Q&A on Donating Eggs

Pensive student doing homework at home

QUESTION: I’m interested in donating my eggs and I’m wondering if there is any way to ensure that they will not be discarded or used for science in a way that would not be God-pleasing. Do we have a Christian resource that accepts egg donations? Is it wasteful or selfish for me to donate eggs while there are already so many snowflake frozen embryos?

ANSWER: I commend your concern to be God-pleasing in the decisions you make and your concern for the intrinsic value of human life. I am not aware of any Christian resource that accepts donated eggs for possible later use. The problem is the inherent deficiencies of the in-vitro fertilization (IVF) process, which is often fatal to many developing embryos before success (success, by my definition, is to finish to the process with a child in the arms of a parent) is realized. The industry is still poorly regulated and statistics by clinics are often greatly distorted. While IVF is ubiquitous in the treatment of infertility, it is most dangerous to the newly begun life at fertilization. The industry redefined pregnancy a few decades ago from “fertilization” to now being “implantation.” The redefinition was designed to accommodate the IVF industry, which loses many after fertilization, as well as accommodating some forms of birth control which inhibit implantation of a developing embryo. So, simply stated, I am not a fan of egg donation for the danger it presents to a developing embryo and because I know of no way to assure it will not be discarded or dissected for science.

That being said, I remain a BIG fan of snowflake adoptions. It is not only a way for parents to have a child that they carry through a pregnancy, but to save a child who otherwise would likely be discarded. I know that there have been some wild estimates that some 400,000 embryos are frozen as leftovers from IVF clinics, but again I remind you to be cautious about the estimates. I do know that I have referred a number of couples for a snowflake embryo adoption and to my knowledge, there have always been embryos available.

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