City Research Online

Families created via identity-release egg donation: disclosure and an exploration of donor threat in early childhood

Lysons, J., Imrie, S., Jadva, V. ORCID: 0000-0003-0922-0694 & Golombok, S. (2023). Families created via identity-release egg donation: disclosure and an exploration of donor threat in early childhood. Reproductive BioMedicine Online, 47(4), article number 103235. doi: 10.1016/j.rbmo.2023.05.007


RESEARCH QUESTION: What are mothers' disclosure intentions and practices from infancy to early childhood, and is perceived donor threat associated with disclosure in identity-release egg donation families when the children are aged 5 years?

DESIGN: This longitudinal study included 73 heterosexual-couple families with infants born following IVF-egg donation at phase one, and 61 families with 5-year-old children at phase two. At both phases, mothers were interviewed about their disclosure intentions and practices. At phase two, mothers were interviewed about their feelings about future donor-child contact.

RESULTS: Most mothers (75.3%) intended to disclose their use of egg donation to their children at phase one; half had begun to do so when their children were aged 5. Most remaining mothers planned to tell, although a minority were uncertain or planned not to disclose. When the child was aged 5, four mothers had started telling them that they could access their donor's identifying information at age 18, and most (84%) intended to do so in the future. Most couples agreed on a disclosure strategy at phase two. Most mothers perceived at least some threat from future donor-child contact, but this was unrelated to their disclosure practices.

CONCLUSIONS: Disclosure intentions in infancy are borne out in early childhood. Despite perceiving some threat from future donor-child contact, most mothers intended telling their child that they could access the donor's identifying information at age 18. Revisiting these families as the children grow older will be important to understand how the mothers' perceived donor threat may change over time, and how this is related to family processes.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons CC-BY license, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Publisher Keywords: Disclosure, Donor threat, Egg donation, Gamete donation, Identity release, IVF
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Psychology
SWORD Depositor:
[thumbnail of 1-s2.0-S1472648323002924-main.pdf]
Text - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (489kB) | Preview
[thumbnail of disclosure and donor threat manuscript accepted for publication.pdf] Text - Accepted Version
This document is not freely accessible due to copyright restrictions.


Add to AnyAdd to TwitterAdd to FacebookAdd to LinkedinAdd to PinterestAdd to Email


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics

Actions (login required)

Admin Login Admin Login