These testimonies were sent in through our Share your surrogacy or eggsploitation story page. This provides a space for women to share their experiences anonymously and in their own words.
Anonymous surrogate mother
I was an altruistic surrogate a few years ago and was abandoned by the intended parents (IPs). We were really close before and I allowed them to get close to my children. My UK surrogacy agency instilled in me that I had to be close friends with the IPs to reduce the risk of the arrangement breaking down. I regret this now, I only hope my children aren’t feeling too much of a loss from being used by the IPs.
During my 13-year career as a midwife I witnessed many negative consequences of surrogacy for women.
The first time I encountered a surrogate mother was when I was caring for her when she was unwell in the high dependency unit. She had been commissioned by two gay men to carry a baby for them. It was her egg. There was a vast age gap between the two men and one of them died during the pregnancy. The younger one no longer wanted the baby. This young mother was then left to bring up the baby by herself. She was vulnerable, poor, and had previously been a victim of domestic abuse.
I have also been involved in the care of a young woman who was carrying a baby for a heterosexual couple who divorced. It was their egg and sperm. They no longer wanted the child. She was bullied into a termination at 22 weeks gestation.
Another horrifying story was of a mother of three children in her 30s who discovered she had a terminal condition and had to terminate the pregnancy at 20 weeks. She later died leaving three children. The surrogacy did not cause the condition but it hastened her death.
There are many other stories of trauma which I cannot share due to them being identifiable.
In my experience it is only poor and vulnerable women who choose to become surrogates. Wealthy, educated women never choose to become surrogates. If it’s only poor women, how can it truly be a choice? It is exploitation.
In the UK we are not meant to have commercial surrogacy but it is evident that we do. Women are given vast sums of money as “expenses”. When they are using their own eggs, it can only be described as human trafficking.
I have also cared for women after “successful” surrogacies. These women feel immense loss and sadness after giving birth and handing over the child. Even if it’s not their genetics the mother-foetal dyad is still powerful. Women are not microwaves. We tell pregnant women to bond with their babies in utero and to talk to them to help brain development. The babies bond with the mother as they grow. Then they are ripped away at birth. Some never see them again after the first day. It is barbaric.
Share your story
We believe that there are many women who are suffering in silence after having an unhappy, damaging or traumatic experience of ‘donating’ their eggs or being a ‘surrogate’ mother for the benefit of others. If this has happened to you and you’d like to share your story anonymously, please see our Share your surrogacy or eggsploitation story page.
- I was an altruistic surrogate and am now against ALL surrogacy
- My surrogacy story: I was lied to, manipulated and exposed to cruel behaviours by public institutions and people I thought I could trust
- Women as “bags, pouches, pots or saucepans”: A review of ‘Towards the Abolition of Surrogate Motherhood’