The history of surrogate motherhood goes back to biblical times. In fact, some people say it dates back to Sarah and Abraham. Certain people say that it started even before them, and that it is only recorded about Abraham because he was written about in the Bible. In many countries, surrogacy has been around since before records. Many cultures have belief systems that abide with the rules of surrogacy and those that do not agree can be thrown out of their families. Numerous religions and civilizations will actually celebrate the surrogate mothers, for their good deeds and service to others. During the 1980′s surrogate mothers were used by the gay community to build their families, then, it was frowned upon by society.
The American Indians were the first ones to truly begin the surrogate mother history in this part of the world. So we are looking back to the 1899′s for the beginning of this part of the story. If an Indian woman was found to be infertile, then her husband would go to the chief of his tribe and ask for help. He would then be sent to see the medicine man, who would give the wife certain herbal concoctions. Then, after the witch doctor said nothing could be done to help his wife, the husband would go to see the chief. He would be allowed to take another woman and make her pregnant, hopefully, so that he would be able to father a son to carry on his tribe. The barren wife would have no relations with the child. He would stay with his birth mother.
The American Indians were not the only civilization to use surrogate mothers to carry on the family name and bloodline. Back in recent European history it has been heard of, especially in Spain for kings to take in several surrogate mothers until he was born a son. The surrogate mother of the child would then become nanny to all of the royal children. The children would believe themselves to be genetically related to the king and queen. Never knowing the truth. Obviously, things like this were kept secret, because if not, questions would be asked about their right to the throne.
Nowadays, we are lucky that due to technological breakthroughs in this field of science a woman can feel safe in the knowledge that even though another woman is carrying her child, her husband or partner has had no physical relations with the surrogate mother. Such things have, in the past, caused battles and feuds between the people involved and it is quite understandable. The technological solution has saved an awful lot of heartache for many families.
In America, the very first surrogacy agency was opened by a lawyer named Noel Keane back in the late 1970′s to early 1980′s. He went on to create many more agencies that abided by the surrogacy arrangement laws. Since then, there have been more than 30,000 births due to the surrogacy arrangement laws. Society obviously feels that surrogacy is a viable solution to infertile women and gay men. There will always be those who criticise but if they could only look at it from a different angle, they just might see something different and even end up with a different viewpoint.
Ashley Kate is the publisher of Surrogate Motherhood website. The site offers information on becoming a surrogate mother.