Back in the late 80's, I was a college student looking to make some easy money by donating semen. I graduated, left the country to do some volunteer work, and came back to that city a couple of years later to look for a job.
Thinking that some extra cash would come in handy during my job search, I contacted the clinic I had gone to previously and inquired about becoming a donor again.
Turned out that nobody wanted to buy my semen because I was adopted and unable to provide any family medical history!
Ah well, funny old world, isn't it?
Although I may never meet you, I want you to know that you are truly loved. Like you, my own origin has been a mystery to me for most of my life. As I wake, I wonder about you. Now, today, and every day, I hope that you live in the love and esteem that I hold for you. Just as you search for me, I search for you. Any face, any child. Young men and women. We are strangers. Even though we are bound by blood, the tangled skein of life obscures our association. Spend your time in this world wisely. Choose your associations, lest they choose you. Own your lives, and remember that this world belongs to you as much as it belongs to anyone else. Always keep one foot firmly planted on the ground. Though sometimes your road may be rocky, never doubt that you can succeed.
I LOVE YOU.
I'm in the process of providing an anonymous family my eggs. I don't understand why some of some of the children of donors are upset. So you don't look exactly like your mom or share her DNA but she did everything possible to get you. Have you looked up the costs to get an egg donor. Not just the compensation but the flight if she is out of state or the hotel,food,hormone injections ect that they have to pay for. Love that they love you and accept you. I'm just helping a couple who deserve a family.Sure the hormones make me a little moody right now but the feeling that I'm completing someones family is worth it to me.
I am a birth mother to a beauitful baby girl who is now 5 yrs old. I have always wanted to be a mother and age was against me and the fact that I had never met a Mr.Right . I love my child with all my being and only want to give her the best of everything just as all parents do. When I had the bio clock ticking I asked an ex who I had remained really close to for many years and have known him since I was 15 to help me. He was not into it for a long time it took me the better part of 2 yrs to convince him . When I did he went along with it and charged me for his "DONATION". At this point in my life I saw what a great father he was to his other 2 kids and I thought he would be the same with this baby. Boy oh boy was I wrong. He is from an all Italian family and he claims they would not accept how she came to be. What a cop out. At any rate I was adjusting to being a only parent to my daughter till she has been asking alot of questions and I dont know how to proceed. My child is very intelligent and will ask me where her daddy is and why he doesnt love her. I tell her he does love her and that he lives very far away and that mommy and daddy just dont get along. The sad thing is he lives a hour from us and he sees his son who is out of state more than he has ever seen his daughter. I want to protect my child and not hurt her in any way so I dont know how to answer her questions she only just turned 5. How do I proceed I want her to know how much I wanted her and would not change a thing. Another thing that bothers me is that we were trying to conceive naturally and it did not happen we had to use a fertility Dr. How can he just walk away and how do I proceed with my child moving forward. Please help if any ideas.
I was 18, in college, drinking beer and chasing girls. At the time, I didn't think much (or at all) about the consequences of being a sperm donor. The ladies at the bank were very pleasant -- always reminding me what a generous gift I was giving to those who couldn't conceive. I'm a little older, perhaps a little wiser, but as I see baby after baby being listed on DSR, I feel disconcerted. What do I make of all this? I always had a vague notion there might be a person conceived as a result of my donations, but, after reading the emotional stories on this site, how do I handle the fact that there are dozens (or hundreds) of children out there with my DNA. Will they search out for me? Want to meet me? Will they resent me for a decision born out of youthful ignorance, so I could tell my buddies about my "kick-ass swimmers"? How involved might our lives be? Should I remain anonymous and simply keep my medical history updated? Or should I brace myself to one day be sending out 80 Christmas cards to biological children I didn't raise and don't know. Is there some sort of middle ground? After I graduated, I moved on, to a different city and a different lifestyle. And while I may have quietly moved on, I see now the decisions I made remain very much permanent in consequence. At the time I wasn't thinking; now I don't know what to make of what I'm feeling.
I had four children of my own and read an article about donor eggs and the unhappiness of childless couples. After a lot of thought I decided to donate eggs. It was painful, time consuming and a big intrusion in my life. I did it for the best of reasons, I received no money, in fact the procedure cost me in time off work, transport etc. I did it to make at least 3 lives better and I truly hope that's what happened.
Get over it... Be happy, you have control over your lives now, make the most of your life. You were given life for the very best of reasons, make your life your own and make it worth being.
I will miss you until we meet my sweet intimate stranger, until then I will carry you in my heart. But if our kindred eyes fail to recognize the other in that noisome, crowded world - if our familiar souls pass each other blindly by (our search frustrated, or never started), then I wish that you never want for happiness, health or contentment. I wish that the world, despite being what it is, is kind to you and I hope and pray, with all the hypocrisy of the naive, that you never have cause to doubt that you are loved by others, if not by me (you being unaware of me, anonymous stranger; whose face reflects my own; you unaware of my abiding care for you, a care kept kindled by the daily ritual of remembrance and the nightly vigil of my dreams).
Certified as a teacher, principal, and superintendent, I currently work as an officer of the court, private investigator, and deception expert. I have worked on two master\'s degree programs and have completed my doctoral degree. If time permits, I may eventually teach part time at a college or university, but right now there is no space in my schedule for it. I greatly enjoy my work and do not care if others know I am a sperm donor.
Originally born in Oklahoma City in the United States of America, I have traveled to over fourty different countries and have lived in Estonia, India, Mexico, and China. I have also lived in Texas and Alaska, and I currently reside in Edmond, Oklahoma. The opportunity I have had to travel has broadened my horizons and has made me more open to the idea of donating sperm to singles and couples. Indeed, I first began donating back in 2009 while living in China.
I always inform potential recipients that I have no sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), and I test regularly and show them the results. Since I only donate via artificial insemination (AI), that pretty much ensures that I do not get diseases or pass them on to others. This is especially important, since I am happily married, which seems to also put recipients at ease. Of course, my wife knows about everything and supports my endeavor to help others, too, and she is monogamous.
It is also important that people to whom I donate know that I have no criminal history and am a vegetarian. I really take care of my health, as this is very important to me for many reasons. Health is indeed wealth, and it is important that I keep my body and thus sperm healthy. I take great care never to go into hot tubs, do not drink or smoke, etc. It is also important that I keep myself healthy, as I have a wife, parents, siblings, and several kids of my own who rely upon me.
Whenever I donate sperm to recipients, I do not discriminate against them because of their age - except in such cases where their chances of conceiving are very small or nonexistent, weight, sexual orientation, height, transgendered status, race, ethnicity, nationality, veteran status, marital status, political affiliations, religious beliefs or the lack thereof, etc. I have a \"live and let live\" policy per se, and that seems to suit many people just fine. I do wish, however, that all recipients will raise their kids to be open-minded, loving individuals.
