When I need to cancel a cycle because of a poor ovarian response, I tell patients they have two choices: either to use donor eggs , or to consider adoption. Some will say, " The donor egg route is much better ,because at least this way it's my husband's sperm; I get to carry the pregnancy ; and I don't need to tell anyone what I've done because the name on the birth certificate will be my husband's and mine" . They are very comfortable with this option. Others will say, "I'd much rather adopt a baby. If I am not going to be able to provide my child with my DNA then it's much better to just make a fresh start , and take a kid who's already been born , rather than go through the entire process. After all, adoption has a much better success rate ... it's 100%. More importantly, this way I will be able to help bring up a kid who's already been born , rather than have to start from scratch all over again."
The reality is there is no one option which is better than the other. Both choices are equally good , and it's got to be your own heart which tells you which one is right for you. The truth is you can't debate these things logically. Ultimately, it's a question of what your gut tells you - what your feelings are, and what seems emotionally correct.
I'm not a big believer about the significance of whose DNA the baby has - I feel that it's your love which makes your child yours. I believe that nurture is far more important than nature, but this is just my personal opinion, and I don't want to hoist my views on my patients.
I need to make sure that my patients have thought through the pros and cons of both choices, and made a well-informed decision which they are comfortable with. Have they weighed all the possibilities?
I tell my patients to keep an open mind, and to explore both options in parallel. For example, if they are thinking about donor eggs, I tell them, "Please register your name with an adoption agency as well. You might find the adoption process is far better, and you may fall in love with a child. This means that's the better option for you. Or you may find that the process is too onerous and the waiting lists are too long ; and that you'd prefer the donor egg route, because you don't have to wait endlessly, and you can take control of the situation."
Ironically, when some patients decide that they're okay with adoption, they find it much easier to terms with using donor eggs to have a baby . The major advantage is that they don't have to contend with long wait lists, and don't have to get buy-in from other family members, or explain to anyone why they chose to adopt . The most important rule is that you need to figure out what's best for yourself.
Can you tell if the child in the photo above was adopted ? or a result of donor egg IVF ? And does it matter at all ?
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