Sunday, April 30, 2006

Studies related to DI

Within the last week there was a post to the DonorMisconception Yahoo Group regarding a comment made by a member of a British research team that had recently published a study dealing with the psychological impact on kids conceived via DC. The study itself was one comparing DE kids to DI kids in their psychological development. The post actually centered on the readers reaction to a commentary piece written by one of the researchers of that study. The researcher had concluded her commentary with a statement that "these non-disclosing families are producing well-adjusted adolescents shows that there is more to parenting than sharing information about genetic origins". The reader was concerned that the researcher was ignoring the importance of honesty in disclosing to the DI kids their origins etc.

I have brought this all up not to discuss the merits of disclosure of not but rather because it brought me back to my desire to find a study dealing with assessing the psychological assessment of how individuals changing ages and maturity affect their views of their conception via DI or DE. I find many studies (most somewhat stale) dealing with parental views of disclosure (a, b), studies dealing with parents of young school age kids, and studies dealing with adult views but few if any looking at the topic on a truly long range scale. The Sperm bank of California appears to be headed in the right direction regarding such a long range study. I found each of these links just by "Googling" the terms "Studies" and "Donor Insemination".

It seems to me that disclosing early leads to well adjusted kids during their early years and into adolescence but after that there is no little statistically significant research out there taking the question to those middle years between adolescence through young adulthood. I have opined before that I believe most people's views change at each point in their life where identity issues abound and it appears that the views developed at young adulthood can have the most profound effect on lifetime views.

The British DC Network has a great video titled "A Different Story" where several DI conceived kids and adolescents comment how DI has not adversely affected their views of who they are and all seems like well adjusted kids anybody would be happy to claim as their own kids. I truly hope the DC Network follow these kids and ask their views again when they each hit their early to mid 20s and that they find the same reactions.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

He Looks Just Like You

This topic is not a new one for me. Where it used to hurt me and serve as a reminder of my pain now I just smile and take it as a compliment.

Now that we moved to a new apartment I am commuting daily with my son to his old neighborhood school so he can finish the year with his friends. Today we got to the street his school is on a bit early so we stopped for a bagel (me) and a sprinkle donut (him). [Don't tell my wife]. Anyhow while sitting on a street bench a woman stopped to say how my son looks just like me. My son asked me what she said and I told him.

He just smiled and I smiled. I love him so much and he really is a great kid. So if someone tells me he looks like me I am now content and happy because it must be mean I am being a good daddy.

Note: It probably did not hurt that we were both wearing baseball style caps in the same manner.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Being Public

I was asked today why would I be public as to our using DI and putting my name out there via interviews, this blog, and various online discussion groups and bulletin boards. The simple answer is education.

My goals at this point are to educate others that while there may be parties disagreeing as to the use of DI the issue should not be hidden in the closet perpetuating the stigmas attached leading to embarrassment and pain to all parties involved. Years ago the issue of adoption was an unspoken topic which brought shame to the adopting families and the adopted individuals themselves. Today adoption is no longer addressed in whispers and is seen as a viable, socially acceptable alternative to families wishing to have children.

By being public I hope to move DI forward such that the public can accept DI as it has accepted adoption. Yes there are many issues to discuss (and perhaps disagree with) but without bringing the issue into the public eye no discussions can take place.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Slight Blog Hiatus - Apartment Moving

During the next ten to twelve days posts to this blog will be quite infrequent if at all. We are moving and the move date was accelerated due to possible building worker's strike here in NYC so our packing has been accelerated and my access to a PC will be limited if at all.

So if you don't see me writing I wish you Chag Sameach re Passover, a Good Friday and a Happy Easter or whatever other holidays I may have missed.


DI Dads Speak Out

I have created but have not activated a new Blog titled DI Dads Speak Out. The idea is to invite a number of the Yahoo Discussion Group DI Dads to put another public face on our side of the story. Yes this might dilute my own readership and yes there are two other TTC DI blogs currently out there but this would present multiple opinions at once that might interesting to see.

The long term goal is turn the posts into a book that could perhaps help other Dads who don't use the Internet or would want something to refer to at their leisure without turning on their PCs.

I am unsure if I will activate the ability for viewers to leave comments and am leaning strongly against as this is a forum to present views not debate them. I am not looking for these men to be badgered as many comments seem to be used.

I was not sure how the group would react. So far a few of the Yahoo DI Dads are interested. I am not sure how the rest of the group feels about the idea. Given that they each can be posted under psuedonyms I think at least a few more will join in who otherwise would not go public. The idea is that I would occasionally present a topic and then perhaps three (3) members would each draft their views independently which I would post simultaneously for viewers to see the similarities and differences of opinion.

I am thinking that posts would only be added on a weekly basis so as to not overload anyone and to give this version of a multi contributor blog time to grow.

Good idea or bad?

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

More Multi Dad Blogging Sites

In addition to DadBloggers (which I have begun contributing to - see post of a few days ago) the following is a list of other multiple dad blogging sites ( I found on the DadBloggers site) where the viewer can read posts from many dads all at one convenient web address:

Monday, April 03, 2006

The Role of Fatherhood Part 2 - Choices

There is a message thread currently on the Yahoo Group SpermDonors that started after the 60 Minutes DSR segment. The thread's discussion has touched on the obligations of a bio father vs that of the choice to be a dad by the social fathers.

As a social father who was there (1) for the choice of donor (actuallly I chose him) , (2) for the inseminations, (3) the entire pregnancy [& all that entails] and (4) for their birth I feel my role is more than a choice. It is a committment to the children, to my wife, to the world and to the donor that I raise these kids [as my own]. My name is on their birth certs which gives me equal custody and decision making capabilities. It also obligates me as much as any bio dad. Except for [their] blood [which matches mine in type] these are my children and I recognize and acknowledge all the resposibilities that go with it. If I had met my wife after she had these kids perhaps it would be more of a social choice. But based on my fact pattern I am their dad [by more than simply choice] as are any other men whose facts match.

As a result I feel all of the obligations of a bio father are mine and nothing less. And yes I acknowledge that if a marriage were to dissolve between a married couple (bio mom, DI dad) that the social dad should be liable for child support as to do otherwise would signify a lack of commitment to the child and a lack of respect for the former spouse.

To recap the point being made in some of the thread responses is simply that social DI dads who choose to enter this method of conception are choosing to love and raise these kids. Yes, I agree but once the choice is made it requires an acknowledgemenmt of a lifetime obligation.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

DSR Passes 2000 Matches

The Donor Sibling Registry this weekend officially made its 2oooth match between genetic half siblings and/or siblings to donor. This is quite a milestone. When we registered during the Summer of 2005 the matches were at less than half that amount, somewhere around 900. Simply amazing!