Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Revising the Family

While assiduously trying to avoid the news and the reaction regarding Israel's botched operations (paint guns?!), I came across an editorial in the International Herald Tribune entitled, "How babies are made (revised)" by Ross Douthat.

Without regurgitating the entire piece - though I suggest you read it - he basically addresses the new reality in America as more and more couples use anonymous sperm and egg donation. In his op-ed, he quotes various data from a study by Elizbeth Marquardt, Norval Glenn and Karen Clark, which studies the emotional development of children who were conceived by anonymous donation.

Here is the bit that disturbed me the most, he writes that children "conceived through sperm donation also are more likely to feel alienated from their immediate family than either biological or adopted children...They are more likely than adoptees to say that 'when I see someone who resembles me, I often wonder if we are related.'"

In short, these children between the ages of 18 to 45 seem to feel that they were bought, like a sweater at the mall.

I know that Israel as a society is more supportive of the process that I, and many other women, have endured not for selfish goals, but for the express joy of being a mother and bringing a child into the world. As single parenthood by choice becomes more "normal" around the world, I sense that therapists will be cashing in, thus creating more stress than I believe is necessary.

1 comment:

koshergourmetmart said...

I do not think that the authors of this article is saying "these children between the ages of 18 to 45 seem to feel that they were bought, like a sweater at the mall." People want to know where they came from, hence the big boom in geneological research (like I have been doing geneological research and have discovered family tree charts from kracow so I can now trace my family back through my mom to the 1700s. this information is very exciting to me and something I was able to find b/c I know who both my parents are. your daughter will get tons of information from you about your side but other than medical info how much info will they get about their dad? children from anonymous donations may have the most loving parent(s) but may still feel something is missing and to ignore their feelings will create stress.