How can I come to terms with using donor eggs or donor sperm in my fertility treatment?
When a fertility specialist recommends a couple uses donor eggs or donor sperm for fertility treatment, it can be emotionally challenging to deal with the loss of biological connection to a child. At Wijnland Fertility Clinic, we work closely with our patients, providing counselling support to provide a sense of closure.
But what is “closure”? Closure means finality: a letting go of what once was and feeling fully accepting of what has happened. Closure honours the transition away from what’s finished, towards something new. In other words, closure describes the ability to go beyond imposed limitations in order to find possibilities.
In the case of fertility treatment, and fertility treatment using donor eggs and sperm specifically, closure involves grieving the loss of passing on a genetic legacy to offspring, accepting this and appreciating the new path of parenthood. For women specifically, there may also be feelings of grief surrounding the loss of experiencing pregnancy.
During fertility treatment, we need to realize and take note of the grieving process and give couples a chance to go through this psychological process of closure. Closure usually implies resolutions, which may not be possible with the prolonged nature of infertility and the treatment process.
At Wijnland Fertility Clinic, we spend a lot of time with our patients, navigating this process of closure with them. We validate this loss, acknowledge and empathize with patients and help the couple to reframe what parenthood can mean. Often in these sessions, we help men to understand that a genetic link is not the most important part of building a family by talking about the experience of fatherhood and the meaning of family.