Finding prospective intended parents, either through an agency or on your own, is only the first step to ensuring you have the perfect match moving forward. In order to really know that a match is right for you, though, you must take the time to really get to know the intended parents through an in-person meeting or a phone call.
While you’ll be excited for this opportunity to confirm that the intended parents are who you hope they are, it can still be nerve-racking to prepare for this first meeting. You’ll probably wonder, “How will I know they’re the right fit for me? How will I know what to talk about? What are some questions I should ask to intended parents?”
When you work with an agency for this step, your conversation will be mediated by your surrogacy professional — which means they will also help you prepare for the conversation topics to discuss and any important questions you might wish to address during this first meeting. If you are finding intended parents on your own, however, you may not receive this same preparation and may wonder exactly what to expect from this first conversation.
No matter which path you are taking, you can learn more about getting to know the intended parents in this article.
Setting Up Your First Conversation
If you have found a potential match for your surrogacy journey, congratulations! Most likely, you have looked at several profiles of intended parents to find the ones that you’re interested in. However, a profile can’t tell you everything you need to know about intended parents — which is why getting to know the intended parents through a phone call or in-person meeting is so necessary and beneficial.
Keep in mind, if you have found intended parents independently, you will likely have already made contact with them through social media or a surrogacy listing. You will still need to set up a time for a detailed conversation before solidifying your match — to make sure you agree on all the small details that you may not have addressed in your initial contact.
This first, detailed conversation with the intended parents can seem overwhelming and awkward at first, but it is the best way for you to get to know them on a personal level. After all, these will be the people that you will intimately work with for a year or more, so it’s important that not only your surrogacy goals and preferences match up but also your personalities.
Starting the Conversation
Once you have set up an initial talk with the intended parents, you will likely want to ease into the conversation rather than ask sensitive, surrogacy-related questions right off the bat. Think of the beginning of this conversation like a first date; you and the intended parents want to make sure your personalities mesh and that you have similar values.
You may ask, “But, what questions should I ask the intended parents to ease into this conversation?”
You may consider asking the intended parents questions like:
- What are your interests and hobbies?
- Why do you want to become parents?
- What is your family like? What traditions are you hoping to pass down to your child?
- What are your values? What is important to you?
- Why did you become interested in pursuing surrogacy? What excites you about this family-building process?
Other questions to ask include any that were brought up when you viewed their personal profile, like any additional information you wish to know about their professional or educational background, their relationship, or where they live.
The beginning of your first conversation with the intended parents should progress naturally, and you should focus on getting to know the intended parents on a personal level before moving forward with the more crucial details of the surrogacy process itself.
Discussing Your Surrogacy Goals and Preferences
After you and the intended parents have gotten the chance to know each other a little better, you can move forward to asking questions about their surrogacy goals and preferences. You will probably know that your basic surrogacy goals line up with the intended parents’ (based on their profile), but you should still take this opportunity to discuss the important aspects of a surrogacy journey.
Remember, if you work with a surrogacy professional like a surrogacy agency, a surrogacy specialist can help guide you and the intended parents through some of the more difficult and sensitive topics of the surrogacy process. Just as you will ask the intended parents questions about surrogacy, the intended parents will also ask you questions about your personal goals and preferences — so be prepared for a back-and-forth discussion.
Again, you may ask, “What are the surrogacy questions I should ask to intended parents to make sure they’re the right fit for me?”
Here are some important questions to help you determine your compatibility with the intended parents:
- When are you hoping to begin the surrogacy process?
- How many embryo transfers will you attempt? How many embryos do you want to transfer at a time?
- Are you using your own sperm, egg and embryo, or will you use a donor’s?
- What are your thoughts on selective reduction and termination?
- Do you have certain legal and medical professionals in mind for this process?
- What kind of relationship are you hoping to have with me before, during and after the baby’s birth?
- What will you ask of me during this pregnancy?
- How do you plan to be involved during our surrogacy journey?
- Are you willing to get to know my partner and family during the surrogacy process?
- Is your family supportive of your surrogacy plans? How will they be involved in the process?
- What do you plan to tell your child about their surrogacy history, and what do you plan to tell them about me?
Ensuring it’s the Right Match
While a great deal of your initial conversation will be to learn more about the intended parents and their goals and preferences, getting to know the intended parents is also important in making sure that you feel comfortable and safe with them. If you are working through a surrogacy agency, the intended parents will already be pre-screened. However, if you found the intended parents independently, you will need to pay attention to certain aspects of this conversation to notice anything they mention that might put you in danger, like:
- Questioning the need for a surrogacy attorney and surrogacy contract
- Focusing on the financial aspect — for example, asking to forgo certain services to save money
- Unwillingness to talk about their surrogacy with friends or family members
- Lack of support from their partner or family
- Rushing through the conversation and not seeming interested in getting to know you as a person
While some of these can be harmless situations, they can also indicate larger issues that mean the intended parents will not be the right match for you. This can be another situation where the mediation of a surrogacy professional can be helpful. Having a professional intervene can prevent any discomfort or awkwardness you would feel if you questioned the intended parents’ motives yourself.
Overall, remember that finding the perfect intended parents is a personal journey, and only you can determine when a match is “right.” Don’t be afraid to take all the time you need to find the right match for you. Only when you do so can you pursue a positive surrogacy journey that you’ll enjoy every step of the way and look back on with pride and satisfaction.