Israeli woman donates kidney to ex-husband

Despite being divorced for nine years, holiday resort manager Adel Edri had no hesitation about stepping up to help her former spouse, who had a history of kidney problems; 'He's the father of my children,' she says

Tzipora Roman|
Adel Edri and her spouse have been divorced for nearly a decade, but it did not stop her from donating a kidney to her former husband when it emerged that his health condition had worsened.
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  • The 41-year-old Rosh Pina resident said in an interview with Ynet sister outlet Laisha that she and she spouse have been divorced for nine years, but she did not hesitate to answer the call for help - not least because of the children, of whom the two share custody.
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    אדל אדרי
    אדל אדרי
    Adel Edri
    (Photo: Eitan Nir)
    How do you feel?
    "When I woke up after the surgery, there was some manageable pain. A week later I still feel it, yet anxious to go back to being the Mitzpe Shalom resort manager in the Golan Heights."
    Were you aware of Avishay's kidney problems when you met?
    "I was 24 at the time and he was 29. He was an accountant and had already been donated one kidney from his mother. He told me right away, but I didn't care. When I was pregnant with our second child, his father donated another kidney. Seven years later we got divorced. The second kidney held up for 11 years, up until six months ago."
    How was your relationship after the divorce?
    "Initially, it was complicated, but in the last few years things were great. We're both involved with other people now. His girlfriend is wonderful and so is my boyfriend. His name is Eitan, and I told him when we met that if there was a time my ex would need my kidney, he'll have it. Eitan accepted it right away.
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    כאב כאבים כליות כליה אבנים בכליות גב
    כאב כאבים כליות כליה אבנים בכליות גב
    Kidney disease/ Illustration
    (Photo: Shutterstock)
    And then it happened.
    "Avishay tested positive for COVID eight months ago and required dialysis and a new kidney. I told his mother that now it's my turn to step up for him. It was very emotional. Without informing him, we began moving things along. When it was clear I'm a match, we informed the kids and then him. He thanked me, but was also concerned about who will attend to the kids while we're both in surgery."
    There was no hesitation?
    "None. It was clear to me I would do this. He's the great father to my children, and they need an involved parental figure in their lives to be happy. In my opinion, when you get divorced, the children should always be top priority."
    Who did you consult with?
    "No one. Some family members as well as my friends raised an eyebrow, but they realized how determined I was. Eitan and I had some heart-to-heart conversations about this, and there were people who helped move the process along from an operational perspective."
    Weren't you afraid of staying with one kidney?
    "Doctors explained I would feel no difference in my day-to-day life. It's like we were born with two kidneys so we would give one away when needed."
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    Rabin Medical Center
    Rabin Medical Center
    Rabin Medical Center
    (Photo: Yaron Brenner)
    What Adel did not anticipate is that she would be a match for someone else while waiting for the surgery.
    "Anat, the donation coordinator at Rabin Medical Center called and said there's a young man who has been waiting for a kidney match for four years and I was ideal for it. I cried, because now there were two people who needed my help to live.
    "I spoke with both Eitan and Avishay, who said that as far as he's concerned, the young man's new kidney would come from me, while Avishay would receive his from another altruistic donor, who is a doctor himself - Avraham Rami from Soroka Medical Center.
    Edri's surgeon, Dr. Evyatar Nesher, the organ donation department director at Rabin Medical Center, said: "This a complex multi-donation event. Whenever that happens, we feel very excited to be able to grant someone a new lease on life."
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