If you are a woman who wants to be a gestational carrier or traditional surrogate independently, without the help of an agency, then you need to really consider what you are getting yourself into.

Surrogacy is a life changing endeavor and as great as it sounds in theory, in practice it’s a huge undertaking. Looking into ‘independent’ surrogacy situations is most common among those who are finding it difficult to raise the full amount of funds needed and therefore will consider cutting corners. Women who are compelled to help couples and individuals sometimes find themselves compromising their beliefs out of the goodness of their hearts. Below are 14 common mistakes to avoid. Its so important to be true to own ideals…that is one of the best gifts you can give to your Intended Parent(s) and to yourself!

Giving out personal information, especially before a contract is signed, such as social security numbers and release of medical information to anyone but the attorney, psychologist or clinic.

Not having a face to face meeting before any contracts are signed.

Not having your own legal representation when reviewing your surrogacy contract.

Being ‘talked into’ agreeing to issues that are fundamentally against your personal ethics/religion or life style i.e. abortion, selective reduction, working with IP’s that you don’t feel comfortable with, etc.

Not insisting that all compensation, per the contract, be deposited into an escrow account before the first transfer.

Agreeing to at home inseminations (IUI)

Going without term Life Insurance of at least $250,000 (or any insurance policy for that matter).

Cutting out benefits such as lost wages, maternity clothing allowance, c-section reimbursements and child care, etc. because you don’t think you will ever need them.

Thinking that it’s OK to use federal or state funded medical insurance for a surrogate pregnancy.

Thinking that the surrogacy process will be fast and easy.

Excerpts from Sharon Lamothe