To adopt or keep doing ivf

Just wanted to ask if any of you have considered adoption if ivf fails and how many cycles you would do before saying this is enough? We've failed our only nhs funded cycle and are now planning to go to prague for private treatment using donor eggs. You can't really get annoymous donors here. I think the clinic we're going with offer 3 cycles for price of 2. After that I think we've decided that s it. We will then go for adoption. I just wondered if anyone else has quite a set idea of the number of cycles they are going to do.

73 Replies

  • Hello,

    Just wondering, what are your concerns over egg donation over here?

    We have decided to do sperm donation as a good private clinic we have chosen will do our Ivf for free if we donate sperm (we aren't eligible for any nhs - I'm 32 but don't meet their minimum AMH cut off. We figure that we may end up needing eggs, so willingness of donors is important to us, so we also wanted to give couples that chance. We've talked over the inplications but feel it's worth it,

    Because I haven't had my first cycle with my own eggs, I don't know what it involved, so don't know how many goes I would have, but I know my sister in law tried 3 rounds and had 2 Miscarriages before she adopted and they are really happy with their lovely little family. She couldn't really face anymore Ivf.

    Good luck with everything. X

  • Thank you. It's such a long hard road isn't it. The nhs wont give us a 2nd cycle due to me only getting 1 egg. They would have given us one with donor egg but we d have to find our own donor. I want an annoymous donor. All the private clinics are the same you need your own donor so only option is to go abroad really. Plus a lot cheaper and donor remains annonymous. After having 1 failed round already I know I couldn't keep doing this. X

  • I'm so new to it all, so really can't offer much more than some supportive suggestions! I'm going with Care Fertility. This is recommendation from a few people I know who have had successful treatment from them and I was very impressed when I went and met them. They do Ivf with donor eggs and embryos (from their supply of donors, not finding your own) for between £5000-8000. From what I've read there is anonymity up until the child reaches 18 at which point it can request the name and city/last address of their donor.

  • Yes I did look at them will go on and look at their website but somewhere like prague is definitely cheaper.

  • Abroad is half that amount x

  • Know how you feel I am doing my 3rd cycle soon if that fails one cycle with DE then adoption. I have been researching and talking to people in adoption just getting general info, they do say you have to be 6months clear of IVF treatment before you start the adoption process X

  • Yeah but I think you'd need that Just to get your head straight then it's about 18 months got the adoption process. My cousin adopted 2 wee girls a few years ago and she said about 18 months but guess depends how long it takes o get your match x

  • They told us they have got it a lot better now due to the demand of children needing adopting And the stress for all concerned it's about 6 months from application X

  • What 6 months from applying to child? Where do you live? I'm in scotland. I phoned social work about 2 years ago and they said you would probably get a toddler not a baby.

  • Yes they told us toddler upwards unless you look at the foster to adopt route (not sure I could cope with that though if the baby did go back to birth mother) I am in uk near Manchester and have spoken to 3 separate agencies under different councils and all say 6 months from application, they have moved leaps and bounds in the last few years to improve the waiting times for children to be in their forever families xxx

  • That's really good not sure if it's the same in scotland but would be amazing if it was. Esp as we've already waited so long for a child. Although my mum knows a gay couple who adopted an 8 month old baby and my cousin adopted an 11 month old and a nearly 3 year old.

  • It would be amazing but understandably they have to be certain its right for the child. I think we would still like to adopt even if our treatment is successful as I know we could offer a lovely forever home to a child. My Auntie used to foster, had 2 children of her own and ended up adopting 2 others and her family is fantastic X

  • Yes I feel the same have always wanted to adopt. I suppose it's just a bit scary not knowing what issues your child could have but I know i could totally love a child.

  • We are going through local authorities at the moment regarding fostering our next meeting is on the 4th but also have to meet with an adoption social worker that day too as they say have to have covered every avenue so we are going to wait and see what they say before making a definite decision. I hope your keeping well. xx

  • I'm in the same situation, we so far have privately paid for a vasectomy reversal and 2 rounds, we now are at the stage we are thinking about adopting but it's such a hard time as I would love to go to one of these clinics that monitor you for two weeks but it is hitting 11thousand to try that clinic :-(

  • It is so much money we are using our life savings the money I was keeping to support me when I was on maternity leave. I know I will be utterly devastate if this fails.