I have always been open to being a known donor. I am perfectly fine if any of the kids I help conceive contact me via SKYPE, e-mail, regular mail, via Facebook, telephone, web camera, or in person. I believe that it is great if the kids born from my sperm and the recipients\' eggs know about me. Most recipients and I have agreed that the kids will know by at least the time they are eighteen, but all recipients seem to want something different.
Some people I help want me to put my name on the birth certificate and to have the child and my kids contact each other at any time. Indeed, some of the people I have helped and I have grown so close that they even have keys to my house. Our kids will play together and we will all get together for certain holidays and other times. I love it! This is always the very best scenario for me.
Other individuals I help do not want the child(ren) to know anything until they are eighteen years of age. They want to keep things more private, and this is fine with me. I wish they would tell their kids right away, and I am perfectly fine if they ever change their minds and want their kids to seek me out earlier.
A few couples who are male/female couples want to put the husband\'s name on the birth certificate and just tell the child that he or she is the husband\'s son or daughter. This is a little different and, I suppose, deceptive to the kids. However, if this brings such great joy and happiness to the couple and the kids have wonderful, loving, kind parents, then so be it.
I know that couples can break up, and that there is always the possibility that the birth mummy will tell her child(ren) that her husband or perhaps ex-husband is not his/her/their \"real\" daddy. I have no control over such things, but I just want everyone to be happy and healthy.
I will not donate to sperm banks, as they sell sperm in much the same way as international adoption centers sell kids born overseas. I know how much money some couples who went the sperm bank route spent each time they tried, and it was so much! Couples have told me, \"We were spending so much money on this each time and could only try once every several months. Now that we found you, we can try each month for much less!\"
Hearing what you had to say on this website has made me think a great deal about the donation process and its effects on the kids born from sperm donation. As far as I know, two mummies or two daddies can raise the kids just as well as a mummy and a daddy can. However, I suppose my situation and the way I help others is different than kids who are conceived through a sperm bank. I suppose it is also different, as I am willing to be known at any time to any child I help conceive. However, questions now loom on my mind.
After listening what has been said on this website and after doing a bit of other research, I ask myself several things. \"What would it be like to grow up not knowing my daddy?\" is one such question. Also, I would wonder how many siblings I have out there. I do try to help recipients I have helped who want to make things known connect with each other, so as to help each child get a better sense of his or her roots and identity. Nevertheless, my heart and sympathy go out to those who will never know who their father was or who their siblings might be.
I suppose this debate will continue for some time to come, but I hope that all kids I help through donating are happy, healthy, and may, if they so desire, know that I helped conceive them. I never hide who I am, and I am readily found on Facebook and through a simple Google search. I hope that sperm banks are required to tell kids who their father is, like Great Britain has since done. I commend the discussions this website is promoting, and I hope that it brings about changes which will benefit the kids born from all sperm donations. :)
(Reposted from original interview with Jennifer Lahl, at www.eggsploitation.com)
I grew up in foster care and aged out at 18 without ever having a family. I was a good kid, talented in the arts and academics. I worked hard with the hope that a family would want me. I was never adopted so needless to say I've been desperate to be a part of a family my entire life.
I was never paid for my eggs. I gave my eggs away. A few years ago, I gave my eggs to good friends with the naive belief that this was a way for me to be part of a family--and I would even have a genetic connection! I was promised that I would always be part of the family and the child's life. I was told that I was "always meant to be part of their family and that their family never felt complete until I came along." I wanted to give my friends what I never had--a family. I thought, "When would I ever have a chance to make such a huge difference in someone's life again?" And I would be part of a family too. How could I not do it? I was so eager for love and had no one looking out for my best interests which made me easily exploited, even if unintentionally.
I took Follistim, Menopur, and Lupron. The doctors assured me there were no long term side effects from egg donation. The only risk was OHSS which only happened in 1% they said. Knowing what it's like to yearn for family, I went through with the egg donation for my friends. I had to take some genetic tests for diseases, health tests, and a counseling session over the phone. The counseling session was about my life history and how the egg donation might affect my friends. It was never about my psychological needs. I produced an unreal 47 eggs. At first I felt pride in that. Now that I know better, I am angry that the doctors risked my health and allowed twice the normal amount of eggs normally produced by donors to develop and allowed my ovaries to stretch beyond safe levels. I was so uncomfortable. I looked pregnant. I had to hold up my distended abdomen just to walk during the last few days before the retrieval.
During the egg donation process the doctors and nurses were super supportive except for when I questioned anything like the fact that all the drugs came in my friend's name. When I questioned it I was told "Because she's the one paying for everything" in a pretty harsh tone. Um, she may have been paying financially, but she was not the only one paying for the donation. Plus, it's illegal to take drug prescriptions written for someone else isn't it? After the egg retrieval their attitude towards me changed. They did not want anything more to do with me, especially when I had complications. I became an annoyance. During the whole process I had some eye problems. My vision was a little blurry and my eyes ability to focus changed. My eyes returned to normal about six months later, but when I asked the fertility doctor about it he told me that he never heard of that happening. I later researched it and discovered that the FDA lists it as a side effect of the drugs I was given.
Immediately after the retrieval, I had a lot of bleeding and discomfort. I became severely depressed to the point where I needed antidepressants but my mental health continued to decline. My periods stopped. My hair became dry and brittle. My skin changed and I got a lot of acne. I gained weight at an alarming rate but my diet did not change. Driving over bumps, jumping, or any type of rough movement was a little painful for months after my donation. I kept calling the clinic with my concerns but each time I was told my side effects were normal and would get better. Six months without a period was normal? The side effects did not get better.
Finally I went to see my doctor who ran tests and found that my hormone levels were "all over the place." He referred me to a specialist who told me I had what seemed like PCOS and then I was referred to an endocrinologist. I will be on drugs to control my hormones for the rest of my life. I still go months without a period. My mental health continues to be an issue and is very much linked to my hormones. My ovaries have remained enlarged and I will most likely never be able to conceive naturally, if at all.
My friends promised me I could have the remaining embryos, but they have since changed their minds. They've changed their minds about a lot of things.
My friends have decided that I am no longer part of their family. She cannot handle that her son looks exactly like me. She is devastated that her son has no genetic link to her. She wishes he had come out looking like her husband because I remind her that he's not hers. I'm not sure what she expected when she took my DNA. I'm no longer part of my "nephew's" life after loving him for over two years; I have to stalk the father's blog to watch him grow up. I would have never given them my eggs had I thought I would not be a part of the child's life.
