After months or possibly years of trying to conceive, learning that you can’t is often heartbreaking. You’ve spent so much time, energy, and perhaps even money – now you’re feeling emotionally drained. You aren’t alone; there are many caring, capable professionals available to help. Far from being the end of your dreams, this is a new beginning; it’s time to explore your other options. Two such options are egg donation and surrogacy. The best way to choose between egg donation and surrogacy is to arm yourself with knowledge and consider the various factors that affect which option is the right one for you.
One of the most important questions to consider is whether you would like to become pregnant once the egg has been donated or if you would like for someone else to carry the baby to term for you. If the experience of being pregnant and carrying your child is important, then egg donation might be the right solution. Egg donation is used mainly in instances where the woman cannot produce viable eggs. This may be due to several factors including ovarian defects, or after the removal of ovaries for other health reasons. If this is your only fertility issue, you may be able to – after fertilization in a lab – achieve pregnancy and carry your baby until birth. Egg donation gives you and your partner the opportunity to experience pregnancy and give birth to your child, which can be critical to many hopeful parents.
There are more options to consider when it comes to surrogacy, as you need to think about what’s best for yourself, your baby, and the surrogate. If you cannot (due to various genetic or other health concerns), or prefer not, to become pregnant surrogacy might be the right choice for you. There are two options to consider when using a surrogate: you might choose to use your eggs, if that is an option, or you may use a surrogate’s eggs. When searching for a surrogate, many couples ask friends or female family members; others use private agencies that pre-screen candidates. Businesses that provide these services allow the couple to choose from a pool of viable candidates. Or, you might even be able to recruit your surrogate independently.
Egg donation and surrogacy both involve in-vitro fertilization, but egg donation is a bit simpler of a medical procedure and process. Surrogacy requires more detailed legal contracts and, overall, higher expense. However, only you can decide what the right option is for you and your family’s unique situation.