Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Viva La France! Surrogate Children are Granted Legal Recognition Finally!

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Viva La France!  Surrogate Children are Granted Legal Recognition Finally!

According to news reports out of France from last week, it appears that France has finally changed their tune regarding surrogacy births overseas.  There have been many of our own clients over the years who have had to live in fear regarding the legal recognition of their children, but not any longer.

Time Magazine stated the following:

France’s highest court has granted legal recognition to surrogate children, in a major turnaround that will make their daily lives easier and could lead to greater acceptance of new forms of families.

The Cour de cassation ruled Friday that, while surrogacy will remain banned in France, children born abroad through this practice will now be legally tied to their parents and will be granted birth certificates and immediate means to prove their French citizenship…

Until now, surrogate children were deprived of any legal connection to their parents, or any civil status in France. They were considered as children born from unknown legal parents, since their foreign birth certificates weren’t recognized. One lawyer has described them as “ghosts of the republic.”

Unlike other children born abroad to a French parent, these children couldn’t get automatic ID cards or passports, or register for state health care or other services.

This exposed them to frequent problems, because many basic tasks are impossible in France without an ID or authorization from a legal parent.

Congrats to all of the parents in France who have been dealing with this issue for so long – Viva La France!!

Read more here about France legally recognizing children born via surrogacy.

Conceptual Options Surrogacy in France Ruling

Conceptual Options Surrogacy in France Ruling

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Surrogate Support & Our Surrogate Community

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Surrogate Support & Our Surrogate Community

At the end of last month, Conceptual Options was honored to show our gratitude while spending quality time with our community of surrogates.  This summer’s party was attended by all and was a huge success (see party photo below).  Children, spouses and significant others also attended, and there were gifts and prizes for everyone.

Feel free to come join us for our monthly support group meetings and our Summer and Holiday Parties that are thrown twice a year for the spectacular women and their families who mean so much to all of us here at Conceptual Options.  Join our community of surrogates that understand that they are a community of empowered women making the world a better place for families, including their own families.  Thank you!!!

Conceptual Options is a Premier Southern California Surrogacy Agency that is focused on the whole person experience for both the Intended Parents and their Surrogates.

Surrogate Community and Surrogate Support: Conceptual Options

Surrogate Community and Surrogate Support: Conceptual Options

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Being a Stay At Home Mom and Loving It as a Surrogate

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Being a Stay At Home Mom and Loving It as a Surrogate

We meet a lot of women who consider becoming a surrogate on a daily basis, but consideration goes only so far.  You need to be a dedicated individual who knows what she wants and how she wants to get there.  As with most of our Conceptual Options surrogates, many women are supplementing own income or they are using the money to allow themselves the ability to stay at home with their children.    But, being a surrogate is not for everyone, nor should it be.
In fact, one of current surrogates just let us know that she is glad she decided to become a surrogate – and she is loving the ability it gives her to be at home with her kids.

Jenny, Jessica, Tina and Staff – thanks so much for the opportunity to join your group of wonderful surrogates at Conceptual Options.  All of you there have given me the ability to stay at home and raise my kids.  I know that it is not for everyone, but it works for me and my husband.  Thank you again !  I am enjoying this entire experience beyond belief (although not so much in the morning with this morning sickness 🙂

Rachel

Need we say more?  Learn more about becoming a Super Surrogate at Conceptual Options here.

Conceptual Options Become a Super Surrogate

Conceptual Options Become a Super Surrogate

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: The Real Face of Surrogacy

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: The Real Face of Surrogacy

At Conceptual Options all of us have come across friends and family that know nothing about surrogacy.  But, we have also found out over the years that what we often come across people who could really benefit from surrogacy but were always to afraid to ask – until now.  Well, that just happened to one of our staff members last week.  She sat down with friends for dinner that she hasn’t seen in almost a year, and they got right down to business, so to speak.

A little back story on this couple, they have been trying to have a baby for over 10 years. They have tried it all from holistic medicine to IVF. Their savings is quickly dwindling, as fertility treatments can be quite expensive, and they are tired. They are over it. They just want a baby. They wanted to know if Conceptual Options could do to help.

