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On the Mumsnet Donor Conception forum, you can discuss sperm and egg donation with people in the same situation.

Donor conception

Secret donor baby

16 replies

Carlyghill · 25/10/2019 20:28

Hi newbie here joined for advice
I’m looking at sperm donation to have another baby after a long gap, I have found a donor and the dates are set to go ahead this month
I feel like I’m getting cold feet which I presume is normal but the main thing that is causing doubts

  • my family are strongly against donor/surrogate/adoption and they have no idea I am going down this route. I’m not sure what I will tell them yet but I can’t be honest with them and this worries me for the baby’s future. I’m not ashamed but I’m disappointed it has come to this that I haven’t found the one and I’m fulfilling my dream by having a strangers baby. The baby will never have a father and they may hate me for it one day. I have no problem explaining to the baby one day that a kind man helped me have them but my older children may grow to resent me for purposely having a baby without support or feel they weren’t enough.

What would you do? Are these normal fears that will go when the baby comes? What would you tell your family if you were me?
OP posts:
CardinalCat · 25/10/2019 20:30

Probably not what you want to hear, but your gut is trying to tell you something. I think you should listen to it and at the very least postpone while you explore your thoughts about what is troubling you about your plan.

Haworthia · 25/10/2019 20:32

You have older children? In that case I don’t quite understand why you want to have a baby with donor sperm.

Haffdonga · 25/10/2019 20:37

How will you explain your pregnancy to your parents? Would they be more comfortable with the idea of you having one night stands with unknown men than carefully planned donation?

Carlyghill · 25/10/2019 20:50

Why shouldn’t I have another child because I have 2 already? I can afford another by myself and I have coped as a single parent to this point. I have wanted another for 5 years but as I have never met anyone it wasn’t possible, I told myself if I get to mid 30s and I still haven’t settled down that I’ll consider sperm donation. I would deeply regret never having another. I have no idea what my family will assume or what I would tell them if asked but I know they will take it very badly if I’m honest. I don’t feel happy with letting their opinion stop me from having a longed for baby.

OP posts:
Haffdonga · 25/10/2019 22:04

I don’t feel happy with letting their opinion stop me from having a longed for baby.

There's your answer then. Take your own advice, don't let it stop you and tell the truth.

LisaNix · 25/10/2019 23:23

Go for it your life your body, I'd lie if my parents were against it. I'd eventually tell the truth what can they say they arealdy have pure innocent love for the child with no tainted feelings. Or you could just straight out tell the truth. Your older kids probably won't resent you kids bounce back pretty easily. Don't live on what ifs otherwise you'll never do anything xx

Quitedrab · 25/10/2019 23:29

If it was me, I would tell them the truth. Keeping it secret makes it seem as if it's shameful. It should be open from the start, as if it's not.

Cynara · 25/10/2019 23:34

I'd o it if if was my only chance to have a child, but as you have older children already I'm not sure that going ahead when you're having doubts is the best idea. It would be adding complications to their lives that they don't need. Maybe you could stop for now and weigh up your options. You're hesitant for a reason, listen to your instinct.

Gingerkittykat · 26/10/2019 00:02

If you are going to do this you are going to have to tell the truth to everyone, including your parents. Tangling yourself up in lies will only backfire.

Persipan · 26/10/2019 09:50

I have zero issues with donor conception (I'm a single woman currently 16 weeks pregnant after double-donor IVF) but I think you're going to need to get your head around what you're planning to tell people.

The thinking nowadays on what's best for donor-conceived children is that ideally they should know about their origins from a very early age; so early that they never have some big revelatory moment but have just always known (in an age-appropriate way) about being donor conceived. In practice, this means that other people close to you are going to end up knowing something about the situation, too - not that you'll necessarily want or need to tell absolutely everyone, but it's probably going to come up from time to time. As a minimum, I would suggest you might want to tell family something along the lines of "I decided to have another baby and I'm very happy about it".

This is an area where it sounds as though people close to you are likely to have (and vocally express) strong opinions about your decisions, so I would really recommend working through your feelings on the issues involved before you proceed. You could look at getting some counselling from someone specialising in fertility matters; also you might find the Donor Conception Network really helpful.

In terms of your older children, are they old enough to have a conversation with about possibly having another sibling? Would you be swayed by their opinions? It sounds as though you have worries about how they might feel, so I guess I'm wondering whether it makes sense to explore that with them to help inform your thinking.

One other thing I would note is that, if you're planning on using a donor through an informal arrangement (i.e. outside a clinic), this can be legally very complicated. Many people have conceived in this way and it can work really well, but I would always advise caution as it can be a real minefield. So, make sure you do your homework!

Best of luck, whatever you decide.

Carlyghill · 26/10/2019 10:06

Thanks everyone appreciate the advice
I’m not having doubts as in wondering if I should or shouldn’t I’m 100% in it to the end, it’s the conception story that scares me. My children know I’d like another baby and always ask for a new brother or sister so I know they will be ok. If my family are unsupportive I think I will struggle, as a single mum I won’t have anyone to help me already so them being on side is important to me. I’ll take your advice and think it through more as I definitely don’t want the baby feeling like a dirty secret.

OP posts:
atlanticblueandgreen · 26/10/2019 10:07

Personally, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with holding back. Things can be private without being secret.

Iliada · 26/10/2019 20:01

Look, it’s vital the kid knows their origins, but it’s up to you what you tell your parents. I mean, it’s not their business at all. I know people who have just told everyone that they are never going into where the other half of the DNA came from, and leave it at that. I mean, how much do parents ever really want to know about how sperm got inside their daughter? And if your kid tells them what you’ve said later, we’ll... to hell with it.

I mean, you either either want this baby or you don’t. That’s your choice and nobody else’s. And your other kids will get over it. Most people eventually get over their initial horror at having a sibling! But it’s not their choice either. Your baby, your life, your rules.

Unoboozetrez · 29/10/2019 13:38

Your fears and concerns are ‘normal’. (Hate that word!)

If you’re thinking of keeping the donor thing a secret, it gets tricky when medical appointments for you and the child whether together or separate, schools, nurseries etc are attended and you get questioned about family history.

We have always been honest with everyone from the outset and got a lot of backlash from my husbands side (If you’re having to go down THAT route then you’re not meant to have children Hmm)

I always see the positive in everything so try to take it that actually, this is how much the child was wanted.

Aunaturalmama · 06/11/2019 14:19

I would for sure have a baby through egg donation if I was single and getting to that age! And I have 3 children lol if you can afford it and want another do not let others opinions make your choice for you. If your family is that awful they wouldn’t help you out due to situation then they are total rubbish

Aunaturalmama · 06/11/2019 14:21

For my family the egg donation would be welcomed when the alternative is a one night stand. How else would you tell them you’re pregnant? Either a random or a tested sperm sample.

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