Despite my gift and sacrifices for the people I love, they have abandoned me. My devastation and drastic mood swings became too much for me and I attempted to end my life. This was a scary blessing. Antidepressants didn't work well for me so the psychiatrists ran tests and found the right medications to balance my hormone levels and I feel so much better and a lot more stable. I donated my eggs out of a desire to mend the broken hearts of people that I love and my own. What I got in return was a hormonal disorder, major depression, infertility, and another family abandoning me for reasons I do not understand. I wish I could go back in time and spare my body, fertility, mind, and my heart.
Egg donation is NOT harmless like I was led to believe. It has seriously affected every part of my life. I often cry about the loss of my friends, my family, the little person with half my DNA and my ability to have my own genetic children someday. If you're thinking about donating your eggs for ANY reason--DON'T. It's not worth it.
I became a sperm donor because I wanted to, not to make money. In the UK where I live there isn't the same level of financial compensation for donors as there is in other countries. I received £250 (around $385 dollars US) for just under thirty donations. My travelling expenses were also reimbursed.
Since 2004 the law in the UK has changed and donors have had the right to anonymity removed. I recognise the torment caused to donor conceived children who do not have the right to know their biological father, in my view the change in the law is a very positive one.
In the UK the number of families that can be treated with donor sperm is limited to ten.
When my donor children reach eighteen they will be able to trace me, I sincerely hope that they make this choice, I will be in my late fifties by this time and I will probably welcome the company of younger people. Not all donors or potential donors feel the same and the number of men coming forward has dropped considerably since the right to anonymity was removed.
My reasons for donating were very complex, initially I wasn't that serious about it and just wanted to have the fertility test and sperm analysis. I did not realise that only 5% of men who come forward have sperm that is suitable for freezing I realised that I almost had an obligation to continue with it. It was only after the initial tests that I really began to give serious thought to my reasons for doing it.
Partly I wanted to help people who could not conceive, partly I wanted to send my genes forward into the future having no children of my own, partly it just seemed like something very positive to do. It is not very fashionable to be pro-human these days but I really felt that adding to the population was a good thing to do. I felt that if a single woman or a couple were prepared to go to the lengths of being treated with donor sperm then the resulting child would be wanted and loved.
I can understand that being the result of a medical process, sharing your genes with a stranger, having many half-siblings that are not known to you may be very difficult. I hope my donor children will be able to rationalise these difficulties, weighed against the fact that they have a life to live, a life that they would otherwise not have had, a life potentially filled with fascination and joy then I hope they won't appear to be such huge problems.
Not knowing much about the authors/contributors here, or the author of the referenced post, a legal point is worth noting.
In Italy artificial insemination with donor sperm has been illegal for a number years, since, I think, 2008. In fact, thousands of Italian couples go abroad for such treatment each year. This is true. You can confirm my statement easily enough through online sources, including the Italian press.
So how can "Italian Donor" be doing what he states unless it was before 2008? If I recall correctly, a temporary legal ban on the procedure when into effect several years before the referendum. Yes, it was a popular referendum. I remember. I voted in it!
So is he a private donor operating outside a clinical setting? Private donors, acting directly with the recipient, are afforded no immunity from litigation in Italian law because what they're doing is ILLEGAL!
Or maybe he is OUTSIDE Italy?
Not to pick on guys in Italy (which includes me), but some of their "boasting" gets tiresome. On the blogs, every Italian guy brags about doing his hot teacher when he was 17 and she was about 30. Yeah, right, like EVERY female teacher in Italian high schools has sex with her students. Please!
Naturally, none of these claims can be verified.
Welcome to Italy!
To all donor concieved children Im sorry. I needed the money and I thought I was making your parents happy. I thought you would be loved and wanted.
But not by me. Please dont hunt me down and break my real family, for they dont know. My gift of life to you could be my own lifes distraction. My real children would not forgive me. My wife, who is my life, would leave me.
I now realise I was wrong. This whole system is wrong. Please forgive me, but I am not your father, nor did I ever intend to be.
Sperm Donor i read your story,
As a sperm Donor and Someone knowing many sperm donors via internet i can say such these feelings are more frequent than anyone could think.
There is a Donor in my country Who donated to' a sperm Bank like you and then privately too: now he is ok and happy about it, but at the beginning he was feeling even guilty. He wrote to' a forum: "am i doing the right thing? Sometimes i feel Like th cukcoo bird Who leave his eggs to' the other birds letting them raise the offsprings..."
An other one Who knows he fathered 28 felt overused and even me sometimes i wonder some questions like "wait but these Will be' my biological kids....and they are far away from Here...it sounds weird" but then in my case i am so happy for the parents and for the children created that i am almost entusiastic about donating.
Everyone is different though and have different feelings: what i suggest you is to' ask the clinic if they can write somewhere you could be' open to' contact....maybe some kids Will call the clinic in the future and if you say you Are open maybe they could call you..... or yes you could sign up to' a special site like DSR.
Bye and support from a sperm Donor
PS If you want to talk about your feelings with other donors sign up on Freespermdonorregistry which will be soon KnownDonorRegistry...i am sure you will feel better!
I am the author of the article here: I am a spermdonor, 09.22.2011. This is my second entry.
Yesterday I got a phone call from the fertility institute, that out of my anonymous sperm donation 2 succesful pregnancies came to happen recently. And there are still vials left. The call came after my initiated interrest how things are, it was a promised call return. It did not came to me as a shock as it did a half a year ago, when I have had a similar conversation, but it turned out to be false alarm, it was some of an error, and it was not out of my samples the pregnancies had happened. But back then, after hearing that several new lives are on their way who are fathered by my semen, it was more then overwhelming. I was dizzy, I had to sit down really. It all became so surreal. Nothing changed in my life, and suddenly I am confronted with this piece of information, that several pregnancies were succesful already. Obviously, as a sperm donor it is something I was well aware of, that it would be only a matter of time that this would happen: this was the purpose, why I did it, but still, hearing someone tell you on the other line, that babies are on its way out of your semen, and being a single guy, not in this life-phase yet to hear something like that normally, it was quite a shock.
Anyway, a couple of weeks later, back then half a year ago, that I called again, it was cleared, that it is not the case. At least not for the time being.
But yesterday it all got real. Two pregnancies are on their way. I failed to aks if there are twins among them, or anything about their conception, I was just holding my cell, and let this information got poured on me. This time I tried, but could not have any emotional response. Nothing. It was in the middle of my workday, actually at lunch break, that I got the call.
Later I googled a picture of a germinating seed, trying to have some focus. I was stearing at it, trying to get into the feeling. To have some sort of association� nothing.
I just told myself, well, later in the evening, laying in my bed, in the dark, the feelings will come. Any sort of an encounter with this information. Actually it was a 1.5 year long journey since I started writing my diary about this, and contacted the institute for the first time, and I knew, someday had this ending. Someday I would get this call, knowing, that it all got real.
I joined my community group in the evening, we had a nice time together, and then I went home, and fell asleep.
