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to consider being an egg donor for my sister, when DH is not really keen on the idea?

(86 Posts)
IWillOnlyEatBeans Wed 07-Sep-11 14:11:10

My sister and her husband have been trying to have a baby for about four years now. They have had two cycles of IVF. Dsis always wanted a family and I know she'll be a brilliant mum.

She is 40 next year and is worried that the IVF is not working because her eggs are too old. So she called last night to ask if I would consider donating some of my eggs for them to use in their next cycle - she has an appt with the hospital on the 21st and asked if I could let her know before then. TBH I have been expecting it for some time, it's something we'd always floated in a 'worst case scenario' type discussion. My other sister has agreed to act as a surrogate if the problem is actually Dsis's ability to carry a child, rather than her eggs being too old. However, my other sister is too old for egg donation (38) - I am just young enough (I'll be 34 if/when it goes ahead).

I am absolutely fine with the idea of egg donation and I'd love to help Dsis become a mum. I live about 300 miles away from Dsis (not sure why that is relevant, but i think it would be more difficult if I lived round the corner).

Anyway, discussed this with DH last night and he is not keen at all. He thinks it will get complicated and messy and that I'll end up feeling too attached to any resultant child. I don't share his concerns (am I being naive??)

he said it's ultimately my decision. he wont try to stop me and he'll be supportive. But he just doesn't think i's the best decision for us.

We've been through a rough time since our DS arrived 18 mos ago (really bad PND, DS having some development issues) but things are fine now.

So AIBU to consider doing this for my Dsis when DH would rather I didn't?

nightowlmostly Wed 07-Sep-11 14:15:38

It sounds like a lovely thing to do for your sister. Surely the process would involve some sort of counselling to go over any issues that may potentially arise? That way your DH could be reassured about the impact this may have on your relationships, both with your sister and new neice or nephew and between you both.

I don't have any experience in these matters tbh, I'm sure someone will be along soon who knows more than me, but good luck with whatever you decide!

PissesGlitter Wed 07-Sep-11 14:15:49

i think it is a lovely idea but if i was to do it i think i would need husbands full support before going ahead

Alikersh Wed 07-Sep-11 14:16:32

YANBU to consider doing it at all, it's a lovely thing to do.
Will you have to give a definite yes or no to your sister in time for her next appointment or is she just telling the doctor you're willing to consider it? Is counselling involved for you & DH to get any concerns out and have them explained? Maybe your DH would be more willing if he knows his concerns are being dealt with too.

WorzselMummage Wed 07-Sep-11 14:17:27

I think it would be a lovely thing to do. If you feel ok with it and you have thought about it then go for it. I'd do it for my sister in the blink of an eye if she needed me to.

I'm not sure what your husband thinks it's got to do with him tbh.

AMumInScotland Wed 07-Sep-11 14:19:54

I don't know much about it, but I think maybe if you had a bad problem with PND they might not think its a good idea to put you through all the hormonal ups and downs for egg donation anyway?

AMumInScotland Wed 07-Sep-11 14:22:50

*Worzsel" - I think the husband does have the right to an opinion in the matter, though not the right to overrule her. Personally, I would be uncomfortable about my husband donating sperm, because knowing there might be a child out there who was genetically his would be something I'd have some feelings about. I wouldn't say he must never do it, but I'd have a right to express my feelings, which is all the husband here is doing.

ShoutyHamster Wed 07-Sep-11 14:24:50

That's an astonishing point of view WorzselMummage - they have a child - not saying the DH's point of view is a particularly reasonable one but how on earth can you think that it has nothing to do with him?

OP, it's a wonderful thing to do for someone, but unless your DH is fully on board, enthusiastic even, I'm not sure it's a good idea. You cannot reason away the kinds of feelings this issue raises in all individuals involved. In his eyes, it would be looking at the second child that could have been his, that is in reality a half-sibling to his own child, the child that (in his eyes) is actually born to his wife and his brother-in-law...

Not logical, not perhaps honourable or fair but by God you ignore those kind of feelings and overrule them at your peril I reckon.

Counselling, yes, definitely. Keep talking to him. It's a brilliant gift to give. But if he remains unhappy about it I don't know how in all conscience you could overrule him and expect it to be ok. Even if he actually wanted it to be ok, it might end up not being.

IWillOnlyEatBeans Wed 07-Sep-11 14:26:55

Thanks.

my 'official' diagnosis was actually PTSD. But people tend to look at me a bit hmm when I mention it, so I generally use PND instead blush

nannyl Wed 07-Sep-11 14:28:22

if my sister ever needed an egg donar id hope i would be the 1st person she would ask, and i would happily oblige.

