When I started telling people I was having a baby with a gestational surrogate, the responses ranged from awkwardly supportive to just awkward. A woman at a party congratulated me, praised me for being so clever, so ahead of the times. “Ugh, you’re brilliant,” she told me. I’d have someone else do the dirty work of motherhood for me. Genius.
Others wanted me to know I was in good company: Kim Kardashian had just been through the process. So had Gabrielle Union. And Andy Cohen. And now me!
My traditional Indian mother, fiercely private and surprisingly sneaky, had another idea. She thought it might be better if we made up a story that the baby was adopted. “People aren’t going to understand this,” she said.
Misguided, to be sure, but my mother (as usual) had a point: There is still an incredible amount of secrecy around the gestational surrogacy process. And wherever there is silence, stigma isn’t far behind. It’s for rich people, it’s immoral, it’s dystopian, it’s exploitative…