  • Im on my 4th embryo transfer and we have 1 frozen embryo left. Im hoping this is our lucky one but if not i will have the last obe transfered all being well and if that doesnt work then i will adopt. We had 2 full cycles through the nhs and we are coming to the end now. I had to give it my all with my own embryos before adopting otherwise i feel "what if". If you have the opportunity you may as well give it a go. When you want something that bad you will try anything and everything. Good luck with your donor eggs though xx

  • Thanks and good luck with yours hope it works out. It's such a cruel thing. Yeah we just felt we'd only had 1 cycle we have to at least try again otherwise we'd always wonder. As my egg count is so low our best bet of success is donor eggs x

  • It is a cruel thing. When you want a child so much but you just cant seem to get there. Fingers crossed you will be lucky with your donor eggs. Try not to stress too much as that doesnt help. Im staying reasonably calm this time round. Just keep thinking when will i have any signs its worked!! X

  • Yes that's true. You just want some certainty that it will work!! But I figure with donor eggs the chances of it working are much higher. The clinic I've found you're guaranteed 6 eggs and 2 embryos and as long as good sperm quality you get 2nd cycle free and if that fails again you get 3Rd cycle free definitely x

  • Fair play thats good 2 free cycles, but really you are hoping you arent going to need them. Is it expensive as well? I hope it all works out for you i really do. We all need some good luck on here xx

  • Thanks. It's such a worrying time. It's about 3 grand so not expensive at all. Then flights and hotels on top of that.

  • Its a no brainer when it's that price really. Good luck xx

  • My sister adopted a 6 month old girl a year ago and she is gorgeous. They are so happy as a family after going through 2 cycles of IVF and then in between getting pregnant naturally with twins but miscarrying at 12 weeks. Its a tough process to go through but seeing how happy they are has made me definitely think of adoption as an option. Her friend went through 3 cycles of IVF before adopting brothers who were 1 and 3.

    Even if IVF works for us I don't have time for loads more cycles so would consider it to have more children.


  • Yes that's what I think. I'm 38 so even if our ivf works I'd probably want to adopt in the future. Where does your sister live? I know most people get a slightly older girl. My cousin got an 11 month old and a 3 year old. The 3 year old had a lot more issues.

  • They live in Hampshire. Initially they said they wanted an under 2 year old and were then told then should go to at least age 4 to increase the chances of getting a child. They were then told they were selected to get a baby.

    They have been very lucky. Their little girl was a very well behaved baby and doesn't have any health issues. She was only with her birth mother for 2 weeks before she went into foster care.

  • Sounds like they've been very lucky. We would love a baby.

  • Hey katya38,

    Me and my partner have spoken about this. Although we haven't yet started our NHS treatment we said if both NHS attempts were unsuccessful we would give private one go and if that was unsuccessful then we would be looking into the adoption route.

    When will you be going to Prague? Good luck 🍀 xx

  • Thanks. Probably Nov or Dec. We're going on honeymoon in October so hope to start again after that. Bear in mind you are not guaranteed 2 shots on the nhs. All our family and friends have been shocked that we're only getting the 1. It depends how you respond to does seem very harsh.

  • Yeah it is very harsh. They did tell me at my last appt that if on the first go you don't respond to drugs then that's 1 go used already. It's actually ridiculous to be honest.

    Keeping my fingers crossed that I do respond so that I at least get a chance to see if it's successful.

    They told me I'd be short protocol at my last appt and that I had 7 follicles on each ovary. That's all I was told. I don't feel they give you very much information and they just seem to expect you to know what they're talking about xx

  • That's exactly how I felt Amanda. They give out very little info. I was terrified we would fail before we even started! But our 1 egg did fertilise it just didn't implant but I am glad we got the whole way through. I phoned after it failed and nurse pretty much said yeah they won't get another go cos of 1 egg. Then she said on no you won't get called back for a few months.!! So that's why we're just going private now. Not prepared to wait for a meeting with nhs that will only tell me what I already know!!

