Among the many requirements that qualify a woman to be a surrogate one of the most vital is that she has previously given birth successfully and is raising her own child.
The first and foremost reason for this requirement is that a potential surrogate must be able to demonstrate proven fertility and the ability to carry a healthy full term pregnancy with low-risk of complication. For this reason, potential surrogates must provide their previous OB/GYN medical records to agency personnel for review by physicians, agency, and intended parents before initiating in a gestational surrogate journey.
Many people who are otherwise perfectly healthy, will not find out that they experience fertility issues until they attempt to conceive. Some of these couples turn to surrogacy as a resolution to their struggles. To be matched with a surrogate who too, as it would reveal, suffers complications or trouble conceiving would be an ironic redundancy. It would prove to be a significant financial setback for the commissioning couple and a severe disappointment for not only the intended parents but the surrogate who committed so much time, energy and her body to the cause.
It is our responsibility that we provide the best possible match for our hopeful intended parents and a positive experience for our potential surrogates.
On a related note, it takes a very special woman to be willing to give herself and her womb so beautifully to another couple in an effort to help them achieve their dream of parenthood. Factoring in medical preparation, the span of a pregnancy and postpartum recovery, being a gestational carrier is a 9 month+ commitment. Pregnancy itself, as any mother can attest, is an emotional journey and can also take an immense physical toll. While every pregnancy is different–you may experience morning sickness with one and not another, some women develop stretch marks while others don’t–despite the possibility for variation, as a whole, one can only truly understand the effects of pregnancy as it relates to their own body and emotions, if they have experienced it firsthand.
Once a pregnancy is achieved, despite any trials or tribulations, one cannot simply opt out. It is of the utmost importance that a surrogate can not only prove to the intended parents that she can perform this duty physically (by past successes) but also that she is knowledgeable, through firsthand experience, and is mentally and emotionally prepared to her best extent for the commitment she makes to the intended parents as she embarks with them on their journey as their gestational carrier.