As I have posted in the past….a long time ago, I and my husband had gone through the IVF treatment in order to get the family we so desired. We got the family we wanted. We LOVE our boys!
I thought I signed a form telling the fertility center where I had the IVF done to donate them if I don’t use them within 2 years. Apparently, this was forgotten because last year (5 years after the birth of our boys), I was contacted by the fertility center asking me what I wanted to do with them or I’d have to pay for storage. There were options for me to consider.
- Destroy them
- Destroy some of them and store the rest
- Donate them to science
- Continue to store them for later use
- Embryo donation
- Embryo adoption.
I didn’t want to just destroy them. I worked too hard to get them, I’d hate to just throw them away. What a waste (to me, not meaning to put anyone else’s personal feelings down)! I also didn’t see the point in destroying some and then still having to pay for the storage or make a different decision for the rest.
I considered giving them to science. If I were to destroy them, why not at least do something good with them.
I didn’t want to store them anymore, because I know I won’t be using them again. I’m complete with the two boys I have now. My husband is also satisfied and no longer wants any more kids.
Donation and adoption were my favorite choices. I considered donation. I’d give them to a facility who would them transplant them to someone that wants a family. I’d never know anything about it nor have to pay for anything.
Adoption was another option. My fertility center said they’d hold them for free with this option while the embryos were being considered for a family. I also get to be a part of the choosing and the adoption would be considered an open adoption. It’s treated as if it were a live birth, but the adoptive family is aware that the transfer might not take and it is not my responsibility.
I know adoption is the hardest. With donation, the adoptive couple knows only a little about our appearance and a brief history and medical history. We, in return, know nothing about where the embryos go and to whom they were transferred to. THe potential child also will not know much about us as he or she grows up and is likely left with many questions of how they came to be. All very similar to a closed adoption setting. With open adoption, the couple gets a much more detailed history of our lives and our medical history. They have the option to deny our embryos and move on to another family if they don’t like what they see or hear. We, as the biological family, also has the right to deny a potential couple who wants to consider using our embryos if we don’t like their profile either. There also has to be a match in priorities and the amount of communication between us. They are required to write the adoption agency once a year with a picture to update them. That record, we have access to if we want. Any further communication has to be agreed upon when going through the adoption. For example, if I want monthly letters, pictures, phone calls, and a yearly visit, the adoptive parents have to agree to that. I don’t want that actually, but you get the point. I am looking for communication of either email or letters with pictures at least a few times a year. No face-to-face until age 16 (though I’m flexible with that, DH is not. I’d consider earlier if the child wishes to meet me before 16). I’d also consider phone communication, but it’s not a requirement for the adoption.
The next step after the paperwork is complete is my interview with the director. This is to confirm my priorities and communication requirements before setting up matches. I have completed the interview at this point. The interview was brief and the director was very friendly. She liked what priorities I had with support first. I also was accepting young couples with no strict priorities, such as religion restrictions, and left communication fairly open which made me a good candidate for a match. I also had a lot of healthy embryos which was a major plus. The director told me that I could expect to see profiles soon, but it could take up to a few months before I see any.
HOLY POOP BATMAN! The following day I got a profile! That was fast!! The profile was of a young couple who lived in a big city. One I am very familiar with, but I had not visited their specific location before. I like this couple. We both think this will be a good match. We had hoped to find a couple in the suburbs somewhere….you know, the white picket fence with little blue birdies floating around singing fairy tale songs. Everyone’s dream of the perfect family setting. I would hardly call a city the perfect family setting, but these people are virtually perfect according to their profile. They are young professionals who have tried to start a family for about 5 years now with no success. I’ve been there. I know how that feels! I grew up in a big city. I turned out OK. I didn’t have many friends and I was an introvert, so I can’t say I can relate to those who love the city life, but it works for some. We are waiting for some questions to be answered such as more information about what their plans are for young kids in a city setting and what are their expectations for communicating with us during all this. We like what we see and read so far. I hope this turns out!
This whole thing has become so real to me. I’m excited! I feel completely good about this decision. I only hope that my embryos do make a family happy if not this one we are currently considering. I went through so much and I too had to consider adoption but without the option to feel what it’s like to carry a pregnancy. I’m offering a couple that opportunity to grow a child and the feeling of what it’s like to grow their own family. Adopting a live child is wonderful. Heck, I was adopted as was my husband. This is just another step further into parenthood. A great compromise from having your own flesh and blood child and adopting a live baby from someone else. I also thought it was good to give the embryos the opportunity to live. If they don’t, then I tried. I know I’m doing the right thing. It’s just a scary thing to realize that a child with my DH’s and my genes is out there somewhere. Open adoption at least allows me a window into that child’s life and lines of communication are open in case that child and family needs a reminder they they have a connection to a family beyond their own family. That child would not be my child, but the connection can be very important to them. I know that because I’ve been there. I had a closed adoption, and I had SO many questions that could not be answered. I never doubted who my family was. I didn’t want anyone else, but it would have been nice to have an idea of where I came from, who I was, and why I was adopted before I became an adult when that information would have truly helped me.
Sorry this was long. I have a lot on my mind. Tomorrow is a big day. Any matches after that could take a long time to come, but to know it’s getting started is a HUGE deal. Wish me luck! I hope I find a good family out there.