Our journey was a long one and FSC stayed with us every step of the way. They offered help and guidance through our ups and downs and never wavered from our goal of creating a family. – FSC Parents E&K
E&K had a long journey, with many challenges along the way, including a pandemic! Throughout their journey, they learned to be patient, understanding, and persevere. Their journey was complete in May 2022, when they were blessed with a daughter who was lovingly carried by TeamFSC Surrogate Kristi.
How did you first hear about surrogacy?
I’m not sure we could pinpoint when we first heard about surrogacy. Most likely from television or in school. Growing up and coming out it’s one of those things some kids/teens/adults think about right away. We feel we were fairly well informed that we had different options of starting a family, and the option we always wanted was surrogacy.
We found FSC through our fertility clinic meeting. We took the recommendations from the clinic and began searching around our area and going into different agencies to interview and see which place was a fit for us. After talking with a few companies we felt FSC fit us the best and we began to proceed with the next steps.
How did you know that your surrogate was the one for you?
After reading through our surrogates profile we set up a time to meet virtually since she and her husband lived in a different state. During our meeting, we realized that we all shared a love for video games and that was something that sort of bonded us at the start. We loved how relaxed and go-with-the-flow they were so we said yes right away and were matched within a day or so.
How did you tell friends and family and how did they react?
We approached the subject in many different ways throughout our journey.
Before starting to look at agencies we were very open about letting family and friends know that we intended to go through the surrogacy process to have a family. It was a month or two into the process of finding a clinic and surrogacy agency that we began to share news of our decision. We shared a lot of updates at the beginning but as we had our ups and downs throughout our journey we began to share little tidbits once we felt like we had reached a milestone.
What was your relationship like with your surrogate? Was it different than you expected? What is it like now?
Our relationship I would describe as a more casual/easy-going one. We checked in with her before and after major appointments and kept each other informed with weekly check-ins, and holiday and milestone conversations. We were very respectful of each other’s time and tried not to be too pushy/needy throughout the process. I think from our initial conversation the relationship we built was pretty on par with what we expected. We intend to keep our surrogate updated on big events within our child’s life. As we are in different states we are keeping in touch via text message and social media. We hope to continue the casual relationship we built and look forward to what the future brings.
Do you have any advice for intended parents who are just starting out?
I think the biggest advice we would have is to expect the unexpected. Your journey may be a quick one or it may take you longer than expected. Find strength in knowing that you are doing this for a reason and remind yourself in the hard times that you will find success. In the toughest of times know that you have a support system there for you and keep pushing through. The joy at the end of the journey far outweighs any of the hiccups that may occur along the path.
What challenges did you face on your journey? How did you overcome them and how did FSC help?
Our journey in total took us about 5 years (disclaimer: once we matched with the surrogate that carried and delivered our child it was just about a year). Hardship is something that perhaps defined our journey, but in the end, we persevered to welcome the greatest bundle of joy we could ever hope for. We matched with our first surrogate within a few months which we thought was great. Unfortunately during the legal process, we decided to move separate ways. We overcame this with the advice of our legal counsel and the understanding of FSC to guide us to our next match. We learned and refined and went through a few more candidates before meeting another great match.
Our next hardship came in the form of creating embryos. Our goal was to use a fresh donor, but unfortunately, no embryos were created through our first attempt.
Through consults with our physician and the understanding of FSC and our surrogate, we began to look for another donor. Our next attempt started out looking like a repeat of our previous, but thankfully we were able to create a few embryos. We matched with a new surrogate and created a wonderful relationship with her and her husband while creating the previously mentioned embryos. Luck was not on our side as we lost those two embryos in unsuccessful transfers. We kept our heads up and looked to our loved ones to encourage us and FSC kept with us throughout.
Having continued our relationship with the surrogate, we created new embryos and decided to try one more time. We were successful in implantation that confirmed a pregnancy. We had a moment of relief and joy until we learned at the ultrasound that things weren’t looking as they should. It is at this time we experienced a miscarriage. This was perhaps the toughest part of our journey. We felt so close and we experienced a loss in the family at the same time. We grieved, took time to process, consulted with our loved ones, and looked to our physician once again for guidance. Not once throughout this process did FSC try to give up on us either, our case worker Ronda was there with emails/calls of support and understanding. We ultimately parted ways from our surrogate at the advice of our physician at this point and entered back into the world of matching.
Our last hardship came in the form of the worldwide pandemic. We knew matching with surrogates was tough to begin with, but the pandemic seemed to throw a wrench into the matching process. We took about six months until we reached our final match. After the long wait, we met and matched with another surrogate, and before we knew it had a transfer scheduled. From all our hardships, we learned to be patient, understanding, and to persevere. We confirmed a pregnancy on the first transfer and remained cautiously optimistic. Remaining hopeful and cautiously optimistic throughout the pregnancy that brought us our daughter is when we were the happiest. We had learned through the many ups and downs that almost nothing goes as planned and that is ok. Each step of the way we took the little wins we could, processed and grieved the setbacks, but ultimately here we are now with our newborn and couldn’t be happier.
Do you have anything else you’d like to share about your experience with FSC?
After meeting with other agencies we felt that Family Source was the best fit for us. They seemed kind, and caring, and answered any question we had. Being a younger gay couple we felt like we fit in when we met with them and decided to place our trust in them to help us start our family. Our journey was a long one and FSC stayed with us every step of the way. They offered help and guidance through our ups and downs and never wavered from our goal of creating a family. Our case manager kept us up to date and made sure things were always on the right path. She was a great asset throughout the process and we were happy that she followed us through our long journey and didn’t hand us off to another case worker. We even recommended one of our friends who were struggling to start their own family to check into using FSC. If you are thinking about starting a family, definitely give FSC a chance to help you start a family.
If you’d like to learn more about becoming a parent through surrogacy or egg donation, request a no-cost consultation with one of our Client Relations Managers today!