Emotional Support

Forums Sperm Donors Emotional Support

This topic contains 16 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of yfactor yfactor 4 years, 3 months ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 17 total)
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  • #2366
    Profile photo of ellssjay
    ellssjay
    Participant

    Hi. My boyfriend donated sperm to a very close friend last year who conceived a daughter, now 14 months, and is on his way to having a son. While my boyfriend is incredibly happy for his friend and his friend’s wife, it’s started to wear on him emotionally. His friend has started sending pictures of the girl to him everyday and has decided to name the boy after my boyfriend. The girl is beautiful and looks so much like my boyfriend that it’s uncanny. He can’t stop looking at them and it is taking a huge emotional toll. He’s majorly depressed, having terrible nightmares, not eating or sleeping. It’s killing him. I know this isn’t a something one gets over but I’d like to find some resources to help him cope. Can anyone here help him?

    • This topic was modified 4 years, 4 months ago by Profile photo of ellssjay ellssjay.
    #2368
    Profile photo of wmdoran
    wmdoran
    Participant

    @ellssjay Thanks for sharing. That is heart-breaking to read. To tell you about myself I am sperm ‘donor’ conceived. I found my father through my DNA. He sold his sperm for a decade. I likely have hundreds of siblings and have no way to contact. When I found my father the similarities were insane. Not just physical, but even my profession as an aviation engineer. I learned 5 generations of my family worked in aviation and engineering. I similarly am very naturally handy and driven, teaching myself everything I know. I share this to explain that the connection to a father and family/lineage is very important for the physical and emotional development of a child and through adulthood. It is something I lacked but now as an adult have been able to find some of my missing pieces. Unfortunately society will tell you that sperm is simply tissue or gametes or reproductive matter. It is so much more. Your boyfriend gave his children away and the pain/grief/depression is very real and probably similar to what I went through as the abandoned child. In this case your boyfriend is able to have contact with his children which is great. The scary thing is if he shares his feelings with his friends they will not understand and will likely resent him because they see these children as theirs and not his. This type of family structure is built on disillusionment that genetics don’t matter. In fact they matter very much. On paper these kids aren’t his but in reality they are. I’m not sure how he should approach talking to his friends, but I do think it’s important. It is vital to these children they know their father. It is also important their origins are not a secret. As they grow up they will want to reach out to your boyfriend, their father, because of their connection/similarities. This will likely cause his friend to become very angry/bitter/jealous and won’t be able to handle it. I am concerned for your boyfriend and these children. Please keep us updated and let us know if you have any specific questions and need for advice. Stories like this break my heart and also confirm the truth I know which is children are supposed to be created between a man/woman and raised by their genetic parents. It is the natural way of the world and how we develop as humans. Others will disagree and criticize your boyfriend and me for our feelings but they are delusional. Our feelings are valid. Thanks for reaching out and hope to hear back.

    #2370
    Profile photo of yfactor
    yfactor
    Participant

    Sending daily pictures to a friend sounds extreme, giving the boy the name of the donor too. It also doesn’t help in keeping a healthy distance, since they are their children in a social/legal way. Realizing this and making this clear is crucial. Being open about who the donor is to the children is also crucial. So that makes it more complex with helping people you know. While certain things may help, such as talking to certain people (close friends, professionals), first thing to do I would think is reducing damage. To stop daily pictures and to make sure the boy gets another name seem obvious to me. A healthy distance has to be restored ASAP. (To @wmdoran: while I disagree with the idea that kids having to be raised by their genetic parents, I do believe the children should know the truth and be able to have contact with their donor.)

    #2371
    Profile photo of wmdoran
    wmdoran
    Participant

    @yfactor Saying that sharing pictures can cause emotional damage goes to show that the connection between genetic parents and children is natural and strong. Children are meant to be raised by their real parents. This is a perfect example of the natural development and connection between a father and his offspring. By disassociating via name change and cutting off communication you are just creating an illusion that it doesn’t matter. Put them together and it does matter. That attitude is robbing the child and father from a relationship and natural identity. Every child/father deserves to have that identity with one another and have a connection and should not be decided by another person. Unfortunately, this father believed what the world told him which is it is altruistic to give someone sperm to ‘create a family’. He is now realizing the reality and needs support. I imagine if you have a heart and had opportunities to know your children you would feel the same connection and attraction. It is common for fathers who easily disassociate themselves from their offspring to be very narcissistic which explains the lack of empathy.

