Presenting Embryo Donation and Adoption: How to Educate Your Clients, Part 4

In this four part series we’ve looked at overcoming barriers to educating clients about this new family building option, different families’ motivations for adoption, and addressed how and when to educate clients on embryo adoption. Today’s blog addresses one more common question from adoption agency professionals.

Why would a client choose to work with an adoption agency for this when they could simply work with a fertility clinic?

Clinics are selective about embryos they will accept, making the waiting list to receive embryos long. This is because clinics are focused almost exclusively on assisting patients achieve a successful pregnancy, meaning they are focused on the short-term success not on long-term emotional wellness. Most clinic embryo donation programs are anonymous, but research indicates that embryo donors would prefer to have some say in who receives their embryos and perhaps be able to have contact with the adoptive family. The ability to have a directed donation or open adoption relationship with the adoptive family makes donating embryos through an agency embryo adoption program more attractive to some donors. Embryo adoption agencies, therefore, tend to have embryos waiting for adoption, rather than adoptive families waiting for embryos. 


Embryo adoption through an agency is child-centered, applying all the great lessons we have learned from Adoption Best Practices to the process of embryo donation. Embryo adoption incorporates counseling - before, during and after the adoption process. Full disclosure regarding genetic siblings is encouraged. The home study process helps ensure the parents are prepared to raise a child who is not genetically connected to them. The home study also ensures the child is placed in a stable loving home, providing peace of mind for the donors.

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