Surrogacy is a type of assisted parenting, in which a surrogate mother gives birth to a child for a couple who, for many reasons, cannot have children. There are two forms of surrogacy:
- Traditional surrogacy – where the surrogate mother’s egg is used for conception
- Gestational surrogacy – reproductive material parents are used, with the help of in vitro fertilization
Surrogacy is not a new phenomenon, and some forms of this procedure can be found in ancient civilizations. For example, in ancient Rome, there was a practice of “ventrem locare”, which resembled today’s surrogacy. It meant that a man who had a woman who had no fertility problems could temporarily “hand her over” to another man whose wife was infertile or had stillborn children. Of course, the difference from today’s surrogacy is that then it was performed naturally, while today, with the help of advanced medical technologies, it is performed through in vitro fertilization of surrogate mothers.