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Being Pregnant with Your Adopted Child

Updated on October 14, 2014

Embryo Donation / Embryo Adoption - A Family Building Option

Hi, I'm Erin, and my husband and I are in the adoption process -- for adopting embryos. The only reason I'd heard of embryo donation/adoption was going through infertility treatments before the birth of my biological daughter.

Many people have heard of surrogacy (a woman carrying a pregnancy for another couple and giving the baby to them at birth), domestic adoption (adopting a child from your own country) and In-Vitro Fertilization, A.K.A. IVF (where a woman's egg and a man's sperm are joined together in a petri dish to create embryos; usually one or two of which are transferred into the woman's uterus).

Embryo adoption / embryo donation has elements of each of these more common methods of building a family. In short, it's where a donor couple who has surplus cryopreserved (read: frozen) embryos legally releases the embryos to an adoptive/recipient couple who have the embryos implanted into the female partner's womb. The recipient couple then gives birth to and parents the resulting baby.

Sound a bit complex? Confusing? That's why this website is here. To explain the embryo adoption and embryo donation processes and how they can benefit couples struggling with infertility. It's also how my husband and I are pursuing growing our family after a secondary infertility diagnosis.

It'll certainly be interesting being pregnant with our adopted child. I'm looking forward to it and I can't wait to meet him or her.

photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/81112744@N00/2435076479/

Glossary of Terms Related to Embryo Donation / Embryo Adoption - If the whole concept of embryo donation is new to you (you may even be asking 'what IS an embry

  • Embryo -- An organism (in this case, a human being) in the very early stages of development. A human embryo is created at the moment of fertilization - when a woman's egg and a man's sperm fuse together to make a genetically complete, albeit very, very tiny baby. The embryonic period then lasts until the end of the eighth week of development, after which the developing baby is called a fetus. All donated embryos available via embryo adoption/donation have been cryogenically frozen, most at between 3-6 days of development.
  • In-Vitro Fertilization, A.K.A. IVF -- An involved fertility procedure where a woman's eggs and a man's sperm are united outside of the body (usually in a petri dish) to create embryos. Usually one or two of the resulting embryos are transferred into the woman's uterus to hopefully result in a pregnancy. Any remaining embryos are cryogenically preserved for future attempts at pregnancy.
  • Donor Parent(s)/Donor Family/Donor Couple/Embryo Donor -- Each of these terms refers to the couple or individual who donates their embryo(s) to another parent or couple. Donated embryos aren't necessarily related to the couple/individual who donates them. For example, an embryo donor couple may have used the wife's eggs and donor sperm to create their embryos. The donor couple legally relinquishes the rights to their donated embryo(s) to the adoptive/recipient parents via contract. This is handled according to the clinic, individuals or agency handling the transfer of ownership of the embryos. NOTE: embryos are technically considered property according to the law.
  • Embryo Recipient or Adoptive Parents -- Each of these terms refer to the couple or individual receiving donor embryos, depending on the philosophical bent of the parties involved in the donation and receiving process.
  • Frozen Embryo Transfer (FET) -- The procedure of thawing embryos and transferring one or two into the uterus of the recipient woman. Most of the time, the recipient mother is given medication to prepare her body for the reception and implantation of an embryo/embryos.

How Familiar Are You with Embryo Adoption/Donation?

Had you heard about embryo adoption or donation before reading this website?

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My husband holding our newborn daughter. Looking forward to moments like these again when our adopted child is born.

What's the Difference Between Embryo Donation and Embryo Adoption?

The difference isn't merely semantics. There are some philosophical and procedural differences between the two.

Embryo Donation

For embryo donation, most any person or couple can receive embryos, provided that the woman to carry the pregnancy has a letter from a reproductive endocrinologist stating that she has 'no contraindications to pregnancy' and they do the paperwork/actions necessary to be accepted by the clinic's program. Consequently, embryo donation is the overwhelming method of choice for gay and/or lesbian couples, unmarried domestic partners and single women in addition to married heterosexual couples. Usually the embryo recipient requests which embryos they'd like to receive from the clinic's database. Usually donors remain anonymous, but recipients are provided with the embryo donor's medical records.

