Need some advice

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My husband has BRCA 1 (heredity gene) and I have PCOS.

We have discussed the options we have with our genetic councillor, we can either have a child naturally, meaning they would have a 50% chance of inheriting this gene and potentially dramatically impacting their lives at a young age, or we could have genetic IVF (once - which may be harder because of my PCOS) or we can adopt.

We have discussed that adopting might be the best avenue for us...

This is something I ever thought I'd be faced with but feel positive about stopping this heredity gene that has devastated our immediate family. We aren't ready to adopt immediately but I want to get as much information about feelings/emotions/bonding. Can anyone give me any advice?

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Now I might be shot down here - and that's fine - but if it were me, and knowing what I know now - then I would do all that I could first in order to achieve a healthy pregnancy and child.

We did the ivf thing for a long time and got that entirely out of our systems before making the decision to adopt. We now have three children via adoption.

Feelings, emotions, bonding differ with each child - they're individuals, their personalities are different, their needs are different so it's entirely probable that you'll feel differently to me about any child you may have. I can't compare my feelings about my children to that of a birth child because I don't have one, although I can't imagine loving a birth child more than I do my own kids.

However. It's a very different experience and you do run the risk of replacing one hereditary illness with another, albeit a mental health issue rather than a physical one.

Read as much as you can. Research the types of children coming through the care system. Read up on asd, ADHD, fasd, the effects of drug/alcohol abuse, the effects of domestic violence etc. Try to get as much childcare experience as possible. Think about the age and abilities/disabilities you feel you could manage - and those you definitely can't. Of course, you may still end up parenting a child with those issues anyway, as I did.

It's not the same as having a birth child. Not worse. Not better. But different.

Good luck

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Hi. I think that society often portrays adoption as just another way for people to create a family, whereas it does bring a lot of additional issues with it. Many of the children in the care system awaiting adoption are from truly dysfunctional backgrounds, so you can end up dealing with a lot of very challenging behaviours and learning disabilities. This can be due to epigenics (where behaviours change the DNA), genetics (both of my girls have turned out to have a chromosome deletion which is related to learning disabilities), post-birth experiences (neglect and abuse at the hands of birth parents until they are removed to foster care) and the big one - intra uterine experiences, including foetal alcohol. Often you get all of them. On top of this you have identity issues and perhaps a lot of anger at what has happened to them.

You really have to want to adopt, either for altruistic reasons or to create a family which you know could well be very different from that of your friends. A lot of adopters become isolated as friends and family don't understand. School can be a nightmare.

I would urge you to read up on current day adoption and the types of children awaiting adoption and the difficulties they are likely to face and then see how you feel that this compares with the risk of the BRAC gene.

Best of luck

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Thank you for your comments, I really appricare you posting back and will definitely look into all the points.

Really great to get someone else's opion and experience.

Thanks so much!

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Hi jodie. I do agree with the above posts.

I came to adoption after I had explored every fertility option. I really am pro adoption but it is not just another way to have a baby. You really need to have worked through your other options.

I would recommend you try the IVF cycle with genetic check on embryos, I always recommend 3 cycles. I know many friends who have fallen pregnant from ivf with pcos. If it doesn't work then use the free counselling service that the fertility clinic offers to explore your feelings of loss over your own fertility, the genetic issue and the loss of a birth child option.

Then, when ready, speak to some adoption agencies. But do understand that you may experience genetic or health issues (which would be undiagnosed when a young child is placed with you) in any child that you adopt.

But my family built through adoption is wonderful, just not what I dreamed of initially.


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