Author of Once Upon a Surrogate: The Stork’s Helpers, started the phrase “I’m not the mom. I’m just the stork”. Surrogacy has opened many doors for me which led to a happier, more rewarding life. (Inactive as far as the Mormon part, still spiritual, open and respectful) My surrobabies were born in 2006 (girl), 2009 (twin boys) and 2014 (girl). I am a huge surrogacy advocate and creative entrepreneur. Hoping to match for one final journey.
The Vatican is against surrogate mothers. Good thing they didn't have that rule when Jesus was born. - Elayne Boosler
There are quite a few things I could write in this, my first surrogate blog. I feel strongly about them all, but quite possibly the strongest about this.
The quote above refers to the Catholic Church, but sadly, it's not just the Catholic Church that feels this way.
In my opinion, every woman who is genuine in the want to be come a surrogate, has thought, prayed (depending on her beliefs) and researched all that is entailed with the process.
In my own personal decision, it is something that I not only want to do, but I genuinely feel I NEED to. I'm supposed to do this.
In the past days, maybe even weeks, I've had several conversations with people on this subject. I've had responses from one extreme to the other. I've found that these replies fall into three basic categories.
1.) Happy and Supportive. Thankfully, for my own sanity, 85% of the responses that I receive, fall into this category. Usually they are at first surprised, but then are genuinely glad and supportive.
"Wow, I've always thought that would be so great to do. I'm so glad for you. I wish I thought I could do it!"
"Really? That's pretty neat, and very nice."
"Are you sure you could do that? I mean, I could never feel a baby move and grow inside me and be able to give it away."
"What happens if something go wrong? Is it safe for you?"
"I've learned not to question God. It was obviously his plan that these people not have children."
"You know, they have a name for women that sell their bodies...."
2.) Hesitant. I really have no other idea of how to describe these ones. The 10% that reply are usually more concerned with how it will effect me.
3.) Negative. The remaining 5% fall into a category that really was the idea behind this post. I feel like I can safely say that at least three of that five percent are using medical or religious reasons. and the other two? Well honestly I'm not sure where their opinions stems from.
I really wish I was making those last two replies up. I'm not. Up to this point in my surrogacy journey, that has been the hardest part. The fact that those comments came from a person I respect and also a Church official, made it worse.
There are people in your life that you EXPECT to be negative. It's just who they are, so it wouldn't have come as a surprise if it had of been one of them. Yet when you hear words like that come out of someone completely unexpected, it really throws you off course for a bit.
I'm not saying that I've let their opinions influence what I'm going to do, but it's still something that weighs heavy on your mind, creeping up when you least expect it, or even when your trying to AVOID thinking about it.
Although no one wants a negative response, in my own experience it has been easier to accept one of an admittedly personal opinion rather than using, for example, Religion to back up your own views. If you don't like the idea of something, say that. If YOU feel it is morally wrong, say that. Do not say "the church, the group, the whatever-the-heck-else" feels like this, and therefore, I have done absolutely no research and follow blindly."
SURROGACY IS NOT FOR EVERYONE. Plain and simple. It's not for all to condone and accept, and it's not for all to discourage. It's research, it's praying, it's knowing and it's keeping informed. Not all childless couples will turn to surrogacy, the same that they will not all accept being barren or adopting children. Not all women will become carriers. Not all people will agree with it.
If you wish for me to respect your choice. Respect mine. If you wish for me to respect your opinion, respect mine. And finally, if you wish for me to even remotely consider/ponder your perspective, be dang sure that you have formed your own opinion and not mimicked someone else's.
The following was taken from a article by Stanford:
"The ethical debate on surrogacy has often looked to religious roots and cultural backgrounds in search of an answer. One of the first ancient references to infertility occurs in Genesis, when Jacob’s wife, like many of her Biblical peers, was unable to bear a child. After praying to God and begging her husband, she sends Jacob “unto” her maid and then adopts the resulting child as her own. Sara did likewise, sending Abraham to her maid Hagar, saying, “I shall obtain children by her.” (Full article may be found HERE)
Denomination vs Surrogacy
In the LDS (Mormon) Handbook, it says:
The Church strongly discourages surrogate motherhood.
In that letter, the Church spoke of homologous forms of assisted reproduction in which sperm and egg come from the married couple; and heterologous forms of assisted reproduction in which some third party is brought into the process of conception, gestation, and birth. Most homologous forms of assisted reproduction divorce procreation from sexual union of the man and woman; and all heterologous forms (such as surrogacy) do. As a result, neither is acceptable from within official Catholic teaching." (Entire article found here )
The Jewish Beliefs:
In Jewish law, a childless couple falls within the category of personal suffering and there exists a clear obligation to assist them in every permissible way, as long as no one is harmed in the process.
The Eastern Orthodox Church
supports medical and surgical treatment of infertility, and
TheBaptist, Methodist, Lutheran, Presbyterian, Episcopal, United Church of Christ, Christian Science, Jehovah’s Witness, and Mennonite religionsall have liberal attitudes toward infertility treatments.
Islamic law encourages attempts to cure infertility, but only to the extent that IVF technologies involve the husband and wife.
Hindus have never seriously debated assisted reproduction because of their belief in karma, which preordains the kind of life an individual would lead after birth. There is no conflict between Hinduism and assisted reproduction, which is generally accepted as a form of treatment and not an infringement on religious beliefs.
(articles and reference notes to the previous 5 can be found by clicking here