I think its important that you have your DH on-side though, but id be very very upset if my OH decided in his mind that I couldnt help my sister

porcamiseria Wed 07-Sep-11 14:28:34

if DH keen, dont do it

IWillOnlyEatBeans Wed 07-Sep-11 14:29:29

Not sure if we'd get counselling. We'd have to check to see if it would be available here (London) as opposed to where Dsis and family are based (Newcastle).

DH does have a few issues with the thought of me having a child with my BIL. Even though it wouldn't actually be my child.

Lots to think about...

SansaLannister Wed 07-Sep-11 14:29:47

I would not be happy about my husband donating sperm to create a child with his brother's wife, tbh.

Sorry, but I see my eggs not just as cells. I used to. But having had children, well, they look like the two of us together. I wouldn't want to create a child with someone else besides DH, and that's how I see egg donation, creating a child.

She doesn't know if she even needs an egg donor yet, however. It's really too early to put this out there, IMO.

captainmummy Wed 07-Sep-11 14:30:18

My sister had the same sort of issue - she had an early menopause and tried 2cycles of IVF before this was established. She suggested I donate my eggs for her ,but when we lookedinto it, I was not allowed to, the Ethical Administration forbade it between sisters.

And as I am not talking to her now, (argument regarding parenting!) it's prob a good thing too.

She went on to adopt 3 kids.

icooksocks Wed 07-Sep-11 14:30:54

I think shoutyhamster has just about knocked the nail on the head.
YANBU to consider donating.
YWBU not to consider your husbands feelings in all of this.

icooksocks Wed 07-Sep-11 14:31:23

w-for Would

PissesGlitter Wed 07-Sep-11 14:31:47

but you are not having a child with your BIL your sister is
its not like you are carrying the child, just giving your sister one of the ingredients needed to do it herself

SansaLannister Wed 07-Sep-11 14:32:03

'DH does have a few issues with the thought of me having a child with my BIL. Even though it wouldn't actually be my child.'

I see his point. No matter how people see it, biologically, genetically, it's your child.

I'd be concerned how my kids saw it, too. Not all people think, 'Oh, that's so lovely, we created a child as a family blah blah blah.'

SansaLannister Wed 07-Sep-11 14:33:08

'but you are not having a child with your BIL your sister is
its not like you are carrying the child, just giving your sister one of the ingredients needed to do it herself'

That's not how everyone sees it. The husband obviously doesn't.

plantsitter Wed 07-Sep-11 14:34:49

It's a tricky one. I like to think I would do this for my sister in a heartbeat, but when it really happens it can be a bit different.

I think for me it depends if you have finished your family and if you did donate eggs to your sister and then later on couldn't conceive another child, how would that make you feel about having donated?

In DNA terms, your sisters and your eggs have the same genetic material in anyway, don't they (err, slightly shaky genetics knowledge)? Do if DH is worried about that you could point that out.

maypole1 Wed 07-Sep-11 14:35:12

if hes not keen give information but dont push you may help your sister start a family at the risk of breaking up yours

and i do think if your husband is not keen then you cannot really go ahead with out his full support

PissesGlitter Wed 07-Sep-11 14:36:47

i wrote a reply and MN ate it

i am only answering from my point of view
but i do seem to be in the minority so i am stepping out of this one

SansaLannister Wed 07-Sep-11 14:36:53

'In DNA terms, your sisters and your eggs have the same genetic material in anyway, don't they (err, slightly shaky genetics knowledge)?'

Only if they are identical twins. Otherwise, they do not have have the same genotype, no matter how phenotypically similar they are.

SouthernFriedTofu Wed 07-Sep-11 14:38:38

You husband isn' dead set against it - he is just worried which I think is natural. I'd still consider i if I was you. I know it is "your" egg but as you are sisters her egg or your egg would be genetically similar so a baby that looks like you could have happened anyway.

5inthebed Wed 07-Sep-11 14:40:49

What a lovely thing for you to do for your sister. I would donate to my sister in a flash.

My only concern would be my own fertility after this, and whether it woud affect me any further DC. You have to pump yourbody full of drugs for your ovaries to produce eggs, its the same as the first stage of IVF IIRC.

You only have one DC, what if you cannot have any more after this? Would it affect the way you feel about your sister? An about the way you would feel about a child that is 50% genetically yours?

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