Friday, November 24, 2017

Watching Generation Cryo

my 13 year old daughter is as I type this watching the first episode of Generation Cryo the five part documentary that aired on MTV co produced by the DSR. 

So this week Z (13 years old) had been in contact with M (14 years old) her only known female half sibling who lives in MD. Both are interested in searching for their donor. I have also been texting with M's mom re what is going on. I have also text with N's mom out in CO. N (15 years old) is the only know male half sibling. He is excited as well and has always wanted a dad.  Both M and N are in single mom households. 

For the record, J, my 15 year old son, does not care and has even said he thinks we should respect the donor's privacy and not search for him. 

Z this morning asked if I was upset that I do not have any biological children.  I told her in the beginning I was upset but that was 9 years before she was born. By the time she was born I had accepted this fact. I told her we tried using IVF with ICSI using my sperm but no baby resulted. Embryos yes but which did not take. 

I told her from the moment I saw her she was my daughter and the only daughter I could ever imagine or want. So no I am not upset this is my kid. Blood or not. 

As I said she is watching episode one we will see what questions result from it. 

Saturday, November 18, 2017

And so it begins...

Daughter again told me tonight she wants to meet her donor. The kicker which freaked me out was she contacted her only known female half sibling whom we have visited with over the years and kept in touch with.  She contacted her via Instagram and I was unsure how public the half sib has been. Z has told her friends. Luckily she sent her message via a private DM message. 

The kids have all treated each as other as more distant cousins etc than direct siblings so Z reaching out was a surprise.  

I contacted the girls mom and she was happy that Z reached out as she did. We will see what develops here and what the girls even tell us. More as it occurs. 

As I said ...And so it begins. 

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Known Donors. Movie Spoiler Alert.

Spoiler Alert. Semi recent movie. Admit I watched it for the female protagonist. Did not expect the ending but should have seen it coming. Good cast. 

Known donors are generally in the news in court cases either arguing the donor has no place in the donor conceived's life or that they owe some sort of obligation. 

Tricky subject. In reality and in the movies. Was not focus of 97% of this movie but did play a role in hindsight for how the characters' lives played out. 

Next Morning After Telling Me

I posted this a few moments ago to the DI Dads Yahoo Group: 

I knew this day would come and I knew it would be second child, my 13 year old daughter. 

My daughter came to my apt last night after not being here for over a week due to school and some blips in my custody arrangement with her mom. I missed her a lot. Her brother stayed at his moms. 

Somehow I knew it would be Z that asked. She is the emotional of my two. He more theoretical. He knows his story. He knows I am his dad. Perhaps he wants to know also but does not want to tell me for fear of hurting me. I have told him such a request would never hurt me. 

So last night Z asked me and it became real. I am not hurt. Surprisingly so even after theoretically saying I would not be after all these years. I do have concerns I admit as any of us would have. 

If she never finds him what amount of disappointment will infuse itself into her life?
Will she come to resent our choice as a result of a long search?
Will she fantasize who he might be over glorifying him as an individual?

These questions and others are inevitably a mix of my thoughts for her and my own. I have spent the bulk of the last several years virtually ignoring this world, except for small steps back into it, while dealing with issues affecting my children and myself due to separating from their mom, and eventually divorcing. Our divorce was not related to the children's creation story in any form. 

Z innocently said it would be cool to know more. I will discuss with her mom letting the kids first read his written profile from the cryobank and then later hearing his voice on the CD we got from the bank. I have not read or listened to either in years. 

So now I will be turning to these issues for the first time directly in years. Some no longer in the theoretical sense. 

I say thanks to Eric J. and the other dads who told their stories here long ago when their kids were teens and older.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

My Daughter Wants to Meet her Donor

Out of the blue she states that thinks it would be cool to meet her donor. 

She said she knows I am her dad but she is curious. 

She said she spoke to her mom who told that she and I legally could not search as we signed papers that says we'd respect the donor's anonymity. 

I also learned that she and her brother and their mom did those ancestry Dan kits. Although I have not heard of anyone finding close relatives through that program.  I need to ask their mom about this. I will also look into the costs of 23 and me. 

And do it begins. Her older brother so far did not care but the 13 year old is curious. 

Thursday, November 02, 2017

Why I am here

Meaning this blog.  Not why I am here on earth. 

I guess it started as blogs did as a place mostly just for me to vent, to put things to paper as it was, regarding being a dad of two DI conceived kids. I was listening a few minutes ago to the You Will be Found lyrics from Dear Evan Hansen. I think it prompted me to write this today. I don't know if people still read blogs anymore to be honest. 

You Will Be Found. Pretty powerful lyrics. Song. 

I wrote this blog so people will not feel alone. Infertility is a very lonely place. Choosing donor conception is a big deal. Read my previous post. 

Our responsibilities as parents are so much deeper than we realize before we have our kids. What burdens we lay at their feet are our burdens. We certainly don't intend to do so but inevitably we do. Our job is to provide them the tools to take it all in. To process life. To help them in anyway we can and to take the burden from them as much as we can. 

I don't have all the answers. But at this point I am making sure I am prepared for all the questions. Why am I here?  To help you see that you are not alone. We can find the questions together. 

Facebook Group Discussions

We all have found that online discussions of anything often break down into heated discourses where both sides end up disgusted and exhausted. The following is a post I added to one discussion and then later as a stand alone post. I have not been here on this blog in a long time but thought it worth posting here. Can't say when I will post again but here is this:

In the years that I have been actively participating in the original yahoo groups and later here on Facebook I have understood that part of the issue that the post James wrote is simply that those individuals who are donor conceived just wish to voice their experiences and not be discounted. 

Yes some due to their experiences are advocates against the use of donor conception. Others want to offer their stories as a warning that parents can take into account when raising their kids. Others truly just need a venue to vent. 

The fact of the matter is I traded the pain of my infertility, the loss of ever having my own biological children, to have children via DI with my then wife not realizing that our children could feel a loss to knowing both of their biological parents, not just their mom who they have. 

We used DI not knowing the fear our children might have regarding hidden medical time bombs that might await them donated graciously for cash by their sperm donor. 

There any many donor conceived across the generations that are perfectly happy. No need to go further. The number of stories is as long as the number of individuals conceived using donor gametes. 

Both sides of this process have the right to their story and the right to feel a loss. No one should be discounted or feel they are being discounted just because someone else wants to tell their story. 

The level of negative vehemence this stirs up serves no purpose but to keep us from gaining true insight across the board.  

I truly ask everyone to try to step back before responding in this manner.