In the old days, say the 1990’s, sex educators criticized movies because characters had wanton sex, never pausing to use “precautions” but never suffering the real life consequences that often appeared after nine months. Now there are babies without all the grunting and moaning. You can see how this might confuse adolescents in sex ed classes.
There’s some irony is all this single mom craze. Lorraine and I lost our babies because our men didn’t stand by us. Of course the acceptability of being a manless mom (unwed mother in old fashioned parlance) depends on who you are. If Jenn were a poor black woman or Mexican woman with an "anchor baby", calling attention to her desire to excise the dad from her child’s life would be met with an investigation from child welfare officials, once more proving the rich are different from us.
At age 41, sperm donation alone may not do the trick for Jenn so she may have to select another item from the Café Repro Tech menu. Adoption is always an option. It avoids nine months of indisposition and has a lot of PR possibilities. Little Louis is likely doing as much for Sandra Bullock as her Oscar and her split from Jesse James publicitywise.
If Jennifer wants to experience the real mom thing, there’s always those Ivy Coated Eggs (presumably salmonella free) which would allow her to pre-select all the baby’s DNA.
And if these options lack appeal, there’s the combo, donated sperm and egg with a surrogate to do the dirty work. If fact, she might as well double the output and have twins, ala Mathew Broderick and Sarah Jessica Parker. If you’ve got the dough, have it your way at Cafe Repro Tech.
Lorraine here: Do we decry all this technology that creates babies without a two-sided cultural heritage? Yes, we do. "Daddy's Name Is Donor" may be a funny slogan on a t-shirt, but it is not amusing to the approximately estimated 30,000-60,000 children are born each year through sperm donation in the U.S.
The lead author, Elizabeth Marquardt, of the report from the Institute for American Values discussed in the previous blog, When Daddy's Name is Donor... elicited a comment from her that is worth repeating here:
In the full report, we also write, on page 72, "Advocates who claim donor conception is no big deal, 'just like' adoption, also reveal their ignorance about fierce controversies in the field of adoption, historically and today. In the recent past, children were too readily separate from birth parents because the state decided that other, richer or more powerful couples were more suitable to be their parents. Today, there remain serious controversies over open adoption, the rights of adoptees to access their birth records, international and cross-racial adoption, pressures on birth mothers to relinquish children, adoption by gays, lesbians, and singles, and more."And this is from Karen Clark, one of the co-investigators of the report, a blogger at FamilyScholars.org, and the child of a sperm donor herself:
In Table 1 of the report (the 138 page pdf of the report is available at Family Scholars.org) you'll find the full summary of the survey data which includes all the numbers for the adopted persons.
I am very sympathetic to the experiences of adoptees (as is Elizabeth) and in fact I am trying to advocate for opening adoption records (in my blogging efforts) as well as banning donor anonymity. Several of my posts are directly related to adoption loss. One person left a comment under one of our posts suggesting that they thought we even had a "radical anti-adoption" stance. Please help us support you by joining in on our discussions related to this topic. I want your voices heard along with the donor conceived...Thank you.We at First Mother Forum believe that whenever possible children should full knowledge of who each parent is. This is an unalienable, unassailable right, and to deny it to anyone is to commit a grave moral failing.