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Question about choosing a donor

March 10 2012 at 10:13 AM
Antonialisa  (no login)

Thanks so much for a warm welcome and again I need some advice.

DH and I are talking about DE seriously as I mentioned about a week ago. We are both a lot more comfortable with friends/family members than anonymous donors. Has anyone gone this route?

We have discussed some ideas. Right now I am thinking a lot about a former summer student of mine, a brilliant and lovely young woman. We struck up a genuine friendship some years back and managed to keep in touch (off and on). We have a lot in common and she is in many ways a much younger version of me, albeit brighter, wittier and more dynamic, lol. I'd be very comfortable using her. I think she might say yes because she is very altruistic and has already spent much of her adult life in service of others.

My question is, before I get too carried away, what do I need to be looking for in a donor? I believe that health and family history of inheritable diseases is a big issue. I don't have any knowledge about this with her. I have no knowledge of her fertility potential except that she is under or around 30.

We don't have a Dr. yet. I think we'd probably want to find a clinic in the town where she is living now. Do we need to find a clinic first, then donor, or vice versa?

Thanks for your help. I'm overwhelmed but starting to feel more positive about the future at last.

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Re: Question about choosing a donor

March 10 2012, 10:40 AM 

First find a clinic with a back up donor pool just in case then ask clinic about own donor testing etc. Then ask friend and of course offer a genourus gift at least five thousand and go from there..

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(Login Raindrops1)

That would be nice if she works out.

March 10 2012, 2:08 PM 

I used an anonymous clinical donor myself. I didn't even have the option of a family member or anyone I knew. Plus DH wanted completely anonymous. But I personally like the idea of knowing the donor.

Since you are very interested in your friend I think it would be fine to go ahead and ask her now. Realizing once the cat is out of the bag and you start telling people you are interested in using DE that she may tell other people and it could open a can of worms. But if you plan to be open about it then it is fine. But it is likely she may then ask for advice from other people as to whether or not she should donate.

Usually women find a clinic first and then look for a donor. So you could ask your friend while at the same time investigate clinics you are interested in both near you and near her. But there are lots of clinic options and you may decide you want to travel for a clinic that is not close to ether one of you. Since you want to know the donor I would start getting recommendations for egg donor agencies as well and then get passwords to their donor databases. Then you can start looking at hundreds of donors online and it will give you ideas of what criteria you are looking for in a donor. Many donors listed through agencies are willing to have open contact with you. But using an agency is the most expensive way to go. And you want to find a reputable agency.

The least expensive and easiest is selecting a clinic with a large anonymous donor pool. Those donors have already been screened by the clinic and meet their requirements as a good candidate. And most are previous donors. They have already been tested for antral follicle count, FSH level, medical history background, psychological testing, etc. But if you want a clinic donor that is not anonymous and willing to meet you then you will need to find a clinic that is willing to do that.

If you ask your friend and she is interested in being a donor then you will need to find a clinic and do whatever testing they require for her to be your donor. You will also need to hire an attorney to create some sort of legal contract with the donor. And if you decide you want to pay for a guaranteed refund plan then your donor will also have to meet those requirements or you won't be able to have her be your donor with a guaranteed refund plan.

So there are tons of things to look at and consider and it may take a while to look at all these options. But taking time is good as it allows you to get more comfortable with all of it.

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I went through this first

March 11 2012, 1:30 PM 

When we decided to so de, a dear friend of mine who had male IF as her fertility factor offered us her eggs after she finally had her own son. We were thrilled, and thought we bypassed having to go through all the things that finding an anonymous donor entails. It did not work out, however, and in fact, now that we are in the middle of an agency cycle with an anonymous donor, oh my, it is so much easier.

You are right to think about the process -- first, you need an excellent clinic with lots of de experience. Then, you need to see if she knows what this means and is willing to do all the medical and mental testing (not too onerous).

There was so much to think about before proceeding! We all saw an IF counselor. What would we tell mutual friends or not tell them? What about potential children, and the possibility of them going to school together? Family members? Our relationship?

She absolutely did not want any money, which actually, in the end made it harder.

Scheduling was challenging and I was stressed about it.

Sadly, she was in the minority of people who nearly died from the egg retrieval procedure itself. This was horrifying and I still have nightmares about it.

When she was admitted to the hospital, she did not give them the egg donor insurance, so there were all these bills going to her personal insurance co pay which I had to deal with as they were coming after her for payment and it was hard to go back and get Brown and Brown to initiate the claim.

And then, the fresh and frozen transfer did not work.

We are no longer friends, it was simply too painful of an event.

Fast forward three years later: we spent a long time finding a good agency donor, and while I was worried about finding her and getting the cycle started, once she showed up for the cycle start check and we sent the checks and signed the docs, OMG, I am so happy to not be worrying about every little thing. And, honestly, while I bless her daily for doing this, I do not want to have to worry about any health emergencies like happened to my friend, ever again.

I just wanted to share the harder aspects of a known donor.

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(Login Raindrops1)

Oh that sounds awful Minniet.

March 11 2012, 3:47 PM 

It sounds so complicated and I'm sorry you and your friend had to go through all that. The complications from the egg retrieval is just really bad luck. My clinic told me severe compliations are pretty rare. And then to not have it work either......sad.gif I'm wishing you good luck this time!

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(no login)

thanks for sharing

March 11 2012, 9:53 PM 

That does sound horrible. After years of IF with my own eggs, I sort of see DE as the magic bullet but yes, it can get complicated.... Sorry you had to go through all that.

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thanks for this

March 11 2012, 9:54 PM 

Thanks for your help in preparing me for my possible next steps. We have lots to do and think about.

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