Surrogacy Together "Chicken Soup For the Soul"

While I enjoy bashing evil people's heads against the wall as much as the next person I am starting to feel like a stalker that's kicking someone when their down.

I would stop posting, but I keep getting emails from people thanking me for posting information that they can't find anywhere else or nobody else is sharing.

I know people that were unknowingly brought into this scheme and it makes me sick.

I will continue to post new information as it becomes available to me.

In the meantime, I am working on an ebook that will share positive stories about the Community. So many good rewarding things happen to everyone involved in the Community and we need to share this information.

The Project is called Surrogacy Together. Our first ebook is titled "Inspiring Surrogacy Stories."

Our Mission is sharing positive, uplifting stories about Surrogacy and the Surrogate community with the world.


When presented with the details someone called it our version of "Chicken Soup For the Soul."

You can go to the website for all of the details: who, what, where, when, why, and how.

We are giving everyone the platform to share their inspiring story. We have all had personal experiences where someone helped you navigate the often rough road through Surrogacy or infertility.

This is your chance to share your short story that is 250 - 1,200 words in length.

Anyone that has a story to share is invited to participate.

You will get full credit for you story, including the right to approve it before we go to production, and a link back to your website or blog so that the readers can find out more about you. Because we all have a lot more to share than one short story.

To get this ebook out before the sentencing hearings we are on an extremely tight schedule so we need you story to be turned in no later than August 22nd, 2011.

Please forward this information to anyone that you think might be interested in participating. The whole Community is invited.









Surrogacy Together - The Power of Teamwork and Shared Leadership

Surrogacy Together - The Power of Teamwork and Shared Leadership is the name of the book that I am working on to share my story.


The title covers my experience through the process.


Detailed plans, daily follow through, and teamwork carried us to success. 


We built a team with well defined roles and multiple leaders to complete our mission.


It was a very satisfying and humbling experience.


We had a large support network that helped guide us through the rough patches and uncertainty and get us to the other side. Without them the road would at times would have been impossible to navigate.


In our case, we had 4 distinct Support teams. While they were all important, not everyone was equal.


Some participated for a day, week, or month, while others were involved daily in the entire grinding experience.


At this time, I am dividing them into a few simple categories:Professionals - The medical and law team.
Mentors - Other IP's and/or Surrogates that have been there - done that and can give real world advice and feedback.
Emotional Support Team - Friends and Family that didn't understand the process and what we were going through, but were supportive the whole way through.
Fans - Random people that either in person or via the Internet offered support or kind words along the way.


Many people fit into more than one group and their help was essential to our success.


Who was on your team during your surrogacy?


You can get the sneak peak and be among the first to share your story by following this link to Surrogacy Together.



Lived Experience Of Intended Parents

My Other New Surrogacy Project....


Project Title: What Is The Lived Experience Of Intended Parents During Surrogate Pregnancy And Transition To Parenthood In Relation To The U.S. Healthcare System?


That is a mouth full.


What does it mean?


The term lived experience is used to describe the first-hand accounts and impressions of living as a member of a minority or oppressed group.


In layman's terms -


How does the Healthcare system oppress Intended Parents.


I could go on for days on this subject.


The study is being done by the The University of Texas at Tyler.


The potential benefit of the study is that it will be used to set the guidelines for hospitals around the Country.


As is my nature, I was the first Intended Parent that volunteered to be interviewed. I want the project to start off heading in the right direction.


They are looking for additional Intended Parents that are currently involved in a Surrogacy or have a baby through Surrogacy that is less than one years old. It is only open to Couples that live in the United States.


If you are interested in being involved please contact me for additional information.



A New Surrogacy Project..........

I am about to focus on a new all consuming Surrogacy project.

Well I actually have more than one all consuming projects coming up, but for today we will focus on the sharing of the most public aspect of my Surrogacy Story.

Today, I am committing to writing a book.

It will be a memoir as opposed to a guide book.

