I wanted to start this thread to hear from any ladies who have experienced the incredible gift of a donor egg to create their family. I am very interested in the decision making process of choosing a known donor so that the child can trace their heritage in the future if they choose to - versus - completely anonymous donation with no chance of tracing the biological mother in the future.
I imagine that anyone who has walked this path has considered the pros and cons of both options and weighed that up against the practicalities of receiving a donor egg here in Australia - in comparison to the ease of overseas anonymous options. Costs also factor in, and whether you would like no contact, minimal contact or lots of contact if you chose to head the known donor path.
This is not a thread to determine whether one path is better than the other, but I wanted to open a safe space where donor recipients could share their thought processes that led them to heading one direction or another. I would love to know what helped to make that decision? Did you discuss it with friends, family or a counselor? If it is an anonymous donation are you keeping that a secret from your child and never telling them the truth, or are you letting them know very early on that they are a donor egg baby but never have a chance of tracing their egg donor mumma? Did you think through the potential repercussions of the different options and if you chose anon, do you have strategies in place to support a child who is desperate to find out their identity but can't?
The reason I am posting this thread is that I always believed that a known donor was a priority for me, as I wanted to try and preempt any issues for my child in the future and make things as easy as possible for them if they wanted to trace their egg donor mother. As it is turning out though, the best option for us at the moment is a very strictly anonymous donation overseas, and my DH and I have to decide if we can live with our child never being able to find out about their heritage. We wouldn't keep it a secret, so we would need a clear plan of how to handle that situation.
My counselor shared that from her professional experience, no child ever believes that their parents did a fantastic job of raising them ( no matter how good they were!) and that you cannot preempt if this will be an issue for the child. She said there is usually something that a child will find wrong about their upbringing and you can never know quite what that will be. So her advise was to make our choices, and then be honest and loving and what will be, will be.
I know there is a vast range of emotions in children that have been conceived through donation - from the identity crisis ruining their life, to others not caring a bit and saying that their Mum and Dad are their Mum and Dad and that's it. I know epigenetics plays a big role too, and that the child is genuinely a "three-way baby" with some influence from the recipient Mum, so it's not like the child is completely without connection to their Mum.
I might be over-thinking it too much but I would love to hear from others about how they made their decision, the way they have made peace with it, what was important to them in the process, and the conclusions they've come to about it all.
My DH said last night to stop worrying - that in twenty years time they'll be doing such radical things with "designer babies" that what we do now will be a big nothing by then and likely not even cause a blip on the radar of the child. Which is possibly true too!
This is not a judgement thread, but a space to share your thoughts and feelings about being the Mum of a donor egg baby and how you dealt with it and plan to deal with it in the future with your child. Thanks in advance for your comments, thoughts and experiences.