During your first surrogacy journey, it’s natural to have plenty of questions, like “what should a birth plan include?” We’re here to help.

If you’re reading this, it seems there’s a bundle of joy heading your way. Congratulations on the beginning of a very special journey!

Whether you are the gestational carrier or intended parent(s), this is an exciting time in your life. It’s also a very busy one! Any pregnancy has its physical and emotional demands, and with a surrogacy birth, there are multiple people’s needs to consider.

Our team at Extraordinary Conceptions is here to support you every step of the way. We believe that creating a solid surrogacy birth plan is an important one to be taking.

Surrogacy Birth Plan Considerations

In order to create your surrogacy birth plan, it’s important to know what that actually is.

A birth plan, at its most basic, is a written document or statement (usually around a page or so,) that lays out the terms of how you want your upcoming birth to go. This is intended to be distributed to any parties present at the birth and ensures that everybody is on the same page.

The Basics: What Should a Birth Plan Include?

Giving birth is a very personal experience, and it’s safe to say that no two births – and birth plans – are ever the same. This is especially true with a surrogacy birth plan. Discussing birth plan considerations is very important to a smooth and stress-free delivery.

In general, a biological OR surrogacy birth plan includes the answers to a few key questions:

  • Who Will Be Present During the Birth? It’s helpful also to consider who will be in the room during unexpected circumstances, like a C-section.
  • What Birthing Methods and Positions Will Be Used?
  • Will Photos, Videos, or Social Media Post be Allowed of the Delivery?
  • What Environment Do You Want to Create? Some new parents want to have certain music playing when their baby is born.
  • Who Will Hold the Baby First? Is immediate skin-to-skin contact a priority? Who will be holding the baby first?
  • What Birth Interventions Are You Comfortable With? This includes methods like forceps or extraction by vacuum.
  • What Type of Birth Will This Be? Will the gestational carrier prefer to take an epidural or other pain relievers?

If you are the gestational carrier, then a birth plan is something you might be familiar with from your previous biological pregnancies. However, there will be quite a few differences when you create a surrogacy birth plan as you have a few additional elements to think about. Everybody’s individual needs should be voiced and discussed in the early days of this process.

What Makes a Surrogacy Birth Plan Different Than a Biological One?

Not only do your birth plan considerations pertain to the needs of multiple people, but you will need to navigate legal regulations and paperwork. This is in everybody’s best interest, including baby.

Among the primary birth plan considerations for surrogates is making sure that your HIPPA and other paperwork are in order. It’s crucial to establish legally that the intended parents are responsible for baby’s medical decisions. This also is to ensure that all of the correct parties have wristbands and access during the delivery and other appointments and required visits.

Communication, Respect, and Joy

This is a special time for every party involved— and it’s also an emotional one. It’s important always to remember that both the intended parents, the gestational carrier, and, if applicable, her partner, are all in this together.

Be sure to keep an open line of communication between all parties involved throughout your surrogacy journey. This is not a business interaction but a personal experience that will affect each life involved. Many GCs remain very close with their intended families for many years and sometimes carry for them again.

By treating each other with respect and openly discussing preferences, boundaries, expectations and goals, it will lead to a more joyful birthing experience down the line.

If you are thinking about beginning your own surrogacy journey, whether as a gestational carrier or intended parent, we’re here to help. Send us an email, and Erica will get back to you within 48 hours.