To think using donor eggs is selfish

(157 Posts)
Dilemma81 Mon 30-Sep-13 10:28:25

I have had multiple miscarriages. I have been trying for a baby for over 5 years and the last ivf round has now failed. Although i’m in my early 30s, using an egg donor has been mentioned several times now because it seems my eggs are not good quality. Whilst I wouldn’t ever judge other people’s choices for using an egg donor, I have been up all night wondering about the ethics of going down this route for us. I don’t have religious beliefs so that’s not my problem. But is it selfish to go down this route? If I think about the child, how would they feel when they are a certain age to learn that I’m not their biological mother? Part of them would surely be missing and they surely would be wondering who they are. On the other hand, I’m desperate for my husband to be a dad and I know he would be up for the idea of donor eggs. But again, I keep thinking that nature is telling us something and perhaps it is wrong to try and defy it. Very interested to hear what people think.

AngelsLieToKeepControl Mon 30-Sep-13 10:30:08

I think you should get your title changed tbh, that is going to upset anyone who has used a donor egg.

GangstersLoveToDance Mon 30-Sep-13 10:31:45

Personally, I would use donor eggs if it meant the difference between oh having bio children or not.

As we are now (2dc) then should we want more children and be unable, I would prefer to adopt.

Essentially, having children is always a selfish act, however they come into the world.

CadleCrap Mon 30-Sep-13 10:32:57

So your DNA is not the same, who cares?

Did you love, cherish and do the best that you could for your child?
That is what counts IMO.

You would still be their mother. You would carry the baby, grow it, then love and care for him/her when born. The egg donor is not the biological mother, they are a very kind egg donor .

EST0106 Mon 30-Sep-13 10:34:47

I think it's about how you handle these situations and explain them to children. IMO children want to be in a loving home and aren't to interested in biology, as they get older I'm sure there will be questions but it's how you explain things that counts. Openness and transparency would be best I think. Having said that I have no experience of this sort of thing, other than adoption which is similar I guess. Are there any support groups/ people who've done it that could offer you advice? Good luck x

BOF Mon 30-Sep-13 10:35:36

I'm really sorry to hear about your miscarriages thanks. I think that posting this in AIBU with a provocative title (I assume for more replies?) is probably a bad idea though, as it is likely to upset other posters who have used donor eggs, and lots of posters won't read your OP properly and will just pile in to give you a kicking, so it will end up making you feel shit too. I'd honestly recommend that you report your post and ask MNHQ to repost this in another section with a less judgy-sounding title so you can get some support with your decision and a less fraught discussion. Good luck.

fluffyraggies Mon 30-Sep-13 10:35:39

Yes, i was going to come in all full of bluster based on the title.

OP this is something you need to work through before making a decision, obviously. With your DH.

All i can say (with no experience of IVF or egg donation, but with experience of struggling to ttc) is that personally i've never met a person who wishes they had never been born based on their parentage and origin.

There are sensitive ways to handle the question of 'where did i come from' when the time comes - as with adopted children, children from donated sperm etc.

BrokenSunglasses Mon 30-Sep-13 10:36:27

I don't think it's selfish. There doesn't have to be a child of a certain age suddenly finding out that you aren't biologically related, you can tell the child about it when they are still toddler age and accepting of anything. All young children learn a tiny bit about where babies come from as they have baby siblings or their friends do, and you can just build your minor difference into those conversations.

My mum is my mum because of the fact that she brought me up, not because we share DNA.

I also don't agree that nature is trying to tell you something. I think if you truly believed that then you wouldn't have gone for any type of IVF in the first place.

You need to talk about how you feel about using donor eggs with a counsellor that can help you identify and come to terms with the way you are feeling.

Methe Mon 30-Sep-13 10:37:31

It's a controversial topic isn't it. I don't think using donor eggs is selfish necessarily as long as they childs biological history is somehow traceable.

It's certainly less selfish than the way a lot of children are brought in to the world.

froken Mon 30-Sep-13 10:38:06

I am sorry for your losses sad

I don't think it is at all selfish to use doner eggs. The child may be curious about their genetic background but you will be the one who grew tge baby, you will teach him/her your values, they would probably be very like you in other ways. I have an adopted sibling who is so alike my dad, they have exactly the same posture and expressions.

I have a baby and there are occasional fleeting moments where I think he looks just like my grandma or he has my smile but mostly 99.9% of the time I just think about him as him.

If you didn't use tge doner eggs the child would never be born. Yes they may go through a stage where they are curious and they might wish they had a more conventional genetic history but ifeel the advantages ( being born) outweigh the disadvantages.

Good luck with the path you choose.

BarbarianMum Mon 30-Sep-13 10:38:26

No I don't think it's selfish.