Proponents of embryo donation contend that home studies and the paperwork that goes along with an adoption-like process are unnecessary since legally in the United States embryos are considered property and adoption law does not apply. Embryo donation clinics eliminate the time and money spent jumping through hoops that are not legally required. Donors who prefer less or no contact with any child resulting from their donation may choose this option because it's easier to be anonymous. They also may want their embryos to have a good home but prefer not to have a hand in choosing who that would be. Donors who are open to having or would prefer to have gay, lesbian, unmarried partners and/or singles receive their embryos would choose the option of embryo donation.

Embryo Adoption

In embryo adoption, the prospective recipient(s) must complete an application for the clinic or agency's program, go through any requested training for adoptive parents and complete a home study or dossier which typically includes background checks. In most cases, it's pretty similar to the process someone would go through for a domestic adoption. Most agencies/clinics who handle embryo adoptions limit applications to married heterosexual couples only or married couples and single women, as this mirrors many states' adoption laws. Typically in embryo adoption, the donor views prospective adoptive parents' family profiles and chooses who they'd like to receive their embryos. The recipients would then accept or decline the match. This isn't always the case, however. Each clinic/agency handles the process slightly differently. There is much more variation in the potential for contact between donor and recipient families; some embryo adoptions are very open with personal contact between parties, and some have contact through the agency...mostly photos and letters.

The rationale behind going through an adoption-like process to receive embryos stems mainly from two things:

First, the fact that however a child comes into a family to whom they are not genetically related, they will deal with many of the issues and situations that face adopted children, i.e. 'why did my genetic parents give me up?' possible desire to meet their genetic parents, 'why do I look so different than my mom and dad?' etc. Might as well give the receiving parents the same type of training that they'd get when traditionally adopting.

Secondly, some genetic parents want to ensure the best they can that any children born would be parented by someone who's been 'checked out' via background checks and a home study by a licensed social worker. Typically, embryo donors who want a choice in the matter of who gets their embryos choose embryo adoption.

Why Do People Donate Embryos?

There are a variety of motivations and circumstances under which a person or couple would donate the embryos they've created either with their own genetic material, donor eggs/sperm and any combination thereof. Here's a list of some of the more common ones. Most donors would cite several of these reasons as to why they are making their embryos available.

  1. They want to bless another couple going through infertility with a child. Embryo donors know what it's like to go through infertility treatments, and want to help someone else who can't conceive on their own.
  2. They're finished creating their family. A donor couple may have all the children they want/can afford to parent, and therefore don't want to use their remaining embryos.
  3. Financial reasons. Donors are NOT compensated for their embryos. That's illegal and unethical. However, frozen embryo storage fees can be very expensive. If a couple has been sitting on the fence as to whether they want to donate their embryos, the financial strain of storage costs can motivate them towards donation.
  4. A divorce. If the partner who has 'custody' of the embryos doesn't want to have children using their ex-spouse's genetic material, they will often donate the embryos.
  5. They don't want their embryos to be destroyed or given to science.

Books for Children about Adoption - A highly recommended selection of books to commuicate with children about adoption; either adopted children or their sibling

All of the proceeds I earn from Amazon.com sales from this website wlll be going toward our adoption expenses. Purchases don't have to be of the books below; just use the link to get on the Amazon.com page then navigate to what you want to purchase.

How the Embryo Adoption/Donation Process Works - Basically, I'm going to use the process that my husband and I have been/will be going through as an example.

  1. Recipients research and review embryo adoption agencies, and choose one that best fits what they're trying to accomplish and how they want things handled. At this point, they submit the application paperwork. Most agencies/clinics have a non-refundable application fee between $100 to $350.
  2. The female partner who would carry the pregnancy (or surrogate if the recipients would be using one) gets examined by a doctor (usually a reproductive endocrinologist, or possibly an OBGYN) to confirm that there are no contraindications to pregnancy
  3. After acceptance into the agency's program, the adoptive parents set up a home study with a local social worker. The home study in and of itself will requires prospective adoptive parents to write quite a bit about themselves and their family, go through a background check, get fingerprinted and have the social worker come to their home for an interview and to take a look at where they live. They won't do a white glove test (at least our social worker didn't), but they do want to get a very good picture of who the adoptive family is and how they'd like to parent.

    For embryo donation, this step would be omitted.

    NOTE: My husband and I actually did this step first, but usually it comes after being accepted into the program of your choice.

  4. The prospective adoptive parents write a 'dear genetic parent(s)' letter communicating to the genetic family about themselves and what they're looking for in the adoption. They create a more indepth adoption profile photo book about themselves, their family, their home, etc. for genetic parents to get a better idea of who they are. This can differ from agency to agency, and some embryo adoption agencies don't use this step at all. Ours does.

