Becoming a Surrogate Mother – Tips to Juggle Working Full Time
Before making your final decision to become a surrogate mother, you’ll want to think about the impact it will have on your employment. If you work full time, any pregnancy is going to change how you do your job. When you’re a surrogate, you have even more things to take into consideration. There are more factors to keep in mind, including the emotions of carrying a baby for someone else, time off for appointments, and the emotional rollercoaster of going through embryo transfers.
But with a little bit of planning, working full time can fit right in with your pregnancy. The important thing is that you take care of yourself throughout the process. Use the tips here to prepare for pregnancy, including the right time to tell everyone at work that you’re pregnant!
When to tell your employer
Your employer and HR will need to know about your pregnancy. Some surrogates talk to their boss prior to pregnancy while others wait until they’re twelve weeks pregnant before sharing the news. The choice is entirely individual and will come down to what type of a working relationship you have.
When you let your employer know, they’ll need to discuss benefits and insurance with you. It’s important to note that the FMLA (Family Medical Leave Act) may not apply to surrogacy as the baby is not biologically related to you. Time off will vary from one employer to the next and be dependent on your own job situation. So will paid time off – not all employees will provide you with this benefit. Consider accruing time so that you can take enough time off when you need it or after the birth.
Depending on where you live, state laws vary about disclosing the details of your pregnancy unless you choose. Most surrogates find that it’s better to be upfront with your boss and HR about your surrogacy. This will make it easier for you to ask for time off for multiple appointments and support if you have to go through more than one embryo transfer.
When to tell your coworkers
You’ll be able to hide your pregnancy for a while, but eventually your coworkers are going to notice your baby bump. When you tell them is up to you – before you start showing or when no one can help but notice. What you tell them about your pregnancy is also up to you.
The concept of surrogacy is still a relatively new one. While everyone has heard of surrogacy, a lot of people don’t know someone who has gone through the process of being a surrogate mother. This is a great opportunity for you to help raise awareness and educate people if you choose! If you decide to be open about being a surrogate, you can expect there to be both positive and negative opinions among your coworkers. There will be a wide variety of questions and reactions, all the way from how you got pregnant to how much money you’re making. You can answer as fully as feels comfortable or choose to give short, polite answers. How you respond will depend on your own individual comfort zone and how much you’re willing to share.
If you’re employed in a good work environment, telling your coworkers about your surrogacy can be a great source of support. You’ll be around people who can listen when you’re going through the hormonal ups and downs. They can also be supportive when you need to talk about the emotions of carrying a baby for someone else.
As you’re going through the process of embryo transfer, you may have to take time off work for appointments, you may be feeling anxious and emotional, hoping that you’ll conceive. You’ll be taking hormone medications that can affect your moods. If you have vacation or accrued time, this can be a good time to take a couple of days off and deal with how you’re feeling. If you haven’t already, this is a good time to confide in your employer or manager so they’re aware of what’s going on.
Navigating the early days of pregnancy
Have a plan in place for the first three months of pregnancy when you’re most likely to feel nauseated and unwell. After all, this pregnancy is like any other and comes with the same physical and emotional feelings during the first few weeks.
If you’re feeling stressed and unwell, clear your calendar as much as you can, postponing tasks and assignments that you can do later when you’re feeling better. These early days are a time to focus on you and getting through the first trimester. Make time to relax throughout the day and fit in a bit of light exercise when you can. In the evening, make time for your family. It’s okay to let the laundry wait for another day. Or ask a family member to help with housekeeping so you don’t overdo it.
Take enough time off after birth
Plan on taking at least two weeks off to rest after giving birth. Take even longer if your job is a physical one. Your body needs time to heal, so do your emotions. Simple Surrogacy offers a retreat after giving birth for you to take some time for yourself after giving such an incredible gift to the intended parents! There are a lot of feelings you’ll be going through. You’ve just spent nine months carrying a child and you’ve done an amazing thing by helping another couple become a family! Now it’s time to take a little time for yourself as you begin your next chapter.
Preparing for surrogacy
Now that you know the logistics of planning a surrogate pregnancy around full time employment you can make plans ahead of time. Many surrogates continue to work full time right up until the birth without any difficulty. Talk to your employer and coworkers about the surrogacy process and the wonderful journey that you’ve decided to take in helping build a family.