They were ready to start today. They weren’t afraid of the cost, they understood all the medical risks .. what they were afraid of was related to all the negative stories they have been seeing the last few days about Baby Gammy. Could the surrogate decide to keep their baby? Could she prevent them from being with their child?

She told them, just as with anything in life, there are never any guarantees, however there are certain precautions they can take to ensure a safe, healthy and happy surrogacy journey. Not all surrogacy stories are negative, in fact I can list hundreds of positive stories as well.

Deciding to use a surrogate to build your family is the hardest part. Once you decide, you need to start doing your research. Find an agency that you feel comfortable with, ask yourself what type of relationship do you want with your surrogate, what type of experience are you looking for – do you want to be fully involved or do you want to take a hands off approach? And understand that the process is costly. Agency fees, surrogate compensation, psychological evaluation fee, health insurance, IVF costs, attorney fees, court fees.. they all add up. So be prepared.

Our recommendation to them was to interview three different agencies, speak to three different reproductive attorney’s and three different IVF doctors. Then go with the agency they feel most comfortable with, one that matches their style and aligns with their values.

Do your research, ask questions, be involved and be patient. Surrogacy is and can be a beautiful, life changing event for everyone. We all just need to work together to make sure it stays that way.

*Note that all parties approved of our disclosure of their story.

Conceptual Options Surrogacy Options

Conceptual Options Surrogacy Options

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: A Royal Sickness – an Update

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: A Royal Sickness – an Update

As we all know, Princess Charlotte was just born to the royal couple, Kate and William, last month.  But, Kate’s morning sickness was the original media story – for both Charlotte and George.  Instead of speculating on the gender and possible name of the new royal baby, all news outlets had been focusing on Kate’s horrendous battle with morning sickness.  Now, that the worst is behind Kate, we wanted to remind everyone about morning sickness, and how you can counter the effects to provide you a safe and healthy (and happy) pregnancy.

As was with her first pregnancy, the Duchess has once again been diagnosed with Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG). Unfortunately, this isn’t just your regular “I feel a tad nauseous” type of morning sickness, we are talking about a sickness so severe that it can cause hospitalization and even death if not properly treated.

According to the American Pregnancy Association, more than 50% of all pregnant woman experience some sort of morning sickness during their first trimester. Whereas only a very small percentage of women (1% – 2%) are diagnosed with HG.

What is the difference between your typical morning sickness and HG? Below is a chart by the American Pregnancy Association, detailing the differences:

Morning Sickness: Hyperemesis Gravidarum:
Nausea sometimes accompanied by vomiting Nausea accompanied by severe vomiting
Nausea that subsides at 12 weeks or soon after Nausea that does not subside
Vomiting that does not cause severe dehydration Vomiting that causes severe dehydration
Vomiting that allows you to keep some food down Vomiting that does not allow you to keep any food down

Additional signs and symptoms of HG include:

  • Rapid Weight loss
  • Malnutrition
  • Headaches
  • Fainting
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Low blood pressure

Why does HG and or morning sickness even happen? Although research has not nailed down the exact cause, it is believed that it may be due to a rise in hormone levels. Specifically, the rapidly rising levels of the hormones: human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) and estrogen.

What is hCG? When an egg is fertilized and attaches to the uterine wall, the placenta  starts to develop. This developing placenta then begins to release hcG. The function of this hormone is to basically ensure the production of progesterone, thereby preventing a woman’s body from having her period, which in turns helps to maintain a pregnancy.

What about estrogen? What is it and what does it do? During pregnancy, estrogen is also produced by the placenta. It’s role is to help the uterus grow, and to maintain the uterine lining, it also helps increase blood circulation and after birth helps with milk production.

The increased combination of these two hormones can throw things off in your system, producing the symptoms mentioned above. However, typical morning sickness is not harmful to you or your baby, in fact, many doctors think morning sickness is actually a good sign! Studies have found that women who have signs of morning sickness are less likely to miscarry and even have a reduced risk of preterm birth. But, not having morning sickness does not mean that you are at a higher risk of these things either, just means you lucked out!  Although typical morning sickness is not harmful to you or baby, hyperemesis gravidarum, if severe enough and left untreated, can be harmful.