    For embryo donation, this step would be omitted.

  5. At some point, the recipient parent(s) pay the agency/clinic's fee for processing paperwork and matching them with a donor. Varies as to when. This looked like as good a spot as any to put this info.

    Agency/clinic fees for this can vary widely from $3,500 to over $12,000.

  6. Once all the paperwork required for matching is completed, the agency or clinic goes through its matching process with donors and recipients. Varies widely how this is done. In our case, the donor would pick us. Match is confirmed.
  7. The donor(s) sign relinquishment of parental rights contract. Typically this can be revoked only up until the point that embryos are thawed for transfer into the recipient.
  8. The donor would go through any testing required by law and the clinic that will be performing the Frozen Embryo Transfer (FET).
  9. Arrangements are made for the embryos to be shipped to the clinic where the adoptive mother or adoptive parents' surrogate would be doing the FET. In some cases, though, the FET has to be performed at the clinic where the embryos were created. In this case, the recipients would have to travel to the embryos.

    At the time of the FET, the recipient parent(s) would pay the clinic performing the FET for those services, which include storage fees, thawing fees, monitoring of the woman's response to medications preparing her body for the transfer, and transfer fees. This total can vary as well from clinic to clinic; mostly between $3,000 to $5,000. Medications are also an additional cost.

  10. The adoptive mother or surrogate takes some medications to prepare her body for the FET at a reproductive endocrinology clinic (A.K.A. fertility clinic). At the correct time in her menstrual cycle, embryos are thawed and one or two are transferred into her uterus.

    NOTE: not all embryos survive being thawed. In many cases, one or two embryos can be thawed at a time, and if one or both don't survive the thaw, one or two more can be thawed for transfer.

  11. Approximately two weeks after the FET, the adoptive mother/surrogate takes a blood pregnancy test to see if she is pregnant.
  12. If pregnancy hasn't occurred, the adoptive couple can go through a FET again if they have embryos remaining from their match. If not, they can request to be re-matched if they so desire. Some agencies/clinics charge a re-matching fee.

Do You Just Adopt/Receive One Embryo?

Short Answer: Usually not. For explanation, see Long Answer below:

Long answer:

An adoptive/recipient couple receives all the embryos that a particular donor has. This could be one embryo, but is usually between 2 and 6. I think the most I've seen on an online donor profile has been 10-12.

This begs the question of "Do they put all of those embryos into the adoptive mother at one time?" (thoughts of Octo-Mom are probably racing through your head right now). The answer, to everyone's relief (including mine) is that according to every agency/clinic that I've encountered, a maximum of only two embryos would be transferred to the recipient mother's uterus at one time. The rest of the adopted embryos, if any, would be reserved for a future pregnancy attempt. If the adoptive family is done having children and there are still adopted embryos remaining, then another adoption/donation plan is made for those embryos.

photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/15333658@N00/4180334218/

Why My Husband and I are Pursuing Embryo Adoption

We took some detours along the way, but we know that God's leading us where He wants us to go.

My hubby and I got married when I was 28. After 3 1/2 years of trying to get pregnant the 'regular' way and having many fertility treatments (including several rounds of IVF) we finally, miraculously, became pregnant with our daughter. After she was born, we started trying for a sibling ASAP. A year and a half later we found out that chances of us conceiving again, even with IVF, are very, very remote. I have hardly any eggs left for my age (mid/late 30's) and the ones that I still have are poor quality. We'd started to plan and live our lives around the fact that we were a family of three, when several months later, God opened both of our hearts to adoption.

Actually, embryo adoption wasn't our plan A for adoption. Initially we'd started our home study process heading towards adopting a child from Ethiopia. My brother and his family live in Addis Ababa, the capitol city of Ethiopia, so we've learned a lot about the culture there and have a heart for all the children there who are growing up in orphanages. As the result of some wise counsel and given the turmoil that the adoption-from-Ethiopia process is in, with heavy hearts we hit the pause button on our adoption and investigated other options.

We very seriously considered adopting from another country, and also domestic adoption. Both were great options that we've seen friends and family use to bring their sons and daughters into their homes. What kept pricking our hearts to capture our attention about embryo adoption was that there are an estimated over 400,000 frozen embryos in the United States. Of course, not all are donated and available to receive, but many are. That's a lot of teeny tiny babies who don't have a chance at a life and experiencing the love of a family unless someone is willing and able to have them thawed, be pregnant with them and parent them. Donor parents, by and large, would love for their little embryos to be loved, cuddled and experience life...but they're not in a position to do that.

