Families come in many forms. If you’re looking to have a baby via sperm donation, one of your options is to find your sperm donor online.
Before starting your search, it’s important that you and your partner (if you have one) take the time to consider the different options available to you. If you want to have a child via sperm donation, whether you are a same-sex couple, a single woman or a couple with fertility issues, there are a number of things that you should consider. Will you opt for a known or anonymous donor? What fertility treatment will you use? What level of contact do you want them to have with the child? Do you prefer to undergo artificial insemination in a fertility clinic or an at-home insemination? Will you require IVF? Another important question if you are a lesbian couple: who will carry the child?
There are many questions to ask yourself and it’s normal to feel a bit lost. Paying a visit to your GP, as well as gathering information about sperm donation and fertility treatments, is essential so that you can make the best decisions for you and your future child.
How to choose your sperm donor online
This alternative to sperm banks offers many advantages. One of them is that you are able to select your donor based on your own criteria. Depending on your standards and what you are looking for, information about your donor that you might take into consideration includes their personality, age, location, physical traits, career, IQ, hobbies, ethnicity, religion etc. You might also be interested in their reasons for donating sperm or whether they have children. Also, don’t forget to confirm the level of commitment that they wish to have with the future donor-conceived child, in order to be sure that their expectations are compatible with your own.
The length of this list depends entirely on you. However, obtaining info regarding your potential donor’s personal health, lifestyle and fertility, as well as their family medical history, is important, as this will increase your chances of becoming pregnant and will prove vital when it comes to you and your baby’s health.
Meeting your donor or not?
By opting for a known donor online, you have the possibility to meet face-to-face to get to know more about him, find out more about his personality and ask all of the questions that you want to ask. Meeting your donor will allow you to gauge him more easily and discover whether you would like him to be your future child’s donor or whether you should start looking for someone else. It’s a crucial decision!
Whether you’re meeting your donor, chatting online or over the phone, consider carefully all of the questions you might want to ask him beforehand. If you prefer, you can write down a list to carry with you, to make sure that you won’t forget anything important.
How can I collect the donated sperm?
You’ve found your donor? Congratulations! Before you make use of their sample, however, be sure to check that their sperm is of good quality and that they are not carrying any genetic or infectious diseases that they could pass on to you or your future baby. It might be an embarrassing thing to ask for, but it’s vital that they show you their medical test results.
Your next step is to collect the sample. You can either have your donor provide you with this at your place or somewhere more neutral, like a hotel. You can also ask a friend to pick up the specimen for you. It’s entirely up to you.
How can I make use of the donated sperm?
Once you’ve got the sample, you can perform the insemination yourself at home, using an at-home insemination kit that you can purchase online or in a drugstore.
Don’t feel comfortable with this idea or not certain that you will be capable of performing the insemination yourself? Another option is to bring the specimen to a fertility clinic and have the procedure be performed by professionals.
In vitro fertilisation, or IVF, is another fertility technique that people turn to in order to become pregnant. IVF involves the collection of the aspiring mum’s eggs through a minor surgical procedure. The eggs are then fertilised in a laboratory with sperm (donated, or provided by the male partner). After being left to develop for a few days, the obtained embryos are then implanted into the woman’s womb. This procedure might be recommended to those who have tried artificial insemination without any success. Women with absent or blocked fallopian tubes, endometriosis, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) or other fertility issues are also good candidates for IVF.
What if your sperm donor was also your co-parent?
Co-parenting – which is when two or more parents raise and share all rights and responsibilities towards their child without being romantically involved – is growing in popularity.
Many donors want to do more than just donate their semen: they also want to play a role in the child’s upbringing. Some recipients (whether they are single women, lesbian couples or heterosexual couples with fertility issues) are looking for a sperm donor who could also be a dad for their baby.
The co-parents can be singles, in a relationship, married, divorced, LGBTQ or straight. For example, a lesbian couple can partner with a single homosexual man in order to have a child together. A gay couple can also decide to have a baby with a lesbian couple. Finally, the child can have, two, three, four or more parents.
A co-parenting agreement, preferably written before conception (or at least before the birth), will allow the co-parents to have their intentions set out on paper. This document serves to describe the important decisions, such as who will be the main care giver, how to arrange shared custody of the child, how to share expenses and other important decisions, ranging from childcare to the type of education, spirituality, etc.
With their 100,000 members from all around the world, CoParents.co.uk gives parents-to-be the opportunity to not only find a sperm donor or a recipient, but also a co-parent with whom to raise their child. All you need to do is register, create your profile to explain your search, and then browse through the donors’ profiles. Thanks to the online chat function and forum you can easily contact other members from the comfort of your own home.
You can find out more by visiting CoParents.co.uk.