Please tell me about using a bank! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 06-24-2010, 05:51 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi everyone!

My two were conceived with the help of a known donor. I am considering using a bank in the future, and am interested in hearing experiences. How did you choose a bank? How did you choose a donor from the database? Did you have to undergo counseling, and did they ship the vials to your home address? Do you need a doctor to sign? How did you like interacting with the bank?

Thanks

I'm Olivia. I blog about physiological childbirth, homebirth, and unassisted homebirth!
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#2 of 5 Old 06-24-2010, 06:57 PM
 
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Sending you a PM

K, H, and baby E (who is now three!!!)
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#3 of 5 Old 06-25-2010, 12:52 AM
 
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Hi,

Both our kids were conceived with sperm from a bank. At the time we were trying, we really wanted to use an identity-release donor and that idea was just starting to spread, not that many places were doing it. So the total donor pool was not very big. We didn't pick a bank, we picked a donor after reviewing files from several banks. Our first screen was some very basic physical characteristics (DP didn't want a donor that was super tall was one of them), then did a very thorough screen of family health history. We knocked a lot out of contention by trying really hard to avoid duplicating medical problems that run in our families. That part kind of made me nervous since it's what the guys report, but what else is there to go on? Then we went to personal characteristics. Picked a guy with some overlapping interests with us who sounded nice and mentioned that he supports queer families. I should say, we went through this choosing process it seems like a zillion times, but maybe it was more like 4.

I remember calling 3 places, two on the east coast, one of which was Xytex and the other I can't remember, and The Sperm Bank of California in Berkley. I have to say, every contact was a good one. I've had the most contact with TSBC since our success came with one of their donors, and have nothing but positive things to say about them. TSBC is very lesbian positive, and they've been doing identity release a long time. But I never felt uncomfortable with the other 2 banks, which are more mainstream either. I definitely felt like I was dealing with salespeople who wanted to make my experience easy and pleasant, and I have no problem with that at all. There's a ton of information on the web sites, but it was very easy to call and get a question answered every time one came up.

We didn't ever try to have anything shipped to us, did IUI in an MD's office, so I can't answer to your other questions.
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#4 of 5 Old 06-25-2010, 01:05 PM
 
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We used Northwest Andrology. We chose the donor first. We only wanted to use Mexican donors and there are only a few in the whole country, so that narrowed our bank possibilities significantly. We ended up with the perfect bank for us. They ship to your house (if you want) with no doctor's note or physical exam first, which is how we wanted it. And they are much cheaper than other banks. I have nothing but great things to say about them. And our donor worked for us right away, but that doesn't have to do with the bank. They made the whole process easy and simple and answered all our questions right away. They only thing I thought was kind of weird for me personally was that their office workers are men, so (for me) it was a little weird calling up and ordering sperm and talking about cycle days with a man.

Beth- WOHM slinggirl.gif  -Madly in love with my Wife- SAHMhola.gifandbabyf.gifSophia, born 11/2/10, at home! homebirth.jpgExpressing love, one ounce at a time!  1pump.gif

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#5 of 5 Old 06-26-2010, 04:31 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for your replies! NW Andrology sounds like a great bank! Any experiences with rainbow flag, anyone?

I'm Olivia. I blog about physiological childbirth, homebirth, and unassisted homebirth!
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