Most people have no idea that embryo adoption/embryo donation exists. We do, so we'd rather pursue growing our family in this way. Hopefully that moves another loving forever family up a notch in line somewhere to be matched with another child either here in the US or abroad.

Pragmatically, we can't ignore that the total cost of many embryo adoption programs plus the clinic fees for frozen embryo transfers (FET) is almost always lower than domestic US adoption and international adoption. For a middle-class family who's been through so many infertility treatments -- which aren't cheap -- we also have to think about how adoption will affect our finances. (With international adoption, we had planned to do a lot of fundraising to help offset the costs)

Embryo adoption seemed a better fit for us than embryo donation. We already had a home study completed, and personally we appreciate the extra training that helps us prepare for becoming parents to a child with whom we'd have no genetic connection. We plan on telling our child(ren) from embryo adoption the story behind how they came to be, and how they came to be in our family. In that same vein, we'd like them to have the option of knowing their genetic parents and any genetic siblings they may have if that is what they wish to do.

photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/tigerzeye/231725123/

What are the Benefits of Embryo Donation/Adoption?

Every method bringing a child into your family has benefits. Here are some of the main benefits of embryo adoption:

It gives an infertile couple the chance to experience pregnancy. Given, of course that the female recipient has no contraindications to pregnancy.

The adoptive parents have control over the prenatal care of their child.

Embryo adoption is generally less expensive than conceiving through egg donation (where the male parent's sperm is united with an egg donor's egg), domestic adoption and international adoption. It can be around the same price as conceiving through IVF.

It gives a child who wouldn't otherwise have an opportunity at experiencing life to be cared for, loved, cuddled and parented.

Books About Coping With Infertility - I know the pain of going through infertility for 3 1/2 years before my daughter was conceived. It can be a lonely time.

An Adoption Resource for Relatives and Friends - A wonderful resource for adoptive families and their loved ones

In On It: What Adoptive Parents Would Like You To Know About Adoption. A Guide for Relatives and Friends. (Mom’s Choice Award Winner)
In On It: What Adoptive Parents Would Like You To Know About Adoption. A Guide for Relatives and Friends. (Mom’s Choice Award Winner)

In On It is a helpful, practical and compassionate book written for relatives and friends of adoptive families to help them be 'in on' the world of adoption and understand how they can be a great support in the adoption process. After reading this book, I'd wholeheartedly recommend it to adoptive parents themselves as well as a resource to give to friends and family. I think it's got a great perspective on how many people who interact with adoptive parents and their children are well-meaning, but can be even more helpful in their perspective on adoption and interactions with adoptive parents/adoptees. This book doesn't shame friends and families' unintentional insensitivity, but kindly helps everyone give one another more understanding of where everyone's coming from. It's really practical too.

 

Your Thoughts About Embryo Adoption / Embryo Donation

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    • FCAbroad profile image

      FCAbroad 

      4 years ago from Edinburgh

      Lots of information there. Thanks

    • MelloKnitty LM profile image

      MelloKnitty LM 

      5 years ago

      Wonderful lens - I had not heard about this process before. Thanks for sharing your experiences, and for raising awareness about embryo adoption.

    • stephiy profile image

      stephiy 

      5 years ago

      Great lens and so well done! I was familiar with this process but you did a good job of detailing all the steps involved and the difference of adoption to donation. Very nice :)

    • takkhisa profile image

      Takkhis 

      5 years ago

      Wishing you good luck and say Hi to your daughter.

    • profile image

      DDLewis 

      5 years ago

      Great information about a subject that was new to me. I am adopted but was not familiar with embryo adoption. Congratulations and prayers for the new life you will be bringing into this world!

    • mnydgs profile image

      mnydgs 

      5 years ago

      You write so very clearly about a subject dear to your heart. Thanks !

    • profile image

      ikepius 

      5 years ago

      Very good lens. I fell for the title. (seemed a bit strange)

      congratulations on being pregnant with your adopted child.

      I pray you have a healthy baby! Make a lens when you do!

    • MJ Martin profile image

      MJ Martin aka Ruby H Rose 

      5 years ago from Washington State

      Such a wonderful idea, so helpful to many. Thank you for this wonderful lens and congratulations on your personal experience with Embryos and for becoming a Giant Squid! Oh and did I also see a Purple Star for this lens? It certainly deserves it. Helpful information indeed.

