Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Would I ever donate?

Would I ever donate?

Quite simply - NO!
Although I must admit that during a time before my views changed dramatically (eg the birth of my first child), I did seriously consider it. I don't know why, but maybe I thought I could help other couples who were infertile in an altruistic fashion. I am so glad I never followed through with this.
The reasons are numerous.
Even if I had stated that I wished to be a known contactable donor, there is no guarantee that the child would even be told about their origins by his/her raising parents. While this is in itself fundamentally wrong, it also takes away the right of the child to know their genetic relations. I believe that every child has a right to know who their father is and this is a concept that is also supported by the United Nations Convention of the Rights of the Child. Even if this child was told of their conception, was aware who I was and did have contact with me, I would not be able to help feeling as though it was a child that I had adopted out and that it was a child that I had lost. I think now being a father that this would break my heart.
By taking away their genetic father, it removes their sense of "place". Donated children frequently remark on how they seem to not quite fit in the family picture.
I could not deprive this child and my own children the right to know who their siblings are. Not only that but they all should have the right to grow up together, not separated. They are brothers and sisters, not cousins or some other more distant relation.
Not only should all children know who their genetic parents are, but I also believe (being a father myself) that all parents should know, love and nurture all of the children that are unmistakeningly connected to them. Adopting out your gametes deprives not only the child but yourself.
I do not want to perpetuate and support an industry and a practice that intentionally removes the childs genetic relations, family health history and heritage.
Finally, I do not want others to have to experience what I have, and am currently going through.

4 comments:

Joy said...

Curious,

do you think "donation" crossed your mind as a way of connecting to your father?

Just curious, because I have never known a man who considered donation. Obviously it would be more on your mind than others.

damianhadams said...

Hi Joy,

I don't think that by doing something he did as a means of "connecting" with him ever entered my mind.

I think it had to do with more of my views of the time in which I thought that donation was a good means of helping infertile couples have children. At that stage I hadn't fully explored the child-father relationship and genetic connectedness thing and all that it meant until after I had my own children.

I now feel that I repressed a deeper thought and investigation into what donation really meant in terms of families and my own situation. It's not a nice realistion when the light switch is turned on in your head that you've been dealt a dud hand. If you don't think about it that way then you can go on living the nice dream that everything is OK.

Joy said...

Ok confession here,

really gross confession here.

Not too long after I met my birth mother, I flirted the idea with gestational surrogacy.

I had this vague sense that, if I could do something like that, I wouldn't have to be grateful anymore, I would have paid some karmic debt off.


I actually remember talking to the Beverly Hills Surrogacy center and telling them that I thought I would be a good candidate because as an adoptee, (What I was out of my mind and desperate for a way to feel ok,god just shoot me?)I understood the need of infertile people.

I actually asked my birth mother what she thought about the idea, and she said something like, I don't care if they give you 250000000 dollars, that's too cheap, there is a not a dollar amount high enough.

And I didn't but on some level when I look back at that dodged bullet I wonder, was I thinking I could pay my debt to the infertiles of the world, and was I trying to understand what my birth mother went through?

damianhadams said...

joy,

that's a really good comment because it reminds me of one way I used to feel. And that is that I used to have the sense of gratitude (why I don't know - perhaps I was just trying to fool myself and feel good about it), and was thinking about "giving back" to the system that created me. Maybe as you said, a debt.
It's amazing how your situation and what other people imprint on you can create certain perceptions.