The Difference Between Traditional and Gestational Surrogacy

If you’re not a surrogate veteran, you probably only know about one type of surrogacy. In fact, you may not even know that there are two vastly different types of surrogacy. Since surrogacy doesn’t really get the exposure it deserves in the media, most people have a pretty basic understanding. One of the most important pre-planning steps before applying to become a surrogate is learning the ins and outs of surrogacy. One of the first things you’ll come across is the two types of surrogacy: traditional and gestational. The difference is pretty substantial between the two, aside from the basics of conception. 

If you’re considering surrogacy or want to know more about the process or if you qualify, contact Adoption and Surrogacy Choices of Colorado. We’re here to provide you with the information, resources, and support you need for your surrogacy journey. From the qualification process, paperwork, pregnancy, and postpartum, we’re here for you. We want your surrogacy experience to be the best it can be. 

If you want to become a surrogate in Colorado, there’s a lot to learn. Surrogacy is very different from other processes like adoption. There are more requirements, a more complex process, and some strict qualifications for both surrogates and intended parents. If you’re new to surrogacy, there’s definitely a lot to learn, starting with the two types of surrogacy. So what’s the difference between traditional and gestational surrogacy? 

If you or someone you know is interested in becoming a surrogate, please call or text us at 303-670-4673 (HOPE) or visit us at Adoption and Surrogacy Choices of Colorado.

What is a Traditional Surrogacy?

Traditional surrogacy has been around forever. It’s referenced throughout history from biblical times to kings and queens; traditional surrogacy has seemingly always existed. Before the technology of IVF, traditional surrogacy was the only option for those wanting children that could not conceive their own. So what is traditional surrogacy exactly? Simply put, in a traditional surrogacy, the surrogate serves as both the egg donor and carrier. 

Intrauterine Insemination (IUI)

Traditional surrogacy uses an artificial insemination process called intrauterine insemination (IUI). This process is one of the benefits of choosing a traditional surrogacy. The procedure is less complicated than methods used in gestational surrogacy, less costly, and overall has fewer medical risks. The IUI process transfers sperm from either an intended parent or donor directly into the surrogate’s uterus. The procedure is relatively quick, taking around 15 to 20 minutes total, and only uses a speculum, catheter, and syringe. 

What is Gestational Surrogacy?

Gestational surrogacy is a somewhat new thing, with scientific breakthroughs allowing for safe IVF practices in the mid-1980s. In a gestational surrogacy, an egg and sperm donor are used to fertilize the egg before the embryo transfer into the surrogate. The eggs and sperm can come from one or both of the intended parents or other donors chosen by the intended parents. 

In Vitro Fertilization (IVF)

In vitro fertilization (IVF) is the type of artificial insemination used in gestational surrogacy. The process is more involved and can come with more medical risks compared to UIU. For IVF, both eggs and sperm from either the intended parents or a donor are required; the surrogate’s eggs cannot be used. The eggs are fertilized using IVF, and embryos are then transferred to the surrogate mother. As with IUI, the process is similar to a regular pap smear. 

Important Differences Between Gestational and Traditional Surrogacy

It may be hard to know which type of surrogacy is right for you. Ultimately, it’s up to you, what you’re comfortable with, and the agency you’re working with. Many agencies offer both gestational and traditional surrogacy; however, some may heavily suggest gestational surrogacy over traditional. Aside from the medical differences in the insemination method, there are quite a few differences that may influence your decision.

  • Surrogate Mother and Baby Relation
    This may be an obvious conclusion you’ve come to on your own but, since traditional surrogacy using IUI uses the surrogate’s eggs, the surrogate is the biological mother. Because of this, it can be harder to let go emotionally postpartum. Contrarily, the surrogate has no shared DNA with the baby in a gestational surrogacy. Because there’s no biological link, and they are merely acting as a vessel, many surrogates report an easier time postpartum.  
  • Emotional Consequences
    As we said, since the surrogate mother is genetically related to the baby, it can add to emotional stress. Surrogacy is already an emotionally taxing experience, and adding to that can complicate things further. Not every surrogate has the same experience, and some have a more challenging time mentally than others postpartum. Overall, gestational surrogates report an overall better start to finish experience compared to traditional. 
  • Availability of Intended Parents
    Families facing infertility or an inability to have biological children will often turn to surrogacy. Since an intended family is entrusting a stranger to grow their child for them, they tend to be pretty picky about the surrogates they choose. If possible, the parents will want to use their own sperm and eggs or choose donors with a specific profile. Gestational surrogacy allows the intended parents to create the optimal outcome, and that usually doesn’t involve using eggs from the surrogate. Because gestational surrogacy is more popular among intended parents, surrogates looking into traditional surrogacy may find a lack of intended parents interested. 

How to Become a Gestational Surrogate in Colorado

If you’re interested in becoming a surrogate mother in Colorado, consider your options, do your research, and contact Adoption and Surrogacy Choices of Colorado. We offer services to women considering gestational surrogacy, as well as intended parents looking for surrogates. There’s a lot that goes into surrogacy, and it can be hard to navigate. Rest assured, you are not alone. We’ll walk you through the surrogacy process, how to qualify, screening and background checks, and if surrogacy is right for you. Not everyone can be a surrogate, and the process to become one can seem more exclusive than getting into an ivy league college. If you do qualify, you become part of a unique group of people who can provide the gift of life to intended parents. 

If you are interested in learning more about your gestational surrogacy options, contact Adoption and Surrogacy Choices of Colorado by email, phone, or text: Email Us, Text us: 720-371-1099, Call us: 303-670-4673 (HOPE). If you are hoping to adopt, please contact us here.

Meet the AuthorMichelle Brugioni is a practiced, well-versed college-educated writer and avid coffee drinker. She has ten years of experience as a freelance writer and has written for an alarmingly wide range of clients and publications. She has written on topics like: life science, biopharmaceutical company acquisitions, dealing with anxiety, and creative drinking games. 

As a fearless writer and masterful researcher, each time Michelle is approached with the question, “Can you write this?” she responds confidently with, “When do you need it?”

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