For many people trying to have a baby in their late 30’s and early 40’s, the journey can involve a few unexpected twists and turns. The journey might involve multiple IUI and IVF cycles and eventually result in exploration of using an egg or sperm donor or gestational carrier or surrogate.
If you or someone you know is considering choosing donor conception, here are just a few of the questions to think about before moving forward with the process:
Each individual and couple will unique reasons for considering donor egg conception and a unique situation. There is no societal template to follow for these situations.
With my own experience of conceiving via donor egg, I chose to be very transparent and public and to honor my pregnancy with a beautiful pregnancy photoshoot that included my egg donor. I have always been very transparent about my fertility journey, and when my children are old enough to understand, I will explain it to them. The relationship between intended parents and an egg donor is an intimate one, even if the egg donor is anonymous. There are no rules about what that relationship should look like.
If the best option is to choose a gestational carrier or traditional surrogate, then this can create additional questions that need to be addressed. In fact, you might even wonder why someone would choose to be a surrogate in the first place. Some women genuinely enjoy being pregnant, in addition to the joy of being able to help another family in need to expand.
Watch this video to learn more about donor egg and surrogacy!
There is no right or wrong answer to navigating these waters. It is a very personal experience and can be as private or public as you feel comfortable with.
Here are a few resources from the Babies After 35 blog to help you if you are on this journey:
Shannon M. Clark, MD, MMS is a double board certified ObGyn and Maternal-Fetal Medicine Specialist, and founder of Babies After 35. In her roles as a clinician, educator and researcher at UTMB-Galveston, she focuses on the care of people with maternal and/or fetal complications of pregnancy. Dr. Clark has taken a special interest in pregnancy after the age of 35, which according to age alone, is considered a high-risk pregnancy.
Check out the products for TTC through parenthood in the Babies After 35 Amazon shop, online courses and other services that come "Dr. Clark-approved"!Check out my favorite things