How is it treated? For mild cases dietary changes, antacids and rest will do the trick. However for more severe cases, the mom-to-be will most likely be hospitalized so she can be hooked to an IV to replenish all her lost nutrients and electrolytes.

According to research,  here are some things you can do to relieve morning sickness:

  • Eat small meals throughout the day
  • Drink fluids before or after a meal, but not with meals
  • Eat soda crackers 15 minutes before getting up in the morning
  • Get plenty of rest
  • Avoid warm places since heat can add to nausea
  • Acupressure  also has been used by many to help relieve the duration and severity of the sickness.

During pregnancy, a women’s body is put through a million different physical changes.. some pleasant and some not so pleasant. Regardless, it is very important for all women to be their own advocates. If something does not feel right, please speak to your doctor right away.

Read more here about Morning Sickness and How to Treat it in a healthy way for you and baby.

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Morning Sickness

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Morning Sickness

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Kim Kardashian is Pregnant – Hold the Surrogate!

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Kim Kardashian is Pregnant – Hold the Surrogate!

For those of you who have been watching all of the media attention surrounding Kim Kardashian and her quest for a second baby, even if it involved using a surrogate – we have good news!  Kim K is pregnant.  We congratulate her and her family on the news.  And, we are happy that she and her family were willing to share their fertility struggles before the cameras.

Conceptual Options Surrogacy: Kim Kardashian is pregnant again!

Conceptual Options Surrogacy: Kim Kardashian is pregnant again!

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Kim Kardashian & Kanye West Exploring Surrogacy for Second Baby

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Kim Kardashian & Kanye West Exploring Surrogacy for Second Baby

In news today it is clear that Kim Kardashian & Kanye West are having trouble having their second child – a heartbreak for anyone no matter who you are.  But, they are considering the option of using a surrogate mother, as IVF has not yet worked for them at this point.

According to US Weekly,

There are a lot of ways to grow a family, and Kim Kardashian isn’t ruling out any of them. After unsuccessfully trying for a year to get pregnant again, the reality star is exploring other options with husband Kanye West — including surrogacy, a source reveals in the new issue of Us Weekly

“Kim has been undergoing IVF,” the insider tells Us of Kardashian, 34, who welcomed daughter North West, 23 months, in June 2013, after a dramatic, difficult delivery. “It’s causing problems with her body.”…

Indeed, as Keeping Up With the Kardashians fans saw on a recent episode, the star had to undergo a procedure to “clear something out of [her] uterus.” And on the May 31 show, she’ll reveal that an implanted embryo did not take.
Read more here about how Kim & Kanye may be going the surrogate route in order to expand their family.
Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Kim Kardashian

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Kim Kardashian

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Surrogacy & Religion

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Surrogacy & Religion

Surrogacy is a hot topic by itself, but when you add religion to the mix it’s like a blazing inferno. This is because many religions are against Surrogacy. For example, in the Catholic religion, it is generally not permitted because it is considered to be against God’s will. While in other religions, such as the Jewish religion, it is generally not considered to be against God’s will and is not shameful to talk about.

Everyone has their own religious views, and they are absolutely entitled to them. And when it comes to the topic of Surrogacy, everyone is also entitled to his or her feelings and views on it. Yet, religious beliefs and other people’s views on the subject of Surrogacy should never be the reason that a person or a family does not fulfill their dream to have a family, especially because those people are not the ones who have to live their lives feeling incomplete or as if their family is missing a piece. Additionally, those people do not consult you when they decide to have a child, and you do not scoff when they tell you that they are going to be adding to their family, so why should they be able to judge you for using a different method to have a child?

Besides, most religions are about forgiveness and family and not judging others, so don’t you think that God or Allah or another higher power would forgive a person or a family who decided to use Surrogacy to complete their family and make them whole by using Surrogacy to have a child. After all, generally speaking children in all religions are considered to be the greatest gift and ought to be cherished.  These children are the next generation who will carry on your teachings and beliefs.  Without children to carry on the beliefs of a religion, that religion would eventually die out because there would be no one to carry on its teachings.

