Asian going through DE process

(71 posts)(18 voices)
  1. Hi,
    I am mostly a lurker and an occasional poster. My husband and I are moving to DE now and we're matched to an Asian donor at SDFC. I have a concern in general about DE. The American Society for Reproductive Medicine recommends that donors do no more than six cycles, given the risk of health problems that may arise later and the problem with half siblings. One of the earlier posts mentioned this. SDFC states that donors may donate up to 10 times. My donor has almost reached the six maximum. Does anyone share this concern about half siblings? If you calculate 10 couples x 2 kids each = 20 kids. I mentioned this to CCRM (getting a second opinion) and Dr. Schoolcraft was really surprised that they would let a donor do that many cycles. That's a lot of half siblings and all born around the same time.

    I\'m starting to have second thoughts about this... Anyone?

  2. Yes, I'm concerned too Blue but I'm not sure what one can do about half-siblings. I'm a rather private person and don't really want my son/daughter seeking out their half-siblings and having a large extended family thrust upon me. I know things are confidential but I'm sure info also leaks out (though it could be beneficial should some sort of medical issue arise) Even if one could pay to have a "dedicated donor" there' s no way to enforce that.

    Did they provide any specifics on the health risks? I probably will have done 7 fresh IVF cycles (and I might try one IUI as a hail mary) I suspect my adenomeiosis got a little bigger but that could just be with age and it's never really caused me any pain. They recently found a cyst in my right ovary which they said looks sort of like endometriosis, though I have an u/s tomorrow to see if it decreased in size.

    Does anyone know what one can do (maybe even in conjunction with the clinic to recruit donors to one's specifications?) I know for adoption some people do direct advertising.

    YDVWA -- good luck to you and you might also try posting on the SDFC thread in the geographical section if you haven't done so already.

    Thanks

  3. Blue... I've always had concerns about anonymous donations, and that's one of the reason why I haven't been able to go that route. Lets take your SDFC's scenario with 20 kids... That's assuming that each recipient couple only decides to have 2 kids, and it ends there. However, once the embies are created, they can do whatever they wish with the remaining embryos. They can donate the embies to another couple(s), and more kids can be created from it. You don't have any way of keeping track of any of the kids created from anonymous egg donations. We did a known egg donor, and we're doing known embryo adoption. Our DE donor is my sister, but the cycle did not work. Our EA donors and we have agreed to stay in touch and inform each of our children's development so that inappropriate full genetic siblings won't develop.

    Curious... There's no reason why you can't advertise for your own donor, then bring the donor to your clinic for evaluation. That's what DE agencies have to do to get their donors.

    PC... Good luck with your cycle.

  4. Thanks christyjen and curious. I have some significant concerns about this half-sibling thing. I forgot about the leftover embryos situation! I don't know how the children are supposed to deal with this later. Are they supposed to divulge their situation to every person they may be romantically interested in, just in case, or just have your kids avoid romantic relationships with a particular Asian group? I know it sounds silly, but it could become reality one day. How do people who do sperm donations handle this? Well, I'm thinking of talking to other agencies and how they handle this situation. I guess you can never guarantee it, no matter what because you could have a donor jump from agency to agency if they really wanted to do that. I'm just concerned that some donors could donate that much!!

    As for the risks, they are theoretical, but one of them is growth of fibroids. I had a small fibroid at before I started (around 2 cm), and then it grew to 6 cm after 3 cycles of IVFs. I had to have it surgically removed because it was pushing on my bladder (which became shotglass size) . You can PM me if you want more information.

  5. Blue... Will you let us know what the agencies say? How do you control your kids from dating certain Asian group? What if your donor is Chinese, and she donates to a Korean/Caucasian couple with a Caucasian last name or a Chinese/Japanese couple with a Japanese last name? The only way I see to avoid this is to keep it an open relationship where all children involved eventually know about each other. I don't think there is a way to manage it with anonymous sperm donor either.

  6. Hi Ladies,
    I have thought about this aspect of Donor IVF as well, and I am in the "tell" camp, in large part, due to this consideration of the future possibility of chance meetings/paths crossing/relationships forming, etc. etc. between unknowing half siblings through the anonymous donor factor.

    I hope that our world and that of our future child(ren) is large enough to dissolve realistic chances of a specifically concerning - romantic relationship between half-siblings....but truly, the chance is always there. I have seen a televised news show (I believe it was 20/20) about approximately a dozen half siblings who all came from the same "anonymous" sperm donor, living now, in California. Many of the recipients were living in Colorado, and the original two parents who made the initial chance connection, were living in the same neighborhood, and noticed eachother's toddlers while playing in the same park. They were able to confirm connection by the sperm donor's ID number - "Donor XYZ" from the same sperm bank.

