When a couple decides that they would like to go through the frozen embryo adoption process, they’ll go through a process that’s similar to adopting an already-born child through an open adoption. They will create a profile and wait to be picked by a donating family. Some donating families take years to choose an adoptive family for their embryos while others feel like the first profile they read is the perfect fit.
When the Hawkins family was chosen, the donating Yasuda family had been searching for the perfect family for their three remaining embryos for several years. Stephanie and Ben Hawkins’ profile felt right to them, though, so they got the call that there were three embryos available for adoption from Hawaii. So what happens after a match has been made?
- Both families completed the legal paperwork to transfer the embryos to the Hawkins.
- The embryos are shipped to the Hawkins’ clinic.
- The embryos are thawed. The success rate for thawing is up to 70%, and the Hawkins family were delighted to discover that all three of their embryos made it through the process.
- An embryo transfer takes place, placing the embryos into Stephanie’s uterus.
- Stephanie rests at home while implantation takes place, then it’s time for a pregnancy test!
All three of the embryos were transferred into Stephanie and the couple gave birth to their daughter Annika in 2009. Stephanie said in an interview with CBS News, “She’s very outgoing. She’s not really afraid of anything...We can’t imagine not having done embryo adoption and not having her.”
You can read more about the Hawkins and Yasuda families in the Winter 2015 edition of pathwaystofamilywellness.org, or learn more about frozen embryo adoption by visiting EmbryoAdoption.org.