In the class I teach at American River College we discuss several things like Heterosexism, Homophobia, Straight Privilege, etc. So when a friend on Facebook asked me why I'm not a Surrogate for straight couples it got me thinking. . . .
Like I've stated in other posts before (Q&A), I've known I was going to be a Surrogate since High School and even back then I knew it would be for a gay couple. I don't think my Uterus is Heterophobic . . . it carried Ruby, Preston and Sawyer just fine . . . WAIT! HOLD ON . . . it actually kicked them out weeks early but carried the twins 3 weeks over Full Term for twins . . . hmmmmm.
I have thought of this before, you have to when you are filling out your Surrogacy Application. They ask you who you want to be matched with . . . Straight? Gay? Lesbian? Single? Couple? International (not living in the U.S.)? Interracial? The only ones I didn't mark were Straight (both times) and International (second time) . . . I can't remember if I marked Single.
My first set of IPs, George and Sanj were Gay, Married, and Interracial . . . they are Canadian but lived only 3 hours away from me in California. My Current IPs are Gay and live in the United States.
Part of my reasoning with selecting Gay Parents Only is I feel that there are already not too many women able to become a Surrogate and of them, only a select few may chose Gay vs Straight. So, I feel like the Straight Couples I don't help, will eventually get that help, and possibly quicker than their Gay Counterparts.
Another thing, and I've mentioned it before, I consider my Surrogacy for Gay Men my own Uterine Activism. I belong to HRC, made donations to organizations fighting Prop 8 (and years ago Prop 22) and this is another thing I can do to let society and my own kids know that I SUPPORT GAY FAMILIES. I belong to several groups on Facebook about this very thing and if I can't donate the Millions of Dollars I'd love to donate to my causes . . . I can put my Uterus where my mouth is.
I do have a few fears of carrying for Straight Couples . . . I'm not sure I would want to deal of any feelings of Jealousy that may come up, call it Uterine Envy, whatever, but I'm a woman and I know if I couldn't carry Rick's children, I may feel some weird feelings about the woman who was carrying our child. Sure, some of those feelings would be joy about being a parent . . . but to see him rubbing some other woman's belly . . . might be a bit much. I knew for sure that Sanj wasn't going to form some bond with me and leave George, I wasn't his type, at all (even though I have an amazing personality and am wildly attractive- LOL). Now, maybe I've seen Juno one to many times but that's just a fear I have. I know there are a lot of Surrogates (some that I know and follow my blog) that have had no issues with this but it is a thought that I have and when you are going into Surrogacy- the last thing you need is any reservations.
The second time around I didn't want an International Couple (who didn't live in the United States) because the best part of the Surrogacy for me is the relationship I form with my IPs. I really got spoiled with George and Sanj . . . seeing them monthly, having them able to come to appointments, ultrasounds and still being able to see the girls every few months. I think it would be much harder for that to happen (and expensive) if I chose an International Couple. Sure, there's iChat, Skype and the like but I'd prefer my IPs to be able to show up to some appointments and know for sure they could make it to the birth within a few hours. That's just me.
I think that as a Surrogate, you need to think of all of these options and what your feelings truly are. You want to have a great match and there is so much more you'll need to agree on besides these things . . . but even if you have a small doubt about your ability to work with someone because of gender, race, sexual orientation, etc. you need to choose what you feel comfortable with. It can be a hard situation to be in, so you want to start out feeling 100% about what you write on your application. You need to be completely honest. I know for me, if I marked International and got the profile of a couple that looks great on paper (has similar thoughts as I do on how the journey will go) I may say Yes because I want to help them out and I feel bad wondering how much longer they'd have to wait for a Surrogate if I said No . . . instead of going with my gut feeling that I want a couple I can see several times throughout the process. I may be matched with them and they'd be great but I'd have this "I thought so feeling" if the journey went how I thought it would go with an International Couple. Luckily for the IPs out there that don't fit my preferences, there are other Surrogates out there that want to work with a Straight or International Couple. One of my surro-friends picked a straight International Couple so it would be completely different than her previous 2 journey's with a Single Gay Man. I guess it's like any relationship . . . there is someone out there for everyone!
Oh, and I'm not sure exactly how to classify my Uterus . . . not sure it would fit the description of Heterophobic but it definitely has some prejudices regarding Straight Couples.