The world is changing and options for couple who want kids are rapidly expanding outside of adoption. In fact, the number of adoptions are falling while alternatives are on the rise. Some of the options now available are: Donor eggs (anonymous or from a known donor), Donor Sperm (unknown or known), Donated embryo, Gestational Carrier (a variety of combinations include: client’s sperm and egg; client’s sperms and donor egg; client’s egg and donor sperm or donor embryo), and Traditional Surrogate
Just because these are now scientific possibilities, it doesn’t mean that all jurisdictions are friendly to contacts that govern them. Check your local laws to make sure and consult with the appropriate professionals.
A few terms will be useful to know:
- Assisted Reproductive Technology: treatments where the egg and sperm are joined outside the body.
- In Vitro Fertilization: this is where a woman’s ovaries are stimulated to produce eggs, eggs are removed and fertilized outside the body, and the embryos created are then implanted in the uterus.
- Surrogacy: this is the process whereby a woman carries a pregnancy with the intention of placing the child with someone else for rearing and parenting.
- TS Surrogacy (aka “traditional” or “true”): here a woman becomes pregnant with her own egg and sperm from another (either the donated sperm of the intended father, or donated sperm). In many jurisdictions this type of birth will result in the surrogate being the birth mother, requiring formal adoption of the child after the birth
- Gestational Carrier: here the woman becomes pregnant but with an embryo that has no genetic connection to her.
- Cryopreservation: the process whereby sperm, eggs, or embryos are frozen in liquid nitrogen and used in the future.
- ICSI: this acronym stands for Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection which is the process of inserting a sperm into the nucleus of an egg.