I’ve spent a fortune on baby-making: Donor egg cycle is bought and paid for

Whatever you do, do NOT go and look at the tab at the top of my blog titled “Prepare Yourselves: The cost of infertility.” Seriously, don’t go look at it.

Ok, go look.  I’ll wait.

Did you see the total cost down at the bottom? Join me for a moment of silence, will you, and then feel bad for me.

As of late last week, we have officially spent a grand total of over $24,000 for this kid who still doesn’t even exist.

That’s right.  We have chosen a donor and the cost of the transfer cycle for Texas has been paid in full: $12,210.

We put the whole fucking thing on a credit card.  (If you have never put twelve grand on a credit card for a purchase you may or may not receive, then you don’t get to tell me to watch my potty mouth.)

It’s done and paid for and we have staked claim to 8 frozen eggs, ready for fertilization in October.

This whole thing is terrifying, you guys. One misstep and it’s over and done and that twelve grand is gone. Gone.

What if we get to Texas and none of the eggs survive the thaw?  What if none make it to transfer? What if I transfer an embryo, fly back home, endure the Two Week Wait, only to have the pregnancy test turn out negative?  What if I do get pregnant and I have a miscarriage?  That money, that Twelve. Thousand. Dollars… is gone.

It’s enough to make you want to cry.

Speaking of wanting to cry, check out the post I wrote last week for mom.me.  It’s about the visit we had with the psychologist to get on the wait list for the clinic here in Minnesota.  It’s more ranty-raging from yours truly about parenting the child of egg donation:

I’m not ashamed to admit that I used to get so angry at pregnancy announcements on Facebook. I’d roll my eyes, thinking, “Well isn’t that nice? I’m so glad you were able to get knocked up so quickly and then call it your “widdle bitty miracle baby!” Whatever. (Ok, maybe sometimes I still think this).

I wouldn’t say I get angry now, seeing these announcements.  And for the most part, I’ve stopped rolling my eyes (that’s now reserved for gender-reveal parties only).

Now, when I see the announcements (more and more on Facebook lately, as I think people are now truly feeling pity for me and don’t want to tell me about their pregnancy in person), I simply think, “If only.” As in, if only it were that easy for me.  And it has nothing to do with being bitter, or wanting people to feel bad for me. (Ignore the beginning of this post.) (I mean it, I swear.)

It’s me feeling jealous because I think of all the things I could be spending my money on, and how it’s not going to happen because all my money and then some, is being spent of the glimmer of hope for something most get so easily.

One of the hardest things to hear from fertiles is this: “You just have to keep in mind, kids are expensive.” 

Yes, Fertile, yes they are. In fact, you have no idea how expensive kids are.  I’ve spent almost twenty five thousand dollars on my kid and guess what? That’s all before they were even born.

You might also like

Leave a Reply

25 Comment threads
0 Thread replies
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
1 Comment authors
Stork signAnonymousEmJenSAmber Recent comment authors
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
Amanda Eisenberg

We will break 20k in a few weeks when we make our payment towards donor eggs. We are doing the Shared Risk/Shared Donor program at Shady Grove so 20k for 6 cycles – tho there is a chance the price might drop a tad since we are looking at FET only. We still have our social worker visit to look forward to…


The one thing I used to console myself when I thought about the money we were spending or looking to spend (we didn't do IVF, but we were close, and we did a hell of a lot of IUIs) was the fact that over our 7 years of infertility, we saved a lot of money by not having a kid. We were living in California when we first started trying and day care ran about $1200 a month, so that would have added up fast. Obviously, I would rather have spent money on a baby, but it still helped me… Read more »


Gag. We're inching closer to $20K ourselves which is so incredibly disgusting when you think about what we've accomplished (4 IUIs, IVF, and an FET). I haven't added ours up in a while, but I wouldn't be surprised at all if we actually did surpassed 20 and I just didn't realize it. The financial burden is devastating on so many levels. It's honestly the thing I hate most about all this mess… when I think about how different our family could look if we were either A- fertile and building our family didn't require thousands of dollars or B- if… Read more »

Melissa Long

Whoa. I feel seriously bad for ANYONE who has to spend this much to have a child. It's so unfair! And with no guarantee…ugh. I've got everything crossed for you!


Yeah. Seems like paying for fertility treatments with a credit card is a rite of passage. We did it with IVF #1 ($12K in one shot) and then with each of the FETs ($4K each). Others go to Europe, we paid for treatments. Equally fun is when the bank calls to verify the purchase (also a fun conversation). I fully support the swearing. I fully get how amazingly terrifying all of this is. I won't tell you that I completely understand because your journey is your own, but I can empathize. That said, with all of this shit getting real… Read more »


OMG! It's ridiculous how much everything costs. Thanks for sharing it with us. I've been saving money for IVF for a while now. It sucks that this isn't a guaranteed purchase. If you spend $12,000 on a car, at least you'll get a car! UGH!!

Praying it works out for you!! xo


Tying myself in knots that your 12k ends with a little one for you. I'm sorry that on top of everything else, you have to charge your card like that.


Amen sister! Hoping that this is YOUR cycle and that soon you'll be saying how wonderfully worth it, it all is.


