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On the Mumsnet Donor Conception forum, you can discuss sperm and egg donation with people in the same situation.

Donor conception

Talking to parents about decision

22 replies

ButterflyBailey · 28/07/2021 09:18

How would I go about talking to parents/family/friends about considering donor conception? Has anyone had experience or any ideas how to talk with them about the subject? Thank you

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IamnotwhouthinkIam · 29/07/2021 04:35

You don't say what your situation is so it might be really different to mine (single mother "by choice"), but I just bit the bullet and did it by casually mentioning it whenever the subject of kids or partners came up over time: "Yeah, I'm thinking of going it alone and using a clinic as I'd really like a family".

But then I am single and 40 and have always been open about wanting children one day, so it was kind of a now or never situation because of my age in terms of having a biological child which a lot of people can understand.

If they asked more questions, I'd explain further about having done lots of research into Donor Conception so they knew I had really thought it through - eg. positive outcomes in studies of DC children and their families, donor information available at 18 in the UK if DC adults want it etc.

Most people are either supportive, curious about it or occasionally change the subject out of politeness (if they don't agree with donor conception). Obviously I don't know your personal family situation, so they may be concerned if it's the right thing for you and express that, but people are rarely outright rude to your face about fertility issues in my experience.

LanieM87 · 29/07/2021 10:21

I told my mum first, I explained that I'd been giving it a lot of thought and was exploring my options, internally she might have been having a fit, but she's always been massively supportive, she told my dad for me. I only told my best friend before hand, and then once I was pregnant I told my other close friends and family, some are naturally curious, some didn't really ask any questions!

ButterflyBailey · 29/07/2021 11:57

I am 30 in a heterosexual relationship and my partner can't have children due to a vasectomy. I have told my Mum that I had been looking into other options and she has been supportive and said it's a good idea to do as much research as possible. I completely agree with that. I haven't however gone into too much detail as to what choices I have been thinking of. I am sure that I would like to go through Donor Conception but want to find out what I can.

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IamnotwhouthinkIam · 29/07/2021 16:50

@ButterflyBailey - Have you joined the UK Donor Conception Network charity? I think that would be a good idea for both you and your partner - male infertility is a common thing but which is not often talked about and DCN can put you in touch with others who have been in the same situation as you. They also have "talking with friends and family" booklets if you get to that stage and go ahead with fertility treatment/get pregnant.

ButterflyBailey · 29/07/2021 17:38

@IamnotwhouthinkIam I'm not a member yet but I was thinking about it. I went on a webinar with them the other evening which I found very interesting. They look like a good charity.

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IamnotwhouthinkIam · 30/07/2021 01:10

@ButterflyBailey - I've found them very useful personally. When you join you are usually put in touch with someone who has been in the same situation as you, to help answer any questions you might have - I found the single mother by choice I was put in touch with really kind and helpful answering all my questions.

They also have a library with lots of books about donor conception you can borrow from once you are a member that I've used a few times, and they also help arrange local meetups/zoom meetups with other donor conceived families (I haven't joined these yet as it's very early days in my pregnancy, but I'm hoping to if everything goes to plan in the future).

Good luck with your decision Smile

Maggiesfarm · 30/07/2021 02:02

I don't see why you need to tell anyone anything, it's a private matter. If you do become pregnant and somebody, like your mum, knows your partner has had a vasectomy, let them think he had it reversed. Some people do and it works (I know someone who had three more children after her husband had a vasectomy reversal).

How does your partner feel about bringing up a child that you conceived with a donor, when he obviously didn't want more children? Just interested, don't feel you have to answer.

ButterflyBailey · 30/07/2021 06:01

@IamnotwhouthinkIam I think that’s a really good idea. I will get a membership. Thank you x
@Maggiesfarm He’s fine about bringing up a child conceived from a donor. He says any child will be his whether donor conceived, adopted or biologically his. It’s not that he didn’t want more children. It’s that a previous partner of his didn’t want more. He regrets his decision of having the vasectomy as he would like more with me. I hope that answers your question x

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Nix32 · 30/07/2021 06:06

@ButterflyBailey Just out of interest, have you explored vasectomy reversal? My husband had the procedure, which was straight forward and successful.

ButterflyBailey · 30/07/2021 06:28

@Nix32 @Maggiesfarm
We have looked into my partner having a reversal but he is set against it. I don't want to push him into anything when he doesn't want to do it. We have however thought that having a donor conceived child would be good. It was also his idea to have a child this way.

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ButterflyBailey · 30/07/2021 06:35

@Nix32
I have tried talking to him about having one and tried to say to him it could be successful but he tells me how he can't go through with it. I won't go into the reasons on here but he won't change his mind x

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Fargoer · 30/07/2021 06:40

I'm sure you have discussed this too but sperm retrieval is also a possibility.
details here

ButterflyBailey · 30/07/2021 07:23

@Fargoer
We have discussed IVF as I had found out that IVF does work on men with vasectomies but he said he had already tried that with someone and been told it wouldn't work with him. This does look interesting though. The only thing is that he doesn't want any needles involved. I will send him the information though, thank you x

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drpet49 · 30/07/2021 07:30

* We have looked into my partner having a reversal but he is set against it. I don't want to push him into anything when he doesn't want to do it. We have however thought that having a donor conceived child would be good. It was also his idea to have a child this way.*

*Something doesn’t add up here

ButterflyBailey · 30/07/2021 07:54

@drpet49

Basically when he had his reversal the surgery didn't go to plan and he doesn't want a reversal as he doesn't want to get more messed up as he puts it

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ButterflyBailey · 30/07/2021 07:56

@drpet49
When he had his vasectomy it didn't go to plan rather and he's worried a reversal will end up in him coming out worse

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ButterflyBailey · 30/07/2021 07:58

I didn't want to go into that as it's personal to him.

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onelittlefrog · 30/07/2021 08:06

[quote ButterflyBailey]@Fargoer
We have discussed IVF as I had found out that IVF does work on men with vasectomies but he said he had already tried that with someone and been told it wouldn't work with him. This does look interesting though. The only thing is that he doesn't want any needles involved. I will send him the information though, thank you x[/quote]
It sounds like you are set on donor conception and that is a great choice. But just in case you haven't quite explored all options with this, do you know why they are saying IVF won't work? Surgical sperm retrieval can be used on men who have had vasectomies. It might be that he is a bit squeamish about the procedure (understandably) but really it's quite quick and is nothing like as bad as what the woman has to go through.

You might have already explored it but if not, just don't miss out on having your own child because of a bit of squeamishness about a quick procedure. He might be reassured after a conversation.

onelittlefrog · 30/07/2021 08:10

Regarding conversations with parents... it's touch, whichever route you are going down, because it involves them accepting the fact that their child (or child's partner) is infertile, and that's a difficult pill to swallow :(

We found there was no magical bullet for it and we just had to tell them. Being positive about it yourself helps, though. If they think you are feeling good about it it will be easier for them. We framed it in a way that we are excited about being ready to start a family, and I think that helped.

onelittlefrog · 30/07/2021 08:10

*touch = tough

ButterflyBailey · 30/07/2021 08:16

@onelittlefrog
He was tested to see if IVF could happen with a previous partner and they told him it wouldn't be possible unfortunately.

That's a good idea, thank you. I am positive and excited for it so hopefully that comes across x

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ButterflyBailey · 30/07/2021 08:28

@onelittlefrog
I will definitely look into Surgical Sperm Revival. I believe he was told IVF wouldn't work because the surgeon injected him in the wrong place first. I don't want him to miss out on having a biological child with me but if it can't happen then we at least now have a good idea of what we would like to do.

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