"After a three-year journey through hell, I'm elated, ecstatic and feel ultimately lucky to be able to announce I'm expecting my own child via surrogate in December," Stafford says in a statement.
In an interview with People, Stafford reveals that she's tried previously to have a baby via artificial insemination and in vitro fertilization, and she also looked into adoption. Four surgeries and three egg retrievals later, she finally arrived at the surrogate option.
"I never wavered in my desire to be a mother," the 43-year-old Stafford tells the magazine. "But I did waver on aspects of the process. It was the hardest thing I've ever done in my life."
The actress, who worked with Los Angeles-based IVF specialist Dr. Buylos, and the surrogate agency, Fertility Miracles, said that she plans to be in the delivery room when her daughter is born. Stafford's friend, Kirstie Alley, will be throwing a baby shower for Stafford later this year.
Stafford is not the only soap star to opt for surrogacy. Deidre Hall (ex-Marlena Evans, Days of our Lives) chronicled her experience with the surrogacy process in a made-for-television movie, Never Say Never: The Deidre Hall Story.
"This entire process has been very, very difficult to do on my own," Stafford says, "and has made me realize the importance and reason for a partner."
Stafford joined the cast of The Young and the Restless in 1994. She has won two Daytime Emmys for her work on The Young and the Restless. Earlier this year, Stafford signed a new contract with The Young and the Restless, though the terms were not disclosed.