PRE-BIRTH & HOSPITAL CONSIDERATIONS FOR THE INTENDED PARENTS

Let's envision that you all, the intended parents, and the surrogate mom have met, entered into a contractual relationship and developed a mutual respect for each other. Now it's almost time for the birth! Let's talk about the pre-birth and hospital considerations. -Discuss with your surrogate mom how she sees the birth experience and what she wants from you. Also discuss any labor/delivery desires or fears with us at Shared Conception. -Establish an efficient contact plan so your surrogate mother can easily reach you when “it’s time!" Arriving at the hospital and being seen as a “team” from the beginning will help hospital staff relate to you as a unit. Staff will be more accommodating and flexible on your behalf if they see you as a respectful team. -Find the balance with your surrogate mother regarding “supportive presence” and “hovering”. Ask her questions about her needs rather than make assumptions. -Know hospital policies about who may attend the birth, what happens if a c-section is required, ID bands, staying at the hospital overnight, nursery or “rooming-in” policies. Shared Conception will help address these issues. -After the birth, you will follow the baby to watch the bath, and first exams. Please check back with your surrogate mother often to give her a report and see how she is doing. Some surrogate mother’s feel left and lost at this point and remain concerned about you and the baby. -Feel free to send flowers to your surrogate mother! We are also happy to arrange sending them. -Take lots of pictures – pictures help surrogate mothers re-experience what happened so fast and allows them to better complete the emotional process. Plus pictures are fun to share and help others to celebrate. A lack of pictures is a regret. -It is a joy for your surrogate mother to see you both with the baby. Spending time together in the hospital room or bringing the baby from the nursery to your surrogate mother’s room is important. If you come and go from the hospital, keep your surrogate mother informed. -The hospital birth certificate clerk will assist you in completing the birth certificate and getting it to County Birth Records. If you need a passport before leaving you must request an expedited process. Completion of both documents will take approximately 10-15 business days. You need a certified Birth Certificate before getting a passport. -Years of experience proves that it is BEST if a surrogate mother (with her family) and baby/babies (with new parents) leave the hospital at the same time. -A pediatrician will see the baby at birth and prior to discharge. You may also want to check with this doctor prior to flying home. A written note from the doctor is nice to have if the airlines want documentation regarding flying with a newborn. -Post birth contact can be difficult when contact changes from very frequent (prior to the birth) to infrequent or no contact after leaving the hospital. Our best advice is to call when you arrive home with the baby and tell your surrogate mother when you will call next. If comfortable, invite her to call if she wants – she knows you will be adjusting to a new schedule. Let communication gradually decrease as she recovers and gets back to her routine. Abrupt changes in communication can create misunderstandings. Shared Conception is fully committed to expertly and compassionately guiding you through the pre and post-birth hospital considerations. Call on us, we are here to help.

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