One man's thoughts about the absurd things that go through his mind while building his family through
Surrogacy.

Ideally, it should be a page turner rather than something brilliant.


The story will need SPICE to work.

This stands for Specifics, Places, Incidents, Characters, and Emotions.


Naturally, from my perspective, it will take genuine bravery to write an honest memoir.

It will be emotionally difficult to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth on a page for publication.

However, I feel that I have an important story that only I can tell.

And it's a Surrogacy Story.

That means it will be filled with truths, half-truths, and flat out lies.

With a large chapter titled - Beware.

A story of the journey of a person from innocence to wisdom, self-doubt to self-knowing, that is born of tests and trials during an adventure.

Something that the readers haven't read a hundred times before.

I am moving forward with this project because I feel that I have a story that is unique and that I offer new insights on the subject.

The first draft should be coming by the end of the year and I will be recruiting Surrogates to read it first and give me their feedback.

Without them there would be no story to tell.

Surrogacy Chooses You, You Don't Choose it...

Surrogacy Chooses You, You Don't Choose it...

Surrogacy is a necessary evil for some couples.

Nobody wakes up one morning and says "I'm going to find a Surrogate to carry my baby" without years of struggle and thought into the matter.

And

Finding out that there is NO other option for them.

This is not Plan A.

It's not even Plan B.

It's plan ZZZ.

And even then only because we have to.

After all other options have been explored.

Do we want to?

Hell no!

But, the alternative, life without a child, a family, is unbearable.

At times, it would be so easy to just give up and not have a child.

The thought does cross your mind.

Why can't we just stop?

Why can't we just be happy without a child? Or with the children that you already have in your arms.

Think of all the fun things we could do with the money that we are burning away trying to have a child.

One that we might not get, even with our best efforts.

The desire to procreate is overwhelming.

It's a hammer hitting you in the back of the head every minute.

There is no pill or medical intervention available to stop the pounding.

It's a methodical beating to your head and your heart.

Your heart must pump the desire to every part of your body.

You fell it in your soul. Minute-by-Minute, Second-by-Second.

Women have this ticking time bomb of a biological clock. I believe that men do to.

They just don't share.

And it comes to them much later in life.

When it does come, it's incessant, it's non-stop, and it's painful.

And there is only one cure.

A baby.

Focusing on the Future is Required....

The truth,

no myths,

no trendy responses—

just the truth that endures for this Intended Parent about Surrogacy land is that focusing on the future at all times is required.

That is the one piece of advice that I would give to a newbie just starting out.

Dream. Imagine. Think big.

Before the transfer, during the pregnancy, and after the birth.

Create your child's life story.

You will need your creativity, enthusiasm, and idealism the entire time.

The truth is that focusing on the future is the only thing that will keep you going.

The capacity to imagine and articulate exciting future possibilities will strengthen you during the tough times.

It’s not something anyone else can do for you, but you must do this for yourself.

You have to take a long-term perspective if you’re going to guide people to places they have never been before.

And you will be taking friends, family, and strangers along with you on the ride. You are their tour guide. The first or second person they have ever met that's done Surrogacy.

And, as important as it is, inspiring a shared vision is the most difficult of all to master.

Bringing everyone you meet into your personal story.

Telling them the private details of your life.

As an Intended Parent/Parent you are constantly developing the capacity to share your vision of an ennobling and uplifting story.


Surrogacy, you have to say yes to begin things...


How do you get started with IVF and Surrogacy.

You have to say yes to begin things

You have to say yes to big dreams,
You have to say yes to possibilities,
you have to say yes to the unknown,
you have to say yes to your beliefs, 
you have to say yes to difficult challenges, 
you have to say yes to sleepless nights,
you have to say yes to worry filled days,
you have to say yes to collaboration, 
you have to say yes to trust, 
you have to say yes to gut wrenching choices that often have no right answer, 
you have to say yes to facing your fears, 
you have to say yes to your heart,
and you have to say yes to faith.
  

