ORGANISATIONS are calling for more women to consider becoming surrogates and share in the ‘rewarding experience’.
Kim Bradshaw, from Stamshaw in Portsmouth, is pregnant with a surrogate baby and is sharing her story to encourage more women to sign up.
In recent years, the number of babies born through surrogacy has increased in the UK from 117 in 2011 to 331 in 2015. But despite the increase, more are needed.
Mum-of-two Kim is 19 weeks pregnant after becoming a surrogate through non-profit organisation Brilliant Beginnings.
She approached the organisation last March and now, just 16 months later is almost half-way through her pregnancy.
The 35-year-old said: ‘So far the journey has been unbelievably smooth.’
There is a huge shortage of surrogates here in the UK mainly as the legal framework is not clear which raises confusion about what is legal and what isn’t.Helen Prosser
Kim decided to go for the gestational surrogacy procedure, which meant she followed her normal cycle and watched scans to see when her cervical lining would give the embryo the best chance.
Kim, along with her mother and the intended parents, went to London where the embryos were kept frozen. The fertilised egg was transferred to her womb. She added: ‘The process was very painless and quick.’
Then after 11 days, they all gathered together to do a normal pregnancy test.
Kim said: ‘I set the test up and left it for the intended mummy to wait for the definitive positive lines so they would know the news before me. Within minutes she was sharing the news. It was such a special moment to share and there were happy tears and cuddles all round.’
Already mother to two children – Olivia, seven, and Eli, three – Kim and her husband Andy enjoyed sharing their experiences and giving tips.
Kim used surrogacy agent Brilliant Beginnings, in the New Forest, to help her through the process.
And the agency’s director Helen Prosser said they were delighted for Kim and the parents-to-be. But they need more women to consider becoming surrogates.
She said: ‘Many women may consider becoming a surrogate in order to help parents complete their family but it is a huge commitment and not for everyone.
‘There is a huge shortage of surrogates here in the UK mainly as the legal framework is not clear which raises confusion about what is legal and what isn’t.
‘We do need greater awareness about surrogacy as it is legal here in the UK and also incredibly rewarding, as Kim’s story reflects.
‘It is rewarding not just for the people who hope to have a family but also for the surrogates.’
Ms Prosser added: ‘This is an exciting stage for Kim and her intended parents.
‘There are lots of plans to be made for the upcoming months as well as making sure that day-to-day life in Kim’s world run as smoothly as ever.
‘We are so proud that Kim and her family are taking all this in their stride which is down to their careful planning.’
Kim and the parents recently found out the baby is a girl.
Kim added: ‘The baby is due on December 14 and I’m sure she will be the best Christmas present ever.’
The couple, who do not want to be named, said: ‘The day we found out we were pregnant was one of the happiest of our lives.
‘Without Kim’s unconditional kindness, alongside the support of Brilliant Beginnings and our respective families, having our own child would not have been possible.
Kim has allowed us to be involved and be a part of the pregnancy so we get to experience the journey with her and as our own as well.’