  • It's terrible actually. Everything we go through to have a baby and that's the way they treat people.

    Where about in Scotland are you? I'm in Edinburgh and will be having my treatment at the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary xx

  • Yes I don't think they realise how important this is to you. We had ours at Glasgow. The staff were very nice and the whole process was actually far easier than I thought. Just the emotional side is so brutal. If you have any questions etc I'm happy to answer them.x

  • I completely agree katya38. The staff at Glasgow were great through the whole process but now we have a negative result we are not sure what or when things happen next. Even when we called it was confusing.

  • I know. I'm glad I phoned though because otherwise we would just be hanging on waiting for a letter! And also we were under impression they provided donors not that we had to find our own! Hope your next cycle goes well moira but I doubt nhs will do anything else for us. I was planning to start going to a support group in Kilmarnock as I'm finding all this very difficult. Where do you live?

  • Hey katya38, I'm in Scotland too but attending Ninewells. Our first cycle didn't go well, I had 6 eggs, 3 fertilised but none developed well. They said it was likely my eggs that was the problem so asked about using donor eggs. They said I could do but the wait was around 18months unless we found our own donor egg..... a family member or friend but we defo didn't have to find our own donor. Anyway because I'm 38 we've decided to give my own eggs another try. We have friends that have a baby through donor egg & donor sperm but also have friends that adopted their foster twins. I think seeing both of these has definitely opened our eyes to these options if we fail. Good luck in Prague!x

  • Thanks. Are you getting a 2nd cycle with the nhs or going private?x

  • We're getting a second cycle with the NHS but could have had donor eggs for it. We didn't want to wonder what if so want to try my eggs again. But when I did ask about donor they defo said that I'd be entitled to try donor eggs which they provide for it but it was a long wait unless I had my own donor. X

  • I was told before treatment began that if we got less than 3 eggs they wouldn't give us cycle 2. So am not even waiting for our review as been told it ll be a few months. I wasn't comfortable with knowing the donor x

  • Ahhh I see! Seems so unfair when if you're not using your own eggs that you can't have a 2nd cycle! I wouldn't be comfortable knowing my donor either so I see where you're coming from. Sounds like you have found yourself a great clinic abroad! This will be our back up plan. All the best, wishing you loads of luck!!x

  • Thanks well haven't quite decided yet bit prague seems to be the best place. Seems harsh not to get a 2nd shot on nhs when our egg did at least fertilise. After all it only takes one!! We ll go the review meeting but I know that's what they ll say as a nurse on the phone also said you won't get another when it's failed. I'm 38 so just don't have time on our side. We ve been ttc for 3 years x

  • Yeah that's all you can do! I'm almost 39 now so feel the same. No point in hanging around!!x

  • Thanks very much 😊 that would be really helpful xx

  • Hi katya, I'm glad you posted this question as I've read some really positive things about adoption in your replies. I really hope everything turns out well for you xx

  • Thank you. Really hope so it's so tough x

  • It really is, I'm in my 2nd IVF 2ww and you really wonder how many times you can put yourself through it don't you 😕 Xx

  • Yes I think 3 times would be my absolute limit but I also think each failed attempts would be even worse. Not sure how I will cope if it fails when we've put our life savings into it!!😢😢x

  • Katya38 Id have considered adoption but hubby a straight no... his friend adopted two natural brothers after a 3 year wait both major issues and few years down the line him and his wife have split live different areas completely and each have one of the sons. Beyond sad. We went down the IVF with DE in Prague route... successful first attempt 4 frozen became very proud parents 4 Years ago. Im 47 and hubby 49. Best thing we ever did. Was about £5K including flights and weeks accommodation. I did it all myself. Hope you take the plunge my love x

  • Thank you. That is the route we want to take. Can I ask what clinic you used in Prague and were you successful the first time? I've looked at the fertility centre and gennet x

  • Hi Katya38, you sound like you are in a very similar situation to us. NHS said we could have one attempt with my eggs and after that we would need to find a donor. I feel the same way you do about anonymity and we are taking a similar route with donor egg treatment abroad.

