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Desperately Seeking Surrogates (New York Times, April 2)

Posted On April 2nd, 2022

The New York Times article on April 2, 2022 (“Desperately Seeking Surrogates”) has some accurate information contained within along with plenty of misguided and misleading statements.  Some key points:

  • Surrogate mother (gestational carrier) fees are NOT unregulated at all.  What they are not is “pre-fixed” (antitrust litigation in the third party area of fertility has made sure that won’t happen).  However, judges who issue parentage orders in surrogacy matters can and often do inquire as to the compensation and other costs which are paid.  There is judicial oversight – not the “wild west” atmosphere which is implied in the story.
  • When gestational carriers (“GC”) and intended parents (“IP”) are left to negotiate compensation on their own, it can often devolve into an unseemly and emotional exercise in bargaining.  IP are beyond eager for a child and know GC are in demand and the GC is aware that she is a scarce resource and is venturing into a negotiation with generally well-heeled and anxious benefactors.  Having set fees ahead of time – generous and known to all – eliminates this type of horse-trading and accomplishes the goals of both sides.  IP want their GC to know she is appreciated and being treated well.  GC wants to feel valued and respected for her vital contribution.

What is on the mark in this piece is the realization that there are fewer qualified carriers these days to go around.  More couples and singles (single men and women are intended parents,

 

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Surrogacy in Ukraine Worries Parents-to-Be

Posted On March 3rd, 2022

We feel for any parents-to-be who are fearful and frightened about the outcome of their pregnancy, but the situation in Ukraine right now is unique and particularly disturbing. 

Ukraine effectively replaced India some years ago as a venue for low-cost surrogacy and intended parents from the US, Europe and other parts of the world have been gravitating to the country to be able to work with clinics, programs and gestational carriers at fees they can more easily afford.  It is completely understandable that for aspiring parents of more modest means who also desire a genetic link with their child, the costs associated with a top-flight US-based IVF clinic, established surrogacy program and qualified and responsible surrogate mother are often prohibitive. 

Sadly, there are trade-offs in the pursuit of lower cost surrogacy – quality of medical care, background of carrier and security of the legal proceedings had been the chief ones intended parents needed to understand and accept.  Now political unrest and potential for violence/war have to be risks taken into consideration.  We are hoping that every surrogate mom in Ukraine gets to complete her pregnancy in a safe environment and every intended parent ends up with a healthy baby.

 

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Ellen Glazer Has Two Grandchildren with NAFG’s Help

Posted On February 14th, 2022

Sometimes in life we “know” something before we really “know” it. That is how it was for me with surrogacy. Over the years I have counseled countless people considering this path to parenthood. Many asked me why someone would want to become a gestational carrier. My answer has always been the same. “How often does one have the opportunity to change a family’s life in such a significant way? Being a surrogate doesn’t just mean bringing a child to parents who want one. It brings a niece, a nephew, a cousin, a grandchild, a son or daughter who may one day have children of their own who may one day have children of their own. Surrogacy is a gift that keeps on giving.”

 

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Are IVF Babies Different?

Posted On October 11th, 2021

I’m going to split the question into two parts: one is easy to answer and one’s a little harder. 

So first, are they better? Are they superhuman? The answer to that is absolutely NO. 

No one does IVF to create a superhuman. People who use IVF do it as a last resort after many unsuccessful attempts to have children the natural way. So no one’s taking superhuman sperm and supermodel Ivy League eggs and putting them together to create some superhuman. That just doesn’t happen. The reason we want to procreate is to pass on our own DNA. That’s behind the sex drive and everything that makes us go. And so in IVF, when people want to have their own babies, they want their own zygotes. They want their own DNA. They don’t want some outside superhuman DNA. They want kids who are like them. And even when people look for donors, they look for donors who look like them. That’s the main search criterion for most recipients: to find a donor who looks like them because they want kids who are like them. They don’t want some superhuman. That’s the realm of science fiction when it comes to IVF that people were afraid of: that these super creatures would be created in the lab.

Now the other thing is: are IVF kids not as good? Are they defective in some way? Is there some problem with IVF children? Well, we know in general that IVF can have a risk of premature birth and low birth weight,

 

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Instagram Live with Mama Glow

Posted On May 3rd, 2021

Here is the link to Kathy Benardo’s IG live interview with Mama Glow. We discussed many issues regarding third party reproduction. https://www.instagram.com/tv/COQjpkfpMBh/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link

 

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Surrogacy Finally Legal in New York!

Posted On April 14th, 2020

The Child-Parent Security Act has passed in New York, but the regulations for a New York surrogacy are so onerous, I suspect most New York residents will work out of state anyway. The law is applicable to situations where the carrier resides in and/or will deliver in New York State.  If intended parents live in New York and work with an out of state gestational carrier, the additional burdens and expenses involved with satisfying New York’s statutory requirements will not apply.  New York’s statutory framework in the CPSA has been promoted (by the legislators and lawyers involved in its creation, primarily) as ground-breaking.  It is not.  Many states and surrogacy programs have been protecting carriers and intended parents carefully and comprehensively for years.

 

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Covid-19 and IVF

Posted On April 14th, 2020

Everything is pretty much suspended for now. I explain in this week’s video.

 

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