Wednesday, March 01, 2006

The donor options - Advice to a California couple

I always knew I wanted to have kids -
and being a dyke was certainly no barrier in my mind.
When Jessie and I began walking down the road, we decided to try to get pregnant first and later adopt a child as well. The donor selection process was the most bizzare experience on so many levels.

A wonderful lesbian couple from California wrote to us recently to ask for advice in the donor insemenation process. They are thinking of using a relative - her partner's brother(who is very cool with the idea and very gay savvy) - but they want to be more educated about the process. They really want to hear from others about their experiences.

One thing I will say is that folks are pretty hush-hush when it comes to sharing about their donor choices. Regardless of which direction you go there are so many factors to look at. I will share with you our thoughts and I hope it sheds some light for you. I encourage all of you to jump right in and help these ladies find a great path to make their family grow. If you have used a relative as a donor, please write in and help these two decide what will work for them.

At first we thought we would use one of our best friends - a very cool guy - sweet and loving. But as time grew nearer I began to worry that he would be unable to not be involved. He was so caring and loyal that I thought it would tear him apart to see his birth child grow up and not have the active father role. I couldn't do that to him and I wanted our child to have two parents - not three.

I worried about the law - but that part is pretty tidy as long as you use a good lawyer.

I worried about health issues and what was inherited. Also, to be honost, no matter how much we trusted this guy - how could I know who he had slept with the night before? It just didn't feel safe to me. We could have had his little fishies frozen - but by then I had too many worries.

In the end we chose to enter into an anonymous donor proess. So once you pick a bank -
and that was process enough -
you get this book in the mail
broken down by race.
I guess I always pictured my baby looking like me - a short, jewishy, caucasian person.
but when I recieved the book
suddenly it felt like I was begining to experiment in eugenics.
how could I look at my future child and tell him that I chose white sperm over black?
Because I am white or just because did not feel right to us
The whole process seemed so strange
to be honest it was hard enough
paying $288 plus shipping for a vial of stuff
thay many college students are just leaving around anywhere they can

In the end we went race neutral
screened out any major inheritable diseases
any major weirdos (like the one who said "I love violent martial arts" or " I would be the most beautiful biological donor ever!")
and really just went for health and an overall good vibe
to be honest, we also asked for their attractiveness rating -
didn't want a hugely ugly donor, you know

We also found we did not want to create any falsehoods -
some people like to use a blond donor because they are blond
but really it's just a false impression of resemblace
good for some - not for us

My advice - go for what feels good for you
in your life
on all factors
Comfort now and in 18 years
Comfort now and for when you explain this to your child
Comfort with the safety of the process and health of the child

Many people have guilt when choosing a donor or adopting
especially lesbains - I am not going to wager a guess why
We have guilt for asking for a healthy child
when screening out potential issues or asking for all relevant medical and sexual history
We have guilt for wanting an infant when so many older children exist in this world
Guilt Guilt Gullt

This is your child
demand answers
and make choices
based ONLY
on what works
for yourself and your partner.

Hope this helps a bit
please comment in for these ladies okay?
Can't wait to see pictures of your soon-to-be baby
Good luck!


At March 02, 2006 7:50 PM , Blogger Lo said...

Stacey, my partner and I have made the *exact same* comment about eugenics more than once. We have not made any final decisions about how we are getting sperm, except for this: no racial supremacy. Ever.

At March 03, 2006 12:00 AM , Blogger Zoe said...

Interesting post. My partner and I are deciding between using a family member, a friend, or an anonymous donor. We actually went form being set on using an anonymous donor because we didn't think anyone we knew would do it if asked, to having several of the people we would have asked volunteer. Which was surprising and touching. It's a tough decission, there are pro and cons to all of our options. It was so much easier when we didn't think we had a choice.

At March 07, 2006 8:05 PM , Blogger TPK said...

That was really awesome. My partner and I are going through the donor process and it has been really difficult. It's so awesome to be able find a website such as yours..

At May 10, 2006 4:53 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

my partner and I used my brother as the donor knowing that he would not want to be involved with the parenting aspect nor financially responsible. He just is happy being an Uncle!! And then my family bloodline continues with us instead of stopping!

At May 13, 2006 9:51 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

You can go ahead and deny the society we live in, or accept the reality of it. Picking sperm of a white donor will give the child a much better chance at success in life than that of a black donor. I know this isn't the PC to say, but the truth sometimes sucks.

At June 22, 2006 3:16 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

why be stuck with the product of a straight man and a straight woman ? Why not just use two gay woman to have your child ? I am sure the Godess -- if she supports you -- will find a way to make it work !

Curious, what if your kid ends up becoming an Orthodox Muslim ? Will you allow them to make that choice ? (If not aren't you censoring who they are as people ?)
And if they do want to make that choice (Because they feel they have been born that way and that's truly who they are ) How will you deal with the fact that to be consistent with that choice and its inherent condemnation of your lifestyle they must reject you or at the very least ask you to change ? Curious if you ever thought of that as a possibility. That is no trick question -- just very possible considering an increasing number of 1.5 billion muslims are moving in that direction .


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