Deciding to meet
Lifeline of Ohio is often asked if individuals can have direct communication* or meet with their donor’s family or recipients. Not all families choose to do this, but if they do, it can help in the healing process. In the event that both the donor family and the recipients have shared written correspondence and have expressed either their desire to have direct communication or to meet, then Lifeline of Ohio can help facilitate this process.
* Direct communication is when both parties receive each other’s contact information and communicate on their own without Lifeline of Ohio’s involvement.
What to consider before communicating or meeting
- You have the opportunity to hear or see how your loved one’s gift has made a difference.
- The recipient may ask personal questions about your loved one, you or your family.
- The recipient has undergone a major surgery and may appear ill, need further treatment or require another transplant during their lifetime.
- You will have the opportunity to express your empathy for their loss, as well as your gratitude for the gift you received and the impact it’s made on your life.
- Your donor’s family may ask personal questions about your illness, surgery and lifestyle.
- Your donor’s family may still be feeling the pain of their loss and display strong emotions.
- Donor families and recipients may have differing beliefs or cultural norms. We encourage both parties to maintain respectful communication.
- You may have a different expectation on the amount of contact within the relationship. Additionally, either party may decide to stop communication at any time.
- The donor family or recipient may change their minds and feel they are not ready to meet.
- In the event that both parties choose to meet, it’s important to put expectations aside, as these encounters will look different from meeting to meeting. Please keep an open mind.
Lifeline of Ohio’s Aftercare Coordinators welcome additional questions and can assist you with next steps in this process. Please do not hesitate to contact us at any time at 1-800-525-5667 or firstname.lastname@example.org.