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surrogacy Archives - Blog - Empowered IVF

Why I Felt Oddly Proud & Lucky When I Used IVF to Build my Family

Touch of loveWhen I used IVF to build my family I felt oddly proud and lucky; proud that while having a baby was so easy (and fun) for most others, I was willing to endure the needles, blood draws and stirrups to have a baby if I had to; proud that I would not (could not) give up until I did; lucky that although I did not have insurance coverage for IVF, I was able to find a way to pay for 5 IVFs (believe me, it was not easy); and lucky that I had (and still have) a husband who felt with every cell in his body believed that any challenge we faced in life was a challenge we would face together.

In fact, more than 18 years later I still feel so proud that I talk about how I had my children with pretty much anyone who will listen, although I am careful to ensure that my disclosures are appropriate in terms audience, time and place. Often this has led to an opportunity to help my social companion, his or her family member, friend or co-worker.  Read More

Empowered IVF™’s Rhonda Levy Featured Blogger at Fertility Authority

We are pleased to announce Rhonda Levy is a featured blogger at Fertility Authority. Her blog, Own the Process with Empowered IVF™, is now live and the first post “5 Vitally Important Things to Know About Using a U.S. Surrogate” is available here.

“Gay Surrogacy” Helps Gay Men Satisfy Their Desire For a Child With a Genetic Link

iStock_000024946993_ExtraSmall (1)When a gay couple or a single gay man turns to a gestational carrier and egg donor to form a family via a process that has become known as “gay surrogacy“, they are coming from a place that is dramatically different from that of straight couples who might also turn to third parties for help with reproduction. Typically, the straight couple has experienced a long and heartbreaking struggle to conceive, first in the bedroom and then at a fertility clinic where they hoped to be able to use the woman’s own eggs and uterus.  They have found themselves in “the land of the infertile”, a place they never wanted to be. Their journey has been long, painful and filled with a series of crushing disappointments.  If they have decided to create their baby with the eggs and/or uterus of another women, they have first been through a difficult internal process that generally includes grieving over their need to rely on a third party.  The gestational carrier and/or egg donor represent the only way left for them to have a baby and, once they turn the corner to acceptance, they feel grateful for the women whose generous sacrifices ensure that the option exists. Read More

Does Your Surrogacy Agency Conduct a Home Visit As Part of Its Screening Process?

Friend touching pregnant bellyOne thing to think about when selecting a surrogacy agency is whether, as part of its screening process, the agency pays a visit to the home of a potential surrogate, at a time when her family, and any others living there, are also present.  Some agencies do not conduct home visits as part of their screening process. In fact, some never have a physical meeting with their surrogates before matching them with Intended Parents, and interact with them and others in their lives by phone or Skype.  Some agencies do meet with their surrogates and her husband or partner face-to-face prior to matching them, but the meetings take place in the agency’s office rather than in the surrogates’ homes.  Unfortunately, some surrogacy agencies never speak with their surrogates as part of their screening process, and rely exclusively on applications that have been submitted online.

The purpose of a home visit is to reassure Intended Parents that the surrogate, who will be carrying their baby in her residence, lives in a home and in a neighbourhood that is clean, safe and stable.  The home visit also gives the surrogate’s family, who will experience the surrogacy together with her, a chance to ask questions, in person, of a professional with deep knowledge of the process. Read More

Welcome to Empowered IVF™

On February 6th, 1996, the embryos that became our beautiful fraternal twin sons, Max and Lorne, were transferred into my uterus. Had you predicted on that life altering day that eighteen years later I would be launching Empowered IVF™, I would have looked at you like you were insane. After four failed IVF cycles, the only thing on my mind that day was hope.

But after eighteen euphoric (and exhausting) months of motherhood, my mind began to fill with new thoughts, thoughts of how I might be able to help other couples facing infertility. At first it was just a spark, but the the spark eventually grew into a fire, and today that fire is best described as a raging passion. In 1998, I began to work as an Infertility Consultant. With each phone call or email from a joyful client expressing thanks for the guidance that helped them achieve a desperately longed for pregnancy, I became increasingly hooked. I had never before felt such fulfillment and gratification, nor had I ever provided a service that made such a profoundly positive difference in the personal lives of others. It was addictive and I was in it for life! Read More

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