    #2372
    Profile photo of yfactor
    yfactor
    Participant

    I’m not in favor of anything extreme in this matter. Being too close causes damage to the donor in this case, but would probably cause problems for the new family too. I’m not suggesting to cut off communication at all, but to reduce it now to prevent it from being broken. Also not all donor conceived want contact with their donor (I’m not interested in having contact with the guy who helped my parents). Donor conceived should have a choice, which requires being open to what they want in the future. As donor I’m open for contact, but I let them decide to invite me into their lives or not. Causing problems in the relation of a friend and forcing intensive contact is not in the interest of the children. How empathetic are you if you do that?

    #2373
    Profile photo of wmdoran
    wmdoran
    Participant

    You are coming from a place of belief that it is Ok to create children and families this way with third parties. I am coming from the place that it is damaging to everyone involved as @ellssjay has shared. Creating families this way is an illusion of family but there are consequences. The social parent in this case is not forcing pictures it sounds like he is just sharing without understanding the consequences. I agree if the father tells his friend how he feels the social parent may cut him off because he is the legal parent and can do so and will not understand te father’s natural desire to know his children given the ‘arrangement’. It is not uncommon for ‘donor’ conceived to react as you did by giving away your sperm. It helps you accept the practice and your existence. I think if you were honest deep down you are curious about your father and would benefit from knowing him, your siblings, and other unknown family.

    #2374
    Profile photo of yfactor
    yfactor
    Participant

    Yeah we come from different places. If the genetic father becomes a threat to the family, it’s logical he wants to protect it. However, this does not have to happen. Both are in a way the father, one social/legal and the other genetic. A donor conceived should not have to choose one of them, but should be raised by the social parents and free to have contact with the donor. The boyfriend of @ellssjay seems to have problems accepting the structure he helped to create, with hindsight it would have been better that he would have said no. But I tried to give a practical advise based on the facts as they are. @ellsjay, I hope it can be helpful. In my case I decided to become donor before I knew being DC myself, so your theory doesn’t hold for me. And if I’m honest, I just don’t have any longing to find out. Not all DC feel like you, not all feel like me. Just like non-DC we’re humans who differ from one another. While I do think about ‘my’ DC from time to time and hope the best for them, I am at peace with them having a choice yes/no to contact. As donor you have to able to accept both options. That’s what goes wrong here, with the donor getting too close.

    #2375
    Profile photo of wmdoran
    wmdoran
    Participant

    I guess I made wrong assumptions. Your profile says you found out at age 17 you were ‘donor’ conceived. Are you saying you ‘donated’ your sperm before 17? That doesn’t sound logical.

    The way you describe this process is damage control. Minimizing contact to minimize damage. It should make sense that something that is damaging if fully known is not good (i.e. Third party reproduction is bad/damaging). You say you are a ‘known donor’ but it sounds like that really isn’t the case. You have chosen to not be known unless you receive contact. You are unknown to them for most of their developmental/formative life and indefinitely if they choose to not take the risk to know you. Not only that but you may die before that age which would make knowing you impossible. They will likely feel as though you do not care to know them so why should they contact.

    Children develop best with their biological parents for many reasons (physical, emotional, health, ethnic heritge, traits, thinking/processing, etc). Most adoptees and ‘donor’ conceived struggle with many issues including identity, depression, alcohol/drug abuse, and even increased odds being in jail.

    #2376
    Profile photo of ellssjay
    ellssjay
    Participant

    Well, I didn’t really put this information out there to debate how children are conceived, I just wanted to know if there was a group out there that could help my boyfriend cope with what is a growingly complicated situation. Argruing is kind of pointless as she exists and the deed is committed; so it goes. More insight here: the pictures are now coming nearly ten times a day and they asked him a couple of months ago if he would participate in her life by helping them financially in a 33.3% split of costs. He obliged, as he doesn’t want her deprived of anything and thinks the world of his friend. Last week, my boyfriend received a panicked call from his friend asking him to send money for some unnamed crisis with the girl and he did. Two days later, his friend sent pictures of the girl and him at a very pricey theme park in Florida. My boyfriend feels tricked, betrayed, confused. And the pictures keep coming. Contractually, he was to donate and walk but now they’ve informally amended that agreement. He’s never met the girl, his biological child, but his friend stopped by my boyfriend’s parent’s home and had them meet her. It’s all so… odd.

    #2377
    Profile photo of yfactor
    yfactor
    Participant

    It’s not just odd, it’s insane. Your boyfriend is being used and lets it happen. But as girlfriend you’re also being affected, emotionally and now also financially. New kid is on the way, probably they expect a third of the costs covered for him too. You also have a right to say something about it. I think he needs to hear the truth: what’s happening and what is likely to happen if he doesn’t change what he does. He may need a support group later, but he needs a wake-up call now I believe.