    • Heidi Vincent profile image

      Heidi Vincent 

      5 years ago from GRENADA

      Congratulations BunnyFabulous on your new Giant Squid status!!!

    • weakbond profile image

      Nnadi bonaventure Chima 

      5 years ago from Johanesburg

      highly informative lens ,congrats new giant

    • Redneck Lady Luck profile image

      Lorelei Cohen 

      5 years ago from Canada

      I am happy that there are so very many options now for those who need a little extra help in bringing children into their families. A big congratulations on your adaption process and on become a Squidoo Giant.

    • Dressage Husband profile image

      Stephen J Parkin 

      5 years ago from Pine Grove, Nova Scotia, Canada

      I had not heard of this before, but can see that there are potential benefits for you in that you will actually carry this child. I see this as providing a genetic link, even though factually this may not be quite correct.

      It takes great courage and conviction to go through such a process and I admire you and your husband for being willing to share this information in order to help others that may find themselves in a similar position. We gave up after 3 nasty miscarriages (somewhat similar to your case) and age was against us. In our case I do not feel that this was an option but for some it certainly would be. Kudos to you for sharing and congratulations on becoming a Giant Squid!

    • poldepc lm profile image

      poldepc lm 

      5 years ago

      congratulations on becoming a Giant...; great lens with great info...

    • lewisgirl profile image

      lewisgirl 

      5 years ago

      Very detailed lens. Congratulations and best wishes for your family!

    • profile image

      Ruthi 

      5 years ago

      I think it wonderful that you have shared the embryo adoption and embryo donation process you are undertaking in terms others can understand. I wish you all the luck and love in the world for you and your family.

    • Jack2205 profile image

      Jack 

      5 years ago

      Excellent information. Good luck with the embryo adoption.

    • profile image

      mrducksmrnot 

      5 years ago

      Congratulations on a well written lens and on your newest addition to your family. Keep us informed when he/she is due. A beautiful lens to compliment you becoming a Giant Squid at the same time. Now we have a pregnant squid in the Giant's Club. God Bless you and your husband for giving a child a chance in this great big world.

    • HalloweenRecipes profile image

      HalloweenRecipes 

      5 years ago

      What an interesting and thought provoking lens. 1st - Congratulations on your baby 2nd (Sorry Squidoo) Congratulations on becoming a Giant Squid. While many of us on Squidoo aspire to be a Giant Squid, in my heart and mind there is nothing that compares to bringing a new baby into the world.

    • thegrayrabbit profile image

      thegrayrabbit 

      5 years ago

      I am happy to see some good in the world by learning about this program. I am always too saddened to turn on the evening news because there are rarely stories like this covered. Thanks for the info new giant squid.

    • Expat Mamasita profile image

      Expat Mamasita 

      5 years ago from Slovakia

      Good luck with the adoption / pregnancy. And congratulations on becoming a Giant Squid :-)

    • irminia profile image

      irminia 

      5 years ago

      Wishung you all the best! :))) And thanks for compiling all his information.

    • CreativeExpress profile image

      CreativeExpress 

      5 years ago

      This is an interesting and informative topic, although I had no knowledge of it before coming across your lens. Thank you for sharing your experience so openly. You've done an excellent job of executing this lens. Best wishes!

    • dragonlildragon profile image

      dragonlildragon 

      5 years ago

      Very nice and informative lens about a very great subject. Thanks for the share.

    • profile image

      BarbaraCasey 

      5 years ago

      I love lenses where I learn something totally new. Wishing you happiness in your family and congratulations on your new Giant status.

    • GonnaFly profile image

      Jeanette 

      5 years ago from Australia

      What a wonderful option for those very, very tiny babies and those couples wanting children.

    • danadavies lm profile image

      danadavies lm 

      5 years ago

      Wish you all the best - this is really brave! :)

    • Pat Goltz profile image

      Pat Goltz 

      5 years ago

      I personally don't think in vitro fertilization is such a good idea, even though a close family member had it done twice. It is very, very hard on a woman's body, and there are other ways to accomplish the same thing, it seems to me. There is also a greater danger of birth defects. That said, as long as they are doing in vitro fertilization, in my opinion the ONLY ethical thing to do with unwanted embryos is to release them for prenatal adoption. I applaud you for this, and for writing this Lens. This is something people need to know about.

