August 19, 2015

Why some women become altruistic egg donors

Many recipients have themselves been through the IVF process and therefore, although it is different for them, they have an appreciation of what is asked of donors when they donate eggs. So we are frequently asked the same question: “Why do women do this?” “What motivates them?”

Woman's hand holding a golden egg

To answer this question we went back to the files of our first few donors and were staggered to see their responses to this same question that we asked them at the outset. They can explain their reasons for wanting to be donors better than we ever could:

“I have two children and they’ve made me very happy. It feels right to donate eggs in the hope that someone else will be able to experience that happiness. I also have friends who have been able to have families because other people have donated gametes, and that has brought home to me how necessary donors are.”

“I have always been a ‘giver’ and am happy to give anything I don’t need to live. I donate blood, am on the bone marrow list and thought that as my family are complete that it would be nice to donate my eggs to a couple that need some extra help to have a baby.”

“Recently I have been surrounded by people who have found it difficult to conceive. My best friend has recently lost one of her ovaries. Seeing what she has gone through mentally with the possibility of not being able to bear her own child has made me decide that if I am healthy enough to do that then I should help women who are not able to.”

“I heard the advert and I was very intrigued, so went on the website straight away. I am a young, single and healthy woman and think that as I already give blood, which is very rewarding, why not do something amazing like this and help couples who desperately want to have a family. I also would like to have children of my own one day and if I do struggle to conceive, this may be a path I may have to go down.”

“I completely took becoming pregnant and having a family for granted. I always just thought it would happen. I was very lucky and fell pregnant very quickly both times and now have two happy, healthy beautiful boys. Reading articles and seeing things on TV recently made me realise not everyone is so lucky. Down to no fault of their own, some women’s eggs will never one day become a baby. Meanwhile I have many working eggs that are just thrown away. It just doesn’t seem fair. If I can help a couple to become a family it would be a great privilege to know I played a very tiny part in putting those smiles on their faces.”

“Having seen several of my friends and my step-mum go through fertility treatment, I have seen how distressing and heart-breaking it can be not to be able to have a child.
My step-mum and I are very close and her own story in particular inspired me to become an egg donor. I have always been of the opinion that if you can help someone why wouldn’t you and having researched egg donation I wanted to help a couple who needed it.”

“I spoke to a colleague who has resorted to IVF to start a family of his own. I was really touched by his desire to have children but upset me to see his struggle. If I can donate eggs to make couples happy and to give a loving environment to a baby, I would hate to deny them the chance of doing that. I would hope to have a family of my own one day; and if I was unable to have children naturally for whatever reason would like to think there were volunteers willing to help me too. By giving my eggs that are surplus I my need, I would feel so rewarded knowing it would help someone else.”

Similar themes to these are mirrored through all our donors. You may also like to read some of the comments, reviews and testimonials from our donors and recipients.


PGD and Egg Donation

Pre-implantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) with egg donation enables people who have a genetic disorder to avoid passing on that gene to their children. PGD is a procedure performed in the laboratory by embryologists who test embryos created by IVF for the faulty gene and/or chromosomes. From this testing, only embryos that do not have the […]

Read the full article: PGD and Egg Donation »

Altrui Sibling Pregnancies with Donor Eggs

When we started Altrui five years ago, it was our plan that we would be able to give people the very best chance of starting a family with the help of an egg donor. Most people arrive at egg donation after a long difficult journey full of heartache and disappointment, but also with hope, and […]

Read the full article: Altrui Sibling Pregnancies with Donor Eggs »

Altrui’s Egg Donation Information Evening

Last week we held our first information evening for those who were considering using donor eggs. We suspect that this was also the first event to be held in the UK where such a variety of speakers were on hand to cover every aspect of egg donation, both clinical and personal. We held it in […]

Thinking about the numbers in egg donation

So how are you feeling about your eggs? Most women don’t even think about this, especially if we’ve already had children. Move into the world of donation, though, and you quickly notice that it can be dominated by numbers. How many follicles were there? How many eggs were collected? How many embryos developed, and how […]

Read the full article: Thinking about the numbers in egg donation »

Three-parent babies

The House of Lords has approved controversial IVF procedures aimed at preventing inherited mitochondrial diseases. Over the last couple of months we have heard a lot of different views regarding the use of “three-person IVF” in the UK. Some people are all for it and others against it. What about you? Yes? No? Or maybe […]

Read the full article: Three-parent babies »

Stay privacy-aware – egg donation and social media

At Altrui we’ve recently started putting pregnancy and birth announcements online – it’s wonderful to share positive news and everyone who reads it feels good. But it’s got us thinking about how we can publicly celebrate donors’ amazing gift while protecting your privacy online. We follow HFEA guidelines on anonymity, meaning we only let donors […]

Asian Infertility

An Altrui egg donor explains why she can’t let anyone know she’s donating eggs   For Asian women there are clear cultural attitudes about being fertile and having children, with a correspondingly large stigma attached to being infertile. It is automatically assumed that a couple will have children, which is a major milestone in any […]

Read the full article: Asian Infertility »

Videos about Egg donation

There can be a mass of information to absorb going through the egg donation cycle as a donor, so to make some aspects a little easier to digest we have put together a series of short videos which go a long way towards explaining the treatment that egg donors go through. Thanks to two of […]

Read the full article: Videos about Egg donation »

An egg donor talks about donating again, Part 2

I chose to become an egg donor for two reasons, the first reason being that my mum was adopted by the most loving couple and this was my way of saying thank you to my grandparents. And the second reason being that my little sister is unable to have kids (or so we thought). Donating […]