Known Donor Relative? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 11 Old 12-20-2005, 02:11 PM - Thread Starter
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hi, curious if anyone out there has used a relative (non-carrying partner's brother/cousin/etc) to inseminate. My partner and I are considering inseminating using her brother as a donor. I know that this is done, but haven't met anyone with personal experience. We have gotten mixed opinions from close friends/family, has anyone done this? We would definitly want her brother to be considered as an uncle only, although we would certainly tell the child at some point that the uncle was a donor. Its just impossible to know how they would process that! It could be confusing but is also great because there would already be an established relationship between the two, the child would be related to both of us and we know his health background. I am well aware of the risks of known donor insemination in terms of health/STD transmission and legally.

Opinions, please!
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#2 of 11 Old 12-21-2005, 01:08 AM
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we thought about it, and decided it was too messy for us!

Good luck
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#3 of 11 Old 12-21-2005, 01:26 AM
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Teresarobin -
Our baby is 5 weeks old - my wife's brother is the donor. He will be "Uncle Randy" but KeaganRae will know that Randy is his biological father. We know that in theory this could be really messy but we thought it very important that our baby be "related" to both of us. . .important to some people, not to others. Of course we would love Keagan just as much if we had adopted, but we were blessed enough to have been able to do things just as we wanted. We also figure that we will answer Keagan's questions as they come up and he will not be likely to ask a question that he is not ready to hear an answer for . . . Feel free to PM me if you have more specific questions or concerns.

Mommy to a wonderfully passionate little one
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#4 of 11 Old 12-28-2005, 03:22 AM
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I think that there are a lot of people who go this route. we would have seriously considered it, except my wife's brothers all have substance abuse problems/criminal histories, so didn't really seem like good options to us...
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#5 of 11 Old 12-28-2005, 10:57 AM
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I think it's a pretty cool idea. I would've loved to use one of dw's brothers as our donor, but dw was completely anti. Too be fair to her, I should mention that one of them was only 16 when we were first inseminating, and the other is a bit of an asshole. But I thought it would be really neat to have a baby that looked like both of us, and that was a full biological grandchild for both sets of grandparents. However, it is certainly much less risky to use an unknown donor, or even a non-related known donor in terms of family drama down the road. It has to be the perfect combination of people for the brother-as-donor thing to work. How does your potential donor feel about it?

We ended up using an unknown donor because we didn't know anyone who wanted to be a known donor for us. We couldn't be happier with how it worked out. It was incredibly easy, and no one who isn't biolgically related to our boys cares in the least. They also do look like they could be either of our biological children (which really doesn't matter to us at this point, but we thought it would).

Good luck choosing your donor!


Mindfully mothering SIX kids (ages 6, 7, 8, 10, 12 & 12) in a small house with a lot of love.
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#6 of 11 Old 12-31-2005, 04:40 AM
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This site has a lot of info re:donor issues of all sorts. There's also a lot of pertinent legal & medical info as well.

Donor Issues Related Site

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#7 of 11 Old 01-08-2006, 12:39 AM
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We, my partner and I did exactly what you are asking about and it has worked out great. Our son is going to be 2 in April and he loves his Uncle (our donor)as just that an uncle. My partners brother also happens to be gay and does not plan on having any children of his own so there are no worries about half siblings or anything. Also my partner and her brother look a lot a like and we feel that our child is apart of us all and he is loved by all of his grandparents. . . and I think that the blood relation is important to them. . .particularly the great grandma on my partners side. . . however had oliver been from an anonymous donor I think.hope he would be equally adored.

good luck with whatever you choose
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#8 of 11 Old 01-10-2006, 01:40 AM
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We have a 16 month old son that I gave birth to. We used my partner's brother as the donor. I has worked out FABULOUSLY. We are all very close. He wanted no parenting role, and we did not want him to have a parenting role. So far he is a great uncle, and we love that we are both related to our son. We did a lot of talking with him and his wife ahead of time, and we all felt like we had a clear understanding of everyone's expectations and fears before we inseminated. Between all of us there has been no awkwardness, or weirdness, which surprised me. However, my parter's mom was a littl eweird about it (various times calling our son 'his son"). We quickly corrected her, but she had some trouble adjusting.
Anyway, we are now ready for my partner to get pregnant, but I have no brothers, and my cousin would not we are looking for a donor. We are actually grieving a bit that no other donor situation could work out this well (we can't have a baby related to both of us this time). We are proabaly going to use a friend of a friend (a gay guy) who lives in another state. Hopefully the most-perfect-in-a-less-than-perfect-situation donor will help us have a happy healthy baby this time. Hope this helps!!
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#9 of 11 Old 01-12-2006, 02:47 PM
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I have finally (after two weeks of trying) found the online forum I've been looking for. I am so grateful to find all of you here. I've been looking EVERYWHERE!! Finally some people who share my desire to have a child that's biologically related to both of us and understand why we want to use a known donor.

My partner and I are also considering asking my brother to be a donor for our chlid. There are all sorts of benefits and my parents are all for it. But, we're still investigating the possibly messy outcomes. I'm wondering if those of you who used relatives have thoughts about these concerns:

My brother is young--in college--and is concerned that he isn't going to be around much during the kid's childhood (he has the sort of grand plans many young people with loose feet have). He worries that a kid may feel abandoned and he worries that he will feel guilty, knowing he helped bring a child into the world and he isn't a large part of that kid's life. As we talk more, I think he is going to need to decide whether or not he's going to feel guilty, knowing that our kid will have two loving parents, a loving extended family, and many other adults and that we are not asking him to be a father to our child, just a donor and an uncle.

But, we've found other might his relationship to our child--and other family relationships--change when he marries and has children? What will the relationship between his children and ours be like?

We've discovered elsewhere that donors can bond more than they expected to, to a child, so it seems wise to limit contact at and after birth, particularly with a young man who hasn't yet experienced fatherhood, just to protect him and us from this possibility. And advice here? And, I'm also wondering what changed in your (donor and parents) expecations, hopes, and feelings after the child was born?

I'm also concerned that I may be asking too much from my brother. I'm wondering what all of you think, particularly anyone on the donor side of things. This is a really adult decision, is he too young?

I hope that's not too much all at once!

p.s. I appreciate all the legal info here, too. We'll be recording all of that for careful consideration once we decide if emotionally this arrangement will work out for us. It looks like Ohio also removes paternal responsibility when one uses a doctor, so that's good for us.
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#10 of 11 Old 01-14-2006, 08:44 PM
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i only have a minute as i hear my partner getting the kids out of the bath which means it is my turn- but in response to all those people who say that an unknown doner is less risky- this is our take on that. my brother was the donor and my partner carried both kids and it will likely be the same the next time around. i feel safer with my brother as the legal parent the adoption goes through- that protects me if somethign happens to my partner and her family decides to try for the kids. there are no circumstances where her mother (for example) could get them if my brother was there proving paternity and having a hand in making sure that i get to keep them.

not eloquently said but the best i can do in the time allowed.

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#11 of 11 Old 01-14-2006, 11:20 PM
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I have a book recommendation for anyone considering using a known donor of any sort. The book does touch on this very topic of using a family member. The author also recommends counseling for this kind of situation since it's extra complicated and there are many things to consider. Here's the book I've found it to be really helpful in processing all of the different feelings that come up and anticipating those that will come up in the future.

Megan-39, Postpartum Doula, DW to Sacha-40 (18 years together) and Mama to Finn Alexander born 4/2/07 and Zivia Littlewood born 8/23/10

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