    I have also heard (second hand, so don't know all details,) of a story where two adopted siblings (I believe they may have had different fathers,)were raised by separate families only to grow up and meet and fall in love as unknowing adults. When they became engaged to be married, they decided to verify that they were not related - only to discover that indeed, they were. There was a resulting legal affair, and this was also presented on a televised news show.

    I think stories like these are at the crux of our concern with the anonymous aspect of using a Donor. The same issue exists with adoption, however, I think that lineage is definitely more traceable with adopted siblings or half-siblings, thanks to laws and practices already in place involving adoption agencies and the information they are "allowed" to release in the interest of preserving rights of the adopted. Our situation with using Donor egg or sperm is much newer and legally "uncharted," at this stage in time. I think we would be naive to feel that there was no potential for future issues to arise for any future offspring of Donors, but I think that all of us who are choosing DE/DS route to parenthood are placing more weight upon our innate desires than on our calculated fears...

    Bottom line rests with our Donors - and how many times they donate anonymously. They themselves, have a potential concern as well, for their own future offspring, who will be in the same predicament as the unknown offspring - ours. I felt comfortable selecting a first-time donor who I felt would be mature enough (both in age and in formal schooling,) and of a thoughtful nature who seemed close to her family, and who seemed to be more conservative than free-spirited, among many other qualities, because I felt she would be more likely to not be an over-zealous donor by character traits and motivation. Of course, this is all conjecture on my part, but I did pay close attention to every detail that was available about my donor, and I asked further questions for the donor to answer beyond her initial profile, just to gain a better sense of her, for my peace of mind.

    Yes, there is risk out there, unmeasureable, unforeseen, and not under any of our own control. We will raise offspring (if we are so lucky!) that will have genetic connections that they will likely never realize, and yet, we will impact directly how they shape their beliefs and feelings about that hard fact. We will probably hear of stories like ours that for some odd twist of fate, end up under a spotlight or on some future t.v. expose, or in a public courthouse, for all to see and to judge. I admit, I am not capable of predicting or controlling all possible scenarios or potential problems...and yet, I am enthusiastically, willingly - so full of my heart's desire - to be here, ready with Hope and Love to receive a product of my unknown Donor's (and my husband's) creation to raise and nurture as my own. My personal bottom line is just that. Isn't all of parenting, even in the traditional/genetically-connected sense, so full of mystery, uncertainty, and ultimately, lack of true or full "control," as it is, and is meant to be? I plan to feel my way through this parenting journey (if all goes well with my DE experience,) in the "tell" camp, because I feel that this will allow me the most resources to make the most sense to my future child, in helping him/her understand who he/she is, and why he/she will be here, in the first place. I understand that for others, who will provide all their love and nurturing for their DE/DS child in the "no tell" camp, they have their own good reasons for their choice. But for me, I realize that I am smaller than the "good" I am trying to create, and I will take it a baby step at a time, as to how I will raise a child to avoid any potential pit-falls of being a product of this less-conventional type of union.

    These are just my thoughts - I wanted to chime in because I do agree that it is a huge, and growing concern that we all should address, on both the donating and on the receiving end, of DE/DS conceptions. I do believe time will reveal more, and like anything else, laws and assurances will be put into practice to try to help control potential problems in the future.

    Good luck, to all of us!

  7. skanavi, so I did a little more research and spoke to several REs and a couple of agencies and they all thought that doing more than six cycles was just too much for donors, unless under extenuating circumstances, e.g., undergoing another cycles for a donor sibling. They were mostly concerned about possible health concerns for donors, not so much the half-sibling issue. Additionally, they all stated that it is much more than what ASRM recommends and I spoke to Dr. Davis from Cornell about this and he was one of the authors of the article published on this issue. So, for my DH and I, we are looking at agencies now and considering Cornell as they have a small pool of Asian donors. I've looked into Donor Source and Asian Egg Donation and they both have sizeable pools of Asian donors.

  8. Thanks, Blue! Yes, I agree 10 is a lot. I think 6 is a lot too... It's interesting that no one is concerned about 1/2 siblings. I wonder if they'll be concerned if it were their future children? I bet they would.

    pitsa... Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I agree... The best way is to be open about it with your children. We plan on telling our children early on. But, I can understand how some people don't want to tell their children, family and friends about DE, especially being Asian. With anonymous donation, what do you tell your children about their potential 1/2 siblings? You really don't have anything to tell them since you don't know.

