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How to Choose an Egg Donor, Part Two

Looking back, I never saw myself having to choose an egg donor to help me conceive. So to be faced with choosing a donor for a second time was something completely foreign to me. I always knew the potential was there, but it was something I didn’t think I needed to think about.

The first donor I chose for my cycle last October was remarkably similar to me, only prettier. And skinnier. With a better skin tone. OK, she was better version of me. And don’t we want our children to have it better than us? She was unproven, meaning her eggs were going to be used for the first time by yours truly. Still, why would I have any doubt about the quality of her eggs? One in eight women will have difficulty conceiving. She statistically should have been one of the other eight. I chose her because our child would have looked like our biological one should have.

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Apparently though, her eggs ended up having a bit of a difficult time waking up from the thaw, as we wound up with only two embryos out of eight. Of those, one was a stage behind and the other was two stages behind. My newly diagnosed MTHFR mutation may have played a part in losing those two embryos to a miscarriage, but we were warned in the kindest way possible from our doctor that if the cycle didn’t work, it was not related to me, it was due to the quality of the donor’s eggs.

We were back to square one, needing to once again choose the other half of our future baby’s genetics.

Obviously, the cycle didn’t pan out. We were back to square one, needing to once again choose the other half of our future baby’s genetics. Last week, I emailed the donor coordinator, telling her we needed to pull out all of the stops and only choose from the list of the best candidates. As the movie "Mean Girls" is said to be quotable in any situation in life: We needed the Regina George of all egg donors.

“Well, that depends on what characteristics you’re looking for,” the coordinator replied back. “Why don’t you look at the list of donors and let me know what characteristics you’d like and I can tell you if they are popular or not.”

I wanted to scream my frustration through the laptop screen, ticking off on my fingers in sequence: “Preferably Caucasian.” Tick. “Has successfully donated the most.” Tick. Those were my characteristics. I am not against a donor of a different race, but I want the child that I birth to resemble my natural child as much as possible. But I muttered to myself under my breath, and started picking through the large list of donor profiles to email her.

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Eventually, I settled on a rather daunting handful that the coordinator confirmed had successfully gotten other women pregnant and, after multiple conversations, both with my friend as well as with myself, I placed my request form. The donor I picked doesn’t really look like me, but her profile was minimal for concerning health conditions and I chose her feeling good about my selection, which is what the whole goal of this was. Most importantly though, she was a proven donor, and it brings me one step closer to a baby.

Image via Wikimedia

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