There are few, if any, resources available to help infertility patients navigate who to tell about using third party reproduction. Our guest is Bette Galen, a licensed clinical social worker specializing in infertility who has worked at Reproductive Medicine Associates of New Jersey for 8 years and has a private practice in Montclair, NJ.


+ Highlights of the show (click to expand)

  • Why are parents via egg donation, sperm donation and embryo donation often hesitant to tell their family and friends about their use of third party reproduction?
  • How do you decide who to tell?
  • If you plan on telling your child of their conception with donor sperm, donor egg, or donor embryo, does that influence who else you need to or should tell?
  • How to we help our children to understand the distinction between private information and secrets?
  • How do you make distinctions between who to tell and who not to tell?
  • Is it possible to tell some people and not tell others? Or once you tell someone is it likely to spread to everyone?
  • What are the different levels of who to tell?
  • What are the downsides and disadvantages to telling others that you became pregnant from egg donation, sperm donation or embryo adoption?
  • What are the downsides and disadvantages of not telling friends and family that your child was conceived with donor gametes?
  • How to handle grandparents who are not comfortable with any information on IVF, much less donor egg, sperm or embryo?
  • What causes families members to not be supportive of third party reproduction?
  • How do religious beliefs affect grandparents and extended family members acceptance of egg or sperm donation?
  • How to handle the inevitable question about who the child looks like?
  • What should you do if a family member (grandparent, aunt, uncle) treats your child different because they are not genetically related to their side of the family?


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Image credit: Frank Dai