Need some help - DI issue...

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-28-2003
Need some help - DI issue...
2
Fri, 05-18-2007 - 10:43am

I know no one will be able to solve this for me, but I'm looking for thoughts on the issue.

I'm currently 12 weeks pg from donor insem, since we found out last year that dh is sterile. DH had a hard time coming to grips with that in all the ways you might expect, but after much thought and discussion, we decided to go ahead with ds. We discussed some whether to tell the child or not, and I actually thought we had concluded that we would. Come to find out this morning that dh thought we had concluded that we wouldn't.

So now we're stuck, and I don't know what to do. I always thought I wanted to tell because I don't like secrets, it feels deceitful to me, and I value openness and honesty in family relationships. I've read articles that indicate if you hide it, children are likely to pick up on something being off, and if it does come out later, the fact that it was hidden makes it seem much more shameful that it really is, and the child could feel really hurt and betrayed. This is probably my biggest fear - that the child would find out somehow eventually, and would be angry about the deceit about something so fundamental to his/her own life. It doesn't seem quite fair to the child, since it's actually ABOUT him/her, to keep it secret. (Truly, no offense is intended for those who've decided not to tell, because it's a very personal decision and I understand well the reasons for that too. This is just my own thinking on the issue.)

But dh sees it entirely differently. He's not thinking about the fairness or deceitfulness of it - he's thinking that if we tell, he'll feel less connected to the child. It hasn't been easy for him to get past the fact that he can't "father" my child (though he is the father in every sense that matters) and bringing that out into the open will only make it harder for him. He's afraid the child won't see him as the "real" father and will hold that against him or will feel more distanced from him somehow. And that he won't feel like the "real" father either.

I don't know what to do. I don't want dh to feel not connected to the baby - I really don't. My gut reaction is to say that he can be as connected as he wants to be. The fact that he's not the bio father is already set in stone - so why should being honest about that make it any different? But I can see his point of view too. And I feel stuck.

To add to my fears, dh and I have the same blood type -- O+. The donor is O-. So the baby could be O-. What if we don't tell, and the child figures out someday that he should be O+ but he's not? It's these kind of things that freak me out. Even if I were guaranteed that he would never find out though, I'd still be uncomfortable with what feels a bit like lying to me.

What are your thoughts? Experiences? What have you decided to do and why, and how has it turned out for you?

Thanks for your help.

Deborah

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 05-18-2007 - 8:42pm

We have not disclosed yet because Danny is still to young to "get" it and DH doesn't want to while his father is alive (whatever)

BUT what we HAVE done you might be able to do

We have pictures of the RE in his baby book and we talk about how not all Mommy's get to have babies, some get one, some get ten, some need a doctor. Sometimes the Daddy's have to see a doctor...this works especially well when he's begging for a sibling.

He now understands that a baby is not a "given" and even when he plays house, he'll mention that perhaps he WON'T get to be a Daddy

Its a small concession but might be a start...disclosure (full) imo needs to wait until they are old enough to understand more...for now, Danny knows the "doctor made him"









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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Sat, 05-19-2007 - 8:06pm

First of all, congratulations on your pregnancy.

jhscalis@wisc.edu