Choosing whether to donate your eggs is a very personal decision. If you are thinking of becoming a donor, you may be wondering if it’s possible to keep it private. Perhaps you are not certain your parents would give their approval. You may feel there is no way your close friends would understand, and you want to avoid awkward conversations. You may be freaked out at the thought that the Intended Parents may find out who you are one day. No matter what your reasons are, it is completely natural to have some questions. Can you become an egg donor while staying anonymous? Are there any boundaries? Let us have a quick look at the issue of egg donation and privacy.
Is egg donation always anonymous?
The answer to this is 99 % of the time. And 100 % if that is what you prefer. There are various types of egg donation, each with their individual differences.
Known donor: Another name for this is “open arrangement”. This type of egg donation usually involves a family member or friend of the Intended Parents. All information including names and addresses are shared between the Intended Parents and the donor. An open egg donor arrangement between a family and a donor who have not met before is extremely rare.
Semi-anonymous donor: This is also called a “semi-open arrangement”. In this case, both the Intended Parents and the donor agree to sharing a little information with each other. It could be the city they live in or their first names. Although not expected, a semi-open arrangement gives the family and the donor an option to contact each other sometime in the future, provided you both agree.
Anonymous donor: This is the most common type of egg donor arrangement. An anonymous donation is true to the name. It’s completely anonymous, meaning that the donor and the Intended Parents do not share identifying information and there is zero chance of meeting in the future.
How do you ensure my egg donation is anonymous?
We take the issue of privacy very seriously. There are steps taken to ensure your privacy throughout the egg donation process. We delete all information that can reveal your identity from your candidate profile before we show it to the Intended Parents (IPs). We also keep your information, be it medical, genetic or personal, confident in all stages.
How can I ensure that I stay anonymous?
Although we will do whatever it takes to protect your privacy and confidentiality, there some things you can also do to help.
Make use of unique pictures
Upon application, you will need to submit pictures that will be included in your donor profile which will be shown to the Intended Parents. Unfortunately, it can be easy to bypass anyone’s anonymity, thanks to the power of Google’s or other reverse image searches on the net. We recommend submitting pictures you have not previously posted on any social media platforms or websites (ex: workplace or school)that can be used to identify you. When picking out a picture of you as a child or baby to include in your profile, use ones that have not been used for throwback (TBT) before.
Make sure your pictures are free of identifying information
When you are selecting pictures, it is good to choose ones where you are not wearing a work uniform, a club or university t-shirt or any other things that could give people clues to who you are. Look at the background of the pictures and ponder whether your location or address can be seen or identified.
Keep it off social media
You are going through something wonderful. It is easy to understand that you may want to share your experience with people at some point. However, it is best not to post details on Facebook, Twitter or any other social media. Doing so could jeopardize your privacy.
As a donor, you are going through a battery of intensive screening tests and a close examination of your personal, medical and family history. You are saying yes to taking fertility medications, visiting the clinic and finally undergoing the egg retrieval procedure. You are as well making a big difference in the life of a hopeful family by helping to bring a new life to the world. While egg donation is very rewarding, it is not a walk in the park. So, when giving a lot of yourself, you should be treated with the utmost respect and care that you deserve. And protecting your privacy is part and parcel of that. We will always make sure your identity is protected and safe with us.