In the last year, the United States has seen a surge in childbearing among mothers.
And that’s despite the fact that many mothers are reluctant to give birth at all.
In 2016, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that 40 percent of American mothers said they would rather not have a child.
And for many women, that’s not just a matter of convenience.
“If a woman is not willing to have a baby, I don’t want to be her mother,” said Rani Annana, a nurse practitioner at the Raniannana Health Center in Orange, California.
“She can’t just stay home with the kids.
It doesn’t make any sense.”
The mother of three is one of the country’s most visible surrogates.
The center hosts surrogacy clinics in the San Francisco Bay Area and in other cities, where women and men of all ages can seek out surrogate mothers for adoption.
While it is still not legal to have surrogacy, it’s not difficult to do.
“I don’t have a lot of experience, but I know what to look for and what to expect,” said Trisha Vang, a 38-year-old mother of two who works at a tech company in Seattle.
“My first step is just to ask, ‘Can you do me a favor?
Can you give me a second chance?’
And it’s a good start.”
The goal is to help women who have been unable to get pregnant through IVF or surrogacy because they were too poor to afford the medical services.
If they don’t succeed, Vang said, they can “just go to the hospital.”
The most common way to get a surrogate is to adopt a child, which is not technically illegal.
“The most common [adoption] procedure is just a referral to a surrogate, and that’s what they do for about 20 percent of the women,” said Sarah Anderson, the program director at the Center for Reproductive Rights.
Anderson said she and other surrogacy experts have heard stories of women who are able to get babies with a single visit to the center.
“It’s been a little frustrating for me,” Anderson said, “but I know the woman is going to get the best outcome for her.”
The Centers for Developmental Disabilities (CDD), which is funded by Medicaid and works with the public to promote adoption, offers a free fertility test, free ultrasound and referral to other clinics for adoption referrals.
For those who want to try it, there are other options, including IVF and adoption.
For many, it comes down to the cost.
“We’ve been trying to make it affordable for women who aren’t able to afford it, so we’re just doing what we can,” Anderson told Business Insider.
“There’s nothing out there that we know that will really give us an accurate answer as to what we’re really looking at, but we can make it as affordable as we can.”
To qualify for adoption, an adoptee must be able to pay for at least $300 per month for the surrogacy clinic and $300 for the adoption fee, and can only get the surrogate if they can get a birth certificate from their health care provider.
The clinic also has to pay the adoption costs, but that doesn’t necessarily have to be covered by Medicaid.
Some couples, like Vang and Anderson, are able buy their surrogates from adoption agencies for less than the adoption fees, and then the agency provides the surrogate with an education and counseling session.
In some cases, there is a waiting period before the woman can be approved for adoption and surrogacy.
And some agencies charge significantly more for surrogacy services than they should.
Anderson and Vang say they are not surprised to see a woman who has a financial incentive to get rid of her child.
“In some cases the woman doesn’t have money,” Anderson explained.
“And that’s where we’re at.”
The problem with this is that adoption agencies often do not have the capacity to find surrogates who are ready for adoption to meet their clients’ needs, said Vang.
In other cases, agencies have a hard time meeting demand and are reluctant or unable to adopt new babies.
“Adoption agencies don’t know how to work with women,” Vang told Business Wire.
“They’re not equipped to handle the surrogates and their needs.”
“It is absolutely the case that women who get pregnant are not getting a fair shake,” said Karen Ritter, a clinical professor of family law at the University of Texas School of Law.
“That is, they’re not getting the resources that they need to have an equal opportunity to have children.”
Ritter is an expert on the subject of child support, and she is one who agrees that surrogacy can be a viable option for many families.
“This is a very unique and complex issue that we’re seeing in the United State right now,” Ritter told Business WI.
“Particularly in light of the Supreme Court