Well, I had a dream�. A dream, that got as realistic as only a few of my dreams get. You know those rare occasions in your dreams when you are so into it, and you are getting anxious that this shit is all happening with all its consequences? Such a like�
I was dreaming that 2 of my friends suddenly have died. Both, who are part of that community group I weekly attend, whom I have met that day. One of them is around 45, the other is a college graduate, around 25. The latter looks similar to me, at least I have sympathy for him, he resembles me in some ways, my younger self. I don't remember anymore how they died in my dream, I just got hold of this information somehow, and we were together as a group, and were in shock, but still were trying to talk it through, again, and again, and to digest the shock, that these young lives will never be here with us anymore. At a point the older guys persona left the picture, we mourned for the loss of this youngish guy. I was crying in my dream, it felt very intense, very real. It was almost unbearable. I was just circling around this in my dream, that I will never be able to speak with him, and how I will miss him, and how tragic it is to loose such a young life�
I woke in the middle of the night, and slowly realized, that it was all a dream� I felt so releaved, that this friend of mine has to be well and alive then�
But laying in the dark, almost crying for real, it slowly dawned on me, that this dream was just the emotional reaction, I was longing for� it came actually pretty quickly� And I understood, what I couldn't figure out during the day what I feel right now: I feel grief. I am mourning for my lost 2 children, whom I never will see, never know more about them, then the fact, that they came to exist. I am mourning my role in the process, that it has just ended were others' is just starting. A new family is about to be born somewhere, due to my cooperation. Joy, and tears of joy are all over I imagine, and here am I, not invited, not to participate in this joy.
I wear black today. God, I am so greatful, that I realized, what I am going through from the very beginning: it is going to be a grief process. Now I know it. It is not some winter-melancholy, not depression, it is grief. I do hope, that this consciousness will help me to get through it in a healthy way.
I am contemplating now about two decisions: I might need to see a therapist to get through this� the other: I might want to open up my donor data on the internet, make a page, or register in some database, in spite of the fact, that I am meant to be anonymous. (here we don't have the option of open donation, only anonymous). I don't know. It would be still by chance, that the recipient mother or later the interrested child would find me�
Since these are more US based databases, I don't even know if the recipient mother, or later the child, if they want to find me as the donor, they would even think of me being registered in a US database, being a central-european.
Anyway, I am aware, that all this is part of the mourning process, I guess this is some glimpes of hope, that I could be reached, get involved if they want it like that. I am open for this. Still I am not sure if it's going to hurt them, or hurt me� I guess I have time to make up my mind around this.
I don't know anymore, what I imagined it to be like, when I first decided to donate my sperm, how the process would evolve, but now actually it is somewhat painful.
Afterword: I guess the reason I share this here is partly due to the common notion about sperm donors I see in writings, that he surely is some irresponsible college student, who will buy beer for his next party out of the money he gets for jerking off into a cup, and afterwards he would never think of it all. A selfish pleasure seeker. That he simply doesn't care. Well, this is absolutely not who I am� It kind of hurts to be perceived like that, or even anything near that. I don't want an award, don't get me wrong� I just wanted to bring in an other aspect. I guess I wrote more about my feelings in my previous entry.
I am the same italian sperm donor, but this time i would like to talk not of my story and reasons of being a donor, but about what italian infertile couples think about gamete donation and the way they will act with their donor conceived babies.
After starting being a private sperm donor i decided to join some infertility forum to share my own experience: after a few days i have just be banned.
The reason was that they don't agree with private donation and for them donation can only be anonymous in order to not interfere with the parent role.
I read parents writing that they will never tell the children, not becouse they were scared by their reaction, but becouse for them DNA IS OF NO IMPORTANCE, genetic roots are nothing as they are the parents and that was all.
Some of them are even just trying to forget they went through egg/sperm donation as they see it as a MERE MEDICAL PROCESS.
Some of them even if they could choose between anonymous and non-anonymous donor they just choosed the anonymous one to preclude children the chance to know their biological father, just becouse for them that was just a donor, nothing important...
In my opinion they are just lieing themselves cause they will never accept they are not biologically related to the babies, so they decide to lie even to the babies and they think this is the best way to "solve the problem", but it's not!
I don't judge badly parents who choose to not tell the child, but what i find horrible is to delete every chance for the baby to know the donor father just in case they discover it!
I admit also the 2 married women i helped won't tell the children, but if they change their minds or if the children discover it i am open to meet them...i don't want an offsprings of mine to be a new blogger like the girl of "Confession of a Cryokid" suffering a lot in missing the half unknown part of herself.
Personally i was HORRIFIED in reading these forums and the way these parents to be act and think, but I read 2 stories which horrified me the most:
-A woman pregnant thanks to embryodonation write that she Will never tell the child and that IF she decide to do so, she Will tell when the son Will be like 30 and trying to' have his own children so to give him eventual Medical information. I though: "what the hell use your brain! The son, now a man, is an adult, he is settling down with his wife to have a family and you traumatize his life revealing such an important truth???"
- An other one went trough egg donation and she was saying she Will never tell and that she herself was forgeting it cause it was something of no importance, just a stressful Medical treatment and nothing more.
Maybe i am too much scientific person, but i don't believe these people saying genetic is of no importance.
I have only a sister, but many many cousins (9 of first degree, but even 70 only from my mother part) and everytime i meet them and all the relatives we love to talk about similarities in the features, the body, the way we talk and move cause this give us a stronger sense of identity and it is beautiful to have such a "big family".
That is why lots of donor conceived just can't wait to meet their half-siblings!!
I think in the 3rd millenium when we are all linked toghether through internet we should learn from the mistakes other did in the past even if they live on the other part of Atlantic Ocean.
I don't like to think in 20 years there will be the italian version of blogs like "anonymous us" and "confession of a cryokid" with lots of teens suffering and crying missing half of their genetic roots or even ALL their roots in case of embryodonation.
So i hope this little story can help people in learning from the mistakes of the past.
lots of love and support to all donor conceived.
an italian donor.
Since i was a little child i has always been concerned about the big questions about Life and Death and i also loved so much animals, so much that one day refused to eat the beef my mum was offerig: "they killed this animal, i don't want to eat"
My Mum was very concerned so she took my hands, she sat on the bed with me and showed me the decoration of the sheet: "Do you see this big flower? She is the cow and she is dead now, but can u see these little flowers starting from it? They are her babies: she is dead but she will surive through them...she won't be exctincted."
I think she told me this in an emotional peak as after i often thought about having a big family and my own children in future and still i hope i will have a nice family to build up :)
It was a long time ago and now i am 21: i often heard my sister talking about some of her friends having troubles in conceiving, i heard about Cryos international and since i wanted to have an erasmus time i thought "why not to donate? it would be nice to help other people"
I live in Italy, a country where sperm and egg donation is forbidden by law so there are no sperm banks here and that is bad...but reading on the internet i knew the existence of Private Sperm donation so i put announcments last january and started having contacts with infertile couples both italian and english and started meeting for home artificial inseminations...
