Another paper to be published in Human Reproduction:
“The experiences of adolescents and adults conceived by sperm donation:
Comparisons by age of disclosure and family type.”
This is another paper resulting from the joint research between the Donor
Sibling Registry and Cambridge University. Every time we have a paper published,
the media picks up on it and the results are debated and discussed publicly.
This is the only way to move the industry in the direction of more openness, and
better education and counseling for recipients and donors at the front door-
before they donate and decide to create their families via donor conception.
My understanding is that 90% of hetero-sexual couples still choose to never tell
their children that they are donor conceived. Then, years later, when the donor
offspring are told or find out by mistake (happens all the time), many feel hurt
as well as a sense of betrayal. Also, many single moms and lesbian couples
negate the importance of honoring a child’s curiosity, and minimize the donation
as only a “piece of genetic material”, not realizing that child may view this
“piece of genetic material” as one half of their genetic and ancestral identity.
As a society we know that family secrets are toxic. It is time that the egg and
sperm donation industry starts considering the rights of the child to be born,
and setting policy based on those rights, instead of only focusing on
pregnancies and their bottom line profit.