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#1 of 35 Old 01-01-2010, 09:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So, we've never really considered it before now, but my partner and I are thinking about trying a round of at home, DIY insemination (I'm sure there's some kind of fancy ackronym for that). I'd be interested if those of you who have BTDT could share your experiences, successes, failures.

When we decided to get pregnant with #2, we went straight for a clinic and got pregnant on the first round with IUI (talk about some luck). My cheap genes have got me thinking that if I could get pregnant for 1/4 of the price at home, we should try it. I mean we're not talking about nuclear fission here -- straight people do it all the time in their bedrooms. If the first round at home doesn't work, we were already planning on seeing the clinic in March but it's not like we're rolling in money, I can think of a few dozen things I could spend that $5-6k on (like paying the MW for my HBAC). But if there's not much success there, I don't want to waste some otherwise perfectly good swimmers and about $1,500.

Thoughts?
~Dana

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#2 of 35 Old 01-01-2010, 09:11 PM
 
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Are you using frozen? If you are, it's harder to get the timing right, but not impossible. I got pregnant at home on the first try with frozen sperm. We did two insems about 18 hours apart--one the night I had a positive OPK and the next late afternoon the next day.

We used a speculum and my partner used an eyedropper to drip the sperm into the os of my cervix.
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#3 of 35 Old 01-01-2010, 09:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yes, I would be using frozen, I meant to include that in my first post.

When we used the clinic, they did two inseminations 24 hours appart. We would probably aim for 18-24 hours between inseminations if doing it at home.

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#4 of 35 Old 01-01-2010, 09:29 PM
 
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Dana,

Are you temping at all? I would use both temping and the OPK's to track exactly how long your lh surge lasts. The first time, we insemmed at 12 and 24 hrs post positive OPK, and this time we did it at 8 and 20-ish. Point being, that before DD #1, my surge was a lot longer that it is now, so don't assume that your body will behave itself the same way as before.

Make sure you have a speculum (you can buy them online) and your sperm bank should send you the syringe and catheter (but you can also purchase these online). A flashlight or headlight is really helpful for your DP to find where to aim

After each insem, we DTD, rotating me after 15 mins and DTD again (i.e. on back, DTD, on right side, DTD, on left...you get the point). If possible keep your hips elevated. Who knows if that really makes any difference, but well...it worked for us

HTH!,

Samantha

Samantha, married to Holly for over five years . DD #1 born 12/13/06 , DD #2 born 8/18/10 and 2 furballs of indeterminate age.
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#5 of 35 Old 01-01-2010, 09:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I've pretty much given up charting temps. I tried for about a month but DS is still nursing and not sleeping through the night, so neither am I. Everything I've read said you have to have 4 consecutive hours of sleep to get an accurate temp and I very rarely get that much sleep uninterrupted, and it's been made more complicated by teh fact that I appear to ovulate pretty far into my cycle (day 17-18 of a 28 day cycle). I'll try again this month but otherwise we'll just have to wing it which is the same thing the clinic would be doing anyway since they only do insems at 24 hour intervals.

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#6 of 35 Old 01-01-2010, 09:42 PM
 
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Fair enough, I definitely remember what that's like. Try peeing on the OPK's until the line starts to fade (or in my case, disappears altogether). That will give you a decent window to work with without all the stress of temping. earlypregnancytests dot com sells them at super cheap, so you don't have to feel guilty about expensive pee tests.

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#7 of 35 Old 01-01-2010, 10:02 PM
 
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dana - you don't mention what kind of insem you plan to do at home. iui vs ici makes a big difference.

if temping is not going to possible, you might want to consider a speculum to watch the cervix changes for when you are ovulating as well as noticing cervical mucous. it is amazing how much information this provides. i found it much more valuable and reliable than opks. fwiw, a speculum is not recommended for ici insems because you typically pull out very valuable sperm with the speculum after the insem.

i probably sound like a broken record about this book to others on this forum, but i highly recommend getting hold of stephanie brill's book which was my bible for getting pregnant.

good luck!

Me, DW , and DS born 7/6/10
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#8 of 35 Old 01-04-2010, 03:10 AM
 
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We got pregnant using frozen IU's at home. I charted using OPK's and temperature's the first time around. I was able to get a better idea of when I O'ed in relation to my positive OPK this way. Currently I'm nursing DS and my temps are a little bit screwy, but I'm just using temps to try to get an idea if the pattern is the same now. So far it does appear to be that way.