The first months nothing seemed to work, but then arrived july, the "lucky month", and two women fall pregnant and now they are happily waiting their babies.
I can't describe the happiness of hearing the woman being so surprised and happy after years of sadness and desperation and yes....it was a very good feeling to know there is a new heart beating out there and that it is your biological descendent.
I feel happy in knowing my actions helped new lives to start: i live in Italy, one of the less prolific country of Europe...There are only 1,3 kids for each fertile woman, that means that old people are more and more, while kids and teens won't be so many so i think i could not find a better way to help others...help new lives to start: the kids are our future!!
I know someone could think there is also a narcisistic element and i admit there is: i am considered good looking and especially the women of my family (my mum and my sister) are stunning beautiful so i think the kids will be quite lucky inheriting some of their features. It's nice to think there will be kids with your eyes, your expression out there and maybe even kids having similarities in psyco. I can't deny there is also this reason, but i almost think sperm donation is something genuine..
If i will ever donate also to a sperm bank i am sure i will be open to contact: children deserves to know their origins.
As i said before i cannot immagine a better way to help people: help people to conceive new lives, babies who will be our future.
Hope this message will help to understand better the motivations of donor.
bye from italy
I am a spermdonor
And by being that, I am graced to have the chance of having biological descendants, a succession, that otherwise would not be a self-understood part of this human experience called life.
I write this in the knowledge, that the likely readers of my lines are affected cohorts of this industry. I am aware of the possibility, that you read this eagerly, as a distant message from your own donor, that you would have wished to read... For when does a spermdonor have a chance to talk, after all??... The question of the many of you might be: why? Why have I made this decision of donating my sperm, what were my motives, how do I feel and think of my progeny produced this way? What is the human face, the intention behind the data sheet?
I try to formulate my story form my point of view. Because not only you have a need to talk, to share. I have this need, too. Obviously, I am not presenting anyone else, but myself, I cannot speak for any other donors. I guess, we all have our own individual stories, but this one is mine.
I am a 30 year old single guy, born and living in central Europe, I am 6'1" tall, blonde, blue eyed, considered handsome, some of extra pounds make me a nice cub, here I go: I am a gay man. And being gay, having accepted myself as such in the past 3 years, I have absolutly not come to accept being possibly robbed of the biggest gift of life, by design: a family, in particularly made up with my own produced children.
It is not the USA here, or other parts of this world of a more open society. I am not saying, that it cannot happen, or wouldn't happen, that I will eventually have this dream also come true, but one thing I know for certain: I wanted to make sure, that I wouldn't leave this earthly life not having children of my biological make-up. This was basically the "green lamp" amongst a miriade of red lamps, that I faced. There are two wishes here, as you see: to have successors, these will be my soon to be- conceived children, and to have my own family, with a spouse, and to co-create my own children, with the help of a surrogate, and raise them, this is yet a very uncertain dream of the future.
One dream I could make come true till this point: since end of 2010 for a half a year I have donated my sperm several times at a local fertility institute. The samples are being made available during these months ahead, so these progeny are being conceived at this very time and age.
In my country there is legally only anonymous donorship, no chance of open donating via institutes. I have ambivalent feelings about this. One side of me is releaved, that this is the status quo, every member of the process is aware of it, except "of course" the to be born child.... I know that, I hear that. On the other hand, never having a chance to see these children of my own... is a hard pill to swallow. I have come a long distance to digest this already, but I guess it has yet it's layers as life will go on. Especially, if I eventually will have a family of my own.
As you see, this is the first time, I used the word children. I have a hard time figuring out how to relate to them in my mind, in my soul. There are multi-layers of conception here, of course, and I don't even want to diminish the load of it. Would be my self-raised children more my "real" children? In some terms of course they will be. But it would be an insult, and ignorance not to acknowledge my otherwise conceived children, in their very existance, having come to existance partly due to my decision to pay that insitute a visit... Ignorance never has, and never had good fruits.
The solemn knowledge for me, that there are going to be people on the planet, even whom I won't ever meet, who are my successors, in their eyes you find my eyes, in their smiles, in their very body and even in their psyche I am there as half of their heritage, this makes me feel, that I live in them forward, my very core of being has been passed on, something I also inherited from old ages. I know, there is something deeply narcisstic about this... But this is how I feel. That I have been a vessel of a life giver, it is something deep from my male-hood, I guess, too. mere instinct, made conscious? Maybe.
I have already written more then thirty pages in my diary dedicated to this process, self-reflecting on all the thoughts and emotions that needed to be digested (how gay it that, ha? :)) It was vital to do this...
Is it a solemn selfish and irresponsible act of mine, that I freely gave up A, my chance of knowing, and raising these children of my own biological make-up, B, their very right to know their biological father, with all the aspects and consequences around this?... Maybe it is. Am I the one to judge? Are you the one to judge?
I genuinely wish for my conceived children the best possible future. Although it is a future, I wouldn't be present in, and have hardly any power to intervene, to shape... The very constitution of artificial insemination might be a strong proof, that their going-te-be parent, parents, really and truely wanted them to be! I think this is a good place to start. Prayer seems to be an ever powerful tool here, all the power I am left with... I pray to my heavenly Father, that He would grace all my insufficiencies, and meet them, and my kids without the knowledge nor the fathering of their biological father, and fill theirs, right where they are. I wish for you, dear reader, to be filled with grace, too.
What is my ultimate message? I really don't know. I guess, we all are put, or have put ourselves into life situations of insecurities, uncertainty, and places of needs to be met. It is special in a way, for this group of ours, but also too common in an other way... All of us face these trials, literally everyone can relate to this. I personally find strength in my faith in God, and are more in need of it than ever. It is good to abandon myself into His good will for my life. He meets my insecurities, insufficiency and needs.
What would I say to my conceived children, if they somehow would find me in 10-15-20 years? - Thank you. I love you. I want you to know, that you are loved! I am so sorry, if I failed you. It was my conscious decision to donate sperm, but it was never my intention to harm you, by it's consequences. Please forgive me! I love you! Though I cannot see you with my physical eyes, I can see you in my minds eye, and in my heart, and seeing you, I am so proud of you! I. am. very. proud. of. you. Have a wonderful life darling!
This sharing works also as a healing process for me... May it be for you, too!
I donated eggs right before starting professional school years ago. I'm happy that I was able to help a couple have the children they wanted so very much. I'm curious about the children who were born through this process, but wouldn't try to intrude into their lives. The parents who have children using donor sperm/eggs don't want their maternal/paternal claim to the resulting children undermined by the donor. Egg/sperm donation, when done right, is very much a positive thing. It isn't right that infertile men and women should be prevented from having children just because of a biological issue that they have no control over.
