If you are a surrogate mother or an intended parent, the birthing customs mentioned below is incredibly interesting. Just know that Shared Conception is here to ensure the safe delivery of your baby! Let’s take a quick trip around the world.


The Netherlands

Many pregnant women in Holland do not have regular visits to an obstetrician, but are seen by a midwife practice. Doctors and Obstetricians only intervene in high-risk pregnancies or if there are complications during delivery. It is a common choice of Dutch women to decide whether they deliver at home or in a hospital. Surprisingly, most women decide to deliver at home. In fact, all expectant mothers in Holland are required to pick up a kraampakket, a maternity package that includes all of the medical supplies necessary for a home birth. If the delivery is not at home, the midwife checks on the progress of labor at home and then determine whether or not it is time to go to the hospital.

Then Dutch have a unique system of maternity home care called kraamhulp. For seven days after birth to a newborn, a nurse comes to the home, a benefit covered by insurance. She provides medical care, but also helps with the cooking, cleaning, and instructions for the new parents in basic parenting skills.


Japanese women deliver in hospitals, but it’s not very common to have the father in the room. Fathers are required to have taken prenatal classes with the mother-to-be if they want to be a part of labor and delivery. But, if a cesarean is performed, they must go to the waiting room. Interestingly, hospital stays in Japan are longer than in the U.S.; mothers stay a minimum of a five-days for a vaginal birth and 10 days for a cesarean.

Much like the local custom in the Netherlands, in Japan, mother and baby often stay at the mother’s parents’ home for a month after birth. It is also a tradition that new mothers’ stay in bed with their baby for 21 days. This is a time when friends may visit to see the new baby and join the family in eating the traditional cuisine of osekihan (red rice with red beans).


The rate of cesareans in this South American Country is 40 percent, according to the International Cesarean Awareness Network. The rate is even higher in private hospitals. There is speculation that many doctors prefer this procedure in order to receive higher payments from insurance. In Brazil, the doctor-patient relationship is known to be very strong – instead of prenatal classes, women receive most of their information about childbirth from their doctor. With that said, if a woman’s doctor is advocating a c-section, she may well be swayed by his opinion.

It’s always interesting to see how other countries handle childbirth however, Shared Conception is wholly focused on our intended parents and surrogates….and their childbirth experience. If you are thinking about becoming a surrogate or you are an intended parent, call us! We are happy to talk with you.