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Pursuing Surrogacy with One Embryo

June 14, 20243 min read

A question I'm often asked about is whether to pursue surrogacy when the Intended Parents have one embryo. As an eternal optimist, my instincts tell me to shout a resounding "YES!!". However, there are so many aspects to consider that I would be doing a disservice to not share all of them. Here are some of the factors to help guide your decision making.

Understand the success rates

Talk with your Reproductive Endocrinologist to better understand your fertility clinic's success rates on their frozen embryo transfer's for a surrogate pregnancy. The overall success rate on the first transfer fluctuates between 50-70% based on quality of the embryo, the clinic (their experience, technology and protocols), and whether to embryos are genetically tested.

Willingness to pursue donor eggs and/or sperm

If Intended Parents have one embryo and are unable to create more for a variety of reasons, it is important to talk through what the next steps would look like should the embryo transfer not be successful. I recommend discussing with your partner openly and assessing your willingness to consider donor eggs or sperm should you need a Plan B. Some Intended Parents are interested in donor eggs or sperm, while others feel that if the embryo transfer was not successful, they would consider it the end of their surrogacy journey.

Emotional bandwidth

An important consideration on whether to pursue surrogacy is reflecting on the journey you've been on and your capacity to take on more. For some, the road to get to this point has been incredibly difficult and they feel they cannot face another bleak outcome.

Another perspective is that many Intended Parents have shared they do not want to have any future regrets or "what ifs" that would come without trying and moving forward in the process. Each Intended Parent has a unique story and background and the capacity to take on more mentally can vary so much based on this. Taking a look at your "village" (support groups, communities, friends, and family) and the emotional support you will receive regardless of the outcome is a must!

Overall cost of surrogacy

The cost of surrogacy ranges from $125,000-$175,000 based on a variety of factors such as surrogate compensation, type of journey (agency vs. independent journey), and whether your surrogate has surrogate-friendly health insurance. There are certain costs associated with surrogacy that you cannot recoup should the embryo transfer not be successful. Examples of this include the medical and psychological clearance, medications for the frozen embryo transfer, and the legal contract.

Trust your gut

Following your heart and thinking about the full picture (will you have regrets if you don't try, cost, your emotional bandwidth) is so important. There are so layers when navigating a decision as major as this and you don't have to do it alone. Our free community for Intended Parents has many IPs navigating whether to pursue surrogacy with a single embryo. When joining our community, you have the opportunity to meet with other Intended Parents on varying stages of their surrogacy journey and gain access to exclusive free resources.

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Jessie Jaskulsky

Owner of Surrogacy Simplified

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