  9. Chritiyen - Hi there! Yep, I sure believe that any party with a direct, vested interest in using a donor for conception purposes would give longer (much!) pause than to place a mere (and un-traceable, un-verifiable,) # on maximum "allowed"/"recommended" cycles for donors; and they would definitely, (as we do,) place a weighted concern on the issue of half-siblings, resulting from these potentially unlimited cycles...(MUCH more real, and possibly, grossly uncontrolled, with DS vs. DE - think about it! I knew a classmate from grad. school who left at lunch EVERY Friday for the year we had same classes, to make a "deposit" at the sperm bank - and collect his 50$ for his donation....He did say, "I'm 6'2", 225, good-looking, with blond hair, blue eyes, and a doctoral student. I'm in high demand, and I'll keep donating unless they stop me!" (c-r-i-n-g-e!!) It's quite likely he did this for the entire 4 years, too...)

    I find it interesting that RE's are forthcoming to place an actual number on maximum cycles for DE donors, "for health precautions, etc.," yet they don't necessarily promote staying within those numbers for their patients attempting OE IVF...(I could be wrong about this - I just haven't heard any such precautions or guidelines given, yet I do know of so many who have done more than 6 or even 10 cycles...)

    While I do know that I will share about DE with my potential (hopeful!!) child, I do not know what the possible feelings/perceptions/concerns - nor potential problems and issues will really be, until we get there...We are on uncharted - and really, unsupported territory, as far as the parenting issues go, for children produced through DE/DS...What resonates the most with me for now, is the same story I hear from any/all recipients of DE that I've been so lucky to talk to...The story that always begins with: "he/she grew inside of me, and because of me, cell by cell...." --- and always ends with: "I don't look at him/her as anything but 'mine!'" I love that the maternal instinct is just so strong and guiding, over all, and I can only trust that the same will lead me in the best direction for my future child, in helping him/her to be the most secure in our love, and most comfortable in his/her skin - which is what we all want for our kids, regardless of the way in which we received them into our families!!

  10. The story that always begins with: "he/she grew inside of me, and because of me, cell by cell...." --- and always ends with: "I don't look at him/her as anything but 'mine!'" I love that the maternal instinct is just so strong and guiding, over all, and I can only trust that the same will lead me in the best direction for my future child, in helping him/her to be the most secure in our love, and most comfortable in his/her skin - which is what we all want for our kids, regardless of the way in which we received them into our families!!

    We're doing an open embryo adoption, and when the donor wife and I started talking, we discussed our expectations. I really didn't have any expectations that they would donate their embies to us b/c that decision is so personal on both sides. My expectations were really what was best for the embies and for the EA process, that's finding the good fit for the donors and recipients. I told her that for me EA is only the beginning for us, and it's not the end. Any decision that we make will be the best for the embies and our future children if we're lucky to have child(ren) from the adopted embies. My maternal instincts kicked in very early on in the process. The other day when I was talking to my RE, he said "These are your precious embryos..." He didn't refer our embryos to adopted embryos or donated embryos, just your precious embryos... It was really nice to hear it...

  11. The other day when I was talking to my RE, he said "These are your precious embryos..." He didn't refer our embryos to adopted embryos or donated embryos, just your precious embryos... It was really nice to hear it...

    Chritiyen - What a nice feeling that IS!! I could see/feel that very strong maternal instinct that was evident in your actions (and your fortitude and persistance) when you fought hard to ensure the safe and expeditious travel of your embies via the UPS (or FedEx, was it?) in one of your posts, previously...Isn't it just amazing what we are able to do, when that innate, animal instinct kicks in, for the protection and safety of our young?? And, like everything else in nature, that instinctual response exists on a grade, between individuals, be they maternal or paternal...I know of some who admittedly were "clueless," about ever feeling a maternal drive, until they held their own child in their hands. Thank God for the effect of hormones, in those cases! If I didn't say it to you, before, on these boards, I'll say it again: YOU WILL BE the BEST MOMMY any little embryo, infant, child, or teen could pray for. I don't want to see any more of your maternal instinct put to any further time delay -!! When is your transfer, Christyen? Did I read a post saying that you had delayed b/c of your lining? I want to know when you'll tx, so I can be sure and say a prayer for you!!

