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Monday, May 14, 2007

Donor Conception and Counselling

This area gives me a great deal of concern. All people wanting to undertake a donor conception program are usually required to undertake at least one counselling session. All fine and good. The problem is that the counselling session is provided by the clinic with their own counsellors. There is a complete conflict of interest here as the counsellors have a vested interest and are not impartial to the whole process. Their very job is dependent on the clinics getting enough patients to pay their salary. So it is not in either their own or the clinics best interest to turn prospective patients away as being unsuitable or to provide them with every bit of information on the subject which may persuade them to change their minds about pursuing that course of action. Their best interest is obviously to have as many photos of happy couples holding their new bundle of joy up on their clinic walls.
This may seem to be a cynical view but when you consider that counsellors are rarely if ever seen at donor conception conferences that involve stories or reports of offspring and their experiences, they do not inform the prospective parents that there is a possibility the child may be unhappy with their conception, and they do not offer follow up sessions 1, 5 or 10 years down the track to determine how things are doing then this cynical view is pretty close to the truth. It would be assumed that they too would have learnt from the experiences of the adopted generation but they have failed to listen. They claim to always have the best interests of the child at heart but obviously the heart has failed to communicate this belief to the brain.
If donor conception is to continue then surely independent counsellors should be employed by the governement rather than the clinics, ones that are educated on all the issues surrounding DC while providing more than one session in the early stages and also be following up in the years to come.

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