Tough Decision, feedback welcome


#1

My DH and I have been married 14+ years, and as he reminds me, have spent a vast majority of it trying to start a family. After many years of treatments including IVF without success we adopted our (now) 4yo son at birth. He is such a joy!! But I have a strong desire to have a second child, and an even stronger desire (which i’m sure many will understand) to experience pregnancy. I would like to try embryo adoption, but DH is concerned about us having a newborn (we are both 40). He doesn’t want to “Start over” at our age, but is willing to consider adopting a child that is between 1yo -3yo.
So I am considering embryo adoption (so that I can experience pregnancy) and then allowing the child to be adopted…I know this will be difficult for many to understand… and I’m still trying to decide if it is the right decision for me.
If anyone has experienced surrogacy, their feedback would be especially welcome, because of the parallels.


#2

Are you certain that you would be able to give your baby up for adoption following pregnancy? I would think this would be a very difficult thing especially given your TTC history. Is there anyway your husband would come around and could agree to try again? 40 is not so old to be starting again. I’m biased in that I’m 39 and still trying for #1, but I’ve seen so many couples with newborns at our age.

I’m sorry I didn’t really answer your question, but that is my 2 cents.


#3

Wow, that’s a really hard decision to make. If you are able to do this, you will be giving someone a wonderful gift but will they let you adopt an embryo if you’re going to give the baby up anyway? I’m from Australia so I’m not 100% sure how it works over there. If it was me, there’s no way I’d be able to give the baby up after carrying and bonding with it for 9 months and I think you’ll find it hard too because you obviously want a second child. I wouldn’t do it. It has the potential to wreck your marriage. If you do get attached (you will with all the movement and hiccups and ultrasounds, you can’t help it) and your husband still doesn’t want a baby by the end of the pregnancy what will happen then? Are you willing to still hand over the child and hold no resentment toward your dh or would he submit to you and keep it with no resentment. It’s not likely. I completely understand about you wanting to experience pregnancy and I’m all for embryo adoption but in your case, I wouldn’t do it just to give the baby away at the end, try and get your dh on board to keep it or adopt the second child first so you feel like your family is already complete then be a surrogate for someone. That may make it easier. I hope you both come to an agreement that you’re happy with. Wishing you all the best. xoxoxo


#4

More thoughts…

I realize (on an intellectual level) of course that it would be difficult to “give a child up” for adoption, but birthmothers do it every day.
Is it different because they may not have the financial or emotional means to raise a child, and I do? Will society “frown” on choosing adoption for reasons other than the 2 listed above?? Is it only okay to choose adoption if you are poor and/or young?
Having never experienced pregnancy, I know I cannot say for certain that I could allow the child to be adopted by another couple…my mind says I could do it, but I realize the heart is a whole different thing…


#5

Thanks ladies for the feedback, i believe it will help me to hear opinions from a variety of different people, in different situations, to look at this objectively.

For the record, DH has said “I will not say “no” to you trying the embryo adoption”, though he has mentioned several things about it that he does not like (our ages, starting the newborn thing all over again, delaying our retirement, and the costs involved, when we continue to have some credit card debt). He has given me the green light, so to speak, but obviously has reservations. As much as I want to experience pregnancy and have another child, I would not want to bring a child into our house if it isn’t what we BOTH want…


#6

[quote=RNHokie]I realize (on an intellectual level) of course that it would be difficult to “give a child up” for adoption, but birthmothers do it every day.
Is it different because they may not have the financial or emotional means to raise a child, and I do? Will society “frown” on choosing adoption for reasons other than the 2 listed above?? Is it only okay to choose adoption if you are poor and/or young?
Having never experienced pregnancy, I know I cannot say for certain that I could allow the child to be adopted by another couple…my mind says I could do it, but I realize the heart is a whole different thing…[/quote]

RnHokie, I don’t necessarily think that society will frown on you for choosing adoption for reasons other than the 2 you listed. I think birthmothers make an adoption plan for so many different reasons. As someone with uterine issues who is moving on to adoption I understand your desire to experience pregnancy. I wish you luck in whatever you decide.