If the children wanted to track me down one day after they'd grown up I would give them the level of involvement that they and their families were comfortable with. I feel like I should do right by them/their families because they were born of my eggs and because of the arrangement that was made with the parents.
I was given up for adoption at birth because my mother was 16 and my father had been killed in Vietnam. But I have since met my birth mother and learnt my adoption was not due to a of lack of love or desire to be a parent but it was a lack of age, money and family suport, BUT she had an abundance of love for her child that she wanted me to have more than she thought she could give....I am so proud of her for being strong enough to protect me whilst hurting herself.
I grew up in an open, loving adopted family and was given everything I needed and wanted. I was told early on that I was adopted and as a child I spent years fantasizing about having rich, famous parents or rock star siblings.....then as I got older I started being more curious about whose smile, humour, good/bad looks I inherited and what my biological parents were like. Because my biological father (an only child) and his parents had died I then started to researching his family history and geneology to learn who they were.
Somewhere along the way I felt the need to have my own children. I had a very happy life, a great experience with finding my birth mother and her family and then finally knowing who I was...only problem was that I was 36 and not married or in a relationship.
Sure my story is all sweet and rosey but why shouldnt another child be given the opportunity to grow up in 'non conventional' family like I did and be allowed the possibility of all the love and joy I received.
So I became a sperm donor. BUT I wanted my child/children to know as much about me as I could so I practically submitted a full dosier of my history, personality, looks, family history, pictures and a letter to be given to the child/children introducing myself, telling them why I was doing this and offering the mother/parents that I was prepaired to be as involved as much as they would let me in the childs life, from birth onwards and without question or claim. I am not sure if my 'dosier' was ever passed onto any parents/children as its only been a few years....but I am one donor that would welcome the opportunity to help any child born born through my donation to gain that ultimate prize, the knowledge of who they are and where their from. Only adopted/donor children will truely understand the wealth and value of knowing who you are and where you come from......
When I was younger, I never thought I would be an egg donor, let alone surrogate. I went through the egg donor process 4 different times to help two families have the babies of their dreams. After losing my own child, I became a surrogate, and after another loss, finally am waiting to give birth to my first surrobaby.
I cannot explain what compelled me to do this, but here I am. I am not necessarily writing about my own story but about a concern I have.
I KNOW of a woman (I can give the name/email if I am allowed to) who wants to be an egg donor for ALL the wrong reasons. She is not a good person, she has told stories of issues she's had and I am very concerned for potential IP's. Unfortunately, I don't know where to go in order to ensure that someone doesn't inadvertently get screwed by this lady. She acts like she's a nice person, but is very much the opposite. She will do anything for a buck, and that includes to LIE. She is GETTING A DIVORCE but is trying to donate her eggs and get money so she can move. She's not being entirely honest about her history and potential problems that can arise.
I don't know how to potentially stop her. She wants to be an independent egg donor (she would not get approved by an agency). Somehow, I feel strongly that this will end badly for all who get involved with her.
Even in high school, I knew I always wanted to have children and felt sympathy for the couples who tried to conceive but couldn't. Finally when I finished college, I felt it was time to give something that I knew would be the best gift I could ever give someone, and that was the gift of life. My decision was based primarily on the gift I gave and not on the financial compensation. Sounds altruistic, but I had thought about this decision for years.
As a redhead with a good education, I was snatched up right away by an anonymous couple at an IVF clinic. I went through the treatments and became overstimulated with 24 eggs! But with all those eggs, the couple would have the chance to have plenty of kids! I got a call the following year, saying that I "did a good job!" so I decided to do it again. And then yet again, the following year. Three full cycles for me for three consecutive years.
Donating my eggs was one of the most satisfying things I have done in my life. Knowing that I gave life to someone who otherwise was unable, brings me great happiness. The only tangible memory from these three donations is the beautiful silver heart pin the second recipient gave me. Filled in on one side but open on the other, the center has a small gemstone representing the egg. I cherish this gift and wear it close to my heart. I wish she knew how much that gift means to me.
The children who have my genes, are not my children. They are my genes. Their mother is their mother, as is their father (a sentiment that my husband doesn't share.) I now have two children of my own and know first hand now, unlike when I was in school or as a donor, what is truly feels like to be a mother. Life would be completely empty and void of meaning without children.
I am proud of my choices and would be interested in meeting these children at some point, given that they and their parents would like to meet me.
I was in my mid 30s realizing that i might never have children of my own. It all started with me just browsing the search engines and came across some sperm donor forums ads. I remember reading one of the ads- I thought this guy is full of it and lying about everything. Then I realized a majority of the donors in some of these online forums where lying about their education, height, how many they fathered, type of employment etc. There were so many donors who just wanted to have sex. Maybe cause they had problems getting sex from females in their normal life. Many of the recipients were so desperate in finding a donor they sometimes had sex with these donors. Even if these guys were infertile and never fathered any children. They usually make up a number of children they father and the females would often believe it. I used to sleep around with females from the bars and had a very wreckless lifestyle. I started out lying just like some of these guys. Guess the only thing I was honest about was the way I look and that I'm STD free. Im more honest to the females nowadays. As for why I'm a sperm donor- basically I couldn't afford to have children of my own. I work a low paying job like so many people. I did enjoy being told that a recipient is pregnant and how happy she is.
When I was in high school I had a friend who had a meth problem. She carried bags of gummy candy everywhere she went and drank a lot of Diet Coke. She read fashion magazines and got brilliant grades. I would get sms messages from her sent at 4 in the morning on a regular basis. She got scarily skinny in a short amount of time. People started to talk. I started to worry about her. I could smell the meth on her. I told her she needed to stop. I threatened I would stop being her friend.
One day she broke down to me and told me that the meth was her relief for her real problem- bulimia. When she smoked it, she felt like she didn't have to purge because she knew the drugs were burning off the calories. I had no idea she was bulimic. The only evil I saw was the meth- but it was just her resolution to a problem- feeling not good enough.
It was very important to my mom that I go to university and I didn't want to disappoint her. But she didn't have any money and my dad was not in the picture. In the rural area I grew up in there were not many opportunities. So I paid my own way through university- only I used student loans and hoped to pay them later.
I worked retail and waited tables and I still couldn't keep up with my peers. Rent, clothing, entertainment, travel expenses, cell phone, car costs and student loans just kept adding up. I went on craigslist and started looking for extra work. Most of the jobs didn't suit me at all. I either had no interest in them or no ability to pull them off. Because I was unskilled, my pool of job choices was very small.
There were several men offering money for "gentlemen's arrangements"- cash for a young pretty female to spend time with them. It was a euphemism for prostitution.
