Egg Donation: One of Hollywood’s Dirty Little Secrets? by Marna Gatlin
I had to reprint this great blog by Marna Gatlin the founder of Parents via Egg Donation (PVED). It is sad to see how many women that I still encounter who are under the illusions that if they are still menstruating they must still be fertile. And some are naive enough to believe that because celebrities are getting pregnant that they can too. Here are Marna's words:
Really? A dirty little secret? You have got to be kidding me.
CNN just published an article titled: What the Yuck: Are Celebs More Fertile Than The Rest Of Us? The article begins with a simple question:
“Are celebs more fertile than the rest of us? How come so many are able to have babies in their mid- and late 40s?”
And so the article goes on to say:
“You've stumbled onto one of Hollywood's "Dirty Little Secrets": donor eggs and in vitro fertilization (IVF). While being famous can get you far in life, it doesn't extend the warranty on your ovaries. It just gives that A-lister greater access to cutting-edge fertility treatments and doctors that the rest of us may not know about or be able to afford.”
My reply to that is “Well, no duh!”
We’ve only been talking about it for the past 20-plus years, and, heck yes, it’s expensive. Uber expensive and — in most states — not covered by insurance.
And while I get that it’s personal, it’s intimate and private, celebrities are doing the public a huge disservice all over the globe by making us think that fertility is bountiful after 40.
So the answer to the above question is: no, celebrities are not more fertile than the rest of us, and the reason many are able to have babies in their mid to late forties is because they are using egg donation (GASP) to create or add to their families. Are women having children naturally on their own after 40? Yes, but is it easy? No. Do they often need help? Yes.
The scoop on fertility is pretty straight forward. Fertility begins to decline at age 28 to 30. By age 32, the real decline begins. After age 35, hormone levels begin to show continued decline, and by age 40 a real decline has occurred. By age 45, 85 to 90 percent of all women attempting to have a child are doing it through egg donation.
And there is no shame in that. Now if these celebrities (you know who you are) really wanted to help the women’s movement and participate in real public service, they would speak up and out about egg donation, be proud of themselves and their children, and support third party reproduction. It would take the stigma and mystery out egg donation, as well as make the entire process less scary for everyone else.
I say we need to do for egg donation what we have done for Breast Cancer Awareness — educate, empower and support!
So come on you amazing movie stars, singers and public figures who have used an egg donor to create your family, let’s hear your voice. You are being called to help.