So, here’s the big question: 

Are you ready to say yes?

Will the Surrogate give up the baby?

This is a common question Intended Parents get when they tell people for the first time that they are using a Surrogate.

The media plays up the horror stories.

Surrogate keep Baby - when it happens it's World Wide news.

These cases are usually a Traditional Surrogacy done in a place where Surrogacy is illegal.
Or at least paying the Surrogate is illegal. Therefore, the parents have no standing to protect
themselves.

Surrogacy Lawyers play up to this fear.

You need to pay us large sums of money to protect your rights as a parent.

Because as a future parent there would be nothing more heart-breaking than to lose your child.

Your hopes and dreams. So near - and then snatched away from you.

When for just a little more money - you could have protected your rights as a parent.

Fear drives the marketplace.

Now I live in California and am interested in specifically our laws in this State. How do they apply to me?

I plan on using a Gestational Carrier - with my DNA.

What does history tell me about my Surrogate keeping the baby?

Know I am naive and slow at times I will admit. And numbers can be hard to figure out
and process.

But, I need to ask why you never hear anyone in California tell you that the one simple fact about California and your rights as Intended Parents.

Not one Agency or Lawyer will tell you this -

NO Gestational Surrogate has EVER fought for parental rights of a Surrogacy Baby born in California and won.

Not one.

EVER.

That means that in California, the unofficial Surrogacy capitol of the World with more Surrogate births that anywhere else gives the baby to the Intended Parents EVERY TIME.

Surrogates 0%
Intended Parents 100%

If I were a beating man I would like those odds.

This is the only sure thing in a Surrogacy world of uncertainty.

Why doesn't anyone share that information?

My thoughts on our Surrogacy Experiences....

A few days ago I made a post called "A guys thoughts on Surrogacy."

I read it again today and realized the writing doesn't reflect the title.

I wrote about a lack of a guys thoughts on Surrogacy. And that they are missing from the Surrogacy World. My post does match the reality of the situation in that it didn't supply any answers and didn't include and thoughts from a guy.

I suppose that I should of just left the title as it is and made a blank post with no words.
That would correctly reflect the thoughts shared by the men.

It would be a quick read.

But, not very informative.

I figured that I would share my thoughts on Surrogacy in this post and clean up my missed topic.

As a warning, when I started posting on message boards about my opinions I often started them with
"I'm a guy."

Looking back, I think this was a not so subtle way to say "hold on, I'm going to offend you with what I am about to write." Let's see where I'm at today and if I can offend anyone with my thoughts.

Without Surrogacy, Christy and I would not have a relationship. At the very start it was clear that I would need a child of my own and she wasn't capable of carrying a baby.

It was a simple statement made by me that sounded so easy at the time - when Christy told me that she couldn't carry a baby I said:

"We will just get a Surrogate to carry for us."

"No big deal."

I mean how hard could it be?

That sentence changed our life.

How stupid could I be?

A third person that we wouldn't met for years, allowed us to become a couple.

Now fast forward a few years and our clock is ticking and it's time to move forward.

We start calling Agencies to get this thing done fast, without complications, and right away I get sticker shock.

You want me to pay how much?

Our odds are how low?

That doesn't include the cost of IVF!

My first thought is "Effen lawyers."

And I just know that every time I call them up with a quick two minute question they will be billing me for 15 minutes min. and I will be getting a $60 bill. If I'm lucky.

Ok. Let's move on to an independent match.

We find surrogate #1 in our life.

Christy fly's to her house and meets her for the day.

Everything is good. We are content and happy and found our match. She is currently about to deliver another couples baby and we will be moving forward with her in a few months.

We are set and it's just a matter of time.

She delivers the baby for her current IP's and then wants to substantially raise her fee that we have agreed on, almost doubling it, because -

She didn't like the way the current IP's treated he after the birth.

In short, we are being punished for their behavior.

Now this places everyone in a very bad situation.

When you change the agreement at the last minute trust is broken.

