LGBTQIA+ | Same-Sex Couple
You and your partner are in a loving relationship as an LGBTQIA+ couple. You’re ready to grow your family together and want to have a child.
While growing legal and social acceptance has made is easier for LGBTQIA+ couples to grow their families biologically through reproductive medicine, there are still many legal, financial, and emotional issues that add another layer of complexity for LGBTQIA+ couples wishing to become parents. OC Fertility is proud to work with LGBTQIA+ couples who are interested in growing their family and assist them throughout their journey.
Solutions and Treatment
Thanks to massive breakthroughs in modern medicine, there are several options for you to explore before you choose which is best for you and your family.
In vitro fertilization (IVF)
In vitro fertilization is a type of assisted reproductive therapy that involves fertilizing an egg with sperm outside of the body in a specialized medical lab. Once the egg is fertilized and fertility specialists determine that it is likely viable, the egg is then transferred into the body and implanted into the woman’s uterus. The goal is that the fertilized egg (or embryo) will attach to the woman’s uterus and will result in a successful pregnancy.
IVF can be used for a variety of situations. Specific to the LGBTQIA+ community, this is a commonly-used method of growing the families of lesbian couples by utilizing a sperm donor to fertilize the egg of one or both partners. This is also beneficial for women who are choosing this method to become single mothers or for gay male couples who are using a surrogate to carry their child.
If you are in need of a sperm or egg donation service or a gestational carrier/ surrogacy service, we partner with many excellent organizations who can provide you with the resources you need.
Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI)
Intracytoplasmic sperm injection is the method used during in vitro fertilization to fertilize the egg. In this process, the egg’s cytoplasm is injected with sperm by way of a very small, hollow needle. The egg is kept outside of the body for a time to allow for the monitoring of the embryo. Once it is determined that the egg has been fertilized and is assumed to be viable, it is implanted into the woman’s uterus for maturation into a fetus, hopefully resulting in a successful pregnancy.
Massive discoveries and evolution in the field of reproductive medicine has even made it possible for same-sex female couples to carry one another’s biological children.
Reciprocal IVF is the process of extracting eggs from one woman, fertilizing it with donor sperm, and then implanting the embryo into the other partner’s uterus for implantation and maturation.
Intrauterine insemination (IUI) (also called artificial insemination (AI))
Intrauterine insemination, also called artificial insemination, is the process of placing sperm, which has been “washed” and prepared in a medical laboratory, directly into a woman’s uterus to facilitate an increased chance of fertility. Rather than making the sperm work to get to the egg, this process gets the sperm as close to the egg as possible to increase the chances of conception and, ultimately, a successful pregnancy.
This is also helpful for same-sex female couples who are choosing to grow their family through the use of a sperm donor but do not necessarily need or want the greater invasiveness of in vitro fertilization.
Cryopreservation, more commonly known as egg or sperm “freezing”, is most often thought of being used when it is not yet quite the optimal time for a woman to have a child, but she wishes to preserve her fertility from the effects of aging. Cryopreservation, the process of freezing and preserving living tissue and cells, can give people the extra time they need before they are ready to begin their family.
However, within the transgender community, this process offers a special value. Oftentimes, transitioning means the loss of fertility due to the amount of hormones, such as testosterone a female-to-male person would utilize in the transitioning process. Cryopreservation allows transgender people the freedom of living their most authentic lives and still growing their family biologically.
Both eggs and sperm can be preserved in this way and can later be used in a variety of assisted reproductive therapies, including in vitro fertilization and intrauterine insemination.
Each of these processes offer unique benefits and the best choice for you depends on countless physical, biological, and emotional factors. After careful consideration and deciding which assisted reproductive therapy is right for you and your family, contact OC Fertility to discuss how we can assist you in growing your family.
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