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Intended Mothers and the Difficult Jump to Egg Donation

surrogacy journey

In the complex tapestry of surrogacy, where dreams of parenthood are woven against the backdrop of medical science and altruism, one aspect clouded in apprehension is egg donation. The popularity of egg donation varies across the globe but is well-established and widely accepted throughout Europe in countries like Georgia, Cyprus, Spain, Greece and the Czech Republic and accounts for a significant portion of assisted reproductive technology (ART) procedures. For intended mothers embarking on this journey, in particular, the decision to use donated eggs can evoke a myriad of emotions, from hope and gratitude to a profound fear of the unknown.

The fear surrounding egg donation for intended mothers is not merely a product of uncertainty but also stems from deeply ingrained societal perceptions, personal insecurities, and the complex dynamics of parenthood.To start, let’s acknowledge the societal norms and expectations that often dictate a woman’s sense of identity and worth through biological motherhood. For many women, the inability to conceive using their own eggs can trigger feelings of inadequacy and a sense of failure. The prospect of using donated eggs can intensify these emotions, leading to concerns about bonding with the child and grappling with questions of genetic connection.

Another layer of fear revolves around the concept of genetic inheritance and its implications for the child’s identity. Intended mothers may wrestle with questions about how much of themselves they can impart to their offspring without a genetic link, and how society will perceive and accept their family dynamic. These concerns highlight the need for greater awareness and acceptance of diverse paths to parenthood, free from judgment or stigma.

The actual process of egg donation itself can also be daunting. Intended mothers may harbor fears about the health and wellbeing of the donor, the quality of the eggs, and the potential risks involved in the medical procedures. The lack of control over the genetic makeup of their future child can exacerbate these anxieties, leaving intended mothers feeling vulnerable and powerless in a process that is meant to bring them closer to parenthood.

Connecting intended mothers with support groups and peer networks can also provide invaluable reassurance and solidarity throughout a surrogacy journey. Sharing experiences and insights with others who have walked a similar path can foster a sense of belonging and empowerment, validating the varied emotions that come with navigating the complexities of assisted reproduction.

Here are some tangible steps to gradually become more comfortable with the concept of egg donation for all Intended Mothers out there:

Educate yourself: Start by learning as much as you can about the egg donation process. Understand the medical procedures involved, the role of the donor, and the potential outcomes. Knowledge can often alleviate fears stemming from the unknown.

Seek counselling or therapy: Consider speaking with a therapist who specializes in reproductive issues or fertility counseling. They can provide a safe space to explore your feelings, fears, and concerns about egg donation and offer guidance on how to navigate them.

Connect with others: Join online forums, support groups, or communities where you can connect with individuals who have undergone egg donation or are considering it. Hearing others’ stories and sharing your own experiences can provide valuable insight and support.

Explore your feelings: Take time to reflect on your emotions surrounding egg donation. Journaling, meditation, or talking with a trusted friend or partner can help you process your thoughts and feelings in a constructive way.

Focus on the end goal: Remind yourself of the ultimate goal of parenthood and the joy it can bring. While the path to parenthood may look different than you initially imagined, embracing the possibilities of egg donation can open doors to a fulfilling family life.

Seek support from loved ones: Share your thoughts and feelings about egg donation with trusted friends or family members who can offer empathy, encouragement, and support. Having a strong support network can make the journey feel less daunting.

Take your time: Remember that becoming comfortable with the idea of egg donation is a process, and it’s okay to take things at your own pace. Give yourself time to explore your feelings, gather information, and make decisions that feel right for you.

One reoccurring concern intended mothers grapple with, is if, when and how egg donation should be shared with their child in the future. Explaining egg donation to a child in a positive and age-appropriate manner is essential for fostering understanding, acceptance, and a sense of belonging within the family. By approaching the topic of egg donation with openness, honesty, and positivity, you can help your child understand and embrace their family’s unique story with confidence and pride. Although this remains a personal and private decision, here are some ways the conversation could be approached:

Start early: Begin discussing the concept of families and how they can be formed in different ways from an early age. Even preverbal. Introduce the idea that families are made with love, regardless of whether the child shares genetics with their parents.

Simple language: Use language that is easy for the child to understand based on their age and maturity level. Avoid using medical or complex terms that may confuse them.

Focus on love and family: Emphasize that the most important aspect of being a family is the love and care that they share with one another. Explain that egg donation was a special way that helped bring the family together.

Emphasize diversity: Highlight the diversity of families by explaining that each family is unique and special in its own way. Just like how some families have different gender roles, skin colours or speak different languages, some families are formed through egg donation.

Be honest and open: Encourage open communication and honesty. Answer any questions the child may have truthfully and age-appropriately. Let them know that it’s okay to ask questions and talk about their feelings.

Use books or stories: Utilize children’s books or stories that feature diverse families or explain assisted reproduction in a positive light. This can help make the concept more relatable and easier for the child to understand.

Normalize the process: Normalize the idea of egg donation by mentioning it in a matter-of-fact manner. For example, “Some families have a special helper called an egg donor who helps them have a baby.”

Highlight the gift of life: Frame egg donation as a generous gift that helped create the family. Explain that the donor helped the parent(s) by giving them the special egg needed to grow their baby.

Reassure them of their importance: Remind the child that they are a cherished and valued member of the family, regardless of how they were conceived. Emphasize that what makes a family strong is the love and support they share with one another.

Encourage pride and confidence: Encourage the child to feel proud of their unique family story and confident in their identity. Reinforce positive messages about diversity, love, and acceptance within the family unit.

The fear of egg donation for intended mothers embarking on a surrogacy journey is multifaceted. By acknowledging these fears and offering compassionate support, we can empower intended mothers to embrace the beauty and possibility of alternative paths to parenthood, ultimately fostering a more inclusive and understanding society.

Resources on Egg Donation:

Books and Publications:

  • “The Insider’s Guide to Egg Donation: A Compassionate and Comprehensive Guide for All Parents-to-Be” by Wendie WilsonMiller and Erika Napoletano.
  • “Conceiving Family: A Practical Guide to Assisted Reproductive Technology” by Sarah Kowalski.
  • “So Close: Infertile and Addicted to Hope” by Tertia Loebenberg Albertyn.

Websites and Online Forums:

  • Resolve: The National Infertility Association ( offers a wealth of information on infertility, assisted reproductive technologies, and family-building options, including egg donation.
  • FertilityIQ ( provides comprehensive reviews and insights from patients about fertility clinics, treatments, and egg donation experiences.
  • BabyCenter ( hosts forums and communities where individuals can connect with others undergoing fertility treatments, including egg donation.

Support Groups and Counselling Services:

  • Be Parent: Ask your Be Parent surrogacy coordinator to connect you with one of our experienced counsellors.
  • Many fertility clinics and reproductive centers offer counseling services for individuals and couples navigating the egg donation process. Ask your healthcare provider for recommendations.
  • RESOLVE support groups, both in-person and online, provide a supportive environment for individuals and couples facing infertility challenges, including those considering egg donation.

Podcasts and Webinars:

“The Egg Whisperer Show” by Dr. Aimee Eyvazzadeh features discussions on various fertility topics, including egg donation.

Fertility Café ( offers webinars and online events covering a range of fertility-related topics, including egg donation.

Resources for children:

“Hope & Will Have a Baby: The Gift of Egg Donation” by Irene Celcer.

“The Very Special Baby: The Amazing Story of How Babies are

Made with the Help of Egg Donation and Surrogacy” by Nicole Kidman.

“A Tiny Itsy Bitsy Gift of Life, an Egg Donor Story” by Carmen

Martinez Jover.


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