>dealing with the donor issue

>DW and I have started doing more in-depth talking about how/when to start addressing the donor issue with baby boy. We agreed long ago that we want to talk about it early and often so that it isn’t some big secret that comes out at some point. We want the baby to have always just known he has two loving mamas who gratefully used an anonymous donor. Question is, is there such a thing as too much information? Like originally we talked about not sharing much info or pictures of the donor until baby boy was a little older, but talking about the donor basically from day one. Now we are wondering if that, too, creates a sense of mystery or wonder about the donor.

We are considering making a donor page in our pregnancy book or in the baby book that includes the donor photos. Is that weird? I just can’t decide, but I know I don’t want there to be any secrecy around it. While I know adoption is a different thing, all the adopted kids I’ve known that had issues were those who weren’t told until they were older that they were adopted. The well-adjusted ones just always knew they were adopted and had all the info they needed from as far back as they could remember.

How do you plan to handle donor information with your child/ren?

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14 Comments

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14 responses to “>dealing with the donor issue

  1. -c

    >I actually really like the idea of having a page in the baby book. Maybe with just a photo and blurb. Then your conversations can go from there.

  2. >this is an interesting question, i'll be popping back in to see how others respond. in general, we plan to be very open with our kids about the donor issue (on an age-appropriate level). we weren't planning on giving out the specifics until they are much older though. right now, i have all the info (medical data, pics, bios, etc) tucked away in an envelope. our donor is not willing to be known, so i dont want to indroduce the donor as a person (pics, etc) until the kid is old enough to really understand what that means…anyway, those are our thoughts now. this is new territory, so we'll have to see how it unfolds.

  3. >oh, also re: putting the donor photos in the baby book, we decided not to share those photos with our friends/family (they dont even know they exist). i just feel like the photos belong to the kiddo and it should be her decision re: how much to share. (though, i certianly see the merits in just being completely wide open from the beginning…)

  4. >I plan to be open right from the beginning but I'm using an anonymous donor and I won't have as much info – no pics, no essay. Of course I need to get one to stick first! I think the page in the baby book is a great idea but I also agree it is the child's story to tell. Perhaps a page that is special just for family to start with?

  5. Jen

    >I am a scrapbooker and plan to have a page in munchkins book about the donor as well as a picture of the nitro tank! We plan on sharing everything and anything and will answer questions as they arise when he gets older. I refuse to call him dad or the father, but rather donor…that is my way to set a boundary of our family.

  6. >Yeah, I'm thinking maybe we put it in the PG journal as that's one that won't really be shared around. We are on the same page in terms of how much gets shared outside of our little family. We have a photo of the donor as a child and one of him as an adult. I guess I could just see there being resentment or something if we waited to share those until later. Like we were holding back something/keeping a secret. We also chose a willing to be known donor, if it makes a difference…

  7. >I was just searching your blog trying to find out if you had an open or closed donor. Speedy & I are going to use an open donor, too. Our documentation is going to include a donor page that has all the notes and photos we can get on it. But I agree with Jen: donor v. father is a distinction we will make, too.BTW: great belly shots!!

  8. >We didn't include anything in Carter's baby book, but we do plan to be very open with him. I'm not sure we've quite decided how to introduce the photos and such. However, we do know that we are going to meet some of his half-siblings from the donor sibling registry in February, and I think having that network will give a perspective on all this. At 3, I think our son is still too young to really understand the distinction between donot and daddy, so until he can really understand that, I don't think we'll bring the pictures into play.

  9. >That page in the baby book sounds like a great idea. It reminds me of the life books children's services helps adopted children create to come to terms with losing 1 family and gaining another. I have done similar life book type activities with children and families and they have been quite therapeutic. Somehow wring a "story" and providing pictures and momentos is really helpful in creating a strong sense of self. So the donor page plus having 2 loving mothers should help your little one create quite the healthy psych.

  10. >Very interesting question. I have wanted to do a photo page/stats of our donor for our pregnancy journey and other books, but Chicken seems to be resisting. Everyone already knows we used a donor and for me this is just putting it out there in the open and not having to answer the same questions over and over and over. What does he look like? What is his ethnicity, etc, etc?But, we will have to decide together what is going to work for us.

  11. >We plan on a similar route to An Offering of Love. Though our donor is an "open donor," we'll leave it up to Buster to decide who gets to know a lot of information about the donor. Though we'll never keep things secret from him, we'll cross the bridge when it is age-appropriate, or when he begins to ask questions.

  12. >I have been thinking about this too. I would like to put the info in the baby book, but don't want other people to randomly come acros it. There were two Chinese donors coming into Canada when we selected. There is a good chance other couples in our community used the same donor. I have seen families accidently realize they have used the same donor. I don't want to accidently find half siblings, so I share almost no information with other people. I don't mind if someone suspects that we have the same donor and asks, but that is different more intentional process. I mostly feel like it is up to our child to grow up and decide what to share.

  13. >I originally wrote a long entry, in short it read go with your gut, give information as developmentally appropriate and remember having (a) loving adult(s) in a child's life is fundamental. SO happy for you!

  14. >We plan on being open about our use of a donor from a very early age but at the same time we want to restrict the info we share with our LO. Things like where he comes from and that he is a fireman will be left out. We're afraid of creating a fantasy father. Once old enough the profile will be available for them to read.

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