Dear Honest Surrogate...

What do you get someone who is giving you the gift of life? To be honest, you can’t match that so don’t try! Surrogates do what they do because they have big hearts. They aren’t expecting to be showered with gifts. Since the holidays are approaching, I’ve been getting a lot of questions about what do surrogates and intended parents do for each other around the holidays. I am here to give a few ideas!

Dear Honest Surrogate: My gestational surrogate is a few months pregnant with my baby. She has had a rough pregnancy so far. Morning sickness kept her in bed most of the first trimester. Now she has a terrible cold. I want to do something special for her for the holidays. What kind of gift says: “Thank you for putting yourself through this to give me the best gift of all?” - Thankful for my surrogate

Dear Thankful: First of all, thank you for seeing that this whole surrogacy thing is not a piece of cake. She is giving you a gift greater than anything else in the world but she isn’t expecting anything from you…besides what is in her contract. Intended parents have no obligation to get their surrogates gifts during the holidays or birthdays but it is kind of you to do so and it will mean a lot to her. Since she has had such a rough pregnancy so far you could get her something to make her life easier. If she doesn’t already have housekeeping services you could get her a months worth of services for her to use when she needs them most. She might also like a massage or pedicure. You might want to ask her if any of these things are things she would use, she might not want someone in her house cleaning or maybe she doesn’t like massages…might sound weird but I am not a fan of massages. My IPs got me a gift card to a local restaurant and wrote a sweet card, I wasn’t expecting it and it meant so much to me. Just making her feel appreciated and seen will mean so much to her.

Dear Honest Surrogate: I am a gestational surrogate and my intended parents are visiting over the holidays. Our 20 week ultrasound falls around then so we decided to spend the holidays together. I can’t decide on a gift for them. I can’t spend a lot of money but I don’t want it to be lame either. - Gifting troubles

Dear Troubles: Congrats on your surrogacy pregnancy!! I bet your intended parents aren’t expecting any gifts at all, you are growing their baby for them which is the best gift you could give them. I know how you feel though. I felt the urge to get the baby I carried via surrogacy something for his birthday. All of my friends thought I was crazy for running around trying to find the perfect give for him just days after I gave birth to him. I decided on a Montana shirt and Montana children’s book since the baby doesn’t live in Montana but he has a Montana birth certificate. Every birthday since, I have sent him a new Montana shirt and book to keep him connected to his birthplace. So, an idea could be an outfit or book for the baby. You could buy a picture frame for the ultrasound photo. If you know the IPs are going to tell the baby he/she was born via a surrogate, you could get a children’s book about surrogacy, there are many to choose from! A book about surrogacy is also a great gift if the IPs have other small children. You could write them a nice card and I am sure that would be enough. IPs are so thankful to their surrogates, you don’t have to shower them with gifts other than their baby!

Don’t stress this holiday season. I’ll be about 22 weeks pregnant with my second surrogacy baby over Christmas. I was just asked to participate in a Secret Santa gift circle and I hardly have the energy to get gifts for my family this year so I said no. As surrogates, it’s hard for us to say no or to take care of ourselves, but while we are growing these tiny humans for other people, we need to take it easy.

Amber Campanelli ~ The Honest Surrogate