In my circle of family and friends, I’ve known a few women who have struggled with infertility. IVF and surrogacy are some of the options that many people turn to, but not everyone understands the challenges of these processes until they have gone through it themselves.
Family Match Consulting is a company that offers egg donor and surrogate search services. I connected with Stephanie Levich in a Facebook group for San Fernando Valley moms. When I discovered that Stephanie is the founder and president of Family Match Consulting, I thought it would be great to share her story.
Please meet the latest Real Mom of the SFV – Stephanie Levich!
How/why did you begin your business?
Stephanie: I started my company, Family Match Consulting, in early 2015 after over a decade of experience working in the field of egg donation and surrogacy. I was familiar with the traditional model that clients were using to find egg donors or surrogates, and while that model worked well for some, I saw how difficult and daunting it was for so many. I wanted to create a program that would fill in the gaps and ultimately make the process easier. Family Match helps clients find the best possible egg donors and surrogates based on their unique criteria through our curated network of over 100 of the most reputable egg donor and surrogate agencies. We cast a large net to match our clients as quickly as possible while working as their guide and advocate during the selection process, and in many cases, until the birth of their baby. Additionally, throughout my career, I’ve assisted a number of clients in the public eye and those experiences have shown me the unique challenges these clients face. Family Match became the first and only fertility consulting firm with a custom, white-glove, full-service program that not only helps these clients navigate all aspects of their family building journey, but does so while managing and protecting their privacy throughout.
On a personal note, infertility has been a huge part of my life, long before I even understood what the word meant. When my mom was 13 years old, she had a stomach ache and when my grandparents brought her to the hospital, they discovered a severe infection in her abdomen. The only way they could save my 13-year-old mom’s life was to perform a complete hysterectomy. From way-too-young an age, my mom knew that having children in the “traditional” sense was not going to be in the cards for her. Years later, she met and married my dad and they went on to adopt me, and later the children who became my sister and brother. It was infertility that broke my mom’s heart, but it’s what ultimately created our family and I know that they, and I, are grateful beyond words for that.
Then, after working in the field for nearly a decade, my husband and I tried to start our family and as is the case for so many (1 in 8 specifically), we were met with challenges. Through the help of IVF, we finally became parents to our 2 miracles.
Infertility isn’t just “what I do” – it’s ingrained into who I am. Helping loving people like my parents, or same-sex couples excited to start their family, or single clients who are desperately wanting to become parents is something that makes me genuinely excited to sit down at my desk on Monday mornings.
As a working mother, what is one tip or piece of advice that you would give to other female entrepreneurs?
Stephanie: I struggled with mom guilt so much when my kids were born and allowed things like society “norms” or comments from well-meaning friends to make me question my path. I thought being a good mom meant I needed to be all things to my kids at all moments. What I learned is that I’m the best mom, as a whole mom. My kids fulfill me in enormous indescribable ways but my work is another thing of many that makes me feel complete. My advice to other female entrepreneurs and especially to working moms is to give yourself permission to have the career you want to have and to not let outside influence alter your course.
What do you like best about having a business in the San Fernando Valley?
Stephanie: The SFV is home to me. I was born and raised here so it’s comfortable and what I know. Also, lunch from Cava at the Village. I’m mildly obsessed. I should mention that I’m always looking for great surrogates in the SFV, so if you are a mom reading this and you are curious about the process, please get in touch!
If there was one thing you wish you knew before you began your business, what would that be?
Stephanie: Just like I thought that in order to be a good mom, I had to be the one providing all things at all times to my kids, I thought that being a good entrepreneur meant that I needed to be all things at all times for my business. I wish I knew how imperative delegation and creating teams would be. And to not take myself too seriously! Though I can’t lie…I still beat myself up when I find a typo in an email after sending it. Just much less than I used to. I’m a work in progress!
Disclosure: No monetary compensation was received for this post. The images shown in this post are used with permission. As always, my opinions are 100% my own.