My experience with Lotus Blossom was frustrating and disappointing. People within the fertility field speak highly of Mindy, so I felt confident that she would be a wonderful guide throughout this process. Mindy’s lovely and gracious manner was so impressive. In our initial conversations, Mindy allowed me to speak to her assistant who had been a surrogate and was empathic and understanding, like Mindy. It was my impression that the network of surrogates would be similar to the caliber of her assistant. Most of the assumptions I made in thinking Mindy would be my guide and advisor during this process were wrong. At one point, Mindy asked me to be a reference for her and I agreed. I did think it was a little odd that she asked me to be a reference for her when we were still in the early stages of the process, but I had agreed because I had no reason to think otherwise, at that point. In time, Mindy’s network referrals proved to be frustrating for me, with the emphasis on frustrating. Things began to sour for me about 6 months after having signed the agreements. Around this time, I felt Mindy’s empathy for me began to wane, and she definitely favored the surrogate. I felt before I paid Mindy her fees, she was there for me, but around a month before the transfer, Mindy seemed to be exasperated with me and appeared to be the surrogate’s advocate. If I knew then what I know now about using a consultant instead of an agency, I would have never taken the clinic’s referral. The final straw came when the surrogate asked Mindy if she could drive from OH to CT for the transfer with her daughters, and Mindy said I had to give the okay. Assuming that Mindy, the consultant, saw no issue with the drive, I agreed. Over the phone, Before I gave my okay, I told the surrogate that the drive was very long, and the surrogate countered that she didn’t want to be away from her girls and didn’t like to fly. At the time, I remember thinking why didn’t you discuss this with me before we signed the surrogacy agreement. It was my impression from our initial contact that her children would not be such an issue when she had to travel; however, her children were more of an issue than she led me to believe. On the day of the transfer, I walk into the clinic’s waiting room to meet the surrogate, her two daughters, her 14-year-old daughter’s boyfriend, and the surrogate’s friend. So here I am trying to process this information that the surrogate drove in a car with 4 other people all night for the transfer. Needless to say, I was really upset; however, I couldn’t say anything because I wanted everything to work out. When I shared my thoughts with Mindy, she just said she wasn’t happy about it. I later worked with an agency, not a consultant, who said that we insist the IPs and surrogates strictly follow the contract to ensure success and avoid any misunderstandings. It was my impression that I was paying Mindy for this kind of guidance and advice. Also, the agency I worked with provided better service to me and the surrogate. For example, the surrogate received monthly counseling, and the agency provided both parties with weekly updates. The agency’s caseworker was present at the transfer and some of the follow-up appointments. It is difficult to find people within the field to give a negative review of others within the field, unless it is a competitor. When you are doing your research, ask the clinics if there is anyone in the field to avoid. Also, what services will Mindy give you compared to an agency. After having used an agency after Mindy, a consultant, I would go with an agency because the services provided are very clear. One last thing, I have a nice keepsake memento, in addition to my canceled checks, of a photo of the surrogate and her 4 traveling companions outside the fertility clinic getting ready to get into their car to go to the hotel room for the required rest. Do your research and don’t just go with the referral.
This review (Lotus Blossom Consulting LLC Review) was originally published at Holy Smoke !.
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