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Surrogacy Essay: International Mothers and Pregnancy Outsourcing

surrogacy-essayCommercial surrogacy is banned by the law in many countries, Germany, United Kingdom, France and Spain being among them. However, when it comes to places, where surrogate mothers are available in abundance, India is the heart of the industry. Every year, near 12 000 foreigners come here to “rent a womb”, a lot of them from the United Kingdom. The country, where race, sex and class supremacy are the cornerstones of the surrogate industry, adds to its budget over $1bn annually.


Usually, stigma isn’t the issue for the companies that outsource pregnancy to poor females in need; however, desperate women face the difficulties that change their lives for good. Many choose to leave home while carrying the baby since surrogate pregnancy isn’t a respectable way to increase the budget, especially when the woman comes from a rural India.

The average payment for the “womb rent service” is £4 500, which is a huge sum in a country, where the monthly income hardly reaches $215, while the fifth of the nation lives below the poverty line. At the same time, the clinics tend to earn near £18 000 from their clients. In India, it costs five times less to bring home a surrogate baby than in the United States. But while surrogate moms usually come from poor families, the eggs are selected from ladies up to the age of 25, who are healthy and educated. Every female is provided with detailed diet requirements, as well as being monitored to make sure they take medication and live a healthy and clean life. There’s a “residential colony” built with the funds given by a range of fertility clinics. Up to 10 pregnant ladies can live in the colony during the pregnancy course.

Those, who are involved in the business, tell it’s a common thing to plant embryos in more than two females, as well as perform abortions in case more than one lady gets pregnant. In case several embryos are successfully implanted in one female and the so-called multiple pregnancy occurs, the abortion is being performed.

Because of human rights issues Indian government bans the surrogacy services all over the country. Probably the reason lies in the fact that the babies aren’t treated properly. For instance, some of the babies born through surrogacy get hurt by their commissioning parents, as well as left in the country with the birth mom. Some years ago, an Australian couple made a decision to leave one of the twins with the surrogate mom since they couldn’t afford to have two kids.

When the question is about the egg donation, the procedure is performed obviously by an anonymous donor. Parents are free to provide their preferences like hair color or height, but all the rest will be done by the clinics. The surrogate mother won’t know the recipient of the eggs, while the clients of the clinic won’t know whose eggs they accept. One can choose the surrogate from the catalog, as well as pay for removing women from home for the pregnancy period.

The representatives of the clinics say they make sure to avoid the surrogates forming bonds with the little one. In order to achieve that, they give them drugs that stop lactation. The woman won’t produce milk and never be shown to the baby.

Even though the owners of the clinics claim they hire middle and upper class girls only, that’s a lie. According to the Stop Surrogacy Now research, it’s the poorest females that come from the lowest castes, who allow to rent their wombs.


  1. Vossmeyer M. Celeste Schejbal, “What Money Cannot Buy: Commercial Surrogacy and The Doctrine of Illegal Contracts” 32 Saint Louis University Law Journal 1171 (1988).
  2. Schwartz, Lita L, Alternatives to Infertility: Is Surrogacy the Answer? 1991, 200p. Brunner-Mazel.
  3. Richardson, Herbert ed., On the Problem of Surrogate Parenthood: Analyzing the Baby M Case, 1987. 144p. Edwin Mellen Press.
  4. Helena Ragone, Surrogate Motherhood: Conception in the heart 194 (1994).
  5. Vonk M.J. and K. Boele-Woeki, “Surrogacy and Same - Sex Couples in the Netherlands”, in Legal Recognition of Same-Sex Relationships in Europe. National, Cross-border and European Perspectives (ed. K. Boele-Woelki and A. Fuchs), 2nd ed., Cambridge, Antwerp, Portland, Intersentia, 2012.
  6. Andrea Boggio, Italy Enacts New Law on Medically Assisted Reproduction, 20
  7. OXFORD J.HUM.REPROD., 1153 (2005).
  8. Kennell and McGrath (2002) Starting the process of mother-infant bonding. Acta Paediatrica. 94(6):775-7.

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