#7

RNHokie, this is just my personal opinion of course and you and your DH have to make the final say in any of this but I think that the the childs well being and emotions should really be thought about first and foremost. It’s hard enough on adopted children as it is to be “different” than other kids with bio families. To know that their birthmothers were too young ect…But then to add in the fact that they were a donated embryo (in their minds left over and not wanted). Then to have someone want them only to experience pregnancy then to give them up for adoption. That is alot of rejection for any child. I personally think that it would really mess them up emotionally in the long run. Adoption is a blessing and not anything to be handed out lightly. I’m so sorry to say this but I think it is selfish on your part. You are only thinking about your feelings. Trust me I want to experience pregnacy too but I may never be able too and I have to live with it and be okay wit it. I hope you make the right choice and good luck with your journey.


#8

Hi
Since you did ask for feedback. I think you and your husband really need some professional guidance/help on this. To want to just experience pregnancy without keeping a baby… I don’t get it.

You could always be a surrogate if that is truly a need you do have. I agree with the above poster, don’t take away good donor embryos from someone who wants that baby from the beginning to the end.


#9

There are a lot of unanswered variables here. Were you unable to get pregnant because an embryo wouldn’t implant? If that, or anything even remotely similar to that is the case, then you wouldn’t even qualify for a donor embryo. If your embryos were never viable, but you’re 100% capable of carrying a baby to term, why not be a surrogate?

While its a harsh reality, I do agree with the previous posters that I believe it would be unfair for you to remove an adoptable embryo from the possibility of going to a family that wants to make a lifetime commitment to it. Especially while surrogates are also in short supply.

I definitely suggest finding out if this is even medically or legally possible, and if it is, then some serious professional counseling before making a decision.


#10

toughy

I agree that this is an extremely tough decision…I do not see an issue with you being a surrogate. I do not see you as ‘taking viable embroys from the embryo pool’ when there are so many cryogenically frozen embryos out there. I would be amazed that you could give the child up, but I do not know you on a personal level. You would ultimately be giving a family the gift of a lifetime (for those of us who are unable to conceive and carry a child). I would find a family who is up for it, but also knows that in the end you may ultimately change your mind when this angel is born.


#11

Since you are still in the thinking about it stages and gathering information I just wanted to come back and say that one of the qualifications for surrogacy that i’ve seen is that one must have given birth previously. Of course, this doesn’t mean you couldn’t do a surrogacy for friend or family member. I agree with the others though that perhaps a professional counselor would be best in working through this issue.


#12

[quote=RNHokie]I realize (on an intellectual level) of course that it would be difficult to “give a child up” for adoption, but birthmothers do it every day.
Is it different because they may not have the financial or emotional means to raise a child, and I do? Will society “frown” on choosing adoption for reasons other than the 2 listed above?? Is it only okay to choose adoption if you are poor and/or young?
Having never experienced pregnancy, I know I cannot say for certain that I could allow the child to be adopted by another couple…my mind says I could do it, but I realize the heart is a whole different thing…[/quote]

Honestly… I am an adoptive mom as well as a birth mom. And I see the struggles my daughter faces daily because she’s adopted. And she’s only 3. (Long story as to why she knows so much about her adoption at 3, let’s just say it wasn’t something we were going to talk about in depth yet, someone else spoke to her). I realize that if you adopted an embryo it wouldn’t be biologically yours, however… seeing how much my daughter struggles, I know that one day she will have many many questions for me. And I will answer them honestly. If I honestly had to say that her birth mother (I realize not biological) gave her up for adoption because she wanted to know what it was like to be pregnant… it would be a struggle for her. I’m not trying to say that in a mean way, but it really would hurt her.

As a birth mother myself, I know how special it was as well to be pregnant. How the bond begins the minute the strip turns pink. Having been TTC for 10 years, it’s not something I’d be able to do. You may also want to look into - if you’ve had infertility they probably won’t consider you a good candidate for surrogacy. When I’ve looked into it they want women who have given birth before. Usually it can’t be your first child.

If you did go through with it, it would be a huge blessing for a family - one that you’ve experienced yourself. However, the emotional part of it is not easy… good luck to you, whatever your decision!


#13

Thanks for the feedback…

“I hope there’s a strict vetting process for embryo adoption that weeds out people such as this.”

