May I first refer you to my blogpost on “How Do I Find My Sperm Donor?” There is a ton of overlap regarding the first stage of finding your egg donor and finding your sperm donor.
So do your google search for egg donor. Up pop the agencies involved. Fill out your application to utilize their database.
Select your criteria. Put it in writing! Have you partner, if you have one, do the same. I am partnerless and went through the process alone. That does not mean I didn’t involve others, because I did.
I definitively was the final executive decision maker, but other heads were involved in the process. I highly recommend that you noodle your thoughts around with others. For some of us, present company included, this is part of the process of making big decisions. It is actually part of the research. Collecting others thoughts and then deciding which to take to heart and incorporate as part of your own thinking can be critical! I allow others to shape my thinking. It’s not that I can’t think for myself, but simply that I believe the synergy between my thoughts and others’ thoughts often leads to a better final outcome!
Once you have done your homework creating an ideal candidate and then combing through the database to find a match or near match, you should select 3 or so possible candidates.
Next you will set up a telephone interview. Although this isn’t an option yet for selection of sperm donors, telephone interviews are clearly in play for egg donors. Attempt to set up the interview at a time in which both you and your partner are available. If you have no partner, I strongly recommend that you choose a trusted other to join you on this part of the journey so you can compare notes and debrief after the call. Again, two heads are better than one. Together you may knock around what your general impression was of the candidate. Then if you think this is the one to go with you can discuss why and get even clearer about why this is the egg donor for you!
In my case, I had a private lawyer review documents and participate in telephone interviews with me. It was expensive but well worth the cost. He asked questions as well and always had my best interests at heart! He was truly an invaluable part of my process. Thank-you again Jon Pinney, Esq.!
Before your interview you will want to create an outline of questions you will want to know about your egg donor and her family. That list is your road map or guide during the interview. It can set you on a certain course and then you can choose to go off course a bit if you like.
Remember everyone will be at a bit nervous at the beginning of the call. You should spend a few minutes thinking about how you want to present yourself to your potential egg donor on the call too. Remember as much as you are interviewing your egg donor, she is interviewing you too. She has the right to turn you down at any juncture, so be warm, compassionate, and interested in her remarks. She can easily sense any negative vibe on the line. She only wants to entrust her DNA in people that she likes and finds compelling. This process is much more than a paycheck to her. She has a great deal invested in it. Besides she is doing you an amazing favor and act of human kindness, even though you are technically paying her for services rendered.
As the live interview is winding down, I suggest you review the questions list before you close the interview, in case there are questions that are really crucial that you need the answers to before you hang up. Before saying goodbye, dont forget to use your manners and thank her for her time and interest in possibly working with you to help you create your family.
It may be the case that you do a live telephone interview with a few possible egg donors before you find the woman who you think is the one! Don’t despair there are plenty of options out there.
Once you have selected a possible egg donor and she has passed the telephone or Skype interview phase, think about scheduling a longer getting to know you face to face interview. This can be accomplished one of two ways. You can travel to her or she can travel to you. Some egg donors are willing to hop on a plane and come see you if you compensate them for their time and pay all expenses, such as plane, hotel, car and food allowance. If you or your partner are very busy it might be wise to ask if she would be willing to travel to see you. Conversely, you can make it a romantic weekend away with your partner or spouse wrapped around the concept taking some of the first steps associated with creating your family. Once the children are born there will be many outings and trips away just for them. Think of this as one of your first!
You need to consider the venue for your meeting. Will she come to your home or will you meet her at her hotel. Will you take her out to lunch or dinner? Will she determine a great little place with plenty of intimacy in her neck of the woods?
You can meet with her alone or suggest she bring a trusted other. In one case an egg donor asked if she could bring her father. He was a valiable source of information. They were lovely people but I did not go with them owing to a medical problem her father mentioned that one of the grandparents had that had not been disclosed previously. In truth, I don’t think this twenty something potential egg donor was even privie to this problem before the interview.
This is a general issue that I will caution you about here. Often young people, who we may select to utilize as DNA donors may not be fully aware of their family medical history. Likewise, some of them are not doing this with their parents approval, so they are not going to their parents for help in completing their forms. It may also not be the case that they were never told some of this stuff either. It simply may have passed over their ears, yet not registered. Of course, there are the situations in which there is poor communication or family cut off as well as separation from family, due to death or other disasters.
How long is enough time for the face to face interview? I figured on about three hours. How does that sound to you? If it’s entirely too long make it shorter! If I knew early on that this was not the one, I simply carried out the three hour meeting and preceded to get to know her better. It made it easier in the end, because when they got the call that I was not proceeding with them, they were none the wiser as to why. There were no obvious clues, because I used my poker face and continued talking with them for an hour and a half after the dime was dropped.
If you have to do this a few times before you make your final selection, you have been prudent and invested your time wisely. Few decisions in your live will have such far reaching ramifications! It’s only the whole life of your progeny and your relationship with them, as well as their offspring that is at stake!
Lisa J Lafave, PhD, MBA, ACC
The Surrogacy Rocks Coach from Surrogacy Rocks
CEO & Founder of Coaching Rocks, LLC
A Single Mom By Coice Raising Twin Surrogacy Boys
Written in My Little Brick in University Heights, Ohio