Tuesday, August 9, 2011

On Choosing a Donor

Thank you so much for your input and suggestions on the OPK issue. I'm going to try another brand - maybe two - for next cycle and see what happens. I'll talk with our RE about an ultrasound too. But how do I know when to go in for one? When I think I'm ovulating?

Okay, so choosing our donor was most probably the most surreal experience of this TTC journey so far. Devon and I have date night every Thursday, and we decided last week to use the night to take a serious look at cryo-dads and, at the very least, narrow down our list. [side note: I am so impressed with Devon - she is as much into all of this as I am now... she writes me with answers about TTC stuff that she's researched, baby name ideas, thoughts on sperm. She's excited. SHE'S EXCITED. Do you know how frikkin' awesome that feels? I'm so happy.]

We found out that our clinic deals with three banks only. I believe this is the case for all Canadian clinics. Health Canada (our FDA) has to approve all donor sperm to make sure that it is "Canadian compliant"... whatever that means. Along with the one Canadian bank, we had a choice of two American banks - Xytex and Fairfax. About half of the Xy donors are Canadian compliant and about 30% of the FF donors are too. We were not very impressed with the Canadian bank, so we dropped that one early (as some of you know from my other posts, there are slim pickings here). 

One of the nurses at the clinic told us that most people go with Xy, though she didn't say why. FF's website is impressive and fancy and off the bat, seemed the most user-friendly. Xy's website is decent - no bells or whistles, but easy to use. Before purchasing anything, we basically made a list of the top 10 on both sites and then tried to figure out how much money we would spend to find out more about them. Xy was very straightforward with fees and one (hefty) payment lets you view every aspect of every profile. With FF, the fees were info and donor dependent, and what looked like a lot less money would've ended up being way more expensive than Xy for the same information. We also liked that the majority of Xy donors had adult photos, which was not the case with FF. I won't go into it more than that, but if anyone wants to ask questions about the experience so far, feel free to email me (contact me page).

Anyway, just as the donor pictures were loading for our top two donors, we looked at each other and said, "oh my god, they're going to be so ugly". And then one of our top choices came up and we again looked at each other and said (and I quote), "he's fucking hot!" And then our top three choices loaded, and they were all really, really good-looking guys. We were actually very surprised. I know, I know, it's a photo - and probably the best one that they can muster up - but it's all a shallow lesbian couple can go by ;)

We were looking for a few things: Devon's colouring and her interests/personality. The only thing I was pretty adamant about was for him to have a squeaky clean mental health history on all sides. We were really happy with our search and after sitting with our top choices for a few days (and obsessively revisiting them), we decided on our guy.

It just feels right. He feels right... as messed up as that sounds. This whole thing has been so surreal to us - we are shopping online for our future baby's father. So weird. We looked him up on siblingregistry, and there are four offspring listed (we've yet to decide whether connecting with half siblings is something we'd ever do).  I did a search for the donor number, just to see if there was anything else posted about him, and one Xy web page came up saying that there was no samples left, but I think it was cached. We tried not to get too attached to him - and we tried to feel confident in our second and third choices - but it's hard once you make the decision. 

Although this ovulation thing is worrying me, we decided to at least have the option to start next cycle. I imagine we will. So, we called the Canadian "pimp daddy" (we can't order directly from the bank for legal reasons), who add about $100 onto each unit. Despite a few regulatory things, we were actually surprised at how easy the whole process of ordering was. We bought three to start (a recommendation from the clinic). They are being shipped on August 17th and will be good and ready for us to do our first insemination in the last week of August. 

Devon is so excited and wants to have a party when cryodad's goods arrive in the city. With the way I've been feeling, I almost agreed with her... but... we have still only told two people, and I think it'll stay that way until three-four months after a BFP.

I'm not even scratching the surface of all of the emotions surrounding this process, but for tonight, I just wanted to get the words out of my body. My heart will deal with the rest another day. 



  1. WOW you are getting so much closer. Can't wait to see how all this goes. I think you need a doctors help for the timing. Check with ultrasound to make sure you are ovulating and then hit the egg with sperm when it is in the prime position. So exciting.

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  3. momma b and i felt the same way when it came to picking out our donor. and it's hard not to get attached to "the one" ... it does sound strange to say that about a donor, doesn't it?! lol ... i kinda wish we would've had an adult picture, not just a baby picture, but at the time the bank we were going through was in the same city and he is still an active donor. would've been strange to perhaps run into him and recognize him and, yet, he wouldn't have a clue who we were. too crazy to think about!

    anyhow ... so happy you're both on the same page and ready to get started! very happy for you. =)

  4. Hello! Congrats on making the big choice and the big order!

  5. Also, I really like the cheap opks you can get nine, but my favorite right now are the clear blue, wh are outrageously expensive even online but give you a smiley face or not.

    We did not have monitoring except to check the day of the insemination, but the RE shuld be able to give you a sense of when to go. Ours suggested if this month does not work, we should consider coming innxt month when I have other fertilitynsigns like good CM.

  6. Congrats on taking this huge step. You're really on your way now!

  7. We felt the same way about choosing a donor - seemed way too easy to buy bodily fluids!

    Our doc chose when to start our ultrasounds based on average ovulation and cycles.

    SOOOO excited for you!

  8. Yay! So excited that you've chosen your guy--and that he's a hottie! :) I was surprised at how easily we agreed on donors--there was always one that was the obvious choice.

  9. So very excited for both of you!! And when you have that feeling that he's "the one"...well, there's a reason for it. My wife and I each independently made our lists, and the only one we agreed on 100% was our top choice. And he was our guy. And we now have the most amazing son as a result. So don't even for a second discount what you two just did and how important it is! It's awesome. :)

    As for when to have an ultrasound - if you try First Response 7-day OPK, you should have the ultrasound the morning after you first test positive (so if you test positive on a Wednesday morning, have the ultrasound on a Thursday morning to see if you're ready to inseminate that day or not - the first positive test should be showing that you will ovulate in the next 24-36 hours and is signaling just the start of your LH surge). Again, I'd start testing way early - like maybe day 8 or something - just to see if you can get a negative test at any point. That will tell you if you need to investigate any hormonal stuff ahead of time.

    Good luck!!!! :) :) :)