While I requested, and appreciate, feedback regarding this situation, I believe the above statement is overly critical and judgemental.

To choose who can carry a pregnancy, or parent a child, based on your own values and beliefs is a frightening concept.

Many of you did provide ideas and concerns that provoked some thoughtful consideration, thank you for that. Especially to those who looked at this idea from the perspective of the unborn child, that really gave me pause…
The harshest reality was facing the possibility that my motive is selfish… but it needed to be said.

We tried IVF 3 times, and surrogacy once using our embryos and my sister (who delivered a baby before and after the surrogacy attempt), none of which resulted in a pregnancy. Current thought is that it was the quality of our embryos and not my uterus that prevented pregnancy, so embryo adoption is a realistic alternative. I have located a physician’s office to perform the embryo adoption, the embryos are donated anonymously. It sounds as if surrogacy would not be an option based on the feedback, because I have never been pregnant. A lot to think about…


#14

For someone who has struggled with IF and WANTS to have another child, I cannot imagine the pain it would cause to allow that baby to be adopted. I think maybe you are letting your intense desire to be pregnant (totally understandable, most of us have it) cloud your judgment about what you can and cannot go through emotionally. I hope you find peace and are able to resolve your feelings in some way. :grouphug:


#15

As a mother through international adoption and embryo adoption I really don’t see this as a good idea. I think that part of the process of infertility is mourning the loss of your biological children and mourning the loss of the desire to expirience pregnancy. I think that these are important things to mourn before adoption takes place. When we discovered that we could not have biological children it was a huge blow and shock. I deeply mourned that and I completely let go of the want and desire to be pregnant. I believe this enabled me to completly bond with my son from Guatemala. He is mine and I love him more than anyone can even imagine. I firmly believe that God lead us to him in Guatemala.
Well, Guatemala closed for adoption and we wanted our son to have siblings. I discoverd embryo adoption and we decided to give it a shot, not because I wanted to be pregnant but because we wanted to expand our family and again we believe that God lead us there. We were going to try it twice and if it didn’t work that would mean that we were only suppose to have our son. Well, it worked and the twins are my children and I couldn’t imagine giving them into adoption. Even though I don’t know you, I don’t think you could do it either.
My advise is mourn the loss of never being pregnant and see what happens after that.
I really don’t think that any RE would agree to what you are concidering. Just from all the forms that we had to fill out it clearly said that the children born were ours and we are their parents.
I also agree with the PP that said imagine what the child would have to think about when they discovered their beginnings. It is just not a good idea in my opinion.


#16

[quote=RNHokie]My DH and I have been married 14+ years, and as he reminds me, have spent a vast majority of it trying to start a family. After many years of treatments including IVF without success we adopted our (now) 4yo son at birth. He is such a joy!! But I have a strong desire to have a second child, and an even stronger desire (which i’m sure many will understand) to experience pregnancy. I would like to try embryo adoption, but DH is concerned about us having a newborn (we are both 40). He doesn’t want to “Start over” at our age, but is willing to consider adopting a child that is between 1yo -3yo.
So I am considering embryo adoption (so that I can experience pregnancy) and then allowing the child to be adopted…I know this will be difficult for many to understand… and I’m still trying to decide if it is the right decision for me.
If anyone has experienced surrogacy, their feedback would be especially welcome, because of the parallels.[/quote] You say you would like another child. You have never been pregnant AND your husband would consider adopting a 1 (to three) year old. My first thought (I mean this kindly) was, 'why would you adopt a 1 year old when you could have a baby yourself?'
I teach high school. I have seen MANY young girls get pregnant. Many of them consider adoption but MOST of them keep the baby. My point being, that you fall in love with your baby over the process of being pregnant. Having deep feelings of wanting a second child; sounds like you want to use this as a way to get pregnant and then convince your husband to change his mind.
I have been waiting to adopt a child from the fost-adopt program for a year (tried for fours years). It would irritate me to find out that someone was adopting from the pool I am in, who could have had her own. A two year wait is not uncommon.
I don’t mean to be harsh. I am trying to be the ‘girlfriend’ that tells you how she sees it (but you love her anyway because that’s how she is).
Oh, and we are both 40 also. It is going to be hard, but we can handle it. We will just keep telling ourselves that ‘it is just a stage.’ They will sleep through the night in 6 weeks, 7 weeks, etc…


#17

Having gone through the emotional pain of ttc for the past 3 years in addition to the last 6 months of a roller coaster with IF, I have to say I really can not grasp your thought process. Quite frankly, I dont see the difference between a newborn child or a 1-3 year old. Either way, you have to adjust to the child and its initial schedule. Its not like a puppy that comes potty trained and ready to go to be a proper child.

