Written by Caroline Shannon
November 4, 2022
Explaining surrogacy to children doesn't have to be complicated—and these kid-friendly books can help.
If you've ever explained a big idea to a child, you know that no matter the age-appropriate version you deliver, there will be (hundreds of) questions. The same goes for surrogacy, no matter whether you're the surrogate or an intended parent(s).
One thing we've learned? Kids like a good story. In fact, one of our Nodal team members and former surrogate, Brianna Buck, told her two children—ages 2 and 3 at the time—about surrogacy with the cutest anecdote we've ever heard. "I used a cake analogy to explain it was as if our neighbors had all the ingredients for a cake, but their oven was broken, so they came over to use our oven."
Keep reading for more stories about surrogacy for children, including books featuring fuzzy animals, a surrogacy story told from a child's perspective, and a heart-warming tale written by an intended parent.
“Blake the Drake's biggest wish is to be a loving Papa duck. But as a male duck, he can't lay any eggs." Written by intended parent Michael Hilscher (one half of @mikeandsebastian_2dads, one of our favorite surrogacy Instagram accounts), Blake the Drake was the author’s way of explaining surrogacy to Mia, his daughter born via surrogacy. “I used the metaphor of a magical egg that someone else had hatched to explain how she arrived on our planet.”
Favorite review: “This is a beautiful story, clearly written with lots of heart and experience. It’s a lovely way to share with young children one of the many different ways of making a family, highlighting that it is the love that matters most."
Follow a brother and sister duo as they watch their mother become a surrogate. The siblings invite the reader to explore their own personal experiences and offer kid-friendly language to help the reader discuss and better understand surrogacy.
Favorite review: "I was a surrogate last year and plan to do it again soon. My daughter is almost 4 now and I’m so happy to find a book to help explain the process. I love how the parents and families in the book are all different - it really shows that families are made from all kinds of love!"
There couldn't be a more perfect book to highlight the journeys intended parents take to build their families, ultimately landing in the place they longed for throughout—with their babies in their arms. Throughout the story, readers will follow two parents who make the ultimate discovery: there are many ways to have a baby.
Favorite review: "I've had a difficult time finding a book that expressed the journey we've been on in a way I wanted to share with our child, and this is a creative and beautifully written story that will be treasured."
It doesn't get more straightforward than this story about a koala bear and her partner who need the help of a very kind koala to carry their baby in her pouch. Written by a family therapist, this sweet story can be read to children ages 3 and up.
Favorite review: “This little book explains the surrogacy journey to small children from the perspective of a child (in this care a koala) born of surrogacy. The book is simple and not wordy at all, it gets right to the point ... it does a great job of explaining without being over complicated."
According to the author, The Kangaroo Pouch "started off as a simple hand-drawn 'book' (think stick figures drawn with a marker on plain paper and stapled on the left side ...) that I used to explain how I was going to be a surrogate for my kids' aunt and uncle. I needed something simple to show them and then segue into a chat about what I was going to be doing. At the time (2005), there weren't any books available that captured the 'what, how, and why' of the process. As they say, necessity is the mother of invention!"
Favorite review: “As a mother with 3 children who is currently in the process of being a surrogate, this book was a great way to introduce surrogacy to my kids! I tried to explain to them what a surrogate is and how it works and they didn’t really grasp the concept, so I read this book to them to help them better understand and they did! Such a cute book and it really helps clarify everything! I definitely recommend."