When Tim Gullicksen began donating to a sperm bank in , he never expected to meet his biological children. Or envisioned the kids hiking, playing pranks, and competing viciously over silly games they invented together. But this July, Tim will—as has now become an annual tradition—rent that van, fill it with food from Costco, and take the kids out to Bass Lake for a week. Some have been coming to Bass Lake for a decade. These tools have allowed many donor-conceived people to connect with their donors and donor siblings.
The Overlooked Emotions of Sperm Donation
Sperm donation - Wikipedia
The rise of consumer genetic tests—which allow people to connect with relatives they never knew they had, including some who never intended to be found in the first place—is forcing sperm donation clinics to confront the fact that it is now virtually impossible to guarantee anonymity to their clients. Instead, sites like 23andMe and Ancestry. That, clinics and outside experts say, has forced a reckoning for the industry. And in at least one case, a clinic has sought to draw a line in the sand, ordering a woman to cease and desist efforts to contact a long-ago donor she had identified after using 23andMe. Donor anonymity is also an issue for egg donors, but less so.
‘I thought – who will remember me?’: the man who fathered 200 children
Sperm donation is the provision by a man of his sperm with the intention that it be used in the artificial insemination or other 'fertility treatment' of a woman or women who are not his sexual partners in order that they may become pregnant by him. The man is known as a 'sperm donor' and the sperm he provides is known as 'donor sperm' because the intention is that the man will give up all legal rights to any child produced from his sperm, and will not be the legal father. However conception is achieved, the nature and course of the pregnancy will be the same as one achieved by sexual intercourse, and the sperm donor will be the biological father of every child born from his donations. Sperm donation enables a man to father a child for third-party women, and is therefore, categorized as a form of third party reproduction.
The process can look like a seamless way to create a family, and for many, it is. As simple a transaction as sperm donation can seem to be, though, some find it to be stressful or isolating—and because assisted reproductive technology is a relatively new, rapidly developing field, the social and emotional challenges that can arise between the participants in a sperm donation are, for many, uncharted. Even decades after these practices have become common and their intricacies should theoretically be common knowledge, many of those who opt for sperm donation are still consistently surprised by all the ways it can shape—in some cases straining and, in others, enhancing—family dynamics.