    I felt the same when making the decision about 'giving up' on my own eggs, when is it right to move on from this... I think you know deep down how far you can go both emotionally and financially. We decided that we wanted better chances of success if we are investing our emotions and money in all of this again.

    I'm guessing the same things will apply if we both ever need to consider adoption. We'll know when we've done what we can (need to avoid comparing ourselves with other couples) and the time will be right.

    Wishing you the best of luck with everything xx

  • Thanks and you. It's a horrible and unfair thing. Where are you? And where are you going for egg donation? I feel ok about the egg donation as I do believe once I have carried the baby it will feel completely mine. We don't have huge amount of savings, my husband is self employed so we really had to go with the option most likely to give us a baby. Would have taken a 2nd nhs cycle with my own eggs bit that's not an option. We just want to keep going and hopefully get treatment done by Christmas xx

  • Hey, I'm near Newcastle, going to Poland for treatment. Where abouts are you?

    It really is awful, it has such a massive impact on your life for so long. Like you, we don't have a lot of cash (and I felt extremely low after our failed cycle) and as you say, a donor gives us the best chance. The baby will feel like yours, I am certain. It took a long time to put aside feelings about my genetics, but we are ready to be in with a decent chance (5% chance with my own eggs).

    Hopefully you'll have some good news by Christmas, we are hoping to have a go in the next couple of months too. X

  • It's awful. I teach 5 year olds and constantly surrounded by pregnant people and you children. After 3 years you really feel you've waited long enough. I'm near Glasgow. Which clinic in Poland are you going to? I'm looking at clinics at the moment can't decide there's so much choice. X

  • Hi Katya - We're lucky in the respect that we have 3 x NHS treatments. We're one down and due to start our second early next year. After we've had our 3 we will absolutely be looking into adoption. We've already done some research. Our thoughts are that we would like a family and we will do whatever we have to do to get there.

    Wishing you lots of luck with your treatment in Prague x x x

  • Thank you. Good luck with your next cycle xx

  • I was the other way round. Neither of us wanted treatment and were adamant we wouldn't have any. Adoption was the way forward for us. But after going to meetings we were told we wouldn't get a child unless one of us gave up work or at the very minimum dropped down to part time hours.

    Living on the outskirts of London there's no way we could afford it so went down the treatment route instead.

    I am hoping that if we have a biological child, by the time they are old enough to adopt a sibling, we will earn more and can then drop our hours down.

  • That's a shame. Is that because you both worked really long hours? I work full time as a teacher but do get really got holidays and have a good support network with my in laws. My husband works away from home a lot.xx

  • I only have to work 36 hours a week but do have an hour commute each way. Hubby works at a uni (an hour away as well) so gets pretty much 4 months off at summer plus a month at xmas and Easter. But for both of us it can be irregular and I have a few foreign work trips and occasionally hubby will have 100 hours work a week (though the next he will have 2) so I guess maybe they think there's not enough stability and flexibility for the child cos if they have an appointment and hubby has a lecture and I'm away we'd be stuck. But how that isn't the case for everyone I don't know

  • I think they are big on your support network. Luckily we have a big extended family with lots of potential cousins, aunts and grandparents. I messaged my cousin and she said they were fine about them working as long as at least one of you takes at least 6 months off work. Maybe it was to do with your over night trips or lack of back up. Did they give you much feedback? I'm sure you could reapply at some stage in the future x

  • I think it all comes down to the area. Because here you have to take a minimum of a year off of they won't even place a child with you. I know people who have adopted working full time (in other areas) but when I said that to the social worker they pointed out those people were probably in a position to be able to go part time if necessary (which is true actually). We aren't. The only feedback they gave was that they wouldnt place a child with us when there's so many couples who work part time out there and can therefore be there more for the child.

    I think we will reapply in a few years. At the moment there's such a shortage of children they can be ridiculously fussy. I'm sure that will change soon and they'll have to relax their criteria.

