Looking back on last year, I thought I had the most amazing surrogacy plan ahead of me. I had perfect IP's (who are still the most incredible people I have ever met), a supportive family behind me, and what I thought was the world's greatest surrogacy agency leading me through one of the most foreign processes out there for people like me...
I can recall bragging about the passion I had for these women that created and maintained this agency (they're almost to that point where mentioning their name is very well deserved, but I'll spare them that for the time being). They treated me with the highest respect and cared for me as if I were their top priority. In the early stages of the process up until the middle of the pregnancy, they offered overwhelming support. I got checked on daily, had a representative present for important doctor visits, and I was given absolutely everything I ever needed or wanted. This was short lived. Towards the end of my pregnancy, I felt alone. Like many of you realize out there, I was crying out for help!! What did I need help with when I had the world doing everything they could to assist me with child care, house keeping, meal preps, etc?? Well, obviously I was mentally breaking down. Day by day, I was becoming more and more depressed. I just wish my agency had maintained that role they had played in the beginning throughout the entire process. Instead, phone calls, emails, and correspondence from me and my social worker were ignored or neglected. If I had an agency that actually attempted to reach out to me in my time of need rather than me having to force help, I think I would have had a much better time dealing with all of those overwhelming emotions.
At this time of just starting to realize how much my agency was starting to suck, I thought maybe it was just me and these raging hormones that just started to hate everyone. As much as I hate discussing the compensation side of surrogacy, I really need to state that I was taken advantage of. Every month it got worse. I'm not the type to complain until things get out of hand, so I let little things slide until I reached my breaking point. My IP's thought the world of our agency. They worked with a very BIG agency prior to working with ours, which most of you out there are with, and had a not-so-good experience with them. So, they grew to love ours. As time went on, I tried to warn them about all the things happening. I'm so glad they got involved to help in every single matter, but soon they caught on. It wasn't until recently where that moment of "Oh my God, these people have no business running a business" happened. They had no need to, but they apologized over and over again for me having to deal with this ongoing stress with them. In the end, not only was I taken advantage of, but we have proof that they were as well. They feel absolutely betrayed and will NEVER recommend this agency to anyone.
The point of having an agent in this whole surrogacy process is to help guide people through the process and make the entire thing much easier on everyone involved. They're not there to cause more stress and frustration for anyone!! Early on in my pregnancy, I told everyone how important it was to have an agency, but sometimes I think I would have been better off without one. I think having a contract and a very good fertility attorney is key, but an agency really can cause more harm than good. Now that my journey is at an end, I know exactly everything I would have done or said differently. Although the surrogate part is over, me dealing with my agency is not. I may have a long fight ahead of me, but I am not going to let them win!! They may have not realized this in the beginning, but I am one smart girl. I am very well educated and I let NOTHING get past me. I know they hate how "surrogate smart" I am and probably wish I was one of their other surrogates who just "let things go". But, I have news for them... I never give up on things and I am always right (just ask my husband!!).
So, my point on this post is not to bash my agency (which there is a lot more of that I REALLY would like to disclose), but it is just a warning to all of you surrogates out there. I know sometimes you don't know the truth about people until it is too late, like in my situation, but never forget that you have a voice. If you are ever second guessing things, then look into it until you are positive. And just because you may be helplessly knocked up, you still have a voice. Stand up for yourself no matter what the situation may be and let yourself be heard. You all are not just an "oven"; you are a human being that should be treated with respect, especially when you are giving someone life!!
If you have any personal questions, I am free to email to chat!!