Our relationship now is being built on the foundation of your baggage. And we have re-opened negotiations.

I need to start kicking your tires and bringing up your negatives if we are going to re-negotiate.

This is no way to begin a positive trusting relationship.

She was a very nice girl, we liked her, and her location worked well for us.

However, we lost our trust in her.

We made the choice to find another Surrogate rather then negotiate with her and start our Surrogacy with an adversarial relationship. Because, I know that I'm going to make her cry and once that happens there's no going back.

My belief is that once you've negotiated the deal in Surrogacy you can't re-open negotiations.

Everything is based on complete trust from both sides and once you've shown that you will change the agreement in one place the other side is constantly wondering "what's next?"

How am I going to be blindsided?

How stable are you with your ability to make a decision and stick to it?

You've changed your mind on something minor. Before anything complicated had happened.

Can I trust you with something MAJOR? For the next 9 months?


Surrogate #1 down the drain.

On to the next one.

A Guys Thoughts On Surrogacy.

I'm looking all over the Internet for "A guys thoughts on Surrogacy" and I can't find anything.

Clearly, we are a bunch of deep thinkers and sharers.

When I say I can't find anything - I mean nothing.

To clarify, I am looking for someone with a story like mine.

Heterosexual male, Intended Parent, now ex-intended parent. Who went through the Surrogacy process.

I can find Surrogates Stories everywhere. Gay couples with two Intended Fathers, Lawyers, Doctors, and psychologists that have worked with Intended Parents, and Intended Mother stories. Even a few articles about the surrogates husband and how supportive he is - to her journey.

But, not a single story that I relate to and go - that's me - that's what I went through.

I find it odd that one of the main players in third party reproduction has absolutely no voice.

Half of the DNA comes from us. At least usually. And we have nothing of importance to say.

We are just a silent support person? Amazed by the whole situation?

Where else in life do guys spend a boat load of money and shut-up about it? Anywhere?

If you know of any books or websites written about Surrogacy from a guys perspective post a Link in the comment section.

Affordable Surrogacy - Only $103,490, plus extra's.......

Today, we got an email from someone asking us to share our Surrogacy story.
They think that we have valuable insights to share "because we didn't have a smooth road."

It makes it sound as if we were damaged by our journey.

Surrogacy was never an issue for us. We were not damaged, injured, destroyed, or
even emotionally challenged by the Surrogacy side of our adventure.

Well..... maybe a little emotionally challenged.

However, we had tons of issue with a lack of RESOURCES.

Everything was running along smooth and on track for us until we lost our twins
during our first attempt at IVF.

Losing our twins was a major emotional shot. But, this would have been the same feelings
if Christy was the one pregnant. Having a Surrogate lose the twins didn't make things different.

We moved on to a frozen transfer - and it failed.

A little later we did another frozen transfer - and it failed.

Now we are 3 time failures and we are out of Money. Now we have problems
with Surrogacy. We can't afford to continue.

The pregnancy clock is ticking and we can't even get in the game. We are left sitting on
the sidelines watching.

Waiting for our turn to participate. Again.

With no RESOURCES. We are locked out of trying.

Nobody will help.

At least not the professionals in the field.

Call an Agency with out Money and see how long the call last.

How about a Surrogacy Lawyer. Think they will help?
Good Luck with that one.

An IVF doctor? Surely, they will care. That's their job.
Their responsibility.

Most of them will love to talk to you.

For an initial consultation fee of $250 they will tell you they
need an additional $15,000+ to see you again.

But, they really feel for you and would love to help you have a baby.

Oh ya, you will need to spend a few thousand dollars on meds.

And your new surrogate will need thousands of dollars of testing
that you just paid to be done on your prior surrogate.

So an agency, lawyer, and doctor will not talk to me and my eggs
are turning to dust daily.

^%*&# them and their whole cartel!

This is my Surrogacy problem.

If we had money at this point - we wouldn't of had any problem.

