Saturday, March 14, 2020

Are my kids biological or adopted children under the US Census ?

I will likely report one child under the US Census as living with me. My Exwife reporting the other. She will be able to clearly indicate the child is biologically her child. What do I answer?

Clearly in the plain meaning of the word neither of my children is biologically my child. But are they adopted? One argument is that by using donor gametes it is a form of adoption. I can see that argument and I have even used the phrase that my then wife and I have half adopted our kids.

Under NYS law I am considered a natural parent to my kids based on my being married to her when the kids were born. But what is the US Census looking to measure? I doubt it's how many kids are donor conceived. Will mixing DC kids into this data set will it blur the purpose of the question? Probably not to any tangible degree.

Would my kids consider themselves adopted? At this point I don't think they do. Maybe they do. They have not indicated they do. Do I ? Not sure what I will do yet. I want to research the intent of the question.

Sent from my iPhone

Sunday, January 12, 2020

Not Stepping into This

Saw this on Twitter and became curious. The Fathers4Justice Group seems to be a group in the UK that promotes father’s rights. Not donor conception related but more legal divorce / separation related but with the goals that fathers have rights and kids should grow up with a dad in the picture. The Viva Sperm group appears from their Twitter page be associated with the concept of women having free access to sperm for creating families. 

Not stepping into that argument today.  But a sample of what shows up in my Twitter feed.  

I love my kids. I would fight to be in their lives.  My exwife and I together chose a donor and here we are years later. 

The issue above is whether single moms are denying their child access to living a life without a dad as part of it. The father in Cheryl case donated his sperm either altruistically or not, we don’t know, but chose to not be part of the life they may help to create.  I don’t think most donors have a true appreciation of what the resulting children and later adults will think about the conception stories. What these individuals will feel they are cut off from. They see the short game. They are simply either helping create a family or they needed the cash with no thought to the long view as to how it affects the individual created. 

I said I was not getting into the above but here I said two cents I did not expect to contribute. 

Sunday, December 29, 2019

Fears, Failure, Faith

Chanukkah 2019

This year, the last few years actually, we have seen an increase in bigotry and hatred in this country. In the last week there have been several antisemitic acts or attacks just in the NYC area. 

My children were each raised in my faith, Judaism, but between the divorce, their own issues, etc their connection to my faith, the faith of their donor, has drifted away. 

This year I lit the candles but for one night that their half sibling brother was in the apartment where he happily lit the candles even though he was not strictly raised in this faith. 

There are many fears that dads to donor insemination kids hold. Failure at being a dad teaching dad things is one of them. This is not strictly a DI related issue. But it's part of me and something I had hoped to pass on to my children, a love for the faith I grew up in and something that very much defines who I am as an individual.

This year it is more important that Jews don't disappear out of fear. We need to stand up and say here we are. Hate and bigotry have no space and must be confronted. The Chanukkah candles are more than a celebration of a miracle that happened in Israel long ago. They are an affirmation that what is right must be stood up for.

But here I am today feeling that I failed as a father, as a dad. My kids have a lot going on as we all do.  Religion brings us a faith to cling to. What I generally take from this season is that all people share a common love for principles of goodness. Put aside the commercialism. 

As a dad I try to be there. As a dad to donor insemination kids I try to parent by example and to guide them along the way. Tonight I am sad in that something this year was lost. Maybe not forever but as a parent that is how I feel tonight.  


Sent from my iPhone

Female Sperm Donor?

I will read this but I believe the Trans Man was born a woman. His non binary partner was born a woman. The female sperm donor was born a man I am betting.

Ok the article does not confirm my bet. Must be though. Very confusing. As long as the kid can grow up well adjusted and make its own decisions. The whole let the kid decide stuff I disagree with on some levels I must admit. But not debating any of that here.

Saturday, December 28, 2019

Not a Creature Was Stirring ..

Ok, it's no longer Christmas but it was the 6th night of Chanukkah and I gave three teenagers in my apt, my two plus their half sibling brother N.

As usual Z and J are fighting, amazingly i got all three to go the market with my cash as I have a broken ankle.

N flew in before Christmas and the trio have been at my ex-wife's apartment until yesterday. Z took N around Manhattan a bit. A mix of tourist spots and some teenage vintage wear shopping.

Three kids and a crutch bearing adult in a small apt is a bit too tight for five nights but we will make it work. N did light the menorah for Chanukkah upon my request. My two were disinterested or currently mad at me. I think he enjoyed doing so.

I am up early because I am and my ankle prevented any worthwhile sleep for any tangible amount of time. Wearing a two pound medical boot 24/7 is not helping.

More updates to come. I am hoping to get the annual hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil photo of these three but am thinking that is now at the long shot to not happening stage.

Sent from my iPhone

Monday, October 21, 2019

Your Dad is Still Your Dad ... But Not Always

Reading stories like this are tough. Most that I see involve scenarios like this one where the dad is gone and the individual learns later they are donor conceived. 

A few years back I had a fight with one of my kids. Not even sure which one. I got the "you're not even my real dad" line. The one I had been preparing myself for for years. I held firm and was fine but it still hurt. 

Reading this I felt this young woman's pain. But at the same time I understand her desire. Melissa Daniels know you're dad would understand if I may speak for him.

Part of this roller coaster ride is to be strong enough for our kids.  There may or may not be pain and awkwardness but the goal is to raise good people. The goal is to love them no matter what. Part of this journey is growing. Them and us. But our job as parents is to be there for them. That's how I look at all this.

Sent from my iPhone

Saturday, October 19, 2019

The US Needs A Sperm Donor Registry and Overall Industry Regulation

For many reasons this country needs increased regulation around the sperm donor industry. One of these regulations includes the need for a sperm donor registry.  A registry is needed for a number of reasons including to ensure that donors are not overused and to monitor and standardize screening methods and testing. For too long the government agencies that should monitor this industry, and is just that, have ceded self regulation to the ASRM which is nothing more in effect than an industry group, whose purpose is to lobby and ensure no outside regulation is enabled which would monitor the industry. 

Read the article. The Fox TV show Almost Family adds in its comedy and adult themes to attract viewers. It does touch upon many of the issues donor conceived individuals deal with. As it moves forward I am interested to see how it addresses the topics more in depth.

Sent from my iPhone

Male Infertility: What to Know and How to Cope - NYT Parenting

Generally a well laid out article addressing male infertility. The last section touches on "other options" when MFI is untreatable including adoption and donor sperm. However this section was extremely abbreviated and really only states it gives the individual some control. No discussion regarding what donor conception means to the individual created or the responsibilities of the parents using donor sperm to create their family. So much more could could have been said especially since this is as I understood it a Parenting column and not simply a baby creation column.