Posted by J - azoowho@gmail.com |

This month marks the one year anniversary of my first SA and our introduction to this frustrating world of infertility. Isn't it crazy how time flies when you are having...fun? :)

L and I, like most couples who make the decision to use a donor (sperm or egg), have spent a lot of time discussing, and often agonizing over, how much sharing with others we are going to do and with whom. We have decided that, for now, we are going to tell no one but the baby. We are going to try to be very open, in age appropriate ways, so that he knows exactly where he came from and hopefully, someday understands how much we wanted to bring him into the world, the miracle of technology and the wonderful gift our donor has given us, and the difficult choices we had to make to insure that it happened.

Our families know, with varying degrees of specificity, that we are having trouble conceiving and that we are getting medical assistance. We feel like that is probably enough detail for the time being but I also can't help but feel like we are keeping secrets. Conception is, obviously, a very private matter and if we were doing things the good ole fashioned way I wouldn't be telling my parents the details. "Hey Mom, how are you, good, good, so...L and I just did it", *shudder*! On the other hand, I think about how I might deal with the, "he looks just like you", comments, or worse, "he doesn't look like you!" and I start to feel a little panicky. I also think about the day when we finally DO tell our parents, maybe it is years down the road, maybe sooner. What will their reaction be? Will they feel betrayed? Will they resent us, or the baby?

For me, the biggest thing I am struggling with is how to be completely open and honest with our children about where they came from, make them feel comfortable and not ashamed about it, but at the same time teach them that it is private, family business. I don't really ever want to get a call from a Kindergarten teacher telling us that our little one stood up and proudly proclaimed to the class, "Mommy and Daddy bought sperm to make me from the Internet". On the other hand, I don't want to promote a culture of secrecy. It is such a perilously fine line!

How have you dealt with this? Would love to hear from anyone who has successfully (or unsuccessfully) crossed this bridge.


Somewhat Ordinary said...

We haven't really successfully come to any conclusion about how to deal with disclosure. My ILs actually know because my husband was going through some stuff with them and felt it was right to tell them. They have been fantastic about it and I'm sure my family will be just as great. He does have a hard time with how/when to tell our son. I think the best thing is to start early on reading books on his age level about the subject that way it just always seems natural to him.

I think I'm going to participate in a coaching group via telephone sponsored by the American Fertility Association on the 18th called Parenting Children Conceived w/ Donor Gametes. I found it on their site today and thought it would be a good resource for talking to others.

Mommy-in-Waiting said...

We haven't conceived yet much less figured out how is best to go about it, but due to our circumstances we have spent a lot of time and energy thinking about how we would like to handle it. Of course reality may be a totally different ball game.

We are of the opinion that as we want to be open with any kids we also want to be open with people around us. I would much prefer that people got take say their dumb things and give their strange looks to us than my LO oneday and hopefully by telling people early (even though it is none of their business) my kids won't get too much strangeness.

Just our thoughts on the matter. Good luck with figuring out for yourselves what feels best.

Lorza said...

I don't have any sage advice for you, but I just wanted to give you some support. Last November is when we started our visits and going to an RE- it is crazy how time flies when you are having 'fun'.
Until my DH does his TESA/MESA we are working with the Azoo diagnosis and posibilty of DS(we like to be prepared). We stil swing back and forth- it is such a hard choice to make. I could only imagine how hard it is to make the choice of whether to tell or not.

PS- I am wordpress now and going to delete my blogger blog soon. Would think about adding open id/wordpress as a choice to leave comments? I won't be able to if you don't. :(