Sperm donor check list...
Holly0095 · 25/08/2018 12:35
Hi all, sorry still new to this so don't always nowhere to post, hopefully this is the right place!
I've been looking into using a sperm donor, as I'm committed now to doing it on my own I don't want or need the hassle of a partner anymore. ( please don't judge my choices)
My question is....what are the main things to look for and ask about? I've covered the basic questions with him but just making sure I haven't missed any thing out from my list of queries.....
We've been talking for years now and this is something he is happy doing for me, and has done for many same sex couples and single women.
I've got a contract drawn up, and have had tests done, will get an updated one again this year.... but have I missed anything?
Thank you :)
Persipan · 25/08/2018 16:04
Were you planning to have treatment in a clinic setting, or were you intending to do something less formal?
Holly0095 · 25/08/2018 17:51
Due to cost I was going down the less formal route, hence why I want to make sure I have everything organised:)
I've messaged a lot of the lady's he has helped and heard nothing but good things, I unfortunately had to sift through quite a lot of dodgy ones
Persipan · 25/08/2018 18:21
So, in that case I'd say check the legal situation very carefully. My understanding is that, irrespective of any documents the two of you may sign, legally he'd be considered your child's father if you conceive outside a clinic setting.
I'm also always a little wary of men who have made a lot of donations privately - there can be large numbers of half-siblings which could have both practical and emotional consequences for your child. Your choice, but something to consider.
Holly0095 · 25/08/2018 19:01
All very good points and ones I have already thought about many times, he's not donated massively as in 1000s of kids I'd say around the 10-15 mark ish I suppose, I might be wrong could be slightly less, he's the most respectful one I've found in a while 😅
Carajillo · 07/09/2018 09:15
Persipan raises really important points when using a known donor. You really don't know much about him nor really how many children he has created and donors do lie sadly. 10 to 15 half siblings is quite a lot for a child to deal with potentially. It is good that you have sought legal advice and had a lawyer advise you on a contract. However as you know, that is not legally binding so you do need to proceed carefully. You may also want to consider a situation where your child wants to see their dad more often then he wants or vice versa. I really recommend joining or talking to the Donor Conception Network who have other solo mums who have children using known donors and who would be happy to talk to you. Have a look at Natalie Gamble's website. Certainly there can be many positives for a child to know who their dad is from early on! Best of luck. C x
Carajillo · 07/09/2018 09:16
Also, do you know that he doesn't have any STDs, genetic issues etc? The advantage of going through a clinic is that this would be tested.
silverbrooke · 12/09/2018 14:43
Congrats on deciding to make the jump! A few things to think about when not using donor bank sperm. Take them or leave them depending on what level of acceptable risk you are comfortable with for your family.
- Infectious disease and genetics screening-
STI's to look for: CMV, HIV, HTLV 1&2, Hepatitis A/B/C (A is common so if his IgM is negative that means he probably had the vaccination), Syphilis, chlamydia, gonorrhoea, trichomonas vaginalis. These are all standard, but do be aware it can sometimes take a few months for some things to show up on screenings, so make sure he's been regularly tested so you aren't getting false negatives.
Genetics Stuff: The big ones are going to be Cystic Fibrosis, Spinal Muscular Atrophy (if caucasian), his blood type and doing a chromosome karotype to see if all those are normal. Other ethnic backgrounds have diseases that are more common in their demographics. I did the Counsyl carrier screening to see what I carried. You may want to think about getting some screening here at least for yourself - if you don't carry anything, then at worst a child would just be a carrier if your donor was a carrier too.
-Check his motives-
A lot of men are altruistic, but like you said there are some sleaze bums who use forums as a method to get free unprotected sex from women TTC. Others might not tell their wives that they are 'donating'. Sometimes they go off the grid and can disappear, leaving you the hopeful parent unable to obtain more samples if you fail to fall pregnant. You also can't be sure if he's sticking to the HFEA guidance of 10 families. Just make sure you are happy with his reasons, and have enough time to get to know his personality. You don't want him to not be there if you get pregnant, and three years down the road want a full sibling and he's out of sight, out of mind.
Just because he's achieved pregnancies doesn't mean his sperm is optimal. Men go through sperm cycles - it takes about 3 months for sperm to mature and be able to do their job. You could be catching him in a 'trough' rather than a 'peak'...most frozen samples are going to have more than 20 million total motile cells per mL, as this is where the science shows an observable plateau in fertility rates. Low sperm count is
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