    • Pat Goltz profile image

      Pat Goltz 

      5 years ago

      @MobileAppMan: I am the adoptive mother of two. We adopted them as infants, and I breastfed both of them. I do NOT find the term "adoptive" applied to Snowflake Children to be offensive at all! The baby is a human being from the moment the sperm penetrates the egg in the Petri dish. That is what science says, and I agree. Some babies die very young; they never make it to birth. That doesn't mean they weren't human. As for our adopted children, they are ours in every sense of the word (except biologically, but biology is only a small part of things). So are our two adopted grandchildren. What might be offensive is when people who want to be able to harm their preborn child don't want to be reminded that these are human beings. Completely and utterly. Please give this some thought.

    • profile image

      bossypants 

      5 years ago

      Fascinating! Science is amazing. You've generously and thoroughly shared such a personal process! I had never heard of this and hopefully those who are struggling with infertility will be helped by your kind and thoughtful lens!

    • Mamabyrd profile image

      Mamabyrd 

      6 years ago

      Thank you for sharing such a personal story. My daughter were concieved through IVF and I have a very good friend considering other option right now. I will gladly pass this lens on to her.

    • Monica Ranstrom profile image

      Monica Ranstrom 

      6 years ago

      Wow, I am so glad that a program like this exists! I wish you the best in your journey!

    • LisaDH profile image

      LisaDH 

      6 years ago

      I didn't even know this option existed, but I think it's wonderful. Good luck with your pregnancy!

    • Diana Wenzel profile image

      Renaissance Woman 

      6 years ago from Colorado

      I was totally unaware of embryo adoption. I'm glad you shared the process, the reasons why one might pursue this journey, and what has been on your heart. As one who has always wanted to adopt a child, I found all of this very interesting and compelling. Thank you for allowing us to share an important part of your life. I appreciate the privilege.

    • sockii profile image

      Nicole Pellegrini 

      6 years ago from New Jersey

      Stopping back today to "re-Bless" this lens in honor of National Infertility Awareness Week.

    • ottoblotto profile image

      ottoblotto 

      6 years ago

      Very interesting; I wish you all the best!

    • kathysart profile image

      kathysart 

      6 years ago

      Beautiful lens.. thank you for sharing your very thoughtful lens. Angel blessed.

    • NAIZA LM profile image

      NAIZA LM 

      6 years ago

      Sending you prayers for the adoption to be a success. I wish you all well and your family. Thank you for sharing your own story with us. :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 

      6 years ago

      nice lens...this is the great idea for parents

    • BunnyFabulous profile imageAUTHOR

      BunnyFabulous 

      6 years ago from Central Florida

      @KilleenMcG: Thank you so much for your kind words. All the best to you and your family!

    • KilleenMcG profile image

      Killeen 

      6 years ago from Warner, NH

      Being a mom of two, one adopted, I had never heard of this. Thank you so much for sharing - and I commend you in your plans to tell your child about his or her genetic parents at an age-appropriate time. Best wishes in this journey.

    • BunnyFabulous profile imageAUTHOR

      BunnyFabulous 

      6 years ago from Central Florida

      @Johanna Eisler: Thank you for your kind words. That's part of the reason I made this lens -- it's such a little-known topic.

    • BunnyFabulous profile imageAUTHOR

      BunnyFabulous 

      6 years ago from Central Florida

      @blessedmomto7: Thank you! I really appreciate it. :)

    • BunnyFabulous profile imageAUTHOR

      BunnyFabulous 

      6 years ago from Central Florida

      @MobileAppMan: You bring up a number of interesting points. Any embryo we receive wouldn't have come into being without the genetic parents, so I'm incredibly thankful for them. It was alive and grew before it was frozen, but yes, after birth the baby would be ours in every way except for not being genetically related to us. They will always be our dearly loved child. We aren't going to tell them that 'they're not ours,' but we will tell our child in an age-appropriate manner about their genetic parents. The level of personal contact between us and the genetic parents will be something that my husband and I will agree upon together with them so that everyone is comfortable, and that may change and develop as our child grows and matures too. We're open to things being similar to a semi-open or open domestic adoption.

      No, just like with every conception (even by 'regular' means), there is no guarantee that a child will be born. It isn't unusual for pregnancies to miscarry even before a woman knows she's pregnant, and of course many of us, sadly, know friends who've had a miscarriage further along. That's a tough thing about receiving embryos; there's no guarantee.

