Our names are Ross and Kim. We met in 2012 when we both moved back to back to Chicago after college. Ross’s first cousin was a friend of Kim’s at school and told them they had to meet… she was right! We got married on October 20th, 2018 surrounded by all of our family and friends (including our favorite cousin, of course 🙂 ). We’ve built our life together in Chicago and love being just a few miles away from our parents, Kim’s sisters, and Ross’s brothers. We love to cook and make a pretty mean team in the kitchen together. Our other passion is travel – We love to experience new parts of the world by exploring new places, eating new foods, and meeting new people.
Since the early days of our relationship, we always spoke about the family we dreamed to create. Like most people, we never imagined the struggles we would encounter to get there. On our wedding day, we vowed to make “our home a place all are welcome, and we will fill it with laughter and play, understanding and trust, creativity and imagination, friendship and community”. We hope every day that we get the chance to raise children in our home.
I (Kim) am 31 years old. I grew up outside of Chicago with my two older sisters and parents. I’m SO lucky that we all live within a few miles of each other today. They are my greatest support system and built in best friends. Throughout my life, I always sought out roles that allowed me to help care for and nurture others. I taught English at a summer camp overseas. I was “Pledge Mom” for a class of 70+ women in my sorority. This all led me to a career in Human Resources. I love my job because I get to spend my days finding people careers they love and making an environment for them to be their best selves.
I (Ross) am 31, and I also grew up in the northern suburbs of Chicago, Illinois with my parents and two brothers (I’m in the middle!). I grew up in a large extended family and my parents taught us the value of spending time with family and being kind to everyone in our lives. I have always loved spending time with kids, from my early days babysitting and working at a kid’s summer camp to my current involvement in a charity where I mentor a high school boy that lives in an underserved community in Chicago.
About Our Dream
We were so ready to start our family in early 2020 and were lucky enough to get pregnant right away. Sadly, at our 8-week appointment we learned that we had miscarried. Eventually, Kim had to undergo a D&C which caused scar tissue to develop in her uterus. Over the last year, Kim has undergone 6 surgeries to try to correct the scarring. In July 2021, we finally got a positive pregnancy test. But, we soon learned that this pregnancy was ectopic, meaning it was not growing in Kim’s uterus and could never be viable. After all that we have been through, we are excited to move forward with the surrogacy process. We are lucky to have 9 of our own genetically tested embryos and would be so fortunate to find a gestational carrier to help us on the journey to build our family.
The more that we have learned about the surrogacy process the more amazed we’ve become with all of the people that we have spoken to. We have had conversations with a few other couples and many agencies about the process, and we are really looking forward to building a relationship of our own with our surrogate in addition to expanding our family
- We both love to cook – homemade pasta is our specialty!
- Travel! We love to explore new places, try new foods and meet new people.
- We both love to stay active- Ross plays tennis and basketball, Kim enjoys working out and occasionally joining Ross for tennis
- Kim is an avid reader
- We got the sweetest pandemic dog named Stevie!
- Surrogate Compensation: Our budget is flexible. We’re willing to pay someone in the high range for someone that’s experienced and are also open to someone inexperienced who might be looking for less money.
- Number of embryos: We currently have 9 embryos.
- In addition to the general gestational carrier requirements provided by the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (see below), our surrogate must be under 40 years old.
- We are currently working with Family Makers Surrogacy Agency in Atlanta, Georgia.9
The Biggest Ask Says
The American Society for Reproductive Medicine provides the following recommendations for evaluation of gestational carriers (i.e., many fertility clinics will require the following for their gestational carriers) :
- Carried at least 1 child without complications
- Fewer than 3 deliveries via c-section
- Body mass index in between 19 and 32
- No smoking, abusing drugs, alcohol or prescription medications
- Not receiving welfare, public housing or cash assistance from the government
- Has a stable home life with emotional and child care support
- No mental health conditions requiring the use of medications within the last 6 months (including depression)
- No criminal record
No one likes to talk about surrogate compensation, but it is an important factor in any surrogacy agreement. The following is how we classify high, medium and low compensation (excluding the value of any benefits). Many factors affect surrogate compensation including surrogate experience (e.g., has the woman been a surrogate before?), whether the surrogate is signed up with an agency and surrogate preferences.
- Low = surrogate compensation less than $20,000
- Medium = surrogate compensation between $20,000 and $40,000
- High = surrogate compensation greater than $40,000