DS, what to tell potential child? (loss, m/c ment'd)

(8 posts)(5 voices)
  1. DH and I have been TTC 4+ years now, and have done the whole IVF with ICSI. ICSI fertilizes them just fine (only 1 out of 8 fertilized without it), and we have had dozens of eggs become embryos. But after 2 fresh IVF and 3 FETs (not to mention the IUIs and timed cycles in the beginning), we have had only 2 BFPs--one m/c at 7 weeks and the other was a chemical. IVF is not only really hard on my body (severe OHSS), but it's too expensive and we just can't do it again.

    We are close to the end of this journey, and have begun to think that if the IVFs aren't working maybe we could try DS w/ IUI. There are, of course, no guarantees with that either, but it would be our last ditch effort before stopping TTC completely.

    DH is okay with DS (we have actually chosen someone we know), but he wants to do a 50/50 split between his sperm and DS. That way we'll never know which one took. He wants to leave it at that, but I have thoughts about what to tell a child at some future point. DH is dead set against ever telling child anything, and feels that would not only drive a wedge between him and child, but would also be "rubbing his face in it." Obviously this is a very sensitive topic for him, and we're working through it. But it has been hard.

    Has anyone else done something similar? If so, what was your thought process? Is anyone further down the road and what is your experience?

    I really want to have a child, but I want to resolve any of these issues ahead of time for obvious reasons. And I do realize full well that with our history we may well be in exactly the same place we are now. But at least we would know we had tried everything we could.

    Thank you in advance for any thoughts.

  2. Kaye- we are considering the same thing- split cycle- i understand your DH's feelings- it is a hard one. But I am a believer in Murphy's law- my feelings are if you don't do what is best for your child eventually it will get found out- and then you are possibly dealing with a very bad situation. Not saying that some people haven't told- but I feel like I would be setting ourselves up for something much worse down the road. Ie- a medical issue that ultimately requires knowing about the donor sperm.

    It is similar to adoptive children- those who weren't told at a young age- information withheld until older- had much worse reactions- can put huge wedge's b/w families. I think the earlier a child knows, obviously age appropriate the better and less of a big "deal" it is.

    I am just throwing it out there- but- have you considered trying a surrogate? Use DH's sperm your egg- but try a different environment.

    We also have severe male factor issues- but DH seems okay with whatever we do- not sure if we will go ahead or just move on with adoption at this point.

  3. Surrogate is right out--no way we can afford it, and I don't think it's the issue anyway. We know that the m/c was chromosomal (trisomy 22), and assume the chem was as well. As far as my body being able to host a fetus, it did everything it was supposed to do. So it's most likely either his gametes or mine. (Or, a tiny part of me wonders, all that manipulation the poor little things go through in the whole ICSI/IVF process.)

    I think DH's point is, we wouldn't know, so there's no point in telling child. As far as genetics and history are concerned, we know the donor personally so we can find all of that out (he is perfectly okay being anonymous) for future questions.

    But I obviously have those same questions--what if it comes up down the road?

    Thanks for input--I've been reading many threads and it is definitely helping me process!

  4. Okay- well in some ways it is good to know what the cause of m/c was. I did not do a d&c, just vaginal suppositories at home and passed them. It probably would have been a good idea to karyotype, but I just didn't want anything else potentially scarring my uterus.

    I think donor sperm is scary in many ways- obviously a wonderful option- but I have alot of fears about doing it. I am going to find a "back up" donor so that when we find out in May what DH scsa is I already have that done. Still not sure if I will go through with it or not- really just depends how strong I am feeling emotionally by the time june cycle gets here. I am feeling more and more like I can go through another cycle with DH sperm- no matter what. I am also moving on with adoption process so no matter what hopefully I will be one step closer to a child.

    I was wondering- your clinic is okay with you 'knowing" your donor? What is there process of testing a person you have chosen?

    I think since you do know the person that really does help with alot of the unknowns. Hopefully, when you get PG and have baby - DH will come around as he realizes how strong his bond is with baby reguardless of genetics.

    Good luck.