When I "donated" my eggs- I did it because I needed the money. Also, it was a relief for me. To support myself I had been sleeping with a married man with 5 kids for several months on a weekly basis in exchange for this "arrangement". Finally I couldn't take it anymore. I still needed the money though- that's when I sold my eggs. On the application they ask, "Have you ever exchanged money for sex or drugs?" I lied and said "No".
I had a decision. I could sell my reproductive parts either to old men, or old women. The latter was supposed to be a relief to the former. I have a young child out there now that I can't see or know because of my selfishness and my inability to feel "good enough" without a degree, without the clothes, without the car...
I'm sorry to the child and I'm sorry to the wife of the man I slept with. I truly am sorry.
I wanted to stay home with my two young boys, but I needed to find a way to pay the bills. I saw a story on Global National about a surrogate, she was a homemaker and wanted to give a couple the gift of a child. I have been thinking about surrogacy for some time, but didn't know much about it. I started to research on line about the "laws" surrounding becoming a surrogate, and tried to find a couple looking for a surrogate online.
Everything fell into place the head of two fertility consultants contacted me via e-mail. One really stood out in my mind, she is not only the head of the company but she also, like me and other's was a surrogate, and knew what I was looking for. We talked on the phone a couple of times, and in a matter of a week she had found me a IP(Intended parents) couple to work with.
We had an appointment at a clinic downtown, and I was so nervous that they wouldn't like me. Only one of the IP's could meet me that day, but the fertility consultant also met with me to make things easier. He (IP) walked in and I hugged him right off the bat, you can tell he was like "o.k., I don't even know you" lol. But he was so nice and he smiled a lot like me. He was funny and joked around like I like to do. He asked about my boys, and we had a good first meeting.
We had appointment after appointment. The transfer date came and I was so scared, it was a couple of days before Christmas, and all I could think about was how sad and upset I would be if things didn't work out. The two week wait better known as the 2ww. Was long and scary, we didn't take a HPT (home pregnancy test) so the IP's didn't get a false positive or negative. I prayed everyday for this, and I didn't want to start the Christmas holidays off with bad news.
2ww was finally over and the other IP and I got the great news that they were pregnant. We hugged like a million times, I had to hold back my tears. I was so happy for them both.
We are now 13 almost 14 weeks pregnant with twins, and I pray to GOD everyday, I'm so thankful to have met such great IP's, and that they are blessed with twins.
I think if you are a young person, that is done having kids of your own, and you want to help someone out, this is one of the most beautiful gifts you can give. All b.s. aside, I wish and hope that I would have met the IP's in school, or at a party. They are the most loving people I know, they're so in love. Our relationships are so alike it's not funny.
I hope nothing but well wishes to them both, and their beautiful twins. I know after the twins are born the IP's will be sooooooo busy. I know that we may never talk again, and I have come to terms with that. It's hard in some ways cause I'm a very emotional person, and I care for the IP's, but I knew when I started this, that there was a chance that we may never talk again. I'm just thankful that I got to meet such wonderful people like the IP's no matter how short of a time. They will always be close to my heart.
I donated my eggs while in graduate school, initially in response to a radio advertisement. I liked the idea of helping a couple build their family, since this is something my husband and I wanted but had not yet started, and the money would help support us.
The agency stressed the importance of the process being anonymous, though at this time I can't remember the reasons. I made it through the screenings and fairly soon after a couple chose my profile. I believe it was during the screening process that I indicated that I would like to give the couple my genealogical history, since I have done tremendous research on the topic, and the couple accepted that offer. As we progressed through the process, I prepared a CD with pdf files of my ancestry, starting with my great-grandparents in order to keep it fairly anonymous. It was always my thought, though, that with all the genealogical information on the web, that the child could use that information to at least greatly narrow down the list of possible donors.
I had given the couple an email address and received word when their daughter was born, along with a card through the donor agency. And since they were able to collect about a dozen eggs, I was told that they could have additional children as well. I have not heard anything since that initial announcement but hope all is well and that they have a nice family of their own.
I have since had two children and have completed my family. I think about my other biological children occassionally with happy thoughts of how I was able to contribute to their life. If I were contacted, I would be happy to meet with the family and would open my life to them if they wanted or needed.
About 20 years ago my wife and I were trying to start a family and after several months of unsuccessful attempts I had my sperm checked at a hospital which did IVF treatment. The hospital advised that I was okay and asked if I would become a sperm donor. I agreed to the request as it would help people have a family and I had some experience with the emotions that come into play when the desire to have a family is unfulfilled.
Fastforward 19.5 years to Sept 2010, a letter arrived informing me that I had a child conceived from sperm I had donated, and she wished to meet her biological parent and would I agree to the request. My immediate response was yes and after discussing the matter with my wife, we met with a counsellor at the IVF clinic and then arranged to meet the child.
Meeting the child (Sophia) was a very positive experience for us and for her. We organised the meeting through her mother as Sophia was only 15 at the time. We arranged a second meeting with Sophia and her mother at our house to enable our children a boy aged 20 and a girl aged 17 to meet Sophia and her mother. This meeting also went well and we have had subsequent meetings with Sophia and her mother which have been positive and enjoyable.
To illustrate how well the contact has been recieved, my daughter has requested that I ask the IVF clinic to write to the families of the other children (17) conceived by my donations to inform them that I am okay with being contacted if that is what the children wish to do.
My attitude to meeting with the children is one of intellectual curiousity. I am not their parent I am some one who provided seed material to their parents to enable them to grow their family and raise their children.
My experience and message to donors is that a child who wishes to make contact just wants to put a face and some facts to their history and get on with their life.
I'm a donor, both private and clinic. Where I come from, the donor is often the legal parent, so anonymity is advised. This is not ideal!
I don't think there's anything 'wrong' with sperm donation, but I think that honesty is the best policy for helping donor children cope with their origins. It seems wise for mums to be open from the start, to help avoid any feelings of deception when children discover their origins.
Personally, I'd argue for the maximum availability of donors for later contact, should this be needed. Also, I accept the fact that some donors feel they can't donate without being fully uncontactable, as opposed to just anonymous, so personal choice in the matter should be available in order to ensure that the supply of donors is not adversely affected.
Frankly, I believe the shortage of donor sperm would be a lot less of a problem if there was better protection for donors from vexations and mercenary litigation. I feel the best way is for donors to be open and known to the families. This can only come about if with proper legal protection for donors from child maintenance claims, and also with legal protection for their privacy.
If we could move to this system, as I understand is the case in certain parts of Europe, I believe that the whole system would work better for everyone. With better protection and the option of some contact, more men would be persuaded to assist - and for better reasons than a few dollars from a sperm bank.
Being a donor is also very hard emotionally, and I also think that these changes would allow donors to cope much better with the doubts, confusion and emotional fallout of having a number of children that are not part of their family.
