Wednesday, 23 December 2009

It's Christmas!

It's almost Christmas.

I was pleased at the reaction of my immediate family about Monday's article in the Daily Telegraph. They really understood the reason for my decision and my hope that it might provoke discussion. There have been many well-argued pieces about donor anonymity but unfortunately the general public often can’t relate to these and it has to be a human interest story about a particular dilemma which will help them make the connection.

I have felt this all along and have tried to prepare myself for the inevitable criticism of my reactions and disapproval of my decision to make these public. Younger people are, on the whole, more understanding as they are more used airing their feelings in the public arena.

The reactions of the public at large are usually much more sympathetic to the infertile parents and the need for privacy for the donors than understanding of the real dilemmas of the donor offspring. This is because very few people can actually put themselves in our position whereas anyone who has had difficulty conceiving, and this does seem to be more common nowadays, can relate to the feelings of the parents.

As donor offspring, of course, we can understand the desire for children. However, many of us do not feel this is a right. Some donor offspring go on to have children themselves by similar means but many more actually disapprove of the practice altogether because of the problems it brings for the children not only as children but throughout their adult lives

Articles come and go. Interest is ephemeral, particularly these days where so many interests are one-day wonders. Our only hope that each attempt is another pin-prick and that one day there will be sufficient interest and compassion for a group of people who need to know who they are and who, unlike any other group who don’t know their parentage, have been deliberately denied this knowledge to gratify the needs of their parents. I, like many other people, would never deny I grew up in a loving home but sometimes this is not enough. The needs of the offspring are equally valid.


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