Egg donation provides gay parents with a path to biological parenthood. In addition to cisgender gay men, other LGBTQ+ patients can also benefit from donor egg IVF, including cisgender women with nonviable eggs, trans women, gender-nonconforming and nonbinary people with sperm, and any individual unable or unwilling to go through egg donation. This article covers the basic information you need to begin your journey.
What Is Egg Donation?
All pregnancies involve an egg, a sperm, and a uterus. When a person or couple wants to have kids but doesn’t have all the necessary components, they can use genetic material from donors, such as eggs, sperm, or even fertilized embryos. They can also work with a gestational carrier, also known as a surrogate, who receives an embryo and then carries and delivers a pregnancy.
In egg donation, a person between the ages of 21-29 with healthy eggs agrees to have some of those eggs retrieved and provided to intended parents so they can build their families. At PNWF and our partner donor bank SIMPLIFY, we freeze and store all our donated eggs, so they are available immediately to intended parents.
For gay men, becoming parents can involve egg donation and a gestational carrier. Typically, one or both of the intended fathers provides the sperm for fertilization. If neither partner has viable sperm, you could use donor sperm or consider donor embryos.
What Is the Egg Donation Process for Gay Parents?
The first step in any fertility journey is an initial fertility evaluation and assessment. This involves meeting with a fertility specialist to review your health history and family-building goals. You, and your partner if applicable, will also go through a basic series of tests to get a full picture of your reproductive health. From this meeting, your provider will recommend which fertility treatments provide the best opportunities for success, as well as suggesting additional tests or procedures as necessary.
Next, you will choose an egg donor and gestational carrier. We offer a diverse range of donors to meet our patients’ varied needs. We can also recommend trusted surrogacy agencies to help you match with your gestational carrier.
You will also need to decide whether one or both of you will provide sperm. The results of your fertility assessment may inform this decision, as can family medical history and individual preference. Keep in mind that while you both choose to donate sperm, each embryo will only use sperm from one parent.
Once you have settled all your logistics, including donor and gestational carrier agreements, the embryo development starts, and your journey begins!
Additional Resources for Gay Parents Using Egg Donation
Our donor egg bank has several articles on the unique needs and considerations for LGBTQ+ intended parents considering egg donation:
You can find additional resources on LGBTQ+ family building here.
We believe everyone deserves their best chance to build a family. We have proudly served our LGBTQ+ community for decades. While pursuing parenthood through egg donation can seem overwhelming at first, it happens just one step at a time.