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If you have had an organ transplant then you may want to also become a member of these communities if they are applicable to your condition to share your experience:
Diabetes and Kidney Community
Kidney Disorders Community
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WebMD Heart Disease Community
Kidney Donation
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lola1221 posted:
Hi

I was woudering if i am shooting for an unreachable dream, and if its crazy to want to do this. I have been thinking about organ donation for quite some time, and i have spend many months reseaching it on the internet, know the risks that could happen. Once i did all of this reseach and found a transplant place near my home. All of my friends and family think that i am nuts and crazy that i would want to donate a piece of my own body to someone else that i dont know. What is really killing me inside is whenever, my boyfrirend and i talk about it, we always get into fights about how he doesent want me to do it, cause he doesent know what he would do without me. but i just wish he could understand how i feel about this and how much i want to do this. btw we discussed this for a year, i told him before i even told my family.

p.s iv talked to my family and friends for a couple of months now and they still dont understand.

well does anyone have any suggegtions on how i can help m y family and boyfriend understand how importand this is to me, and how badly i wanna do this to save someoenes life.

well any help would be greatly appreciated.

thanks
Reply
 
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Steve0311 responded:
First, I am going to assume that you, indeed, have done all the research regarding the implications of your decision and the life-long impact that providing a kidney to someone. They are not trivial but at the same time are manageable. Seek in-person professional advice.

That being said, I applaud you selflessness, knowing that such a gift may literally mean the difference between life and death for someone. In addition, your gift will impact not a single person but the spouse, the children, parents, brothers, sisters, friends, along with all those that are a part of the recipients life. To those who love the recipient and hold them dear, you will truly be changing their lives as well. God Bless you.

Don't be too hard on those that love you and hold you so dear. Their hesitancy and unwillingness to understand your decision is most likely based in the fear. Your family and boyfriend want to protect you.. The push-back is out of love.

Perhaps you can start by scheduling a meeting with the transplant coordinator at the transplant center near your home. Explain your desire and become informed of the next steps, limitations, and requirements the center has for such a request (make sure the center is accredited, reputable, and research their history). There may even be a possibility that for some reason you are not a candidate. If that turns out to be the case, then that would change the decision process and possibly put an end to the issue without bringing additional conflict within your family.

After such a professional consultation, if you are still convinced that you might desire to move forward and would be considered as a candidate by the center, perhaps the center has in place programs in which you could actually meet organ transplant candidates who are on the waiting list for an organ. If such a program exists, I would suggest that you participate alone in the first meeting as such meetings can be emotionally taxing and may enter into your decision process. Then, if they will agree, ask that your family and/or boyfriend meet with such candidates. Nothing brings home the enormity of the meaningfulness of what you are considering more than to meet some that are waiting for the "gift of life." Some consider this phrase a cliche but believe me it is not. Such meetings may not change your families minds but at least they may better understand your desire. The transplant center can provide additional guidelines on potential meetings as well.

Hearing the stories of organ transplant candidates who are waiting for organs is a moving and humbling experience. I have had the benefit of meeting candidates whose good humor, quiet fortitude, acceptance of their situation, and desire to support others in their same circumstance can only be described as heroic. Some of the candidates I have known died while waiting for an organ. I have also seen the aftermath to families and friends. To know that organs are available (and to some degree, plentiful) with the only real limitation being the availability of donors is heartbreaking.

To be fair, I should let you know (if you haven't already guessed) that I am a transplant recipient. While I try to be objective, I am certainly biased. I am a 22+ year survivor of a heart transplant (June 25 1987). When I received my transplant my daughter was 3 years old. In the last 22+ years, I have had the honor of participating in her life, watching her graduate high school, graduate with 2 degrees from a University, walk her down the aisle in 2005, and see her buy her first house. The aftermath of successful transplantation goes well beyond just the extension of life. It becomes a legacy.

Not sure this helps your specific problem but it might give some context to the issue. Good luck. I'll look forward to updates in the future.
 
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John-SKPT responded:
Contact the transplant center. If you are sure that you want to do this, and if after medical and psychological evaluations, you are accepted as a donor, then it's fine.

Just remember that you need to be in EXCEPTIONAL health, much better than average. Going forward without a realistic set of expectations, and a total acceptance of any potential future adverse events is just not wise.
 
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lola1221 responded:
hi steve0311

I wish i could be emailing you back telling you that, things have gotten better or that my family is supporting me. But if you can believe it. It has gotten much worse, my boyfriend is at the point now that he cant take my decision he is now threatening that if i continue with this procedure that he doesn't know if he wants to be apart of it. He doesn't even know if he could handle it. He is threatening to break up with me over this now. My family is not being any better they all think i am crazy and are telling me that they don't agree with what i want to do, they are saying they don't support what i want to do. So i am now stuck i know what i want to do but i don't want to lose the people i care so much about. Well that is about all, and i apologize for taking such a long time getting back to you, sorry i have been busy with school. And Also i appreciate you telling me your story that was very kind of you to share it with me. Well thanks again i look forward to hearing back from you soon.
 
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Nando22 responded:
Im now in the process of giving my kidney to my wife of 25 years. Like you I always felt a need to help someone and at one time registered in a bone marrow program when I donated platelets. My advice for YOU, since you sound like a young person, is to not rush into this. The reason being is that someday, if you have kids, they may need you to donate for them. It may sound "cold" but this needs to be addressed. let me explain my situation which may shed some light on my comment. My wife was born with PKD. My 2 children were also born with PKD. Two months ago my wife was told that its time for a transplant, she is at 20% output, and I had to make the decision to either donate to her, since im a neg match, or wait to POSSIBLY donate to one of the kids later in life. Talk about soul searching ??? Well since im 51 and my wife is 48 by the time any of my kids, 22 &19, MAY need a transplant I may be either to old or dead. Now to tie in your situation in this story: IF I would have donated my kidney before I met my wife and had kids then how would I feel now knowing that I could not help any of them ? If my wife didnt have PKD and my kids born without it then I would probably have donated, as you want to now, ten years ago. As for your BF ??? He sounds more like an anchor than a life preserver. My deepest respect for YOU
 
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Sistie_J replied to Nando22's response:
I totally get your family and BF's apprehension. My husband of 28 yrs. gave me a kidney just a little over 3 years ago. I am so thankful for his gift. You must know, however, in spite of all the extensive testing done on him prior to donating and the medical reassurance that his donation would not put him at future risk, he is now having health issues. There is a reason they call it practicing medicine. I applaud your compassion, but it sounds like you are young. If you are thinking of having children in the future, donating at this time may not be the best decision for you. Education alone doesn't guarantee you will even be allowed to. There are extensive tests as well as psychological testing that first must be done. Scheduling an appointment with a transplant co-ordinator is great, but living donation is a rare and wonderful gift that offers long term benefits so they may not always be able to be the most objective. I am by no means trying to talk you out of it, but you can never be certain of a positive outcome.....for the recipient or the donor. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask. My deepest regards!
 
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LPunnett replied to Sistie_J's response:
Sistie_J, if you're still there - are you willing to say more about what your husband's health issues are? I am pretty seriously thinking about donating a kidney to someone in my extended family. But I am also finding that it's harder than it should be to get in-depth, unbiased information about the risks to donors. I will do it anyway, if I am medically cleared for it, but I am looking for as much information as possible first so that I can go into this decision well-informed. Thank you.
 
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LeEdna replied to LPunnett's response:
Please take time to research. Remember that most complications may be uncommon, but they do happen.


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