Becoming Parents

Becoming parents

Beverly Hills Egg Donation is committed to helping members of the LGBT community become parents through egg donation.

Since its inception in 2007, LGBT Egg Donation has been committed to helping members of the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community realize their dreams of having a family. With the help and support of our compassionate, knowledgeable team, hundreds of LGBT people have become parents.

Our dedication has also extended beyond our own clients and into the LGBT community at large through our numerous sponsorships of and participation in LGBT and alternative family organizations around the globe.

As an intended parent or egg donor working with LGBT Egg Donation, you can be assured of our commitment to:

  • Provide a positive and nurturing experience for all of our clients and donors
  • Deliver thorough and timely information
  • Treat each donor and intended parent with respect, dignity, and compassion
  • Actively participate in activities benefiting the LGBT community
  • Support and promote equality for all

LGBT Donation offers anonymous, semi-open, and fully open egg donation arrangements, giving intended parents and egg donors the opportunity to decide how much interaction they are comfortable having with each other during the donation process and beyond.

Our available egg donors are highly diverse, and include prior egg donors, academic achievers, and donors with proven fertility. .All Donors have been thoroughly screened and educated regarding the process of egg donation. We follow the FDA, and American Society of Reproductive Medicine and Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology guidelines for egg donation and egg donor compensation.

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How long has Beverly Hills Egg Donation (BHED) been established?

Since our founding in 2007, Beverly Hills Egg Donation has been committed to helping the LGBT community realise their dreams of becoming parents and of having families. We were among the first egg donation agencies to offer gay men, lesbian women, and transgender persons an equal opportunity of reproductive choice.

What is each of your backgrounds and what attracted to you to working for BHED?

Robyn Perchik: I have been the Managing Partner of Beverly Hills Egg Donation since 2011. My previous employment of 30 years was in Risk Management Underwriting at a Fortune 100 Insurance Company. My work with the LGBT community has been rewarding on a personal basis, with new families created for LGBT recipients living in 17 countries in 2014.

Roger Hermann: I am Chief Marketing Officer (or Chief Operations Officer) of Beverly Hills Egg Donation. I am a seasoned marketing executive having spent 25 years in the insurance industry working in risk management, marketing, and finance. After spending 25 years in the corporate world, I wanted a career change that would allow me to direct my work to advance equality, and to make a positive contribution to the advancement of global society.

Which services do you offer LGBT couples and individuals wanting to start a family?

Our work is to guide our LGBT intended parents through the entire egg donation process. We help make all of the logistical arrangements. These include legal, psychological, and genetic referrals to travel arrangements for out-of-state donors. If the intended parents would like help in selecting a donor, we have staff members who are familiar with our database of donors, and can make recommendations based on the recipient’s selection criteria. We also work with the intended parents and donors to facilitate a relationship with the donor that will work for both parties. If an intended parent would like to meet with, or speak to a prospective donor, we can arrange an in-person meeting, or a Skype meeting.

Which forms of surrogacy are available and which one would you recommend and why?

While BHED does not offer surrogacy, there are two types of surrogacy — traditional and gestational. With traditional surrogacy, the surrogate acts as both the egg donor and as the actual surrogate for the embryo. Therefore, with traditional surrogacy, the surrogate is also the biological mother of the child.

Gestational surrogacy is most often used by LGBT parents. This is due to the greater availability and number of gestational surrogates. With gestational surrogacy, the surrogate’s eggs are not used. Consequently, the child will not be related to the surrogate biologically. Using the gestational type of surrogacy, the embryo is actually created by using both the biological father’s sperm and the biological mother’s egg (or egg donor) through a process called In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF).

BHED works with most Surrogacy Agencies and can provide referrals to the appropriate agency for the intended parent.

How does BHED choose potential egg donors and are there any criteria they must fulfil? Is there a typical egg donor?

At BHED, we have an intensive selection process and strict donor criteria. Our donors must be between the ages of 21 and 29. We believe that women in that age bracket are not only the most fertile, but are responsible and mature enough to undergo the donation process. Only 8% of donors who submit applications are able to pass our rigorous application process and become egg donors.

Our comprehensive application process includes an initial medical history of the donor, and her family, back to the grandparents. We interview each donor either in-person or via webcam. We require our donors to provide documented proof of statements made of their applications, including degrees and grades. Once a donor has been selected by an intended parent, she has a full medical evaluation with the recipient’s fertility doctor, called a reproductive endocrinologist. Once initially approved by the doctor, the Donor undergoes a psychological and genetic evaluation before the donation cycle begins.

All donors have been thoroughly screened and educated regarding the process of egg donation. We follow the FDA, and American Society of Reproductive Medicine and Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology guidelines for egg donation and egg donor compensation.

How would prospective LGBT parents go about selecting a donor, and are there any things which you would advise them to take into consideration?

It is important for LGBT parents to decide what level of communication they want to have with their egg donor after their child is born. Beverly Hills Egg Donation offers anonymous donation, semi-open and open egg donation arrangements. This allows the intended parents and the egg donor the ability to be flexible in the way they interact with each other during the donation process and in the future.

Selection of an attorney who specialises in Reproductive Law is critical to preserve the parental rights of the Intended Parents, and legally codify the agreed upon post donation communication between the Intended Parents and the donor. The next for consideration future parents is that the donor has a good family health history.

What sets BHED apart from other similar companies?

Beverly Hills Egg Donation differs from other egg donor agencies in several critical areas. Our donor screening process is one of the most comprehensive in the industry. We provide a second donor cycle rematch with no additional agency fee. If your transfer takes place, and you do not have a successful pregnancy with all frozen embryos utilised, we will waive our agency fee for one additional cycle. If preimplementation genetics diagnosis is used in the cycle, all normal frozen embryos must be utilized before the waiver will apply. BHED offers a Refundable Agency Fee. Should the Intended Parents elect to cancel the cycle before injectable medicines have begun we will refund 75% of the Agency Fee.

On a personal note for each of you, which part of your work gives you the most satisfaction?

Robyn Perchik: My greatest satisfaction is receiving the birth announcements of the children who have been born to LGBT parents; for their parents, it has been a journey to get to this moment, and we are thrilled to have been part of the process.

Roger Hermann: I have helped hundreds of LGBT parents achieve their dream of having children of their very own. These efforts have helped to further expand equality for LGBT persons by allowing them to have families, and to be legally recognised as parents with same rights as heterosexual parents.

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One Family’s experience with BHED

My husband and I live in Los Angeles and have been together for nearly 15 years. We decided to pursue parenthood around my 40th birthday. The questions had been on our minds for some time: Do we want children? Was it even possible? What would it take? Nothing like the big 4-0 to focus the mind! After a great deal of thought and discussion, we made up our minds. When it comes to “the road less travelled,” we chose not the one less travelled (no such thing in southern California) but rather the one far more rewarding. Parenthood or bust!

And, to be sure, there were times along that road when things did go bust. But our smartest move was assembling a top-notch team: a surrogacy agency that matched us with a heroic surrogate; an egg donation agency, BHED, that brought us donor after donor when fate (including some bad timing and poor cycles) conspired against us; and a doctor who made magic happen before our eyes while gently holding our hands through it all. When setbacks struck – and we had our share – these dedicated people rallied around us and never let us veer off course.

Six weeks ago we became the fathers of twins – a happy, healthy boy and girl. We feel blessed and grateful for these treasures and the support of so many along our journey who made this possible.  As for the road we chose and the people we invited along with us, we know that those choices made all the difference in our lives.

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