Tag Archives: Donor

Choosing Your Sperm Donor as an SMC

Michele Ottey - Fairfax CryoThis post was sponsored by Fairfax Cryobank

When someone is ready to start their family using donor sperm, they have many choices ahead of them.  It can be a fun, exciting, and empowering process to navigate. Choosing a sperm donor is incredibly personal and there is no one right way to get started.  When selecting a sperm donor, one is choosing fifty percent of the genetic contribution to their child, therefore my first recommendation is to work with a dependable Cryobank. With Fairfax Cryobank, the trusted source for donor sperm since 1986, our recipients can be confident that they will be choosing from the best tested donors and will be receiving the highest quality donor sperm. Knowing that, they can move on to finding the donor that meets their needs. 

When asked how to choose a sperm donor, I recommend asking yourself, “what do I admire and value in the … Continue reading

What’s in a Donor?

You never fully understand what goes into choosing a donor until you do it yourself! I had this glamorous idea in my mind that I would have a donor party. Assemble the people closest to me, have some wine, enjoy each others company, and look through donor profiles together. After I grieved the donor party idea, I realized I had to get to work to make decisions that would best fit my needs to conceive with. Funny thing is, I started the donor search out with this long list of criteria, almost like what I would expect to find in a partner. Some of it unrealistic honestly and unfortunately found that yielded no results. So I evaluated what was most important to me….

I started with tall, dark, and handsome! Initially I knew I wanted an African American donor who was tall (so I could give my child a fighting … Continue reading

Choosing a Sperm Donor — Decisions, Decisions, Decisions

mustache_bw-e1412031954409-794x1063What is it about my donor that made me pick him? How on earth do you choose a sperm donor?

The weight of this decision can feel very heavy and daunting and overwhelming and and and…. But just know, if you take the time and feel great about the choice you made, whichever donor you choose, it will be the right decision. This is not to say that you should write a handful of donor numbers on little pieces of paper and pick one out of a hat. I mean, you could, but that’s leaving a lot up to the universe, which is a-ok if that’s what you want to do. But I think as you weigh the different factors of what makes each donor who they are as people, a lot of the contenders fall away immediately, while others start to really shine. And once you’ve made the choice, … Continue reading

I Found My Anonymous Sperm Donor. Now What?

In November of 1999, my mother was artificially inseminated. Twenty years later to the exact date, I found my sperm donor.

On the evening of November 3, 2019, I was doing homework  when my mother messaged me. She said I had a DNA match on ancestry.com with someone that wasn’t related to her. I was confused. Then I realized: this was a relative on my donor’s side. I went to ancestry.com and looked at the match. It was a woman’s name, so it couldn’t have been my donor. However, it was a lead. I looked up her name and found her place of residence, her age, and her children. She was from the east coast, in her 70s, and she has 3 sons and 1 daughter. Based on her age, I assumed that she was a grandmother or great aunt.

I went to Spokeo.com for general information. There I found … Continue reading

A Letter to My Donor

Thank You noteDear Donor,

We’ve never met.  In fact, you have no idea of my specific existence, but I think about you a lot.  Sometimes on the subway I’ll see a youngish brown-haired man and wonder if we’re connected.  When an older gentleman or woman passes by, I think about your folks —what they’re like and if they have grandkids.  Other grandkids, that is.

See, I have a son, Isaiah, who’s two and a half, and you, my anonymous sperm donor, made him possible.  For that I thank you with all the gratitude I can summon now and forever.  That sounds like a corny love song lyric, I realize, but the sentiment is true.  I’m so deeply appreciative that something—a little extra cash? some desire to change the life of someone you’ve never met? an inexplicable nudge from the universe?—motivated you to head to a sperm bank some years ago.  With this … Continue reading

My Choices and My Son’s Choices

Smiling young boyI’ve been thinking a lot about this lately, in several different contexts. One significant example is the issues that arise out of the fact that we’ve started getting into more specific details about conception. It was a non-issue for my son to find out, or more accurately, have confirmed that the donor is his biological father, although I will admit that I haven’t emphasized that specific phrase. But I have mentioned it and also do talk at more length about the fact that the donor is the man who gave the sperm that fertilized my egg to create a baby.

I think kids take their cues from us on this sort of thing so I have tried hard to be very matter of fact about it all and present it as neutrally as possible, while still making it clear that I think a mom and kid family is terrific. And … Continue reading

Modern Family

Four young children hugging.Years ago, when I made the decision to become a Single Mother by Choice (SMC) and began perusing the profiles of dozens of potential sperm donors, I was clear about one thing: I planned to use an open donor. Like most people, I’d heard plenty of stories about adopted kids who yearned for details about their biological parents, and I wanted to make sure that if my child ever felt like one of those kids, she’d have the information she needed. An open donor is a sperm donor who is open to meeting the children whom his sperm produced, and when my daughter turns 18, she can contact the bank I used, and they will release contact information about her donor to her.

After I gave birth, there was an onslaught of media attention directed towards the Donor Sibling Registry (DSR). As the DSR website states, “the focus of the … Continue reading

Choosing My Donor

 How does one choose the other half of their child’s genetics? On what do you base that kind of decision? In a typical nuclear family, the other half of a child is chosen by love. You fall in love and want to produce a child that is half of each of you. Well…I didn’t fall in love yet. I didn’t get married yet. I just want a child. So what do I use to pick that genetic “other half”?

I can tell you it’s a stressful process. I “know”, in my mind, that no matter what sperm I choose, I will have the child I was meant to have. I “know” that whatever choice I make will be the perfect one. But I can’t convince my emotional side. I really thought I could take the emotion out of it. My rational side wins out a fair amount of the time, … Continue reading

My SMC Journey: First baby and me, then hubby makes 3!

If you had told me when I was 38 and picking a sperm donor that only a few years later I would not only have a healthy son, but also a wonderful husband and four stepchildren, I would have laughed you out of the room! That’s the stuff of Hallmark movies, not real life, right?

When I was young I wasn’t sure I wanted children, or even to get married. My family is quite old-fashioned, and I didn’t have any role models who were mothers and had careers. I saw how much the women in my family had sacrificed, and I was not interested in giving up my hopes and dreams. Even though I liked kids, I saw how much power the male breadwinners had, and vowed to always be able to support myself.

Fortunately I left my conservative Midwestern town for college, and got to see some more progressive … Continue reading

Questions to Ask a Sperm Bank

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