Saturday, February 09, 2008

Reactions to Yesterday’s Oprah Episode Regarding Donor Insemination

Overall my reaction to this Oprah show episode is that we need to engage Dr. Matthew Niedner as a face and voice to promote donor conception reformation and regulation. The former donor very eloquently spoke that the industry is still the “wild, wild west “and needs to be regulated. Wendy Kramer pointed out in support that there are a number of donor listings on the Donor Sibling Registry that by the sheer number of half siblings proves that point.

Overall the most moving segments of the show involved the video meeting of Stacey Smedley and Chris her half sibling. These two could have been twins and watching the video of them not being able to take their eyes off each other was amazing.

The segment with the live and video interviews of the adult donor offspring (Kristina, Susan, Kathleen and Katrina) was moving but for me nothing new as each of their stories (or stories like theirs) I had heard before. I don’t say that to belittle what they said at all but after two and a half years I am fully cognizant of the range of emotions each of these woman have. It is these emotions that keep me blogging (albeit not as often) as my children may go through each of these emotions. Two of these women knew from very early on their conception story just as my children do.

When I went to the Oprah website this evening I saw two or three discussion threads in reaction to the show. One was 76 comments in length and another 4 comments in length when I visited the site. I started to draft a comment but it got lost when I disabled my pop up blocker. I was reacting to a single comment about where were the dads like me to the guests who had dads like me. The truth is the story is about the donor conceived individuals themselves and the donors. Yes we dads have our own story but I don’t see Oprah doing a show on us dads anytime soon. The story should always be about the individuals created in this unregulated system and how these individuals cope and process the story of their creation.

All in all there was not to much new for me to learn by this episode. For someone brand new to the topic I think it was worthwhile. I think the biggest positive was it was not sensationalistic, its brings the issue back into the public eye, and the number of visitors to the Donor Sibling Registry will again spike tonight leading to many more matches of half siblings and perhaps a few donors to offspring who desire such connections be found.

Wendy, Ryan – You both looked great. My regards to both of you!

And yes I checked our donor # on the DSR and it’s still just my two kids and “T” their half sibling.

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