Tiffany Sullivan: On Surrogacy, Motherhood, and the Joys of Family

Tiffany Sullivan: On Surrogacy, Motherhood, and the Joys of Family

When mom of two Tiffany Sullivan decided her family was complete, she knew she wanted to give that same gift to someone else. Tiffany shares the ups and downs of her journey as a surrogate mother with us, detailing the surprising truths she learned along the way. She weighs in on self care, body changes, and her beautiful takeaway that the mom community can bring us all such amazing gifts.

Tiffany, tell us about you:

I’m a 28 year old mom of two girls and am currently pregnant with a surrogacy baby boy. I work part time running my own business as an independent hairstylist. I grew up in the country in a small town in New York and I met my husband when I was a senior in high school and he was a freshmen in college. Our first year married was quite the whirlwind - we knew right away we didn’t want to wait long to be married so when I was 20 we had our wedding and bought our house within a few months of each other (it was crazy and I do not recommend!) and then 8 months later decided we wanted to start our own family and got pregnant. We had our daughter, Elliana (now 5) and two years later got pregnant with our daughter Scarlett (now 2). We enjoy traveling and it seems we always have some sort of trip planned, whether it be a weekend trip to Great Wolf Lodge , a day trip to the local zoo or flying to Florida to go to Disney world. We are always on the go and looking for somewhere to have an experience with our kids. 

What did becoming a mom look like for you? 

Becoming a mom was such a beautiful yet difficult journey. I was only 21 when I was pregnant with my first child, and I felt so many emotions when I got that very first positive. I felt so much joy and excitement as I always knew from a young age that I wanted to be young like my mom was when I started my own family. But with all that excitement also came a lot of fear of not knowing what was to come or how I was supposed to just deliver this baby and “hope” my motherly instincts would kick in. 

Everyone talks about how beautiful pregnancy is, but it’s not always beautiful. I struggled with terrible “morning sickness”, I was constantly sick all day everyday. It was so physically and emotionally draining and many times I felt like just giving up.


Tell us more about your surrogacy journey:

After having my daughters, I began my surrogacy journey in October 2022 and had an embryo transfer the following October. I am currently 26 weeks pregnant with a sweet baby boy. Being a surrogate was something that had always been on my heart and once we knew our family was complete, I decided to pursue it. It is a long and intense process both mentally and physically, but I am so thankful for the relationship we have built with the intended parents! I am looking forward to seeing them get to hold their baby boy in just a few short months. Seeing them with the baby I gave them will make all of this worth it and is what I am looking forward to the most. 

As someone who never had to go through IVF or any fertility treatments to get pregnant with my own children , and then going through it to become a surrogate, I have so much more respect and understanding of what some women go through to be able to become a mother. 

Becoming a mom looks different for everyone. IVF is tough! You never know how your body is going to respond to medication, and there are so many more appointments for monitoring and for the pregnancy in the early stages that you never have to go through with a “normal pregnancy.” After going through it myself, I feel so much for those that go through it to start their own families and those that go through multiple cycles. Moms are truly rockstars!

You are probably thinking: “why would she go on to carry a child for someone else if she was so sick during her pregnancy?” I know there are so many people who had it worse than I did. There are so many moms who can’t get pregnant and would love to experience that morning sickness just to be able to carry a child . Sickness is temporary and the reward of going through it all is so worth it once I was able to hold my baby girls. I know now that my family is complete and that’s why I decided to help another family grow. I cannot wait to see them hold their precious baby boy and know that because of me, their family is complete, too.

What was the most unexpected part of your motherhood journey?

Knowing my body would never be the same as it once was before having kids was a lot harder to deal with then I had imagined. Our bodies are so different after having kids and adjusting to my new body and finding clothes that fit and I felt comfortable in was much harder than I thought. I also struggled with postpartum rage after delivering my second child and that was something I didn’t even know was a thing - it’s not talked about enough. 


How does Matrescence’s Mission to “mother the mother” resonate with you as a mom? 

It’s so important to mother the mother and I love this mission. I feel like once we become mamas, we tend to lose ourselves. We forget to do the things we used to love and I feel like we just kind of lose our sense of well being. As a mom, I’m trying to do things to make me feel recharged because when I feel good and feel nurtured, I feel I can better nurture my family and overall we live a happier life!


In what ways do you find self-care in your day? Do you struggle with prioritizing it in your life?

This is something I have been trying to focus more on: taking time for myself to start caring for myself more without feeling guilty for it. I joined a gym with a daycare center last year so I have no excuse not to go. I enjoy Pilates classes or even just going and walking on the treadmill while listening to a motivational podcast. I also have been trying to get out a few times a month with friends and have been taking more time for self care such as taking a relaxing bath, focusing more on skincare, and treating myself to a massage each month. Between all of these things I feel so much better both mentally and physically!

What is the best thing you learned about parenting and who did you learn it from?

“The days are long but the years are short.”

I’ve heard this from so many people and it is so true! Some days seem so long and stressful and I feel like I am counting down the minutes until bedtime, but other days I sit back and just realize how fast time goes by, how quickly my kids have grown right before my eyes and I am just trying to make the most of each day and make memories with my kids that we will all cherish forever. 


What struggles have you encountered finding balance and how do you navigate them?

The simple act of trying to balance everything from keeping up on housework, to working , to school activities and sports and get it all done can seem impossible. There is not enough time in the day! I struggle with OCD and feel the need to always have a clean home with everything picked up and in its place. Lately I’ve realized it’s so exhausting and impossible to keep up on everything, every day. I started making a weekly list of different things to clean and do each day of the week so that I am not trying to do everything, every single day and it helped me not feel so overwhelmed. I’ve also been asking my husband to do certain things to make my list lighter which he has been great about doing! 


Anything else you want us to know?

I am just so grateful for the mom community and all of the moms who have brought more awareness to the reality of being a mom and helping me realize that no mom is perfect and we all face our own struggles! 

Follow Tiffany on Instagram


Leave a comment