We could have just paid our way to the next step and moved on
quickly with our life.

Money could have made our surrogacy problem go away.

Instead, the professionals make Surrogacy a secret and if you don't know the secret
handshake you can't get the information you need.

You need to pay them $100,000+ they will let you into the club.
Temporarily.

They will walk you through and show you the way.

But, don't look to hard behind the curtain.

And don't take notes.

Because then you might be able to do it yourself.

And not have to pay the hugely marked up fees required to have a baby by some agency.

Because according to the "surrogacy experts" who are all "professionals" in the field
and need to protect their pockets going independent is like joining the devil.

The lack of Resources to just pay a fee to get the answers lead me on an extremely
long journey to find my own way.

We found lawyers that will lower their fees for Intended Couples and IVF clinics that
will waive their initial consultation fee. They are out there knowledgeable and helpful.

When you focus all of your attention on a problem you find answers.

Find a way to be successful and get things done.

To get pregnant, have a baby, and move forward with life.

To succeed and be successful.

And then turn around and help others accomplish the same goal
and joys.

For a lot less than $103,490, plus extra's.

It can be done.

You can’t do it alone.

This is what resonates the most for me.


You can’t do it alone


No one ever got anything extraordinary done without the knowledge, talent, and support of others. 


You need others and they need you. You’re all in this together. You have to be sensitive to the needs of others, listen, ask questions, develop others, provide support, and ask for help. 


This was the hardest thing for me as the independent person that I am. Being forced to ask for help when I just wanted to do it myself?


Sure, that's impossible. But, it sounds easier than bringing everyone along
with me for the ride. 


Then again, if I had to carry the baby, I really would have been an emotional wreck.


I kept thinking - 


Why can't I just focus a little harder and put some more effort into this and
have success. This has worked for me throughout my life.


I am not used to failure.


But, in the Surrogacy World - going alone - got me no where.


Telling my sobby sad story over and over again was self inflicted torture. 


My own personal ground hog day, where I was forced to ask the world for
pity and help. 


Again, And Again, And Again.


I learned that in Surrogacy World you don't get to hold back. The entire
experience requires that you share of yourself.


Your emotions.


Your thoughts.


Your fears.


We are reminded of this now - every day as we work with other Intended Parents and Surrogates. 


We’re reminded of it not only by the new people who share their stories with us, but also by the fact that we’ve been working collaboratively for years with surrogates to find our own way.


We could never have done what we’ve done without the caring support and involvement of so many other people. The Surrogacy World is a small extraordinary community.


And now - satisfied with my results - 


My fears behind me - 


I have entered the mushy phase.

It’s all about expectations. Greatness doesn’t appear on its own. Somebody expects it.


Okay, so you’re thinking: What in the world does this have to do with me this morning?

I don't know. That's for you to figure out.

For me,  It's about Expecting a Miracle and getting it. The bottom line is that our Surrogate did something great for us.

Now, if you are a new to my story,  it’s was all about expectations. Greatness doesn’t appear on its own. Somebody expects it. For us, our baby didn't happen by accident.

She put her life, and her family on hold so that we could become parents. That is an amazing thing that she did.

So often we slip into our roles and routines – as parent, child, friend or co-worker. And we think others are static entities.

They are great people or maybe simply average, or unpredictable or extremely steady. And if they’re not totally static, then we figure any control of how good they are, lies with them. But, the fact is we have so much more power than that.

We shape possibilities for others. And others shape possibilities for us.

The good parent is relentlessly: challenging, and encouraging, jostling and teaching, coaching, holding feet to the fire, and especially believing some more, and pointing out and celebrating results.

If you followed my story you will know that I was working on my parenting skills the whole time.

Good friends do the same thing.

Great parents, great friends, and great people create a space of possibility. And the last thing they do is give up on their beliefs, faith, and expectations.
After multiple attempts and years of struggle we now have an 8 1/2 month old healthy baby.
And things couldn't be better.