tubes tied ASAP. Can I still do that now? I would think so, since all a tubal does is block my eggs, which we won't be needing anyway for this process, but I'm not sure if that messes up my hormones, or something...?
I have my tubes tied. The only issue will ever be if you want to be a traditional surrogate where you use your own eggs to become pregnant. Shouldn't mess with your hormones or anything. I have been told that it actually helps with the gestational process because then I don't have to be on birth control to make sure I don't become pregnant while cycling. We abstain anyways, but still.



Sorry this is so long, but I'm totally new to this whole issue, and am lost as to what I should know or be doing... Thanks in advance for any feedback!


My answers to your specific questions are above in red. If you have any other questions, concerns or just want to chat about your journey, feel free to post away!!!! If you have anything you need that you don't feel comfortable posting on the board about, send me a private message and I will try to help the best I can!!!
__________________
Bethany
Mommy to Damon TS to Kyle 10/07 GS for E and R--WE ARE PREGNANT!!
Try 1--Sept 2010 negative Try 2--Jan 2011 negative
Try 3--May 2011-miscarried at 5 weeks
Transfer 4---PREGNANT!!! BFP @ 5.5dp3dt Beta at 11dp3dt was 164.6

Ultrasound showed TWO BABIES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!





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  #4  
March 13th, 2011, 07:00 PM
4seasons's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: NH
Posts: 1,759
Wow, what great advice, thank you so much!!

Technically, my pregnancies are low risk, they are actually picture perfect, except for the ridiculous nausea and vomitting. My babies are always totally healthy in utero and at birth, it's just me that takes it hard. I think that my sister might actually pay for me to have a nanny for the pregnancy, to help out with my kids and house (I'm a sahm).

I will definitely have my dh ask for the detailed coverage of our health insurance, I think that might be a big sticking point. My sister and BIL already will have to pay for so much out of pocket, I would feel so bad if they had to pay for the prenatal care and stuff. They're obviously prepared to pay my co-pays and deductibles, but I don't know about the whole shebang.

If they can come up with all the money, I will definitely have to and will do this. It's not that I'm dying to be a surrogate really, I just want to help *them*; this is a big deal in my family!
__________________
~Rachael
*Proud Mom to Adara (6), Carter (4), and Everly Rose, born 1/6/11 *

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  #5  
March 13th, 2011, 09:54 PM
MommaJones's Avatar Host of Surrogate Mommies
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Glad we could help!!!

Its good to hear that your babies and pregnancies were all safe! Sorry to hear they were overtaken with the nausea and vomiting. I only had that my first pregnancy and then nothing since. But that was just for a few weeks and then it went away. I couldn't imagine going through it any longer, so hopefully that doesn't happen again.

I understand about the insurance. It is a tricky situation with a lot of surrogates right now. And its hard because if a job offer were to come to me today, I would have to know up front before accepting whether or not the insurance would work because if it doesn't I have to turn the job down because we are trying to get pregnant. Hopefully your insurance is fine and you can start the process!
__________________
Bethany
Mommy to Damon TS to Kyle 10/07 GS for E and R--WE ARE PREGNANT!!
Try 1--Sept 2010 negative Try 2--Jan 2011 negative
Try 3--May 2011-miscarried at 5 weeks
Transfer 4---PREGNANT!!! BFP @ 5.5dp3dt Beta at 11dp3dt was 164.6

Ultrasound showed TWO BABIES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!





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  #6  
March 23rd, 2011, 06:48 AM
jayleepraise's Avatar Veteran
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Massachusetts, USA
Posts: 159
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I just wanted to add a few things.

My surro pregnancy was VERY different from my own pregnancies. With my children I had easy pregnancies and quick vaginal water deliveries with a midwife. With my surrobaby, I got sever migranes (not that common Ive found out, so lucky me) from the fertility meds my entire first trimester. At the end I developed mild pre-e, had to be on bedrest, was induced, went through 8hrs of labor and had an emergency csection because the baby's cord was too short for him to be born vaginally. I had gallbladder flare-ups and had to have it removed 6wks after my csection. Not fun. BUT I would do it all over again and hope to someday.

I am part of a HUGE surro community online and have seen it all. Every pregnancy, especially when dealing with IVF, can be very different. There are no guarantees. You both will be on meds. Carrying multiples is also much more common.

Though you are family, you should still use lawyers and draw up a contract. You will need to agree on your views of selective reduction, invasive proceedures, etc. You should also know the surro laws in your state.

My husbands insurance had an exclusion so my former IPs purchased me a policy through Blue Cross Blue Shield that covered me, for around $300/mo. We got a PBO so my IPs names went directly on the birth certificate and their insurance took over when he was born.

It is a huge decision you are facing. Please read and research as much as you can! Surrogate Mothers Online, surrogacy is a great resource for getting a glimpse of the good, bad and ugly throughout the entire process. You dont have to be a member to use the Message Boards to read read read. The Search option is a wonderful tool for targeting specific questions you may have.

Best of luck to you all should you proceed!
__________________
Cara wife & mom of 2 (2006 & 2007)

GSx1 for L&B- m/c 2008, BABY BOY 11/2009!!!
Sibling Attempt- 09/2011 FET negative

GSx2 hopeful for A&M- eSET in Spring 2012
my surrogacy blog- Baby Carrier

Last edited by jayleepraise; March 23rd, 2011 at 06:52 AM.
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  #7  
March 23rd, 2011, 03:42 PM
MommaJones's Avatar Host of Surrogate Mommies
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Location: Iowa
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Thanks for adding the input!!! It is always great to get more info from other people who have been through the process. I am so glad you came back to post!!!
__________________
Bethany
Mommy to Damon TS to Kyle 10/07 GS for E and R--WE ARE PREGNANT!!
Try 1--Sept 2010 negative Try 2--Jan 2011 negative
Try 3--May 2011-miscarried at 5 weeks
Transfer 4---PREGNANT!!! BFP @ 5.5dp3dt Beta at 11dp3dt was 164.6

Ultrasound showed TWO BABIES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!





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