Thus, when it comes to having a child through Surrogacy, do speak to your Rabbi, Priest, Pastor, etc. to understand what your religion feels about Surrogacy. But when it comes down to it, you are the one that has to choose whether or not to have a child using Surrogacy and that will be a decision that you personally will have to deal with for the rest of your life. Your Pastor, Priest, or Rabbi is not the one that will have to deal with that decision, you will. And remember, generally religions preach forgiveness, and if having a child through Surrogacy is what makes you or your family whole you have to believe that you with find forgiveness from your higher power.

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Surrogacy & Religion

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Surrogacy & Religion

 

 

Conceptual Options Surrogacy Update: In the Defense of Surrogacy Part II

Conceptual Options Surrogacy Update: In the Defense of Surrogacy Part II

Last week we posted Perez Hilton’s announcement on the birth of his second child via surrogacy, and how he felt that surrogacy should be legalized all over the country.   So, today, we wanted to take it a step further and post some thoughts written by one of our awesome employees here at Conceptual Options.

There are those that say that Surrogacy is not only morally wrong, but it should be outlawed because it exploits women, specifically women that are Surrogates. They say that Surrogates are not being treated as people, but as “breeders” or “wombs for sale.” In essence, they are saying that Surrogates are being exploited for their bodies.

However, what these critics fail to realize is that Surrogacy is about helping someone have the child(ren) that they always wanted and were unable to have on their own. Surrogates are not being exploited for their wombs, quite the opposite actually. These women are giving these infertile people the gift of life, the family that they have always wanted and could never have.

Of course, these critics do not see it that way, because they are being paternalistic and believe that women who want to become Surrogates do not understand the gravity of their actions and need to be “protected” from being used. If this were a third world country that argument might have merit, but here in the United States Surrogates are not destitute women doing anything they can to get by; in the United States Surrogates are smart, caring mothers who want to help people or couples who are unable to have children of their own experience the joy and unconditional love of a child.

And yes, there have been negative aspects to Surrogacy in the United States, but that is a small minority of experiences far outweighed by all of the good that Surrogacy and the women who are Surrogates have brought about. But all these critics want to talk about is the small minority, the negative, instead of looking at any of the positive aspects of Surrogacy.

We should be championing the heartening aspects of Surrogacy, giving the same if not more weight to all of the good that Surrogacy and Surrogates have done. Lets think of those now…Think of all of the children and families that have been created through the help of Surrogate mothers. Think of all of the dreams that have come true because a family is finally complete. Think of all the heartbreak and heartache that has been eased because a Surrogate helped the ultimate dream come true, a child. Think of the swell of unconditional love that a parent feels upon first meeting their child. Think of the wholeness that a child brings to a family. For some families, these thoughts would not be a reality without a Surrogate.

We hope you enjoy.

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News - Defense of Surrogacy

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News – Defense of Surrogacy

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Perez Hilton & the Defense of Surrogacy

Conceptual Options Surrogacy News: Perez Hilton & the Defense of Surrogacy

Perez Hilton, celebrity blogger, is certainly not the first celebrity to have his child via surrogacy; but, this week’s announcement of the birth of his daughter, Mia Alma, brought him front and center to the defense of surrogacy.  We applaud his decision to make certain that those against surrogacy hear his voice.

According to Perez Hilton,

This is what I’ve dreamed of my whole life.

This dream of being a parent is something that many Americans share. Gay AND straight Americans both use surrogacy to start or add to their families. Yet, in many states, surrogacy is illegal.

As the Supreme Court is ready to make their landmark decision on same-sex marriage, I feel the need to get political and urge all politicians to please make surrogacy legal nationwide.

The dream I’m living is one that everyone should be able to live!

Having said that, my brain is mush right now. I am blissfully afflicted with baby brain and so relieved that my soul, Mia Alma, is here.

My son was born 4 weeks prematurely in 2013. So for the last month I’ve been living on edge and filled with a lot of anxiety.

That anxiety has not completely gone away, but my heart has been filled with so much more love!

Love is what matters most!

Well, said Perez!!

Conceptual Options & the Defense of Surrogacy

Conceptual Options & the Defense of Surrogacy