    I am nervously awaiting a conversation with my RE today, which is Day 3 for MY little embies....We have 8 thriving (using DE,) and I was so thrilled they "are all beautiful," as of yesterday. Now that my RE and I discussed my intent to do eSET, (he never asked me before!!) he became very somber and advised that perhaps it would be in my interest of minimizing chances for a m/c/failure, to perform PGD....I cringe at the thought of subjecting them to the disruption and stress of movement to yet another culture media, and then the actual biopsy....I am sooooo nervous about it, and wonder if I shoud just bear the chance of a m/c without the PGD, to select the "best" embie.....Christyen, I would love to hear what your thoughts on this might be....I would love to be so free as to throw 2 in, however I do know our family's limitations, and I truly don't want to encourage a possible hardship for all, with the prospect of multiples....Feel free to p/m me, if you choose!

  12. Oops! That was supposed to be a quote from skanavi - what'd I do wrong!?

  13. pitsa... Thank-you for the kind words. I just PM'd you.

  14. Just PM'd you back!! Thanks again~!

  15. pitsa, I don't know if you've already made a decision but since it is a young DE, why not wait until Day 5 to weed out some of them and then just transfer one. That way you won't traumatize any of the embies with the biopsy and if you freeze any they'll be stronger. Of course, this means more cost and another FET (or more if it doesn't work). However, you'd be paying something like $4k for the PGD anyway. Also, PGD only tests for some of the chromosomes, that cover about 80% of m/cs. On the other hand, PGD does offer gender identification and I'm not sure if clinics will let you pick or if they (or you) would think it would be unethical.

    You\'re probably in good shape no matter what you do since it is DE. Good luck!

  16. Curious - Thank you for your post! You offered excellent advice, as did skanavi, on the subject of PGD. Boy, what a mental, loaded "weapon," I found that test to be, but to update, I did decide to go with it. I just felt that I had not come all this way using DE, to start leaving stones unturned, as far as trying to learn as much information as possible on my prized, little embies. The test resulted in 7/8 embryos found "normal." I feel fortunate that none were damaged in the process, but to be honest, looking at those precious embryos the day of tx, I was made to wonder "what if," they were not subjected to the biopsy....we will never know whether quality of blasts was affected...Yes, I do have a good amt. of assurance (still not 100%,) after PGD, and yes, I did find it helpful (but not "necessary,") to know the sex of the embryos, but I have to say that the emotional agony of awaiting the night after the biopsy was performed - at this late point in the course of the DE cycle, was very tough to endure, and I still stand the chance that in the end, if a pg. is not achieved, I will be left to wonder about the ultimate affect PGD has on these embryos. I truly think that ultimately, as both you and skanavi had mentioned, the 5-day "push" in and of itself, is probably all the (natural selection) "pgd" that we need, in general, for DE IVF...

  17. pitsa, I'm so glad things went well for you! 7/8 normal, even for DE is terrific! I'm sure that will be plenty. It also lets you be a little more conservative when deciding how many to put in.

    Good luck with everything!

    C

  18. Thanks, Curious, for the support!! I can sure use any that I can get!!
    Yeah, my RE did say the same as you, about 7/8 normals being very optimum, even for DE...I heard it, but couldn't wrap my mind around it, as I really didn't know anything about PGD, odds, etc., going in to the decision to have it done...(Boy, does that sound "bad," of me - no wonder I stressed SO MUCH about making the call at the nth hour!!) ...I am sitting on this 2ww, and am very aware of having put all my eggs in one basket with the eSET...I am praying, trying to stay positive, --but as we all know, it's sure easier said than done--! Best, to you!

  19. Hi ladies,

    Can any of you share hotel information near SDFC? We are going for a DE cycle in early February. And does anyone know SDFC does day 3 or day 5 transfer? How many days for bed rest?

    Thanks.

  20. I lived in the hotel circle area, which is 20 minutes away from the clinic, but the price was very good! Others may chipped in with hotels in Del Mar, which is prime area and very close to the clinic. Usually, with DE, you have a higher chance to get more eggs, which subsequently have more embryos to grow to five days. But the embryoligist will report the development daily and let you know if it goes for day 3 or day 5 transferring.

    Good luck on your Feb cycle!

  21. I lived in the hotel circle area, which is 20 minutes away from the clinic, but the price was very good! Others may chipped in with hotels in Del Mar, which is prime area and very close to the clinic. Usually, with DE, you have a higher chance to get more eggs, which subsequently have more embryos to grow to five days. But the embryoligist will report the development daily and let you know if it goes for day 3 or day 5 transferring. SDFC recommended only 24 hours. But I spent 2 days on bed.

    Good luck on your Feb cycle!

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