My partner also checks my cervix as ovulation gets closer. We've found this to be extremely helpful. A lot of times I can't really tell if there's much fertile CM, but when she's right there, she can tell me all sorts of things about what's going on.

The first few times we did inseminations, we did ICI's. My partner would insert the speculum and use a syringe with a small catheter on it to get it up close to the cervix. She would then remove the speculum and inject the semen close to the cervix. After a few months of failed attempts, we ended up doing IUI's instead. We were able to get sterilized catheters online and some banks actually sell them. It really isn't that hard to do, especially if you have a partner that isn't nervous about doing it. If the samples are washed though, you do have to have timing a little more precise since the fluid isn't there to protect and sustain the sperm for as long.

Initially we did our inseminations too close to my positive OPK (I think 12 and 24 hours). The cycle I got pregnant on we did at 24 and 32 hours after the positive OPK. We also used the Clear Blue Easy fertility monitor and did the insem the day after we got a peak on the monitor. We found doing things at home much more relaxed and less 'clinical'. It brought us much closer together, and I felt great having it be my partner that was the one actually helping create the baby. It also gave us the freedom to do it when it was convenient for us, not just during whatever office hours we could arrange.

Another option if your partner is unable to do an IUI for whatever reason, is that some midwives will do them for you. This generally isn't too expensive, especially considering how much a doctor's office charges. Since it sounds like you already have a midwife in mind for the birth, I would ask her if she would be willing to help out.

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#9 of 35 Old 01-04-2010, 10:14 AM - Thread Starter
 
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My partner also checks my cervix as ovulation gets closer. We've found this to be extremely helpful. A lot of times I can't really tell if there's much fertile CM, but when she's right there, she can tell me all sorts of things about what's going on.
I don't think that will be happening with us, LOL. I brought up the idea to my partner and she wrinkled her nose and then I showed her some of the pictures on www.beautifulcervix.com thinking taking the mystery out of what she would be doing might help ... It did not, in fact I think that sealed the deal that she would NOT be willing to go spelunking.

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Initially we did our inseminations too close to my positive OPK (I think 12 and 24 hours). The cycle I got pregnant on we did at 24 and 32 hours after the positive OPK.
Now that I'm thinking back to our round at the clinic, I'm remembering that we had trouble tracking my ovulation and finally they just gave me a shot to make me ovulate (after 2 or 3 trips to visit the hooha camera to verify that I indeed had not O'd). Oy, the timing part is sounding more complicated by the minute.

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Another option if your partner is unable to do an IUI for whatever reason, is that some midwives will do them for you. This generally isn't too expensive, especially considering how much a doctor's office charges. Since it sounds like you already have a midwife in mind for the birth, I would ask her if she would be willing to help out.
Yeah, that might be an option I hadn't really considered. I know for certain she's never done it because we've had a discussion about another MW who has done it but never successfully.

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#10 of 35 Old 01-04-2010, 10:17 AM - Thread Starter
 
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i probably sound like a broken record about this book to others on this forum, but i highly recommend getting hold of stephanie brill's book which was my bible for getting pregnant.

good luck!
Is that the "taking control of your fertility" book? I haven't read it but will see if the library has it.

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#11 of 35 Old 01-04-2010, 11:51 AM
 
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Is that the "taking control of your fertility" book? I haven't read it but will see if the library has it.
it's the essential guide to lesbian conception, pregnancy, and birth. a must read for diy insmes!

you might want to revisit the cervix gazing with your partner - i cannot express enough how helpful it was for more accurate timing than anything else we did!

Me, DW , and DS born 7/6/10
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#12 of 35 Old 01-05-2010, 05:23 PM - Thread Starter
 
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it's the essential guide to lesbian conception, pregnancy, and birth. a must read for diy insmes!

you might want to revisit the cervix gazing with your partner - i cannot express enough how helpful it was for more accurate timing than anything else we did!
Thanks, I bought the book and the one by Rachel Pepper since the reviewers on Amazon seemed to like either one or the other but not both. I also bought Confessions of the Other Mother because it looked like an interesting read.

My partner and I did talk more about the cervix thing. She's very squeemish about it and I'm not sure how to baby step her into it. She wants to do it, but that doesn't necessarily translate into her being able to do it, KWIM?

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#13 of 35 Old 01-05-2010, 05:48 PM
 
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Thanks, I bought the book and the one by Rachel Pepper since the reviewers on Amazon seemed to like either one or the other but not both. I also bought Confessions of the Other Mother because it looked like an interesting read.

