A couple of weeks ago, I checked Manhattan Cryobank's website because I wanted to confirm the donor's eye color.
To my surprise, I noticed that he was listed as an anonymous donor, not as an ID release donor.
The original donor that I had picked out, affectionately known as "Didge," because he played the didgeridoo, had had problems with the labels on his vials. The day of shipment, the lab emailed me to say "call us right away." When I got the message, I called right away and it was then that I learned that the labels on his vials were chipped. The lab manager, Alan, told me that my RE wouldn't accept the vials in this condition, even though the vials themselves were fine. He also told me that I had an hour to pick a new donor in order to make sure it arrived at the RE in time... but that he would help me pick someone if I told him my priorities in a donor.
I told him my only two non-negotiables were CMV negative (I am CMV negative so my RE insisted on the same in any donor I used) and ID release. There were a few other characteristics I was looking for, European descent, average-ish height, on the slender side. I wasn't really that picky. Alan then described to me about eight different donors, all men that he had met in person, including describing his two favorites. I picked his second favorite.
Can you guess where this is going?
Lo and behold... the donor I used is not, in fact, ID release.
Alan insists that he never told me my donor was ID release.
I'm pretty sure that I checked the website to make sure that he was ID release, but a) I was making a big decision in a very short time, and b) there's lots of little boxes and I could've misread them, and c) it's possible that there was a mistake on their website.
We will never know what happened. Alan isn't admitting to anything, and was, not surprisingly, defensive.
It's possible that my vague mention of taking legal action wasn't the most productive thing to do.
I since called back and left a message with another person in the office. Perhaps not surprisingly, he has not returned my call.
When I called my sister, tears dripping on my nursing baby's head, she suggested that I could at least ask if the bank would contact the donor and ask if he would be willing to make an exception to his decision.
I will ask about this.
She also suggested that I write a letter to Calliope, today or tomorrow, describing how I am feeling right now.
Here's how I am feeling: shocked, guilty, and very, very sad.
My poor girl. She's growing up without a father. The very least I could give her is the opportunity, some day, to explore her genetic heritage if she chooses to. And now that door has been closed. Because someone, or maybe, two someone's (me and Alan) made a couple of stupid mistakes. If only I had printed out the spreadsheet that lists all the donors, I would at least have documentation that showed that he was listed as ID release (if indeed, it did).
And now, should I choose to have another child, do I use my nine frozen embryos from the same anonymous donor, so that Calliope and her sibling have that genetic link with each other? Thus denying her sibling the same?
I'm so scared that Calliope will someday be so angry with me that she won't be able to get past this.
I really wanted to have a super productive day today, my only day this week without plans, but instead I am sitting around feeling absolutely horrible and depressed and not getting anything done. I think I need to go pound it out on the elliptical, since Calliope is asleep and I can't get out in the sun.
To my readers: please don't feel defensive if you chose to use an anonymous (non-ID release) donor. This is just how I feel. I am sure that there are very valid reasons to go the anonymous route, and I certainly don't think anything negative about people that choose that. It's just... I had this all figured out, you know?