Options for Infertility – Sperm and Egg Donations
You’re stuck. One of you in the relationship cannot produce egg or sperm. What options do you have?
Here are two options for you to have a half biological child. Your child will have some of your attributes and personality. People probably wouldn’t even know if your child was from a donor or not. They would just see more resemblance to your spouse’s family or yours.
But, this can be complicated. You have to be okay with your spouse having a child from someone else.
One of the first things the nurse said to us when we were diagnosed infertile was, “you can get a sperm donor”.
Sperm donor. That was such a weird concept to me. Initially my thought was that it was wrong. Thoughts like, “if God wanted me to have children with another man, He would have had me marry him instead.”
It’s a tough choice to make. Will your spouse be okay with seeing you in the child but not him or herself?
We had immediately shut down the possibility of that option the day the nurse said that to us. But over time, Michael thought it might work for us. He thought he’d still like to see our child with red hair or my personality. It was only then that I even considered this option.
I personally have mixed feelings about it. Sometimes I am excited at the possibility that my little one could have red hair like me. Other times, I’m grieved at the fact that he or she wouldn’t look like or act like my husband.
It’s still an option for us, but we’re not sure if this is the route God has for us.
There’s nothing in the Bible that says it’s right or wrong. I’m not sure why this option of infertility gets a bad connotation at times. Perhaps it’s the fact that the donors get paid in some countries. I don’t know. Either way, it is still a great option to give you a family, and one that carries some of your genes.
I fully support anyone who chooses this route. I think it is great that people are willing to offer part of themselves to help a couple that wants to start a family.
For us, we would be the candidates for a sperm donation. Perhaps you struggle with not being able to produce a viable egg. I felt overwhelmed researching all the sites on the internet regarding these options. So, I thought I would give you a breakdown of the procedures and fees if this interests you. I have added a few links to research as well.
If you’re a couple in need of an egg donation, here is some research I found for you.
The process is pretty straightforward.
· Do some research and find an organization you feel comfortable with.
· Fill out an application
· Match your donor of choice
· The donor and you will both have a screening call with the organization
· This is when your fees are due to pay for the donor’s process. You’ll also sign the contract at this point
· Donor will be screened by an agreed upon clinic and medically cleared
· The donor and you will undergo counseling sessions to make sure you’re all emotionally ready
· Donor then goes through the legal process
· Donation cycle begins
Most of the time this process is anonymous. However, you can also do it with someone that you know, if she’s willing. There’s more legal procedures with egg donation than sperm donation regarding parental boundaries. Most times, the donor’s information will be completely anonymous to the family. The child is allowed to contact the fertility organization, or a lawyer, to find out the donor’s information when the he or she turns 18 years of age.
From what I’ve researched, this option can cost anywhere from $30,000-$45,000. This is due to clinic and travel fees for the donor and yourselves.
Here is a link to one of the sites that I researched. It gives a breakdown of the clinics that the organization works with. (This is Canadian based) – https://fertilitymatch.ca/fertility-clinics-canada/
Here are a few other links to check out:
This is the procedure I could find that would be typical for this donation.
· Consult with the sperm donation organization
· Search for sperm donors. You can have the organization do some preliminary searching for you if requested.
· Pick your donor and decide how many samples you’d like to receive. Donors typically only give to the system for a few years. So, if you want multiple children, you might want to think ahead for donation size. It might be more money upfront, but it’ll be worth it. Remember that the sperm and egg may not take the first time or two if you go with an IUI option.
· You’ll pay for the sperm at this time
· The sperm will be shipped to your infertility clinic.
· IUI or IVF begins. There will also possibly be fees for this
You can retrieve pictures and profile information from most sperm donors. Most will remain anonymous. But you can purchase some donors’ photos for your child as they grow. For fees and other research options, here are a few links for you:
With egg donations, Invitro fertilization will have to be the method for implantation.
For sperm donation, you can choose IUI, which is when the sperm is implanted into the beginning of the fallopian tube. Or, you can choose IVF. This is when your infertility clinic extracts eggs from your ovaries, injects the sperm donation into the egg in a petri dish, and allows the two to form an embryo. The specialist will then have you return to the clinic where he or she will implant the embryo into your uterus.
For information regarding government funding for IUI and IVF in Ontario, see: https://www.ontario.ca/page/get-fertility-treatments
We’ll see what the Lord leads us to in our journey. Hopefully this brings you some peace and clarification. Finding out what fertility path you should walk can be overwhelming. It can lead to some hesitations and questions you didn’t expect. That’s okay. Take your time. Pray and research, and then pray some more. Work through those tough questions and the why’s behind them. He’ll show you if it’s right for you or not.