My partner and I did talk more about the cervix thing. She's very squeemish about it and I'm not sure how to baby step her into it. She wants to do it, but that doesn't necessarily translate into her being able to do it, KWIM?
The Brill book is way better than the Pepper, IMO.

(My goodness, is it true? Am I really the longest TTCer active on this board?)

If your partner is squeamish about the cervix gazing, you may have yourself a problem. You've really gotta get into talking about cervical mucus, blood, poo, gas, nausea, and other weird symptoms with the rest of us if you're to really enjoy this process.

One fun way of cervix gazing that is really not at all uncomfortable is to use a glass wand thing typically sold in many, many good sexcessory stores. i.e. like this: http://www.comeasyouare.com/default/...l-Glass-Dildo/

I can't guarantee this particular one works for looking at the cervix easily and comfortably, but I've used a similar one with someone I used to date, and I could see her cervix very easily.

Get the TCOYF book, between that and the Brill book, you're all set.

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#14 of 35 Old 01-09-2010, 08:46 PM
 
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I am so impressed that so many of you succesfully inseminated at home!!! We really want to try, and so did one vial/one cycle back in July, but were not successful. I knew it could take several tries, but with ds#1 at OB's office, I conceived the first time, so we were hoping. We decided that it would be better to spend the money trying an IUI again the second time, instead of continuing to try at home, and were successful the first time again in October... So, in retrospect, I'm glad we went to the OB again, but I still wish we could have gotten it right at home!

And dw would have never gone exploring and checking out my cervix!!!

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#15 of 35 Old 01-09-2010, 09:07 PM
 
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Ok I have a serious question....

How do you unfreeze the sperm?
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#16 of 35 Old 01-09-2010, 09:13 PM
 
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the bank gave us directions. I think--if I remember correctly, it was over 4 years ago--that we let it thaw on the bedside table for a few minutes, but we might have had it in a lukewarm water bath.
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#17 of 35 Old 01-10-2010, 03:27 AM
 
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The bank generally sends directions. But what we did to thaw it out was let it sit for several minutes at room temperature until it wasn't too cold to touch. Then my partner held the container under her boobs until it was completely thawed and could be drawn up into the syringe. Yeah, we're a little crazy and like to do things the fun way.

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#18 of 35 Old 01-10-2010, 11:35 AM
 
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We were sent instructions with Xytex. We were told to allow it to thaw 15 minutes at room temperature and then swish it around gently. At least I think so. There is a haze from the stress of handling such expensive material!

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#19 of 35 Old 01-10-2010, 11:15 PM
 
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Hi Spedteacher 30,

I am a 34 yr old lesbian currently trying to get pregnant doing at home ICI inseminations with my GF's fabulous assistance. We have tried twice so far with fresh donor sperm, doing two well timed inseminations each cycle. No luck yet. We have just been doing our insems with a syringe and with me keeping hips elevated for quite some time afterwards. Using the speculum and eye dropper sounds intriguing. We had stayed away from using the speculum during insems because everything I read said doing so was too big of a risk of losing too much semen upon removal. However, the whole, using an eye dropper and dropping it right on your cervix sounds promising. Any other details or helpful info to add?
Thanks!
Erin
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#20 of 35 Old 01-29-2010, 07:12 PM
 
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If you are using fresh sperm, you can drop it near the cervix but not into it. I also recommend reading "the essential guide to lesbian conception" by Brill. It has helped me a lot. I only wish I had read it a year ago very thoroughly. Seems with each cycle I read something new in the book and found we made little mistakes, like using a speculum the first time.

We have been doing home ICI and twice I have had a midwife come to our house and do the IUI. So far no luck but I think I would like to try doing the IUI ourselves. I will search online as some of you have recommended.

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#21 of 35 Old 01-29-2010, 07:16 PM
 
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Ok I have a serious question....

How do you unfreeze the sperm?
Thawing with water can be a hazard if the temperature is too hot. Brill recommends holding it with a glove till you can hold it against your skin. We keep it in our armpit till for about 8-10 minutes until it feels warm all around. My partner puts it in my armpit while she gets ready for the insem. I like that bc I feel it warms to my temp for a little while.

Try not to turn the vile upside down, you want to keep the juice at the bottom of the vile so it will all come out when you draw it up in the syringe.

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#22 of 35 Old 01-30-2010, 10:14 PM
 
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We did frozen once and it didn't really work. The cycle we conceived Delaney we used fresh. He went into our motel room and left his "stuff" in a sterile collection cup like they use for urine samples (DP is a nurse so this stuff is easy for us to get) and then left the room. After he left we went in and he took off. DP then used an oral syringe (like you give babies medicine with) to suck the stuff up and got it in me asap. I did lie on my back with my hips propped with pillows for about 30-56 min. We did two insems around 12 hours apart and it worked!!

