Every human life has value.

This article in the Washington Post tells the sad story of a girl whose dad was an annonymous sperm donor. Personally I find this whole concept disturbing. Things like this make it very hard for me to be optimistic about the future of our children and our country.

“When she was 32, my mother — single, and worried that she might never marry and have a family — allowed a doctor wearing rubber gloves to inject a syringe of sperm from an unknown man into her uterus so that she could have a baby. I am the result: a donor-conceived child.

And for a while, I was pretty angry about it.

I was angry at the idea that where donor conception is concerned, everyone focuses on the “parents” — the adults who can make choices about their own lives. The recipient gets sympathy for wanting to have a child. The donor gets a guarantee of anonymity and absolution from any responsibility for the offspring of his “donation.” As long as these adults are happy, then donor conception is a success, right?

Not so. The children born of these transactions are people, too. Those of us in the first documented generation of donor babies — conceived in the late 1980s and early ’90s, when sperm banks became more common and donor insemination began to flourish — are coming of age, and we have something to say.

I’m here to tell you that emotionally, many of us are not keeping up. We didn’t ask to be born into this situation, with its limitations and confusion. It’s hypocritical of parents and medical professionals to assume that biological roots won’t matter to the “products” of the cryobanks’ service, when the longing for a biological relationship is what brings customers to the banks in the first place.

We offspring are recognizing the right that was stripped from us at birth — the right to know who both our parents are.

And we’re ready to reclaim it.”

Here you can read her online discussion of the article: Outlook: Looking for Donor Dad

December 20th, 2006 at 10:26 pm
One Response to “Who’s Your Daddy?”
  1. 1
    Rosie Says:

    I am currently making a radio documentary in the UK about sperm donation and the effects it has on the children…also considering the law that stripped anonymity from frozen sperm donors.
    I would be very interested to know more about the person who wrote this account of being a child concieved from a donor and wondered there was any other information available about this person.
    I am most intrigued by her gripping response to her conception.
    Having done research for this documentary, I can see how this must have effected her life somewhat, but can also see the usefulness of a sperm donor.
    However, I also see that the law in the UK has a “need for a father” phrase contained within the welfare of the child consideration – yet single women and lesbian couples are of half of those recieving sperm from donors to concieve a child.
    The “need for a father” is soon to be taken out of this law.
    A point that someone made to me in an interview was that… the government comment on gun warefare a lot recently due to current events around London, and in some way blame the lack of a father model in the families.
    A middle class lesbian couple is fine to recieve a sperm donor to create a child without a father?
    But a working class black family without the role of a father is not ok??!
    We are getting ourselves in quite a muddle – I found this interviewee to have a very important point!