Recently we had a Q & A session with a recipient and thought we would share it with you:
Tell us a little about your family:
My husband Paul and I are in our mid thirties and have been married for 12.5 years. We have two gorgeous children - our son, James, aged 3, and our daughter, Hannah, who is 3 weeks old. After a long struggle with infertility, both of our children were conceived using donor embryos. James and Hannah are full genetic siblings from the same batch of embryos.
What advice would you give to others looking to become a recipient?
Be open and honest. Our journey to parenthood hasn’t been easy, however, we’ve found that being open and honest has been key in us achieving our family. We’ve been open and honest with our family and friends about our journey and how we’ve conceived our children; open and honest with our donors about any concerns, desires, preferences, etc. about the donation and our ongoing relationship with them; and open and honest with our children about how they came to be. Allowing the people close to us know about our situation has meant they’ve always been there to support us and care for us through the emotional roller coaster ride along the way. Being open and honest with our donors has meant we’ve been able to establish a relationship with them that works for all of us without fear of upsetting one another when we’ve asked one another questions and talked about our preferences for communication, ongoing contact, any worries or concerns we’ve had, etc. Openly and intentionally telling our children the story of how they came to be from the moment they were born, we hope, will mean they will always just think of embryo donation as another normal way families have children and that they will grow up always knowing how much they were wanted and how much they are loved by all of us.
How did you find your donors?
We found our donors through the Embryo Donation Network’s classifieds page. We placed an ad on their page and about 4 months later were contacted by our donors.
Do you have ongoing communication with your donor?
Yes, we have a great open relationship with our donors. We chat regularly over the phone and via text message and catch up in person about twice a year. It was important for all of us that our children would always know about their origins and have the opportunity to know their genetic donors and siblings. It’s great watching all of our children playing together and the wonderful friendship we’ve established with our donors is a wonderful bonus blessing we didn’t expect when we started out on this journey.