Preparing For Delivery as a Surrogate Mother

Whether it’s your first time delivering a surrogate baby, or you have done this before, there are many important things to remember and be aware of as you head into the big day.


Prepare Your Checklist

A checklist is a simple way to make sure you have everything you need for delivery day. There are a couple important things that you will need to pack in your hospital bag that is unique to a surrogacy delivery. These items are:

  • A copy of your pre-birth order
  • A copy of your gestational surrogacy agreement (your contract)


There are also a few things that you may have packed with the birth of your own children that are equally important, and that you must be sure you have packed. These items are:

  • Your and intended parent’s birth plan
  • Your insurance card
  • Your preferred breast pump (if applicable)
  • Cord blood collection kit (if your intended parents request this)


When it comes to the cord blood collection kit and the birth plan, your case manager will help you with obtaining these items as well as helping coordinate with your intended parents so you don’t have to worry about preparing them in the final trimester of your pregnancy. If a cord blood collection kit is a part of the birth plan, it is important to remind your nurse that it will be used before baby is born so they do not forget to collect the blood in the moments after baby arrives. You case manager will also guide you through the process of how to apply for your breast pump through your insurance and help you with picking the best option based off your needs and previous pumping/breastfeeding experience – even if you have none.


Do I Need to Contact My Hospital Before my Due Date?

While it is important that certain hospital staff obtains a copy of your pre-birth order, your contract, your intended parent’s contact information, and possibly other necessary paperwork, you do not have to worry about completing this responsibility on your own. Your case manager will contact the head social worker of your hospital and will coordinate all necessary communication before your due date. She will also coordinate all communication with the hospital staff during your active labor and after baby is born. We at GSHC will make sure all you have to focus on is having a comfortable delivery and recovery. 


What Happens If I Deliver the Surrogate Baby Early?

In the unforeseen event that your surrogate baby is born prematurely, and you don’t have all of the previously listed documents ready, and you haven’t been in contact with your hospital, we at GSHC have a plan in place. Your case manager will get in contact with your attorney as soon as you are confirmed in labor, as well as with your intended parents and the head social worker at your hospital. We will take care of everything quickly, and you will not have to worry about anything except a safe delivery and a smooth recovery.


What Can I Expect To Experience While Being in Labor with My Surrogate Baby?

While you are in active labor with your surrogate baby, the focus of everyone supporting you (your nursing team, your OBGYN, your case manager, the intended parents, your support person, and the rest of the GSHC team) is first and foremost you and baby’s health and safety. That comes before anything. After your health, our main concern here at GSHC is your comfort. Birth is such a vulnerable, delicate process and we do not take that lightly. We will be readily available to answer any and all calls, to provide whatever may be needed, and to support you through this difficult and beautiful experience. You can expect full support, safety, and comfort as you are in labor and as you birth your surrogate baby. 

It is important to know that after baby is born, he/she may be taken to the nursery right after they are born. Every hospital has a different protocol when it comes to surrogate babies, some keep the baby in the room with surrogate and intended parents, while some take baby right to the nursery for monitoring. Your GSHC case manager will be sure to communicate with your social worker before your birth to obtain the information on their specific policies and make you and intended parents aware of them. She will also be sure that your, and the intended parent’s, wishes are made very clear in the written birth plan of where baby will go and what happens with baby in the hours following birth (ex: skin to skin, breast milk/formula, etc.)


What About After Baby is Born? 

Much like birth, postpartum is a very delicate time, both physically and emotionally. While you will have your nurses there to help you go to the bathroom, check your vitals, and help you with whatever you may need done, you will also have your GSHC team to back you up. We will have whatever food brings you comfort delivered to your hospital room, we will be there to listen to your feelings and to relate to you (as we have all been surrogate mothers before), and we will share in your joy and excitement with you! 

Similarly to your delivery(ies) with your child(ren), while in the recovery room, your nursing staff will be conducting checks and fundal massages on you, to ensure you are healing properly. The social worker will also pay you a visit to ensure you understand your community resources and that you feel safe and comfortable at home.


Going Home After Baby is Born

Going home after a surrogate baby is born is a unique experience to going home after having your own babies. With your own babies, you are pushed into motherly duties while still recovering from 10 months of pregnancy and pushing a human out of your body. You also have many pediatrician appointments, as well as the stress of having many visitors over to meet baby and navigating new motherhood. Being newly postpartum from delivering a surrogate baby, everyone in your household and social circle – as well as here at GSHC – will be mainly focused on you and helping you rest and recover fully, and comfortably. You will not be running around changing diapers, feeding/burping baby, or waking through all hours of the night to soothe baby. You will simply be resting, hydrating, and taking the slow baby steps to recovering (like your first shower!) Your case manager will also be at your beck and call to answer any concerns you may have, and to help provide whatever you may need in this healing period. The best part? The only appointment you will have is your 6 week postpartum visit, given you are on the normal course of recovery. 

Another of the many perks of being newly postpartum after helping complete a family is receiving all of the beautiful pictures, videos, and updates from the new family. Seeing baby in his/her cute outfits, seeing mom(s) and/or dad(s) cuddled up with their new bundle of joy, seeing videos of surrogate baby drinking breastmilk provided by you, and hearing of his/her milestones is such a heart-warming experience, even as baby grows older, it is a feeling unlike any other and you will be filled with nothing but love and gratitude that you could be the one to make someone’s dream come true.


What Can I expect if I Decide to Pump for My Surrogate Baby?

For those of you who will pump for baby after delivery, your case worker will also guide you through this phase both in and out of the hospital. Depending on your level of pumping experience, pumping breastmilk can be a very daunting task when done alone. We will make sure you are never alone in pumping. We will send all needed materials, as well as answer all your questions and concerns revolving pumping breastmilk. We will help you if you feel your supply is not high enough, or if you feel you may have an oversupply and are experiencing discomfort or pain. We will also take you step by step with shipping breastmilk, as that can be confusing when done alone.


Through every phase of your surrogacy journey, you can depend on GSHC to fully support you. This support includes emotional, physical, and legal matters. You will never be alone in your surrogacy journey. Apply today.