Surrogacy Agency Alternatives: Using a Self-Matching Site Instead of a Surrogacy Agency
When looking for a surrogate or Intended parent, you can utilize a self-matching site like SurrogacyPlace.com instead of using a surrogacy agency. There are several reasons you may want to forgo a surrogacy agency and do your journey independently. Some Intended Parents want to save on the costly agency fees, shorten wait times, and/or have greater control over the matching process. Other Intended Parents find agency contracts and their exclusivity agreements risky given that agencies generally do not disclose how many surrogates they represent. Others do not want to pay tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of dollars matching with surrogates that their Reproductive Endocrinologist may not ultimately clear. Remember, only medical professionals such as a qualified Reproductive Endocrinologist can warrant a potential surrogate is fit to carry.
For surrogates, some prefer to name their own compensation without adhering to an agency’s price card and want to set their own terms. Experienced surrogates in particular do not necessarily appreciate the controlling relationship of an agency. Some may have even had bad experiences with agencies. Here’s a list of reasons why surrogates often prefer independent journeys and forgo using a surrogacy agency.
Intended Parents and surrogates alike often feel that agencies can make surrogacy feel like a business transaction and prefer direct communication which can make a surrogacy journey feel like a more personal experience for all involved.
Here are some of the top reasons why surrogates might regret working with a surrogacy agency
Lack of Personal Control:
Some surrogates feel that working with an agency limits their autonomy and decision-making ability. They might perceive the agency as exerting too much control over the process, including selecting intended parents, setting compensation terms, or making decisions on their behalf. This loss of personal control can lead to frustration or regret.
Some surrogates feel they can find the perfect match when they are able to vet a larger pool of Intended Parents vs. who happens to be high up on an agency waiting list. Some surrogates dislike the pressure they get from agencies trying to match the Intended Parents that have been waiting the longest vs. those they best align with their values.
Effective and open communication is vital in surrogacy arrangements. Surrogates may experience difficulties in communication with the agency, such as delays in response, lack of transparency, or feeling unheard. Poor communication can cause misunderstandings, create unnecessary stress, and contribute to a negative experience for surrogates.
Misalignment of Expectations:
If there is a significant difference between the surrogate’s expectations and the agency’s promises, it can lead to disappointment and regret. Surrogates may feel misled regarding compensation, medical procedures, legal aspects, or the overall experience. When expectations are not met, it can result in a negative perception and regret over their decision to work with an agency. Surrogates that choose to go independently set their own terms and compensation levels directly with the help of an attorney paid for by the Intended Parents.
Disagreements or conflicts over financial matters can cause surrogates to regret their association with an agency. This could involve discrepancies in compensation, delays in receiving payment, or issues related to reimbursement for medical expenses. Financial disputes can strain the relationship between surrogates and Intended Parents and contribute to a negative experience.
Here are some reasons why intended parents might regret working with a surrogacy agency
Surrogacy can involve significant financial investment, and Intended Parents may feel that the agency’s fees are too high or not aligned with the services provided. If the agency’s pricing structure is not transparent or if unexpected costs arise during the process, Intended Parents will experience regret over the financial burden. This is especially true as surrogacy agencies require exclusivity contracts – Intended Parents are expected to pay huge sums of money with no guarantees of a great match or a successful journey.
Lack of Personal Connection:
Establishing a personal connection with the surrogate is essential for many Intended Parents. If they feel that the agency did not prioritize finding a surrogate who aligns with their values, beliefs, or personality, they will likely regret their choice. The absence of a meaningful connection can impact the overall surrogacy experience and the Intended Parents’ ability to form a bond with the surrogate.
Miscommunication or Poor Communication:
Effective and open communication is crucial throughout the surrogacy journey. If Intended Parents experience difficulties in communicating with an agency, such as delayed responses, inadequate information sharing, or feeling unheard, it can lead to frustration and regret. Lack of clear communication can create misunderstandings or result in unintended consequences, causing Intended Parents to have a bad experience with surrogacy.
Limited Choice or Matching Challenges:
Intended parents may have specific preferences or criteria when selecting a surrogate, such as location, background, or lifestyle. If the agency fails to provide suitable matches or if the matching process takes an extended period, it can lead to disappointment and regret. Limited choice or difficulties in finding a compatible surrogate can hinder the Intended Parents’ surrogacy journey. When choosing to work with an agency, Intended Parents are limited to whomever an agency happens to have in their database. Intended Parents aren’t given any visibility into the number of surrogates who signed up with a particular agency. It could be a very small number.
Longer Wait Times:
Intended Parents can wait 12-18 months+ for a surrogate match using an agency. This is because agencies have a larger pool of Intended Parents than surrogates. Intended Parents are at the mercy of whether or not surrogates are choosing to sign up with a particular agency since agencies require exclusivity agreements. Additionally, exhausted Intended Parents will often match with the first available surrogate their agency offers because they have been waiting for a very long time regardless of whether or not that surrogate is a good fit.
Legal or Contractual Issues:
Intended Parents can face ambiguous contract terms and inadequate legal protections in signing on exclusively with an agency for their surrogacy journey. Many Intended Parents have to pay huge upfront fees without any guarantees that surrogate matches are medically or otherwise suited for surrogacy.
Increased Control and Direct Involvement:
Surrogacy Place provides Intended Parents and surrogates with more control and direct involvement in the surrogacy process. Instead of relying on an agency to select potential surrogates, Intended Parents can browse through ID-verified profiles, review detailed information, and directly initiate contact with potentials. This level of control allows for a more personalized and hands-on approach to finding a surrogate match.
Broader Pool of Surrogates and Intended Parents:
Surrogacy matching websites like SurrogacyPlace.com often have a larger pool of potential surrogates compared to individual agencies. These websites attract surrogates from various locations, backgrounds, and experiences, offering Intended Parents a wider selection of potential matches. The increased diversity can help find a surrogate or Intended Parent who aligns closely with individual preferences and requirements.
More Transparent and Accessible Information:
Surrogacy matching websites like ours provides comprehensive profiles of potential surrogates, including details about medical history, lifestyle, personal preferences, and surrogacy experiences. This information allows Intended Parents to choose from a variety of candidates based on their specific needs. Likewise, SurrogacyPlace.com allows surrogates to find Intended Parents based on the type of candidates they’d be excited to undertake a journey with, including shared values.
SurrogacyPlace.com offers more cost-effective options compared to traditional surrogacy agencies. The small access fee allow Intended Parents to access and connect with potential surrogates directly without the need for agency intermediation. This can result in significant cost savings throughout the surrogacy journey. Surrogates can always create their profiles for free at SurrogacyPlace.com.
Flexibility and Convenience:
Using Surrogacy Place offers flexibility and convenience for Intended Parents and surrogates alike. Registered users can browse and search for potential surrogates and Intended Parents at their own pace and convenience, without being limited to the agency’s schedule or availability. The online platform allows for easy access to information, and communication, simplifying the process and reducing agency constraints.
Direct Communication and Relationship Building:
Surrogacy matching websites like SurrogacyPlace.com facilitate direct communication between intended parents and potential surrogates. This direct interaction enables the development of a relationship, fostering trust, mutual understanding, and shared expectations. Building a connection from the initial stages can contribute to a more positive and collaborative surrogacy experience for all parties involved.
It’s important to note that due diligence and verifying information is always your responsibility whether you’re using an agency or going independent using a site like SurrogacyPlace.com. Always lean on the expertise of legal and medical professionals specializing in surrogacy to ensure a legally protected and medically sound journey.