Bundles of Joy is proud to assist members of the LGBT community fulfill their dream of having a family. We have participated in the creation of numerous families and understand the stresses and difficulties our Intended parents face when embarking in this journey. Bundles of Joy will provide the needed egg donor and surrogate but will also guide you and your partner in every step of the way from the moment you choose your donor and surrogate until the birth of your child. We understand the changes in the LGBT legal World and works together with attorneys specializing in this changing field to ensure that our couples work according with the laws of their State. For our International couples, our attorneys are prepared to assist them until the baby has a birth certificate and a passport for their individual Countries.
1- Q. What is the difference between gestational surrogacy and traditional surrogacy?
In a gestational surrogacy the carrier (surrogate) becomes pregnant using embryos created through in vitro fertilization. This embryos are created with eggs from an egg donor and the sperm from the father(s). Therefore, there is no genetic connection between the surrogate and the baby and the Intended Parents are contractually protected. In traditional surrogacy, the embryo is created via artificial insemination. Therefore, the ovum comes directly from the surrogate, making the baby a descendant of the surrogate. Bundles of Joy does not engage in such arrangements where the baby is genetically connected to the surrogate and where the Intended Parents are not fully protected.
2- Q. How do I begin the process?
Starting your surrogacy begins with a free consultation. We want to know your experience so far and share with you what to expect in terms of your relationship with us and the surrogate and the costs you will incur. We also explain all of your options with emphasis on the current issues facing Intended Parents (for example, health insurance) and recommend solutions.
3- Q. How long does the whole surrogacy and egg donation process take?
You can expect to spend 15-18 months from the day you choose your surrogate until you take your baby(ies) home. The length of time will vary depending on how long it takes to first find the right surrogate for you, the length of both the legal and the screening processes and of the IVF treatments. Note that if the first round of embryo transfers are unsuccessful (in getting the surrogate pregnant), there will be another round of transfers which will extend the timeframe mentioned above.
4- Q. How will our relationship be with our surrogate?
You will be invited to meet your surrogate and her partner/spouse before the pre-screening starts. You are free to contact each other throughout the pregnancy and share the experience. You will decide together how you will be informed of each and every medical visit. You might want to attend those visits as well. Once again, you will decide together how much participation you will have in the pregnancy and delivery of your child. Finally, some couples and their surrogates choose to continue a friendly relationship after the baby is born.
5- Q. Can I be a parent if I’m single?
Of course! We work with intended parents of all backgrounds—single individuals, same-sex couples, and heterosexual couples. We have helped many single intended parents build families through surrogacy. In Florida, the only requirement is that you can proof that you require a surrogate in order to complete your family.
6- Q. How many embryos will I get and what happens to the remaining ones?
Your reproductive endocrinologist will choose the best two embryos for the first transfer. Any remaining embryos will be frozen for future transfers or for the future creation of a sibling. If your family is complete, you can continue storing the embryos, destroy them, donate them for research or donating them to another family. You can also move your embryos to another clinic.
7- Q. As an International couple, how many visits will I have to make to the United States?
You will have to go to your doctor’s clinic for the initial testing and for the creation of the embryos. Some parents will also want to be present to meet their surrogate and on the day of the level II ultrasound scan. The other magic time you cannot miss is at the hospital when your baby(ies) is delivered. Since when your baby(ies) will be born is uncertain (unless your surrogate’s ob-gyn plans a c-section), many Intended Parents come to the States early in the 8th month and stay until the delivery and initial visit(s) with the baby(ies)’s pediatrician as well as the completion of all of the required paperwork (birth certificates, passports, etc.)
8- Q. How long should I expect to be in the United States during and after the delivery?
We recommend International Intended Parents should stay in the US between 4-6 weeks to, the issuance of any birth certificates and the application for any visas and/or passports. This will also allow for your baby to receive the initial vacci0nations. We will guide you through this process. Depending on legal work, you may be able to go home sooner.
9- Q. If I don’t live in the United States, how will my child get a passport?
Your baby(ies) will automatically be US citizen(s) and qualify for a US passport. Besides that, once the birth certificate(s) have been issued, you can visit your consulate and arrange for a passport from your country. We partner with specific lawyers who have ample experience in the laws of assisted reproduction as well as the laws of many countries and who have relationships with immigration attorneys abroad and can direct you to professional immigration assistance.