One Sperm Donor, 150 Sons and Daughters – NYTimes.com

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One Sperm Donor, 150 Sons and Daughters – NYTimes.com.

“Cynthia Daily and her partner used a sperm donor to conceive a baby seven years ago, and they hoped that one day their son would get to know some of his half siblings — an extended family of sorts for modern times.

So Ms. Daily searched a Web-based registry for other children fathered by the same donor and helped to create an online group to track them. Over the years, she watched the number of children in her son’s group grow.

And grow.

Today there are 150 children, all conceived with sperm from one donor, in this group of half siblings, and more are on the way. “It’s wild when we see them all together — they all look alike,” said Ms. Daily, 48, a social worker in the Washington area who sometimes vacations with other families in her son’s group.

Now, there is growing concern among parents, donors and medical experts about potential negative consequences of having so many children fathered by the same donors, including the possibility that genes for rare diseases could be spread more widely through the population. Some experts are even calling attention to the increased odds of accidental incest between half sisters and half brothers, who often live close to one another.

“My daughter knows her donor’s number for this very reason,” said the mother of a teenager conceived via sperm donation in California who asked that her name be withheld to protect her daughter’s privacy. “She’s been in school with numerous kids who were born through donors. She’s had crushes on boys who are donor children. It’s become part of sex education” for her.

Critics say that fertility clinics and sperm banks are earning huge profits by allowing too many children to be conceived with sperm from popular donors, and that families should be given more information on the health of donors and the children conceived with their sperm. They are also calling for legal limits on the number of children conceived using the same donor’s sperm and a re-examination of the anonymity that cloaks many donors.”

What kind of world do we live in that these are our problems??

What moral compass do we keep to allow things like this to happen??

How has this even become an “industry”, and how has it grown to this?

 

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5 thoughts on “One Sperm Donor, 150 Sons and Daughters – NYTimes.com

    missbartleby said:
    September 6, 2011 at 02:08

    The problem with one guy being the bio-dad of 150 children is that the sperm bank distributed his genes way to casually. In fact, with 150 children (!?), I think they didn’t even consider the impact the number of bio half-siblings would have on the kids. Therefore, there should be legal limits on the number of children conceived from the donor’s sperm.

    Except for this case where one donor had 150 bio kids, I don’t think artificial insemination and sperm banks are unethical. We have problems like these because science gave people more options. (It’s also not unique to our century. The first credible artificial insemination was in 1884.) Lesbian couples and single moms can have a family without a man involved. In a way, it’s like adoption or paying a surrogate, but the clients are actually giving birth to their own child. Sperm donation will continue to be an industry as long as the technology is legal, regardless of whether some think it’s right or wrong.

    Lacy de la Garza responded:
    September 6, 2011 at 02:43

    I definitely agree they were way too forthcoming with the sperm from one single donor…… but I disagree that artificial insemination and sperm banks are not unethical. I think they are unethical. They strip the life-giving purpose of the procreative act from the act itself, infringing the child’s right to be born of a father and mother known to him and bound to each other by marriage and they betray the spouses’ right to become a father and a mother only through each other.

      missbartleby said:
      September 6, 2011 at 03:28

      How about lesbian couples and single moms who want to start a family? They need a way to have children of their own. Also, in 2007, 4 out of 10 children are born out of wedlock, most are between cohabiting couples. Therefore the traditional married couple having a kid is no longer an expectation — just an option. The law can’t mandate that the child must have the right to a married heterosexual, but he will always have the right to a family/guardian.

        Lacy de la Garza responded:
        September 6, 2011 at 10:48

        Just because it is so, doesn’t mean it is right, or even ideal. The right I speak of, for a child has to be born of a father and mother known to him and bound to each other by marriage are not rights given by the government, is a right given by God that cannot and should not be taken away by anyone.

        Lesbian couples, gay couples, and single moms who want to start a family are not in any way guaranteed any ‘right’ to do so. The term ‘rights’ is getting thrown around way too loosely these days, and an instance like this is a perfect example. They are not ‘entitled’ to have a family. Homosexual unions are a contradiction to the natural order of procreation. The incompleteness of their unions themselves do not allow for children to come into this world, meaning that any attempts otherwise are a direct contradiction to the natural order of the world. We don’t know what we are messing up when we alter that order, and we probably are well on our way to finding out.

        The traditional married couple having a kid may be, in your eyes, an ‘option’, but regardless of our opinions about it, it has been proven through hundreds upon hundreds of academically respected studies that the effects of growing up in a family that is not the traditional “mother-father-who-are-married-and-love-each-other” are far-spread and in all cases, less than ideal. Surely you would agree that having a single mother is in some cases necessary (death, divorce, abuse) but in no way ideal. I would imagine that every single single mother would agree with that, as well.

        Always having a right to a guardian is a wonderful stipulation for bringing children into the world, just as it is wonderful that this is taken care of naturally in the traditional household of mother, father, and marriage.

    Emily S. said:
    September 6, 2011 at 13:58

    Disgusting. Well, we reap what we sow. It is so obvious that artificial methods of fertilization are unethical and cause many problems, but we keep doing it.
    I’m curious to see if situations like this will be one of the factors that allows for the eventual legalization of incest. From there, it is only a short jump to extreme government control, in which people need “permission” to have children.

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