The terms surrogate mother, gestational surrogate, and gestational carrier are often intermixed, and sometimes confused. It is important to understand the differences so that you can make the best decisions about your family building options.
The term gestational carrier is most often used by medical professionals and attorneys, to describe a woman who carries a baby that she is NOT genetically connected to. When a gestational carrier conceives, it is via in vitro fertilization by using either the intended mother’s eggs, or an egg donor’s eggs, the intended father’s sperm or a sperm donor’s sperm. Embryos created are then transferred to the gestational carrier’s uterus with the hope that a pregnancy ensues. The term gestational surrogate is used interchangeably, and is the same as a gestational carrier.
A traditional surrogate is a woman who is inseminated by the intended father’s sperm, or donor sperm. If she conceives and gives birth, the baby, or babies are then given to the intended parents to raise as their child. In traditional surrogacy, the carrier is also the genetic mother of any children conceived.
In either scenario, the intent is for the carrier to give any children to intended parents to raise and care for as their own. There are different legal, social and ethical considerations for each of the options, so talking with professionals who are knowledgeable about all options is essential to making the best family-building decisions. Pathways To Parenthood:
An Egg Donor and Surrogacy Agency can help you with clarifying and understanding your options. Contact us today!