Surrogacy Workshop Part 1: Planning Your Journey / 2015 SF MHB

Men Having Babies created this Surrogacy Workshop in order to take a broad look at the crucial decisions and milestone gay men face in their pursuit of biological parenting. It outlines some of the typical steps and milestones parents go through, presented chronologically and as a decision-tree.



Initial research:

Check web, come to Planning Biological Parenthood meetings, speak to surrogacy veterans, and attend free consultations with agencies and watch this surrogacy workshop video. While you do not have to make all of the following decisions upfront, you may want to keep these questions in the back of your mind:

  • Consider surrogacy versus other options like adoption, foster care, shared parenting.
  • Consider Traditional Surrogacy (TS) versus Gestational Surrogacy (GS).
  • These options vary considerably in process, cost, duration, legality and likely future relationships with the surrogate /egg donor.
  • In TS, a surrogate is carrying a baby conceived through artificial insemination using the sperm of one of the intended parents. In GS, a carrier is impregnated with embryos created through IVF (In Vitro Fertilization), using the couples’ sperm and donated eggs.
  • If you decide on GS, consider various options for egg donation: unknown, known (donors who are open to meeting the children or providing additional medical history information should the need arise in the future), or even from a family member or a friend.
  • If you are a couple, think of paternity options: should one of you provide the sperm, or should you mix your samples before the insemination /fertilization? If you are doing IVF, you can fertilize half of the eggs with each sperm sample, so that the paternity of each embryo can be known, and you can choose to implant embryos from both dads.
  • Think ahead of your desired family makeup: are you likely to want to go through the process again in the future for a sibling? Would you like to maximize the possibility of having twins in the first round?
  • Consider options for establishing parentage: will you be seeking second parent adoption? Are you interested in a pre-birth order?
  • Understand the likely timeline for each scenario, and possible setbacks: the chances that you may need more than one cycle to achieve pregnancy, having to consider changing the egg or sperm donor, or even a carrier, and the possibility of a miscarriage.

Once you researched and considered these and other issues, you may be ready to decide: what professional help will you require in your process? Will you try to keep outside help to the minimum (the Independent Track)? Will you employ a full service agency – or maybe just a lawyer? Will you first choose a clinic?

See more at

Anthony Brown

Anthony Brown

Attorney and Advocate at Time For Families
Who am I? On the deepest level, I am blessed. I have an amazing partner, who I have known since 1989 and been married to since 2004. I am the donor dad of two beautiful daughters who have two moms who are equally amazing. My husband and I have expanded our family through surrogacy and have a seven-year old son. I have had three careers (acting, massage therapy and the law) and I am still discovering myself. I am the Board Chair of Men Having Babies. The one thing I know for sure is that life is about trusting your instincts. Family is an instinct.
Anthony Brown