We create a comfortable setting to discuss, plan and manage a plan for gay men to start or expand their family.
Family building for gay men will require IVF with the use of a gestational carrier and an egg donor. “Surrogate” or “gestational surrogate” is an older term for what we now refer to as a “gestational carrier.” A gestational carrier is a woman who accepts the responsibility to bear (or be pregnant with) the embryos created from the eggs of another woman. For gay men, the egg provider is either an anonymous or known egg donor. The gestational carrier provides a host uterus for the offspring, and does not contribute genetic material, i.e. is not the egg provider. Typically, the eggs donated by the donor are inseminated in the In Vitro Fertilization laboratory with the sperm of one or both of the male partners. The resulting embryos are then transferred to the uterus of the gestational carrier, who has been taking hormones to shut off her own ovulation, while preparing her uterus for receipt of the embryos. When a female relative or friend is not available, The New Hope Center has a network of both egg donors and gestational carriers. Our center will put you in touch with reputable services, offer guidance, answer questions and support you along the way.
Upon locating an egg donor, or donated egg, and a gestational carrier, the sperm from one partner is utilized to fertilize the egg. The indicated number of resulting embryos will be transferred into the gestational carrier to carry the child to term.
The New Hope Center follows strict guidelines to ensure this is a safe and efficient process for all involved parties. It is an intensive process that requires exacting adherence to FDA regulations and national guidelines and should not be undertaken without significant experience and expertise. Gay men preparing to start a family with the use of fertility treatments will meet with Dr. Robin to discuss the specifics of utilizing an egg donor and a gestational carrier. A semen analysis will be required of either one or both partners, depending on which partner plans to use their sperm. An advanced semen analysis will test volume, motility, concentration and morphology of the sperm. The couple will meet with New Hope’s Third-Party Coordinator to review potential egg donors. An agency donor or family member can also be used if a suitable match is not currently available amongst the New Hope Center’s donor selection.
The success of having a child depends on a variety of factors, including the fertility and health of those providing the eggs and sperm, and the health of the woman who will carry the pregnancy. And, lastly, the expertise and skill of the physicians and embryologists managing the process are of great importance.
Preparation for the Intended Fathers
The male couple will be required to undergo FDA mandated infectious disease screening. At about the same time, sperm will need to be deposited at the New Hope Center’s cryopreservation storage facility. FDA regulations require that the sperm be collected and quarantined for six months and the intended father(s) must be retested for infectious diseases prior to creating embryos with the sperm. Sperm can only be utilized if the blood tests are “negative” at both screenings. After all FDA screening has been completed, the donor eggs can be fertilized with the sperm in order to produce embryos.
From the time when the same-sex male couple and a selected gestational carrier are initially seen for a consultation, it usually can take 4-6 months to complete the necessary pre-screening, legal contracts, and resulting fresh cycle. If the couple is consulting with an attorney or agency to recruit a gestational carrier, that process may add an extra 2 – 6 months to employ a carrier.
The New Hope Center offers services to recruit, screen and then introduce potential gestational carriers to intended parents. These parent can work with one of the carriers or find someone on their own. However, in Virginia, it is illegal to “broker” gestational carriers so no “agencies” exist in Virginia for this purpose.
Learn all of the exciting options with your comfortable consultation with Dr. Robin at The New Hope Center. Call or contact us to reserve your appointment at (757) 496-5370.