The above quote is one that I have heard from countless families as they were preparing to donate their embryos. As these donor families are in the process of donating their embryos, they reflect that receiving embryos was never presented to them as an option when they considered pursuing in vitro fertilization for their family building plan.
This thought is not spoken with regret, but rather as an observation how the embryo donor process has evolved. Families today that desire to give birth to their adopted child have the wonderful option of receiving embryos that compassionate donors are offering. It is a great option to give life to embryos that remain in frozen storage and are willingly donated by the family that created them.
While the process of embryo donation and adoption occurs in the sanctuary of a medical facility, the decision to donate emanates from the heart of couples who have remaining embryos in storage. The two families involved may never meet or they may choose to have an open relationship. Many donor families report that, even though they do not know nor have an open relationship with the recipients, that they think of the family that received their donated embryos many times.
On several occasions, I have called donors to share with them that the recipient family did not become pregnant with their donated embryos. I was humbled by the way that these generous families grieved for the family for whom embryo donation and adoption was not successful. The donor family had experienced disappointment as they traveled through infertility and they well knew the grief and loss that the recipient family was experiencing.
Embryo donation is a wonderful way to build a family. Through the generosity of one family, a new family is joyously created.