  • Ive recently asked the same question, how many times is enough. It's such a personal decision because this journey affects us all so deeply but we all deal with it in different ways. Some people's faith is so incredibly strong that they can keep going for multiple cycles. For me, I feel that 3 fresh cycles is where I draw the line (happy to do any FET if we have any embryos). I'm 2 down, now on 2WW after FET and have 3 frozen -1 more fresh and then I'm done. The emotional and financial burden is too heavy to bear. Then it's on to plan B..not sure what that is but I have a wonderful man at my side and I know I'll we'll be OK. Check out Access Fertility's programmes. Good luck to you. Baby dust all around xx

  • we had five ivf cycles, one with donor eggs (Greece). ending up in bfns and 1 early miscarriage. your only one failed cycle still doesn't mean you'r hopeless. why you decided to switch to donor eggs now? can you still try on your own? do you feel well with hormonal stimulation?

    as few words about adoption. it wasn't an option for us, to tell you the true. we knew we wanted a newborn. adopting a healthy newborn this days is almost mission impossible. sure, you can apply and waste much money on lawyers, papers, etc. but you can never know it’ll ever work for you. you can wait years and years and still have no match. This doubled with supplemental problems like birth relatives etc. Each IP decides on its own. For our family, it wasn’t an option. We switched to surrogacy (donor eggs). It was also quite risky and nervous for us. Our first attempt failed. I had to take antidepressants and was depressed after that. Still, our contact covered endless number of attempts just until we get what we want. The second attempt – and we’re parenting our twin baby boys who are 1.3 yo now. Now I know we made a right choice. But this is the right choice for me, for my family. What is best for you? You choose

  • Thanks for the reply. Yes we could persevere with my eggs but we don't have much finance and decided to go with donor eggs to give us the best chance possible of a baby. Have never considered surrogacy but we definitely couldn't afford it. I've always been keen to adopt. We would probably get a toddler. My cousin did it and got 2 wee girls ages 11 months and 2 and a half within 18 months. Congratulations on your baby twins that is amazing xx

  • You’re too point-blank, KimDerr. Adoption is a very individual process. Some adopters are more lucky than others, some not. I can even compare it with Russian roulette – you can never know if it works for you. Facing infertility, adoption was on our list of option. Moreover, it was our principle option at first. We went internationally and faced a lot of problems. We wasted time and money and had a failed match. Yes, it was heartbreaking but still I know that it was our fate. Things just had to go this way. We shifted from adoption to surrogacy on advice of friends. Our reproductive clinic is in the country we were going to adopt from – Ukraine. Believe it or not, but our very first attempt was positive and we’re awaiting twins to come in February.

    All I want to say is that there’s no unique option for infertility treatment. We all have our own stories and we’re the only ones to continue them – the way we want/can.

    Good luck to everyone trying/searching/opting


  • Hi. As for me I will going to stop when the drs say to me that it is enough, I have been to numerous ivf oe tx and 3 on de. Now I am planning to change my clinic and go internationally. I think I have like 2 tries left before I turn to a surrogacy. I think maybe you should also consider it as an option before thinking about the adoption?

    xx good luck in your clinic hun

  • We couldn't afford surrogacy

    good luck xx

  • Thank you! But.. have you tried like looking for countries all over the world? But of course if you want to go for a surrogacy at all. I know that there are plenty of clinics where surrogacy programs are really affordable for like everyone. I am not trying to persuade you by any means but if you want you can look at like Eastern Europe clinics.

    I am not the one who is 100% sure in this idea of going abroad though. But I myself will try doing so.


  • Thanks I will look at them but I want a chance of carrying the baby myself so the last of our savings will prob go to donor eggs xx

  • I understand you! Again I hope that everything works out for you, we share together the same struggles and the same desire of having a baby. I want you to write us right away when you get your BFP, so we could share you happiness together rather than our sadness.

    I am sending you fertility vibes! xx

  • Thank you so much xx

  • Katya38, i wish you lots of luck in your adoption journey. we all make our own choices. still i have a question running through my head. you say you can't afford surrogacy but still you can afford adoption that also costs a pretty penny. what are the assosciated costs? are you going domestically or internationally? what type of adoption do you pursue?

  • I live in scotland if I adopt will be doing through local council doesn't cost anything well not that I'm aware of.x

  • ok then, good luck to you in your adoption journey xxx

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