Families may have already made the decision that they would like to donate their embryos to another family but wonder, “When is the right time to start the process?” It’s easy to make excuses when it comes to a difficult decision. If you are truly looking for signs to start the process, there are many—some of which you may have already experienced. You may think the situations are too candid, but the reality is you want to know when the right time is to let go of embryos you know you are never going to use yourself.

1. Medical

Your doctor recommends you should not carry another pregnancy because of health concerns. This is probably the biggest sign that it is time to donate your remaining embryos.

2. Relationship Status

Perhaps you and your spouse have decided to part ways, but you still have remaining embryos. Now is the time to mutually make a decision regarding your embryos. Why let the court decide?  A greater sorrow may be that your spouse has died. You may still intend to pursue a pregnancy, but your embryos remind you of the missed opportunity and heartbreak.

3. Timing

You planned to have more transfers with your embryos but your plans changed. Maybe your current situation, or family size, is all you desire. Or maybe your child bearing years just flew by. A few months passed, which turned into a few years…

4. Money

Medical treatments can be cost prohibitive if they are not covered by insurance. If you can no longer carry yourself a gestational carrier may be an option, but is also costly. And let’s face it, inflationary pressures have impacted everyone’s budget!

5. Storage

Your storage fees are due, and/or your fertility clinic is pressuring you to make a decision. Either pay another year of storage or thaw and discard them, donate to science… The only life choice for your embryos is to donate them to another couple.

To learn more about embryo donation, and other options for remaining embryos, visit EmbryoAdoption.org.