    (At the age of 17 I decided it, heard about my DC background less than 2 weeks later, became donor at the age of 18. The profile makes clear they’re welcome if they want to contact. But to keep on topic here, better stop or move this discussion.)

    #2378
    Profile photo of wmdoran
    wmdoran
    Participant

    We did get a little off topic. Thanks for commenting back @ellssjay. I’m sorry to hear the stress you are facing as part of this dysfunction. My thoughts are either way the friendship is over. Each party has expectations that are not in line with the other’s. I think the original ‘agreement’ is out the window. Is any of it on paper? Keep all the texts and receipts for money. He should have his friends sign every money order check so there is a paper trail. If he can establish a case for earning parental rights he should buut needs records/evidence. Juststart a file and stay on top of records/texts/receipts. I think your BF needs to be honest with them about his feelings. When he does that is strategic and up to him. He may want to wait if he wants to build a case. If he wants to be financially responsible and emotionally invested in his children he needs to have a court grant him parental rights. His ‘friends’ are using him at the deepest level; using his children as bait for money. I am not surprised to hear this as it only confirms the danger of procreating this way. It is very fragile and your BF’s feelings are natural in an unnatural situation. Him swallowing his feelings because of the ‘agreement’ is not going to make things better for him just will be stuffing his feelings inside which will manifest in another form later negatively. I don’t imagine his friends allowing him parental rights so I’m guessing this is going to be messy either way. I’m sorry you’re going through this. I can only think at some point your story will be able to serve others in similar situations. Hang in there.

    #2379
    Profile photo of wmdoran
    wmdoran
    Participant

    @yfactor it sounds like as a minor you were influenced or heard about sperm ‘donation’, then shortly after hit with the reality of your existence/conception. 18 is a formative age developmentally. I could see your reaction to your news to proliferate yourself but in a more altruistic way than you had been made by being ‘open’. I’m just not buying that you decided as a minor to do this. That sounds more like self-justification. It seems like a reaction to your situation more than anything as a way of processing/dealing with the revelation made to you late in adoloescence. Sorry if my perspective pisses you off that is not my intention just what it sounds like to me and want to be honest if it means it can help.

    #2381
    Profile photo of yfactor
    yfactor
    Participant

    Building a case to obtain parental rights?!? Preparing for legal battle, probably a nasty one. Doesn’t sound like that’s what children need.

    Well you don’t know me @wmdoran. I made more long-term decisions when I was young, even at the end of primary school. Maybe that’s in my genes 🙂 I also wasn’t hit by the news and due to chronological order becoming spermdonor couldn’t be a reaction. In the past people believed total secrecy was best for the child, then known donors didn’t make sense. While I disagree with that idea, it wasn’t a lack of altruism.

    Preparing for a legal battle for a child that belongs to another family, that would be a lack of altruism. So @ellssjay, I hope your not suggesting your boyfriend to go into that direction.

    #2382
    Profile photo of wmdoran
    wmdoran
    Participant

    I’m offering @ellssjay an idea. It sounds like her boyfriend is interested in his children and their ‘friends’ are open to him being part of their lives. This is a pretty complicated situation, calling this man less than altruistic because he desires to be part of his children is reflective of a broken perspective of fatherhood on your part. Things aren’t as black/white and cold/medical/legal as you make is seem. Humanity is deeper than that surface stuff that our world wants to create, this guy has depth of heart. This guy isn’t hiding behind false altruism he is sensing his connection with his children and responding to it. He is a good man. If he is able to stick it out and be there for his kids, one day they will appreciate him not abandoning them.

    @ellssjay this stuff is always heated and everyone has different views/feelings. Hopefully we gave you some perspective between the two of us. I hope it works out. I don’t thinking preparing a case for parental rights is crazy, if that is what your boyfriend wants. Obviously it is only something done in the background privately in the case this all blows up and he and his kids are separated by the legal parents. These ‘friends’ may very well cut him off if he voices his desires or cuts off the financial/emotional support. It sounds like he wants to be a truly known father and not a distant unknown ‘donor’. My heart goes out to him and you. Let me know if I can do anything. You could also post in some of the groups on here for support.

    And then again, everything said here may not have much basis…we are in a chat forum and not involved in your lives. You have to do what you feel is right. Take care.

    #2383
    Profile photo of yfactor
    yfactor
    Participant

    @wmdoran, you have a wild imagination. I did never suggest he should have no contact, please read more carefully. I think he should have contact, in a healthy way. But I do oppose your idea of preparing for a legal battle, because how do you think that would affect children?
    That’s something which we can not predict with 100% certainty, but we should try to think about the interest of the children. It’s not only about what the adults want.

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