The Path to Parenthood

Baby fetus newborn over isolated white background. New born child hang in fabric, birth concept

The journey to creating a family is an emotional and life-changing process for anyone wanting to become parents. While parenthood may come naturally to some, others face a path that is complicated, filled with unexpected detours and setbacks that can be emotionally draining as they struggle to become pregnant.

Gregory & Yolanda, new parents
Gregory & Yolanda, new parents

Intended parents may consult with a fertility specialist, undergo IVF or other medical processes, and face a very clinical future that is devoid of the emotional and heartwarming experience they hoped to have while creating a family.

The average age of women using donor eggs was 41 in 2010, and an increase in numbers over the past decade from 10,801 to 18,306.

With more people today opting to start families later in life, surrogacy and egg donation have played an important role in becoming a parent. According to a study by researchers at Emory University and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the average age of women using donor eggs was 41 in 2010, and an increase in numbers over the past decade from 10,801 to 18,306.

Age isn’t the only factor affecting the ability to become pregnant. While many causes of infertility are unknown, some issues for women are due to:

  • Early menopause or premature ovarian failure (POF)
  • Extremely poor egg quality
  • History of genetic disease
  • Ovaries do not respond to stimulation
  • Hormonal imbalance

Men account for approximately 35% of diagnosed cases of infertility due to low sperm count, side effects of medications, or other physical conditions.

After working for several years with an area fertility specialist, Souad Dreyfus, founder of Open Arms Consultants, created her own agency connecting intended parents with egg donors and surrogate mothers. She helps them navigate through the complex array of services – from medical, legal and social — to fulfill dreams of starting a family while building long-lasting relationships.

Souad Dreyfus, Founder & CEO
Souad Dreyfus, Founder & CEO

Open Arms builds a personal relationship with each family, connecting, sharing, and counseling along the way.  For intended parents, it starts with a meeting with a cycle coordinator, who provides a one-on-one consultation to answer questions about the process, legal considerations, financial obligations and helping to understand the roles of the agency, the fertility clinics, lawyers, and others that all need to work together during the process. The coordinators are also available, whether by video, phone, in-person, or via e-mail, to answer any additional questions after the first consultation. The goal for Open Arms is to provide intended parents with as much information as possible to help them make the best decision for them.

For women who wish to help another family by becoming a surrogate mother or an egg donor, candidates complete an extensive application that focuses on their pregnancy history (if applying to be a surrogate mother) or their genetics (if applying as an egg donor).  Open Arms works solely with gestational surrogacies, where the surrogate mother is not biologically related to the baby.  This allows the intended parents to be recognized easily as the birth parents at the time of delivery after the legal obligations have been met.  For egg donors, the donation is typically done anonymously, where the egg donor and the intended parents do not know the identity of one another. The intended parents have access to the egg donor’s profile that includes several photos and a confidential profile of her application.

Open Arms Consultants manages all aspects and logistics of the path to parenthood while nurturing relationships of all involved.  Unlike some agencies, Open Arms remains with the intended parents, surrogate mothers and the egg donors for months after the much-anticipated delivery.  Unfortunately, when circumstances change or something happens, Open Arms is there to help pick up the pieces to help the family start again. Working with local, national and international intended parents, the full-service agency has successfully connected hundreds of surrogate mothers and egg donors with intended parents. It’s an emotional and individual journey to parenthood that the staff at Open Arms Consultants shares with every family.

To learn more call 941-741-4994 or visit

The dedicated team at  Open Arms Consultants
The dedicated team at Open Arms Consultants
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