Does sperm donation need global regulation so kids won’t have hundreds of genetic siblings?

Author: Molly Sprayregen

Sperm donor regulations vary across the world, which some experts say is a big problem – one that could lead to a single donor facilitating the creation of hundreds or even thousands of children.

Professor Jackson Kirkman-Brown, chair of the Association of Reproductive and Clinical Scientists, explained that it can be psychologically damaging for children of donors to find out they have hundreds of genetic half-siblings: “If you’ve always thought you’re an incredibly special gift, suddenly finding there are 300 people who share 50 percent of your DNA is a very difficult concept to get your head around,” Kirkman-Brown said at the Progress Educational Trust conference, according to the Daily Mail.

Other experts have emphasized the pressure children feel to communicate with others conceived using the same donor, something that can feel incredibly stressful and more or less impossible when there are so many half-siblings to reach out to.

Another argument for limiting donations is to avoid accidental incest between two people who have no idea they share DNA.

And while the U.K. calls for international regulations, the United States doesn’t even have policies in place to regulate donors within the country.

According to Cryobank America, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine recommends a donor should facilitate a maximum of 25 live births per 850,000 people in a population area. But only 40% of live births from sperm donation are reported.

Moreover, there is no federal law to limit sperm donations. Laws and policies vary by state and sperm bank, which means it’s easy for donors to donate in multiple states and at multiple banks.

Additionally, couples are increasingly avoiding sperm banks altogether due to their prohibitive expenses, entering the wildly unregulated world of finding sperm donors on Facebook.

A report from Business Insider tells the story of Angela and her wife, who spent $10,000 on ten vials of sperm from a sperm bank and still were not pregnant. They turned to a Facebook group called Sperm Donation USA. There, they met Kyle Gordy, whose donations had already resulted in the birth of 70 children. They met him in a parking lot, and he gave them a free cup of semen. The couple now has a two-year-old son.

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Actual Story on LGBTQ Nation
Author: Molly Sprayregen

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