  5. Kaye,
    The fact that your husband is - as you put it - dead set against telling any child that s/he may have been conceived by DS tells me he really isn't as comforable with it as he says. If he thinks it would be "rubbing his face in it," then there is (in my eyes, at least) still some hesitation on his part.
    We've considered doing a split cycle as well. However, while we might not necessarily know who the bio father is (DS or DH), DNA is a powerful thing and it is not necessarily going to go unknown forever. Also, your donor is not going to be an exact match - physically, intellectually, emotionally, or even medically - so there is some chance your child may wonder. Then will you lie and say DH is the father, even if he may not be? How would you get around the medical history questions at the doctor's office? Would you just never tell your child? I suppose these are things we must all think about (our reasons for doing a split cycle are because we would both like one last crack at the bat, while maximizing our efforts with the DS in the same cycle). But it seems to me if he is unwilling to even consider telling your child about the possibility that DS may be the actual bio father, he might not actually be ready.
    Jen hits the nail on the head in some respects with the comparison to adoption. In the adoption context, the general rule to follow is that you never want your child to remember the day you told him or her s/he was adopted. It should be part of the child's history and it should just be part of the story of your family - such that it isn't traumatic for them to "discover." I have to imagine it would drive a much deeper wedge between DH and your potential child not to tell the child and have him or her find out later in life.
    Speaking as someone with an adopted child, I can tell you that the father-son bond my husband has with our son is so strong and so deep, I can't imagine it being deeper simply because of blood. However, this is something your DH has to discover or realize for himself, and I just don't think he's there yet... Give him time. Perhaps he will come around.

  6. (child mentioned)

    I don't know if my post will help, but there doesn't seem to be a voice for anyone who has actually done DS. I had a very similar experience as you- multiple m/c, IVFs, FETs etc. etc. However in our case, it was determined that 100% of our issue was male factor, specifically dna fragmentation. We were finally at the end of our financial and emotional resources, and decided to go ahead and try an injectible cycle with DS. However, my Dh was totally on board. I got pregnant that first cycle and now have a beautiful son.

    I thought the fact my son is from donor would be a huge issue, but it isn't. You can't pick him as the donor child out of the playground, for example. We basically see him as half-adopted. We've already started the process of telling him his origins (he's 2). I did a lot of reading, and came to the conclusion that donor kids do better if they know early in their lives about their origins. It would be very difficult to tell my son that he is 100% normal and we are beyond proud of him, yet keep such a secret about his origins. I don't want him to ever feel he can't trust us to tell him the whole truth.

    As for paternity- the donor donated biological parts, not unlike a heart or kidney donor. He is not a father to our child. A father takes his son to school, teaches him how to ride a bike, sneaks him cookies, and loves him unconditionally. My husband is my son's father.

    It takes time to get to this point- it is a different path to parenthood.

  7. Just to follow up, DH and I have had many more conversations about this and we've sorted a few things out. He feels that if we bring it up over and over that the child was linked to someone else genetically (possibly), it may interfere with his bonding. When we talked further about it most likely coming up someday (because it will--DNA is probably going to be tested just like blood type is in H.S. by the time any potential kid gets there), DH was actually fine with it. In his eyes, none of us would know for sure till then. Once I realized he didn't want to lie or deliberately keep the information from the kid, I felt much better about it. Given the many things we have done to try and get here, I figure I'll be reading books about alternate fertility paths and have it be a normal part of life from the first. Then if the day comes when we do find out the genetics are different, there will at least be a background.

    It's not a perfect solution, and as usually happens with any big life decisions it's in progress. But as I said, I am feeling much much better that the idea is not that we will never breathe a word of it till our dying day. It's more, if and when it comes up, we'll deal with it openly and honestly.

    Thank you all so much for your input and experiences. It has helped me tremendously. I actually read some very old posts, some of them from a couple of men who had posted, and it gave me a great deal of insight as to what how my DH may see all of this. The very fact that he is encouraging us to go ahead with it (if necessary, still don't know) shows a level of love that makes me cry. It's very difficult for him, but it's something he is willing to struggle through because he knows how much being pregnant means to me. It's a pretty big sacrifice, and I honor him for it. I honor everyone who is going through this and finds the strength to do what is right for both themselves and their partner.

    We're all pretty amazing.

  8. Hi everyone...

    I'm still relatively new to this site, but hear some much courage,and strength in all of your stories.

    DH and I are going through a similar situation....we are considering DS, and possibly a split cycle. DH is afraid that the child won't bond or love him as much if he knows that Dh is not the bio father. He is struggling with the thought of telling everyone around us, and having them look at him through different eyes. It is a major blow to his ego, and self esteem.

    I, on the other hand, can't really imagine bringing a child into this world and keeping something like that from them. I also love DH and want his feelings to be validated.

    Such a tough spot to be in and so very unfair, however, your words give me renewed strength.

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