The egg bank and our clinic armed us with a whole lot of information this past week. The obvious stuff like how to register and the financing arrangements, but also they provided a pamphlet on ‘how to choose a donor’.
This was surprisingly helpful. I very naively believed that it would be pretty straight forward for me. Just find someone that has similar physical features (height, weight etc.), good genetics and boom we’re off. But as I go through the database I am finding that physical characteristics are actually lower on my list, and education and personality feature much higher on my wish list along with genetic predispositions. Of course, DH has a totally different view and places physical characteristics high on his priority list. It definitely is not an easy process.
The pamphlet did help clear up a few misconceptions for me. For example, along with the donors physical characteristics it is important to look at the family as a whole for their characteristics e.g. are all the siblings short or tall? Blonde or brunette etc. It also noted that level of education is not necessarily an indication of the intelligence of a donor, life situations may not allow some to pursue higher education and I shouldn’t discount a potential donor for not getting a bachelors degree. I also liked the emphasis that this should be a positive process, so that when we do tell any future child about their conception, they will feel like they were carefully chosen by us.
The one thing that stood out to me was the reference to this article. Essentially, a recent study demonstrated that even with use of a DE, a future mother will secrete molecules in her uterus that can modify the genetic information of the future child!
This is mind blowing to me. It basically changes what I fundamentally believed about egg donation and genetics. How did I not know about this before? Why don’t people tell you these things when discussing egg donation? I feel like this is important information especially when a person with DOR is being told they will never be able to use their own eggs to get pregnant. Despite the fact that I may say that genetics doesn’t matter, it does. It reinforces my decision to try DE IVF over adoption. And having this little bit of hope changes things.
Obviously I don’t expect to see a little mini-me pop out of my uterus any time soon. But if things work out, it will be nice to be able to hear people say ‘oh she (in my mind it is always a girl) has your …’ and not think: nope, shes from a DE, so whatever it is, she didn’t get it from me.
Regardless, this new information has me a little more excited about the whole selecting an egg donor process and I guess having a bit of hope is a good thing at this time.
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