What a child born this way will think of it will depend very much on what/how they are told and their personality but I think most will come to terms with it, esp. if they are able to gain at least some basic info about the egg donor post-18.

Imo I don't think one has to automatically pay attention to 'what nature is trying to say'. Nature tries to tell people their time is up from disease constantly. Modern medicine is for those who chose not to listen - hence we don't have high child mortality figures any more. Hence many people survive cancer.

Nature doesn't have an opinion, it's just a blunt instrument.

Using donor eggs may not be the right decision to you. But please make the decision that it right for you. Don't worry about what anyone else, or the universe, thinks about it.

Ninehoursahead Mon 30-Sep-13 10:39:32

I was a donor. That baby is not mine. I am not his mum. He has a mum who carried him for nine months and breastfed for 2 years (I am a known donor)
I don't think she is selfish for wanting to experience being pregnant and doing all the things that mums do.
It is also about being open and the child knowing where they came from. That conversation is a difficult one wherever they come from!
Have you been on Fertility Friends? there is lots of support there.

Kendodd Mon 30-Sep-13 10:40:16

One thing I don't really understand is the need some people feel that they must have a (bio) child of their own. To me adoption is just as good and not second best at all. The only negative thing I would say about adoption (for parent and child) is that you don't get they child as a tiny baby, but then we can't see the future and can't go around whipping peoples children away before they've done anything wrong.

ReallyTired Mon 30-Sep-13 10:42:19

I am sorry that you are suffering infertilty issues. However you are really going upset someone that title. Certainly the ethnics of IVF egg donation are a difficult area and prehaps you would benefit from proper councelling to decide whether egg donation is right for you and your family. I feel the "Am I being unreasonable" section of mumsnet is far too feral place for such a sensitive discussion.

How you feel about your baby not having your DNA is a personal view. For some people having a baby with someone else's ova will not relieve the pain of infertility. Prehaps you may be happier with the adoption route.

I don't think that "selfishness" comes into it. There is really no right or wrong answer on whether its OK to do egg donation or even IVF itself.

sugarman Mon 30-Sep-13 10:45:57

I think donor egg and all other fertility treatments are fantastic. A good friend had her beautiful donor egg daughter yesterday. She bought the egg in Thailand. So much joy.

Helpyourself Mon 30-Sep-13 10:46:04

Your post and title don't match- ask MN if you can change the title as you're asking a reasonable question and will get help thinking it through if you don't upset people with the title. Good Luck
flowers

digerd Mon 30-Sep-13 10:47:18

I don't think it is selfish. I wouldn't do it myself as the baby would not have any of my genes, so would not be any part of me or my parents.
There are pros and cons with everything in life. With decision making you have to first decide on your priorities.
Ethically, I have no problem as the giving of life to me is a precious gift.

SilverApples Mon 30-Sep-13 10:47:54

I've never been personally involved in any issues around infertility, so this is just a general observation.
I've always felt that being a parent was about the raising of that child in a loving and supportive family, Not about the conception.

sugarman Mon 30-Sep-13 10:48:04

Kendodd I didn't want to adopt. I was scared I couldn't love an adopted child as much as a biological one. And adoptions here have to be open which frankly sounded too complicated.

LadyBigtoes Mon 30-Sep-13 10:48:54

I think I would share you worries, but I haven't been in the position of having fertility problems, when I might feel very differently.

People use sperm donors, people even adopt a baby that is not their biological child at all. They are still parents.

I have friends who have used an egg donor and they have an amazing little girl now and are the most wonderful happy family. There are plenty of children out there who aren't fortunate enough to have parents who love and adore them and wanted them so much - I think that's probably more important.

LtEveDallas Mon 30-Sep-13 10:53:05

A mother is a mother no matter how the child came into being. It is how you are to that child, what you are and what you do. Biology doesn't come in to it.

colafrosties Mon 30-Sep-13 10:55:09

Hi OP, we used donor eggs as we were not able to use my own eggs for IVF, and were very lucky to have DS (now 3.5) from the treatment.

I did initially have concerns that we were somehow “going against nature” and that it might be unfair to a potential child to tell them that I wasn’t their genetic mother.

But once we got started on the treatment and now that we have DS, the fact that he came from a donor egg is just not a big deal. We will tell him as soon as seems appropriate and keep it as simple and positive as possible so he can take in the knowledge without it seeming “unusual”.

So, as long as you choose a good clinic which treats the donors well, I don’t think using donor eggs is selfish at all.

mistlethrush Mon 30-Sep-13 10:56:15

We struggled with TTC - and had agreed that, if things went 'wrong' again we would see if we were accepted to adopt a child.

FreudiansSlipper Mon 30-Sep-13 10:59:08

I do not think it is selfish but it is not as simple as saying the person who loved and bought you up is your parent and your biological parent does not matter for many it does. the need to know feels like a fundemental right for some others not

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