Telling Him How He Came to Be

I’m not shy when it comes to talking about surrogacy and our experience, the ins and outs, etc. as two of my coworkers could attest after a recent trip.  It’s not like I have “We used a surrogate” tattooed across my forehead or anything, but I don’t see any reason not to talk about it if asked or it comes up.  It’s a part of my family’s history.

We’ve been asked a few times if we will tell Daniel and what we will tell him about how he came to be.  Earlier this week, Amy Blumenfeld wrote about this very thing in the New York Times’ Motherlode blog: Whose Belly Did I Come From.

I really liked her analogy of baking and faulty ovens.  I haven’t given much thought to what we will tell Daniel when he’s old enough, but we will tell him.  He doesn’t know yet, and at 2, I don’t think he’s ready to know.  We don’t show him pictures of F and tell him who she is and that he didn’t grow in my tummy.  But at what age should we tell him?  I don’t want it to be some After School Special or Very Special Episode experience.  I want our explanation of it to be natural and not a big deal.

But maybe we should be talking about it now so that it is something he has always known before he even realizes what it means. How old is too old to prevent shock and possibly fear on his part? 5?

While I would never keep this information from him, I don’t have the option of not telling him.  There are no pictures of me pregnant.  I didn’t fake pregnancy.  Too many people know we used surrogacy for it not to be a risk that he would hear it from someone else.

For those of you who used fertility drugs, IUI or IVF to have children, will you tell your children how they came to be?  We talk a lot in the IF community about speaking up; does that include our children?