It's so ridiculous, isn't it? The money we spend and most people don't even realize that beyond the years of heartache, treatments, etc, there's the money spent. Risa, I've got so much hope for your next cycle. I'm praying everything goes smoothly and you get your happy ending with a baby or two in your arms. Thanks for being so candid.


I nearly gagged when we claimed $22,000 and change on our income tax last year for IVF expenses. And that's BEFORE our DEIVF. No shit kids are expensive.

Jamie Short

I feel your pain. At the ripe old age of 26, after having tried a few iui's and 2 ivf's with my eggs for the past 3 years, we used donor eggs for the 3rd ivf (of which we still have 4 out of the 6 embryos remaining but neither money nor emotions to go on). $40,000 and not even a hint of being pregnant. All pur on credit cards and equity lines of credit. 10 years later and we're still digging out. I hope very much that you prevail where my body would/could not.


We had been saving for a house down-payment for years and I protected that savings account with my life – it didn't matter what emergency came up, we would make it work without taking anything from that account. My biggest fear is that we would be end up childless AND homeless. Thinking about the financial aspect add so much unneeded pressure, as if there isn't enough pressure already. Let's just hope this is the best investment you'll ever make 🙂


So. Fucking. Unfair. I'm so sorry you've had to spend so much, and I really hope this one works. I'm just about to max out my credit card on our first IVF cycle. I too hate the pity, so much so I no longer see people who I suspect of pitying me, just can't handle it. This is a difficult, difficult journey and I wish you all the best.

Sweet C

It truly is gag-inducing, I'm so sorry!! We call my daughter (adopted after 3 failed IVF rounds) our 6-figure baby, because between IVF and adoption, we broke $100k. Granted…worth it in EVERY way, but I get so pissed off at people that tell me "well, having a baby is expensive too". Um, not when it was free to at least get to that point!! I spent a couple college educations to get the privilege of saving for a college education! The one thing I did realize is that not everyone is public with their infertility story. There have been a… Read more »


Yup, I know how you feel. I paid over 40K out of pocket in treatments. My first donor egg cycle was a bust but the second one did work. I was so pissed when I had paid out 19K for the first donor egg cycle, on the credit card too, and it didn't work. My clinic had no clue why it didn't work since both embryos that they transferred were 5AA and hatching to boot. Hoping you get some great embryos and that they produce a baby or two or more for you in the future.

Elisha Kearns

ay yi yi! That's a lot of moohlah! My mouth completely dropped when I saw the numbers. I'm praying this money is not wasted and you see a BFP at the end of all of this! Sending you hugs (and I would send you a check too if I could)


Jennifer T

It is so wrong how much some of us have to spend to have the chance for one baby. I have really struggled with this recently as my SIL announced she was pregnant with her 2nd baby while we are racking up $20,000 in just the hope/chance to have a baby. I was livid.
I relate so much to this post, and I so hope that that $12 grand gets you pregnant and your baby. Then it will be all worth it!


Uggggh! To think some people don't have to pay for their kids… Honestly. Ugggggh!


My dear, I feel your pain…"every single dollar spent and yet here I still sit, with no babies anywhere in sight" kind of pain. And you don't even want to know where I am financially at this point. It would blow your mind (it blows my mind on a daily basis). You listed a lot of "if's that result in negative outcomes, but it's the positive one that's going to make it all worth it…I have hope for you. SOOOO much hope!!


Oh yeah. I feel your pain. We have joked that our kids will have to get a job at the age of 5 because they are so expensive. Okay, so now, what if….. it doesn't work, or you have a miscarriage, or…. I am hoping that out of 8 good eggs, more than just one or two will fertilize and you will have additional shots at it working! I hope like hell it works the first time, but if it doesn't, I also hope you will have more chances at that baby, or a future brother or sister. Gasp! Yes,… Read more »


I think, all in, we spent close to $60k. A lot of that is still on our credit cards, waiting to be paid off. It was really painful spending that kind of money with no guarantee of any kind of return. I really hope this works for you- I have seen so many donor egg success stories! Good luck, Risa!


I read this post when you first wrote it but am just commenting now…sorry about that. It's such a hard pill so swallow…so hard. For some reason, that's what feels the most unfair…that other couples get children for free. Not sure why that piece bothers me so much, but it really does. I think of you and Chris often. Hope you're doing well as you move toward a really exciting cycle.


I started a donor egg cycle (using another donors egg) to get our baby – but we have changed our mind at the very last moment. All paid for!!! Anyone interested in buying our eggs off us. Theres 21 eggs from a very young proven donor. Please put your email address on here as this is confidential and I will contact you. It would be nice for us to be able to help someone else.


I just stumbled across your page after reading 'if my child marries yours'! tear jerk-er isnt the word!! I wish I would have know about your page 4 years ago when my husband started trying to conceive. Although, we did not need a fertility specialist it took us 3 and a half years to get pregnant! but everything you wrote about announcements etc I felt the same way and no one else understood!!!! loving your blog!!! thanks 🙂

Stork sign

Great post! This really helps people to understand better! Thanks for share this information.
I am providing this Stork sign