Q: Hi there, My partner and I have been together 8 years–our anniversary is this week– Yeah!!! Celebration time!!! We’re ready to start our family, and decided to go the “known donor” route so the child would be able to have some awareness of who their biological father is…
Here’s the problem: none of the men we’ve approached (and don’t misunderstand, they’ve all been pretty together, gay-positive men) have been able to “handle the idea”. They say things like “How could I handle having a child, but not really being a father”, or “I would feel too responsible to the child”. Geez, where are all the totally irresponsible men I dated before I figured out who I really am? They were only too happy to let ME worry about contraception back then.
Why have the rules changed now? Talk about irony. We spend half our fertile lives before we’re mature enough to know who we are and what we want trying NOT to get pregnant and the other half trying desperately trying to. Sometimes, life sucks!
Diva Says: First of all, I must congratulate you on considering such a large step in your relationship. And Happy Anniversary! It’s fabulous to see gay and lesbian couples taking seriously what the government, as yet, does not!
Now, to address your problem. You mentioned that the men you are coming to for help (sperm) are “together”… that might be your problem. You are comparing the men you are approaching with the men you dated… I’m assuming that you haven’t dated men for awhile, and have grown up a bit since then. Well, m’darlin, so have the men.
As odd as it seems, men also have biological clocks and desires to form families and have children of their own. The situation you are describing can be scary for men.. Thoughts run through their minds like “What if the woman I marry has a problem with the fact that I have a child somewhere out there that isn’t hers?” or “What if both women are killed in some freak accident… will I have to assume responsibility for the child?” or “What if someday I just can’t stand knowing that somewhere out there, there’s a person who’s half of who I am.. will I be able to find him or her?” You see my point?
As in any situation, good comes with bad. The good of knowing your sperm donor can come with the bad of emotional attachments and unwanted feelings of responsibility. Now, I don’t know what state you live in.. but in the state of California, there is a particular agency that has some stringent rules to help these problems be dealt with in ways that are beneficial to both the donor and the receivers. The donors.. mostly gay men, are only allowed to father three children through the agency. The donors have no rights, nor any responsibility towards the children.. but a year after the birth of the child, the agency will contact the receivers with the name and address of the donor to make a meeting possible. The donor will also be notified with the receivers name and address, thus making it possible for the donor to meet and form a relationship with the child if it is the wish of both parties. The child will also be able to meet his or her two other siblings if it is also the wish of all parties involved.
You may not live in California, but there are possibly similar agencies in your area. I suggest checking a few of them out. Knowledge isn’t impregnation. If you are not open to this suggestion, I recommend you continue your search, and possibly with another gay couple. Gay male couples have no way of having children of their own, and if you are willing to consider a shared parental relationship, it’s quite possible that you could find another couple and provide your child with that much more love and family.
I wish you both well and much happiness. However you choose to have a child, I know that it will be loved and cherished.