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Kidney » Kidney Transplant

When You Meet the Person Who Has Your Kidney

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You are a human and by definition, have two kidneys. Say you decided to save someone’s life by giving away one of them. Since a kidney transplant surgery is a major one, you must have gone through months of preparation, seen doctors, nutritionists, surgeons, and a bunch of other relevant uniforms.


But then, the surgery was over. Your kidney is now cleaning somebody else’s blood. And maybe you downplayed it; maybe you didn’t. But the truth remains that one of your organs, because of a very giving act on your part, saved a human life.

Now, even if you don’t want to meet the recipient, there is a chance that you might. And it is always better to be ready for a situation that could easily go either way.

It Is in Your Control to Make Sure It Never Happens (Somewhat Only)

In case it is imperative that the recipient of your organ never meets you, you can choose to stay anonymous. Inform all the officials related to the case and your anonymity will be preserved.

Know this- It is okay not to want a connection.

But in Case You Want a Connection, Be Warned

Wanting closure is reasonable. And human too. Not knowing what happened to the person you donated your organ to could bother you.

But here is the thing- receiving a life-saving organ from a stranger can be overwhelming. The recipient might not want to meet you or might not show up after a get-together is set up because they feel grateful beyond words.

So don’t lose hope or be bitter about it. While it is okay for you to be disappointed in this scenario, try to hold on to some other form of closure. You can volunteer for transplant groups, encourage people to donate, share your experience with them.

But When the Meeting Is a Done Deal, What Then?

You could be excited, or relieved, or even nervous. So will be the recipient. So calm down.

Do not expect or plan for long conversations. Keep it short, an hour or so. Meeting over coffee, for example, gives you two the time to say a few things, know a few things, and not feel suffocated or pressured to talk.

Also, bringing a friend along is good for support, bringing your entire family isn’t.

You Could Cry. So Could the Recipient. Either Way, Tears Will Flow

There are two possible scenarios here.

You read about the recipient. You know the kind and quality of life they had to live because of a kidney disease. And when you look at them after the kidney transplant and find a healthy person, it could have an effect on you.

Realising that you gave a person a new chance at life could cause an outburst of emotions.

More often than not, the recipient and their family will be immensely thankful. Until that moment when you meet the person who now has a part of you in them, the realisation of saving a life is somewhat partial.

And after you meet them, and their family, the overwhelmed glances and kind words and obligatory expressions might be too much for you.

Here Are a Few Tips

Respond with a ‘you are Welcome.’ Share your story, your reasons behind donating. Congratulate the recipient for braving something as critical as a kidney disease.

Expect gifts or other manners of saying that they are grateful beyond words. Reach out to donor groups and talk your feelings out. You did save a life, revel in the fact that you did.


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ZealthDoc is a medical tourism website providing healthcare services like Liver Transplant, Kidney Transplant, Cardiology, IVF etc.

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