Infertility affects approximately one in five couples in the US, according to the CDC.
So, when one woman was offered the chance to help out a couple who could not conceive naturally, she jumped at the opportunity to carry their baby.
Samantha Matthews - who is already a biological mother to son Canyon, five, and daughter Ember, four - agreed to become a surrogate for the pair after they reached out to her on Instagram last year.
The surrogate baby’s parents, who Mathews did not name for privacy reasons, contacted her in July 2021 to carry their baby via in vitro fertilisation (IVF) transfer after suffering from several failed attempts to have a natural pregnancy.
“My husband and I are always up for an adventure, and this was a rewarding one,” the mother of two told The Post after giving birth to the couple’s healthy boy on 27 July.
Being a first-time gestational surrogate for the strangers she met on the social media platform, the Midwestern native did not supply her eggs for the Manhattan-based couple, and instead carried and delivered their baby for the pair.
Samantha, 31, previously explained in a video that her choice to be a surrogate stemmed from her ‘love’ of pregnancy, and ‘oddly enough, labour’.
“I decided, ‘Let’s do this for somebody else',” she told her followers of her initial agreement with a different couple whom she met on Facebook in October 2020.
After completing the paperwork and starting IVF medication, ‘something crazy happened’.
“The intended mother got pregnant naturally, and last September they welcomed their baby girl,” Samantha admitted of the ‘crazy turn’ of events.
After agreeing to carry the Instagram couple’s baby and being flown out to New York in November 2021 to have the embryo transferred to her uterus, Samantha was remunerated around $40,000 by the couple.
However, despite ‘praying’ to God on whether ‘we should do this’, Samantha still made an effort to emotionally remove herself from the baby that she grew for 39 weeks in her body.
She said to the publication: “Every step of the way I kept reminding myself, ‘This is not my baby, this is for [the couple]'.
“They get to celebrate those milestones, and we’re celebrating baby’s life for them,’ ” she said.
The embryo was successfully implanted after just the first try - which is amazing when you look at the 32 percent success rate for women under 35 years old undergoing IVF, according to the NHS.
Matthews said: “That was truly a miracle. Sometimes it takes two to three [attempts] for the embryo to stick. It’s almost like the stars have to be aligned.”
After the birth, Samantha did not hold the couple’s child, and the baby was passed onto the biological mother to foster skin-to-skin contact and a bond between them both.
In fact, Samantha did not hold the child until the day after the birth, while she made it clear to her own children that ‘mommy is just helping [the couple] have a baby’, and never called the baby their sibling when they would ask about what’s inside her tummy.
“After the delivery, my kids were able to see the parents with the baby, and they both understand that this is their baby now.”
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