If you use donor sperm you will be asked by your cryobank to report a live birth shortly after your baby is born. This is the opportunity for the sperm bank to know that a birth occurred as a result of use of sperm from a specific sperm donor.
Sperm banks attempt to regulate how many vials of sperm from a given donor are released, in a given region in the country. After so many have been released and so many have yielded live births in a given locale, a donor can actually be “retired” from such a location, yet still be viable and active elsewhere in the country. This kind of restriction is designed to protect progeny from donated sperm, be they the result of surrogacy arrangements or artificial insemination or traditional IVF. The progeny have a vested interest in refraining from procreating with siblings for all of the obvious reasons. By spreading the DNA around the country or the world for that matter there is less likelihood of this happening.
In my case, once my sons were a few months old and a medical problem was detected, I wanted to alert the cryobank. When I phoned, I was told that their CEO or President of the cryobank would likely want to speak to me. However, I would have to go online and fill out a firm confirming the existence of my sons in the form of completing what they called a “reporting a live birth” form.
As you can imagine as a new Single Mom By Choice caring solely for my two little sons during the day and having some help at night, my plate was full. I didn’t really have the time to complete some form online. It took me more than five years to get back to that task! But I did complete it.
The important thing here is the cryobank now knows they exist. Furthermore, the sperm donor that I selected allows progeny to contact him once they turn 18. In fact as I looked at sperm donors, I only looked at donors with this status.
I felt very certain that when the time comes that my children might want to meet their biological father, who we refer to at this juncture as the sperm Daddy. They might possibly want to ask him questions about their family background.
I wanted to do everything possible upfront to enable my children to gain access to their biological father, or DNA Dad, if you will, when the time comes. I didn’t want them to have an interest and then slam into a cold trail or brick wall and simply have to swallow the fact that they would never know their DNA Dad, nor any of his family members. My strategy was to leave the door as wide open as possible to afford my children the greatest amount of latitude that the times would permit.
My action of completing that report a live birth form was my obligation, not only to the cryobank and progeny in general, but also to my children, most specifically, should anything happen to me. I want them to be able to pick up that search for their DNA Dad at any moment that they feel the calling.
Should I live and prosper, I will call to their attention as they turn 18 that it is now their right to contact their DNA Dad. I will caution them that they may or may not be delighted with what they discover but that we have the means for them to attempt to make that connection. Exactly to what end will remain to be seen.
In any event, since the forms are completed, all they need is the code associated with their DNA Dad and the name of the cryobank. Those pieces of information have been carefully stowed in a variety of places, so my children will always have access, despite worst case scenario! So that’s why you report a live birth!
When it’s your turn, try to be a bit more timely! Okay? Heck, what if something had gone wrong?
Lisa J Lafave, PhD, MBA, ACC
The Surrogacy Coach from Surrogacy Rocks
CEO & Founder of Coaching Rocks, LLC
Single Mom By Choice Raising Surrogacy Children
Written in my Little Brick in University Heights, OH
Leap Into Action!