These are the questions raised during a recent dinner with a friend and colleague, and fellow Mom Via Egg Donation. What part or role does or should the donor play in our family life?
Is there really a person who should be part of the family tree or is this the person to whom we are infinitely grateful for providing the help we needed (a tissue donation) in our being able to get conceive and carry a child?
If Egg Donors are signing off to not have a legal claim to the child, not interested in identity release or an open (known) donation, then why do we make more meaning of it when it comes to our own families? Or is it our community of mental health professionals making more meaning of the donor?
I've met many parents and IP's via Donor Conception. They represent a wide range of people, with as many variations and opinions as there are on any topic involving babies and children... Birth, conception, child care, nutrition, immunization, education, to name a few.
People in general are very opinionated and for some reason more vocal about these issues than they are about equally charged topics such as politics and sex (our current media and entertainment culture notwithstanding). We seem particularly interested, once we are however involved in Donor Conception, in imparting our belief systems onto other, equally qualified individuals, who are making choices and caring for their families. We all want to think we know what's best for our, or all, children.
In every family, Donor Conceived or not, they will surely tell us at some point whether we were right or wrong, and everything and anything in between.