If you and your partner are struggling to have a child, you may be considering in vitro fertilization with an egg donor. This method has helped many people to have children, especially women with premature ovarian failure. However, choosing an egg donor can be a difficult task. Since your egg donor will determine half of your future child's DNA, making the right choice is important. Here are some ideas on finding an egg donor and the pros and cons of each decision.


One of the choices hopeful parents go with is to ask for an egg donation from a blood relative. This is a great idea, as blood relatives carry some of the same genetic material as you. That means that your child will be part of your bloodline. In addition, since you're already family, it's unlikely that any legal issues regarding the visitation rights to the child will arise. Whether or not you ever decide to let your child know about how they came to be, your egg donor will be able to spend time with the child they helped to bring into the world, and you'll become even closer as a result.

However, keep in mind that egg donors should never come from the same family tree as the person who will be providing the sperm. This could cause some genetic problems, as it would essentially amount to interbreeding.


Another option some people choose is to look to a close friend for an egg donation. This can make a close friendship even stronger, and it can truly help the donor and the recipient to feel like genuine sisters.

There are still some factors to consider, however. First of all, your friend will need to go through rigorous genetic and physical screenings to make sure that they're a viable and healthy candidate. Secondly, while using a friend's egg can make you closer, any future fracturing of the friendship could have unwanted consequences if your friend has legal rights to visit the child. Think carefully about whether or not you want your friend to be a permanent part of you and your future child's life.


Lastly, you can always go with an egg donation from a stranger. While it might sound a little off-putting, donor eggs from banks are rigorously screened in advance. In most cases, you will also be allowed to know a little about your donor, to choose a donor whose appearance, education, and background matches what you're looking for. While the egg won't share any genetic heritage with the soon-to-be mother, there is also no messy legal complication. Egg donors have to sign waivers acknowledging that they are not the parent of the child and generally must waive any visitation rights, as well. As a result, your child will be yours and your partner's alone.

Choosing the right egg donor is a big step, but it's not an impossible one. Talk to your doctor and visit an IVF specialist at a clinic like Missouri Center for Reproductive Medicine to learn more about the process.