I was a surrogate: here’s what people ask about having a baby for someone else
The Huffington Post has featured an interview with Brilliant Surrogate Lisa Charlwood-Green, who carried a baby for a same-sex couple in the UK. She tells Huff Post the questions she got asked most during the process and how she answered them, including:
Why did you do it?
“This is different for each surrogate I’ve met. Personally I wanted to pay it forward and help a gay couple have a family. Many surrogates love being pregnant and want to do it again, but I don’t have ‘the bug’.”
Did you worry about having a bond with the child?
“It takes a very certain person to be a surrogate. We’re quite a practical lot and I treated the pregnancy in a very practical way. I cared about the baby, but I didn’t bond with him. When I was pregnant with my son, I bonded very quickly after birth, but until that point I felt quite detached.”
How did you explain it to your kids?
“I explained there would be a seed from another person, which would go in my tummy. And my tummy would act like a plant pot for the baby to grow. Once the baby got too big, it would come out and go to the parents. They got that, quite happily. They knew the baby wasn’t physically or biologically anything to do with me.”
How did you feel when you gave birth?
“I was scared because I had an emergency C-section – I didn’t want that! I wasn’t a fan of surgery. But after I just felt really pleased for the couple and happy the baby was safe. I guess I was nosey too, I wanted to see what he looked like – I wasn’t interested in holding him, but I wanted to know what he weighed because he was predicted to be a heavy one. He was only 8 pounds (but looked much bigger!).”
How are you doing now, since giving birth?
“People are often very invested, and assume I’d go back to work feeling down about the whole experience. I only had three months off work, and I remember many people asked: “How ARE you?”, like I would burst into tears and say I’ve made a terrible mistake. I feel fine emotionally, and proud of what I have achieved.”
Are you going to spend time with the baby?
“When you give birth, that baby goes to his parents – where he’s meant to be. The amount of people I had asking me, ‘But will you have him for a couple of weeks?’ No, of course not. My job was pretty much done when I gave birth. His place is with his fathers. Why would I look after someone else’s baby?
“The parents could say they don’t want me to play a part in the baby’s life, and that’s fair enough. I do, and that’s lovely. My nickname is ‘Potty’, from the flower pot story. And my kids are known as the baby’s honorary cousins. So yes I do see him, and his family. It’s a great relationship which I hope will continue.”