      Obviously, people have different opinions on whether an embryo is a very small baby in a very early stage of development, or a piece of genetic material, as I mentioned in the Embryo Donation and Embryo Adoption section.

      I'm sorry that you feel my use of the term 'adoption' is silly. Some who use Embryo Donation would say that as well. I don't use the term to be offensive, however, to people who have adopted children who are already born. I have a number of friends who are adoptive parents (both traditional domestic adoption and international adoption), and friends who are themselves adoptees via traditional domestic adoption. All have been extremely supportive and encouraging of us, and freely use the word 'adoption' to describe what we're doing. Some of them know me well enough for them to call me on the carpet if I've offended them and not feel the need to politely ignore the offense. If an adoptive parent or adoptee is offended by my use of the term, I'd definitely appreciate them kindly letting me know.

    • blessedmomto7 profile image

      blessedmomto7 

      6 years ago

      Very cool, my husband and I were considering this, but I found myself pregnant instead. I wish you God's blessings on your growing family!

    • profile image

      MobileAppMan 

      6 years ago

      It would seem to me that, no matter who the embryo came from, once it has spent 9 months in your womb and has been given the gift of life by YOU then would that not make the baby YOURS in almost every sense of the word except, well, simple biology. While I have no problem at all in what you are doing and wish you nothing but the best I have to say that I think you're going a bit overboard with the whole 'I'm adopting an embryo' take on this. I mean, are you planning on telling your child that they really aren't your child someday? Do you intend to let the 'real' parents take part in this child's life? If this is a true 'adoption' then this would be somewhat called for and normal, yes? The fact is, there are no guarantees that you baby will even be born, am I right? It isn't really a baby yet, is it? I guess what I am saying is that using the word 'adoption' is really rather silly and, in the case of people who adopt a child that has actually already been born maybe even a bit offensive.

    • Johanna Eisler profile image

      Johanna Eisler 

      6 years ago

      This is an entirely new idea to me. Gives a person a lot to think about. Congratulations on being featured on the front page!

    • profile image

      h9 

      6 years ago

      Very interesting and after reading comments I think I'm not alone who has heard first time about Embryo Adoption

    • DANCING COWGIRL profile image

      Dancing Cowgirl Design 

      6 years ago from Texas

      Wow. This is very interesting. Something I haven't been familiar with. Thanks for explaining the process. Best wishes. ~ Blessed~ Congrats on having this lens on the front page also.

    • JessyGene profile image

      JessyGene 

      6 years ago

      very interesting lens

    • stylesuxx profile image

      stylesuxx 

      6 years ago

      Interesting topic and very well written.

    • mbgphoto profile image

      Mary Beth Granger 

      6 years ago from O'Fallon, Missouri, USA

      This is a very interesting lens. Blessed

    • profile image

      cleanyoucar 

      6 years ago

      I haven't heard of this before, but am sure glad to stumble upon this lens.

    • profile image

      anonymous 

      6 years ago

      Spotted this on the front page of Squidoo, and stopped back to refresh the Squid Angel blessing! Awesome, brilliant lens that touches the heart.. :)

    • profile image

      milurally 

      6 years ago

      Oh, my God! The medicine has evolved so much

    • profile image

      nikyweber 

      6 years ago

      beautiful lens squidlikes!

    • glenbrook profile image

      glenbrook 

      6 years ago

      I've never heard of this before, but it sounds awesome. Hope your family is very, very blessed.

    • hirephp lm profile image

      hirephp lm 

      6 years ago

      very nice lens

    • profile image

      miaponzo 

      6 years ago

      It is an interesting idea.. even though my religious beliefs wouldn't allow for it... simply for lineage reasons.. even though it would probably be quite rare for a person to end up marrying a close relative.. but .. to be on the safer side :) God bless you for whatever your outcome is :) Blessed!

    • profile image

      miaponzo 

      6 years ago

      It is an interesting idea.. even though my religious beliefs wouldn't allow for it... simply for lineage reasons.. even though it would probably be quite rare for a person to end up marrying a close relative.. but .. to be on the safer side :) God bless you for whatever your outcome is :) Blessed!

    • Judy Filarecki profile image

      Judy Filarecki 

      6 years ago from SW Arizona and Northern New York

      What a wonderful lens, informative, moving and definitely a wonderful resource for couples wanting to have children. You are being blessed b a Squid Angel

    • TravelDiaries profile image

      TravelDiaries 

      6 years ago

      Very captivating subject . I have never heard of that. Good wishes for you all.

