12 Step Program for Egg Donation and Surrogacy

There are 12-step programs for just about everything. How about a 12-step program for intended parents trying to conceive?  I've worked with intended parents trying to conceive for over 20 years and helped hundreds of intended parents find their way to the other side. Here are my 12 steps to dealing with infertility.

1.    Admit you are not in control of your fertility.
2.    Understand that infertility is not a failure but a physical reality like the color of your eyes.
3.    Come to an understanding that a Power greater than yourself has a plan for you and that only once you have moved through your pain can you appreciate your options.
4.    Let go of trying to control things (see number 3 above).
5.    Learn that there is freedom in trusting your Higher Power.
6.    Allow yourself time to mourn your losses.
7.    Experience the denial and isolation as part of this journey, but remember you are not alone.
8.    Rage, as you will, at yourself, your partner, your doctor and everyone else who seems to be able to have children so easily.
9.    Remember that there are many people who can help you on this road and while they can't feel the pain you're feeling, most have a deep understanding of what you are experiencing.
10.     Allow yourself to experience sadness when the road to parenthood looks and feels like a painful uphill battle because at times it is.
11.     Realize that you can only move forward in acceptance of your reality when you have completed the process of mourning your loss.
12.     Remember that you will have the child who was always meant to be yours, even if the timing may not be what you had in mind, and the child you're welcoming isn't the child you thought you'd have.

Gail Sexton Anderson is the Founder and CEO of Donor Concierge.