Donor conception isn't going away, so let's be grown up about it. An open system of contact, with full privacy and financial protection for all recipients, would be the best system.
I'm a father, a "known" sperm donor. I was asked by a lesbian couple, people I considered dear and trustworthy friends, to help them conceive two children. After discussing it at length with my wife I agreed to help them. In short, our agreement was that I would consent to adoption by the non-birth mother. In return, I would have as much involvement in the children's lives as I desired.
I fell in love with my daughter the moment I saw her (in truth I loved her long before she was born). That's when the 1st stirrings of trouble began.
Turns out my "friends" didn't like my attachment to my child, and started making excuses for why I couldn't see her almost immediately. The stress of the situation gradually escalated and started negatively affecting my marriage as well.
Despite clues to the contrary, I continued over the course of the next 2.5 years to help my "friends" conceive a 2nd child (fortunately that never happened). During this time I became more and more attached to my daughter,
and she to me. Finally, my "friends" gave up the illusion of civility and severed our relationship, along with my relationship with my daughter. My marriage also ended around this time.
Fast forward to the present. I haven't seen my child in several years. Any
attempt I make to contact her is met with verbal abuse and legal threats from my "friends." My daughter has no idea she has a father, let alone who I am. Ignoring persistent legal threats, I've made myself easily found on the internet. When and if my daughter tries to find me, it will take her 15 seconds.
It has taken me several years to begin to accept the fact that I was used, lied to and betrayed. I was a means to their end, nothing more. The twist in the ongoing story is that I'm not going anywhere. I'm easily found, and my arms are wide open to my daughter. If she wants a relationship with me she will have it. I pray that she does.
My advice to anyone considering sperm donation is this:
2. If you insist on doing it, don't take it lightly. Get an attorney and get everything clearly in writing. If you ever want to see your child, get those details in the contract. Don't leave anything to chance. If you think it's not necessary between "friends" you're wrong. People lie sometimes.
Maybe not all such arrangements turn out so horribly as this. But in several
arrangements I'm aware of, there is some amount of lying going on to family,
friends and child. Your mileage may vary.
Regardless of what anyone says, you are the parent of that child forever. Your decision has life-long consequences, and no amount of rationalizing will make that go away.
If you are a donor-conceived child I'm sure that your birth father and/or
mother are eager to see you. You have a right to know them and you have a
right to know you're loved.
This entire "friendship," this entire arrangement was doomed from the beginning because it was based on lies. I wouldn't change the fact of my daughter's existence for anything, but the actions of my "friends" have caused a great deal of harm. In my case I made a promise, and I followed through on that promise. Some people would call that stupid and I can't totally disagree. But I still have my integrity. I acted in good faith.
To my daughter: I want you to know that I love you and that I long to see you.
You are on my mind 24/7. You are in my life every day and you are part of me. Nothing will ever change that.
I love you.
When I was a senior at Harvard working on my perfect 4.0 GPA I responded to an ad seeking egg donors. Since I was on scholarship and Harvard is extremely expensive it seemed like the answer to my prayer. I made an appointment and submitted myself to the battery of psychological and physical test to see if I could qualify. Lo and behold I fit the specific criteria they were seeking. While most egg donors are blond hair, blue eye I am the product of bi-racial ethnicity and it so happened that is what the client was seeking.
No need to go into details as most everyone involved in donation knows how the process works. Since I am blessed with a high IQ and I am also multilingual I was able to command top dollar at the time, $8,765. I always wondered how they came up with that amount. In any case all went as according to plan and soon after here comes baby. The money was a blessing and I was able to support myself for awhile. When I graduated, the fabulous career I envisioned did not materialize as fast as I had hoped. Call it luck or serendipity but I received a letter from the agency wanting to know if I would consider donating to the same couple who now wanted a sibling for their first baby. Since the real world now beckoned with bills, car notes and rent I eagerly agreed but I negotiated a larger price this time. I asked for $23,000 and the family who by now was extremely wealthy quickly paid it.
The money allowed me to move back to my hometown in the South and get on with my life. I can honestly say I do not feel I have any "children" out there. Nor do I lose any sleep or suffer angst filled nights lamenting on what might have been. I was simply a conduit that allowed a loving couple to achieve their goal of having a family. I have never wanted to know the girls or by now young ladies as they would seem like a strangers. Their lives belong to their real family and if somehow I get a card from the agency asking for anything more than medical information I would have to respectfully decline.
If I was still able to donate I would absolutely do it again. The agency showed me pictures of the parents as they met their children for the first time. How anyone can be critical of that is beyond reason.
When I was 20 I was in college and looking for a job that would be easy-- I had a lot of obligations, not a lot of time, and not a lot of life experience. I wanted everything and I wanted it now, but restaurant and retail jobs didn't pay the kind of income to buy me everything I thought I needed.
A funny thing happens when a girl becomes a woman-- the world starts treating her as an adult; middle-aged men begin to ask for dates, people stop forgiving you for your stupidity and start expecting you to behave responsibly, and suddenly you're allowed to do whatever you want. "Whatever you want" sounds like a lot of fun. Well... "whatever you want" sometimes isn't "what you need" and mistakes become profound, even monumental.
I popped open my laptop and began my search for the perfect easy job on craigslist. For my lack of degree and vocational skills the pickin's were slim, but for a pretty young girl willing to compromise her integrity there were plenty of ads promising fast cash. I could be a candy-stripe girl, a discount masseuse, a foot-fetish model, a dog walker, babysitter, marketing-research participant, pharmaceuticals test subject, nude model (for artistic purposes of course) or my favorite... a "gentleman's" mistress.
"Thanks, but no thanks," I said, until I came across that seductive "$10,000 & up!" ad. "Give the Gift of Life!" they said. No kidding, with THAT kind of money I could actually have a life...
I signed up and began what would be one of the most dehumanizing experiences of my life. They wanted pictures of me, lots of pictures, and medical information, and personal information. They only wanted baby pictures. They weren't interested in the adult their child might become, they wanted the baby version of me. It was obvious there were right answers and wrong answers in the questionnaire. The more generic you could answer a question, the better. Intended parents want to project themselves upon your DNA. Any kind of real personality is a turn-off. Bad girls need not apply. And then came the hormones... ouch.
Somehow I made the cut, and there is a kid out there somewhere I have no ability to contact. It didn't hit me until I called them and asked if there was a birth. "Yes" is all they told me. Sometimes strangers and acquaintances ask me if I have kids. I want to tell them "yes". But "yes" is all I'd be able to say. I wouldn't be able to answer if it were a boy or a girl, or how old, or what's their name, or when their birthday is--just a vague and bewildering "yes".
I don't even remember what I spent the money on. Debt, dresses and nice dinners probably. I'd give you $10,000 this very second for the chance to meet my kid. Biggest oops of my life.