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#23 of 35 Old 01-30-2010, 10:19 PM
 
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Oh and we did insem the first time the day we got the first pos opk.

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#24 of 35 Old 06-01-2010, 11:48 PM
 
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Thanks so much for all the great advice. My partner and I have tried IUI at the clinic and it was a no go. This month we are doing an at home insem. I'm going out to get the book by Brill first thing tomorrow. There is just so much to learn about ttc. I have been temping and using opk and well as monitoring cm, but I can see the importance of having my partner actually look at my cervix...I think that this will give her a better idea where to place the sperm...and in general give us a better idea of timing WHEN to insem.

Thanks again...Gelly

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#25 of 35 Old 07-06-2010, 01:29 AM
 
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Hi everyone I'm new! My lesbian fiancee and I have tried with fresh sperm\donor at home last month and it didn't work I was SUPER bummed out and thought next we'd go to the pricy CREATE clinic in Toronto to buy some sperm and get an IUI, as I am young (21) and fertile. But then we met an amazing donor and are now going to try until we get preggers!!

We are doing a home insemination with fresh sperm next Tuesday. I ovulate on the 9th-11th but since my DP is in Europe until the 13th, thats the earliest date I can inseminate but I should ovulate then. It's kind of her to run off her 12 hour flight and race to knock me up .

Overall, this year we have TTC 4x. I hope this time it'll work as our donor has had a lot of success on the "first try". Exciting!!

If not, next month I'll be trying Clomid and Robitussin. I also am using red raspberry leaf and nettle, which aid in fertility. And I've been eating alkaline rich foods which make the cervical mucus less hostile to little spermies. My prenatal pills are Materna. They're pink. Cute.

Wish me a lot of baby dust....it will be our dream come true!!!!

M&L
Also if you are lesbian parents or trying to conceive, I have Facebook. I love the support, and we'll be posting pics of our little sweetie one he\she is born!!
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#26 of 35 Old 08-14-2010, 09:24 PM
 
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I just wanted to update. I got pregnant at the end of June doing an at home insemination with fresh donor sperm. I got my +OPK at pm and did one insemination around 10:30 pm and then I did another one the next day around 1:30 pm. I think I ovulated around 5:00 pm. I am currently 9 wks pregnant. The first insemination I did myself as my partner was unavailable. I used a syringe and Preseed and then put an Instead cup in over night. My partner did the insemination the next day. We used Preseed, a speculum, and a syringe with a long catheter on it so she could get the swimmers right on my cervix. I put an Instead cup in and left it in for about 8 hours after wards. Be careful if you use a speculum, if you're not careful you can lose a lot of the swimmers upon removal. There is a great thread on Baby and Bump too about insemination at home with donor sperm. It has a lot of good info on there and a lot of girls have gotten pregnant, given birth, or are trying to get pregnant with donor sperm.



Good luck gals!
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#27 of 35 Old 08-15-2010, 04:11 PM
 
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Anybody use the Instead cup alone without a speculum? My plan was to fill and insert.
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#28 of 35 Old 08-15-2010, 09:24 PM
 
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Plenty of the gals on the other forum I am on have used it that way!
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#29 of 35 Old 08-17-2010, 02:07 AM
 
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Plenty of the gals on the other forum I am on have used it that way!

Thanks.. Good to know!
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#30 of 35 Old 03-13-2011, 08:05 PM
 
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I just wanted to add some info about using the instead cup:

 

It is placed lower in the vagina than a cervical cap which means sperm is faced with more acid from the vagina. If you have lots of EWCM you should be OK :)

 

But if you don't or you are using ICI or especially IUI sperm you may want to use a cap instead. Another option is to combine the sperm with Preseed which will help protect the sperm. Another consideration is the position you are in when placing the cup. If you have inseminated on your back, you should try putting the cup in that way. If you stand up or squat your sperm may end up on the *outside* with the cup effectively blocking the egg!

 

I am a sexuality educator so I have a great deal of text book and real life knowledge of the TTC process with donor sperm. I would highly recommend placing the sperm in an actual cervical cap which can be sized and prescribed at the OBGYN/ practitioners office. It is really only necessary if you have vaginal PH issues or you are using IUI sperm. It is certainly easier than propping your legs up and my wife appreciates the fact that he does not have to worry about sperm being on the outside looking in :(

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