It's no secret that American military wives/mothers often struggle financially and emotionally when their partners are away on deployment. The LA Times reveals that many of these young women are turning to surrogacy as a way to make some money and support their growing families while their husbands are away. In California, where surrogacy is legal, many women are being attracted to the pay off of between $20-25,000 that can be earned for a successful pregnancy.
In the eyes of surrogacy agents, military wives are the perfect candidates for surrogacy, one agent Stephanie Caballero noting, 'Military wives, they don't cry, they don't complain at the drop of a hat. They're organized. They're efficient. They handle everything when their husbands are gone. A few shots during the first few months is not going to bother them, and they don't need to be told to be polite and professional and show up on time." These women are also attractive to surrogacy companies because military wives can access additional insurance for prenatal care worth up to $10,000.
I find this so problematic. While these women are clearly making do the best they can and are choosing to be surrogates, at the same time, the physical and emotional cost of being a surrogate is extraordinarily high and no amount of money can ever really cover the cost of carrying a baby to term and then handing it over to someone else. We should really be blaming the American government for not paying soldiers enough money rather than having women resort to carrying babies for a cost in order to make ends meet at home.
Source: Carrying someone else's dream