If you want to have a child, have never been pregnant and can adopt an embryo and carry the baby to term, by all means KEEP IT! Why would you go through all of this and then have the baby taken away just so that you can have a toddler? I am not sure how much money you have, but it seems not only illogical financially, but also emotionally. You are having a baby to exchange it eventually with a toddler. Something is not right here. I see not only an ethical, but also moral issue here.

You can have one or the other, but you cant pick and choose who’s life you’ll ruin and who’s life you’ll safe. One wrong doesn’t make the other decision right.

You should seriously reconsider your stance on this. If you want a child, carry it to term and KEEP IT.


#18

I definitely can say your idea is a different one. I don’t feel the way the other ladies here do and won’t jump down your throat for the idea. I do agree that once you carry the baby, you’d find it hard to place the baby for adoption. If you were able go through with the adoption, I don’t think the baby would necessarily grow up with low self esteem or feeling unwanted. It would be the adoptive parents job to explain the whole situation to them in a positive light. As an adoptive parent, I am honest with my son but also explain to him that we are his parents and we wanted him so badly that we went through many many extra hoops to get him. I would explain the same to a child that was adopted from a birth mom that used donor embryos. It would mean that the baby was meant to be with the adoptive parents even more. I also don’t agree with the statements about taking donor embryos from the pool for parents who want to keep the baby. There are so many embryos out there that it’s not like there is a limited supply. The wait list is much less at most dr. offices than getting on a wait list for adoption. Like I said before, it’s definitely a different idea but if it works for you and can legally be done, then I don’t see the big fuss. As for the legal aspect, by using donor embryos and signing that paperwork, yes it does say that you would be the legal parents but that means that by you being the legal parent, you could place the baby for adoption. I don’t really see why it would be the RE’s business to whether you were placing the baby up for adoption or not. His job is to get you pregnant. As for the cost aspect… I don’t know how this would work out for you if you’re trying to watch your budget. You’d have to pay for the donor embryo and procedure and then if you adopted an older child, the cost of that adoption. If money isn’t that big of a deal, then that won’t matter all that much. I think it could be a really great way for you to experience pregnancy yet also allow another couple who does want a newborn to experience their dream as well. It doesn’t seem like a horrible plan to me but do worry that you’d not be able to place the baby for adoption once you experienced the pregnancy. BOL with whatever you decide!


#19

[B]I really agree with all of you except for rnhokie…actually hearing this makes me mad…I’m currently pregnant and being in your situation I wouldn’t dream of doing it just to feel pregnancy , to see the sonograms, to feel it move and respond when it hears me , to struggle the pain of giving birth and then hand it over just like that…did you talk to your husband? Does he agree with all this? I suggest you find some help as soon as possible![/B]


#20

Sorry didn’t read through all the posts… Are you looking to give your & DH’s baby up after you deliver, or looking to be a surrogate? I experienced infertility for years, and although I have moved on (for the moment–dh is fixed and I’m broke, and we have our hands full planning a wedding)…I have considered being a surrogate to help others who couldn’t conceive, since I’ve been there, I think it would be a selfless thing to help someone else. I personally would be attached though, and want to at leastbe around for updates and pictures of how the baby is doing… My own mom is very selfless, had 3 of her own, fostered over 30, adopted two, and is now adopting a sibling group of four… so I know what it’s like to love other people’s kids (hence why I’m “past” the ttc stage… and loving being a soon-to-be step!)… But anyways, I get wanting to experience it, but you should consider, would you be giving the child up to fulfill needs of your own or needs of others? If you can say your own, I’d say probably not a good idea, if you say others… or both, I’d say you just need to consider what level of disconnect you’d be willing to accept from the family once your baby is theirs…