    • profile image

      anonymous 

      6 years ago

      very informative, haven't heard about embryo adoption until now. Thanks so much for sharing.

    • profile image

      fullofshoes 

      6 years ago

      this is unbelievable. what a great lens....I loved it. Never heard about embryo adoption until now; what a wonderful thing.

    • profile image

      JoshK47 

      6 years ago

      Absolutely marvelous lens - thank you so much for sharing. Blessed by a SquidAngel!

    • profile image

      anonymous 

      6 years ago

      Thanks for all the great resources and information! It's nice to hear your perspective and we wish you both blessings in the pursuit of your adoption!

      Much love-Gretchen

    • sockii profile image

      Nicole Pellegrini 

      6 years ago from New Jersey

      What a wonderful lens and a terrific, in-depth look at the issue of embryo adoption and donation. While I knew some about the subject before (as a fellow traveler on the frustrating road of infertility), it was great to hear a personal story about this subject including the steps involved. You bring up great points about giving life to all of those frozen embryos, a bit of a touchy subject these days with some states pushing for "personhood" amendments that could even potentially outlaw some forms of infertility treatment. Blessed!

    • SquidooMBA profile image

      SquidooMBA 

      6 years ago

      What a great idea for a lens. Thanks for sharing...

    • profile image

      djroll 

      6 years ago

      This is a fabulously informative lens. You are so kind to share it with us. Thank you for your support on Carving Pumpkins. Happy Halloween!

    • Vikk Simmons profile image

      'Vikk Simmons 

      6 years ago from Houston

      There's so much more available to people now. So many options. So many decisions. I remember when I was 12 my aunt and uncle finally had the child they wanted so badly. It took 15 years but the miracle happened and they were truly joyous. I wonder what decisions they would have made had they lived in this day and age.

    • profile image

      anonymous 

      6 years ago

      This is so very dear and shared with sweetness, a delight....you have me feeling all soft. Thank you for sharing this wonderful journey so we can pray it all through with you and we will all be waiting for the rest of the news!

    • ElizabethSheppard profile image

      Elizabeth Sheppard 

      6 years ago from Bowling Green, Kentucky

      I think it's a wonderful thing that couples can have a baby through someone else's generosity. Thanks for sharing this neat information

    • BunnyFabulous profile imageAUTHOR

      BunnyFabulous 

      6 years ago from Central Florida

      @LouisaDembul: Thanks!

    • BunnyFabulous profile imageAUTHOR

      BunnyFabulous 

      6 years ago from Central Florida

      @happynutritionist: Yes, I like that aspect of embryo adoption too. I'd definitely choose that route if I were in a donor parent's shoes. Thanks for your prayers as well. :)

    • profile image

      happynutritionist 

      6 years ago

      What a beautiful story...I pray all goes well in your process...I'm glad donors have some say as to what couple can adopt their embryo...exceptional lens, glad to see a purple star on it.

    • TeacherRenee profile image

      TeacherRenee 

      6 years ago

      This is an amazingly informative and compassionate lens. Thank you for sharing.

    • clouda9 lm profile image

      clouda9 lm 

      6 years ago

      From start to end I appreciate how you have explained the whole process of embryo adoption/donation. *Blessed because you have shared your story so eloquently and I know in my heart of hearts that this page is going to help a lot of people seeking this avenue to have a child.

    • profile image

      hamshi5433 

      6 years ago

      This must not only be my lucky day of becoming a Squid Angel but also yours for when I first looked at this lens, I was thinking in my head that I would have definitely blessed this lens if i were a Squid Angel. So here you go have some Sprinkles :)

    • profile image

      hamshi5433 

      6 years ago

      I must say this is very very very interesting topic. Congratulation with your new pregnancy. Wishing you the very best and for your little one.

    • Ann Hinds profile image

      Ann Hinds 

      6 years ago from So Cal

      This is new to me although I know a lot about the adoption process as we adopted our grandson. I had not heard that you can adopt an embryo. What an interesting way to add to your family and provide for a child who would not exist without your love. Wishing you all the best. Angel blessed.

    • LouisaDembul profile image

      LouisaDembul 

      6 years ago

      This was so interesting, I actually had no idea that this was possible so (relatively) easy. Wish you the best in your struggle to increase your family!

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