This article analyzes the place of intimacy in the encounters between Israeli gay men and Indian surrogates. While transnational surrogacy is often presented either as an act of solidarity or as a contract for mutual benefit, the article complicates this picture. The intended fathers in the study simultaneously negated, expected, feared, and desired intimacy. The emphasis of the surrogates’ monetary interests kept the women outside the fathers’ families. Yet framing surrogacy as pure work conflicts with the affection and appreciation the men felt toward their surrogates. They felt the need to meet them, even if only once, to bring the relationship to a good end. Their balancing act unveils the asymmetries that structure transnational surrogacy. Gay men rely on distance and proximity to create consistent stories of origin for their children. They do so, however, at the expense of the surrogates, whose possibilities to enact their ideas about these relationships are limited.

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