Saturday, November 19, 2011

On Being Donor Conceived

Maybe I should start a new blog on being donor conceived. I might after I know for sure. In that regard, it's frustration after frustration.

The relative who might know something didn't know anything. Not even ever seeing my (")father(") (?) lately makes it hard to collect a DNA sample. And today I thought I was on the verge of a discovery, one way or another, when I found hard proof of blood types for my entire family - only to be told by the Internet that in the case of my parents (A+ and B+) a donor of any blood type would produce plausible offspring. And I'm plausible. As would any donor's child have been. Back to square one.

Here is an interesting article on being fathered by an anonymous donor, all of which I relate to:

"Some evidence indicates some donor-conceived offspring are not necessarily surprised by the revelation that “Dad” was not their biological father. Some could sense a family secret, while others reported feelings of “not fit[ting] in” with their families. The author David Plotz, who was contacted by many donor offspring, writes that those who learn the truth about their DI origins “are rarely surprised; they always felt something wasn’t right.”

Moreover, many donor-conceived people who eventually learned the truth were angry at having been lied to for years about such a fundamental matter of their being. The reason why many DI offspring “felt something wasn’t right” is because many fathers, try as they might, cannot follow the doctor’s orders to “forget about it themselves.” Husbands often find it extremely difficult to treat donor-conceived children as if they were their own biological children, and such repression is likely to place a strain on family relationships. As Plotz writes:

While good studies on DI families don’t seem to exist, anecdotes about them suggest that there is frequently a gap between fathers and their putative children. [Fathers] are drained by having to pretend that children are theirs when they aren’t; it takes a good actor and an extraordinary man to overlook the fact that his wife has picked another man to father his child. It’s no wonder that the paternal bond can be hard to maintain. When a couple adopts a child, both parents share a genetic distance from the kid. But in DI families, the relationships tend to be asymmetric: the genetically connected mothers are close to their kids; the unconnected fathers are distanced."

Put a narcissist in the mix. Good actors, sure. Extraordinary in the sense implied here? No, quite the opposite, really. See why it matters to me? It would explain so much of our family dynamic and paint it in even darker colors. I started this journey still pretty much wearing my rosy-colored glasses (he loved me, but in a narcissistic way; he was proud of my achievements and just wanted to own and control me; he felt abandoned by me; he was a great dad, although he did it all to be worshiped). This is where I am now: he resented me for existing and being me but had to fake it and even overfake it.

To some out there, genes don't matter. For those who chose donor conception and then lied about it, they clearly matter. Why not opt for adoption and tell everyone? Even if it didn't matter to me (and it does, I'm not going to apologize for that: I look in the mirror and see my mother and someone else, NOT my father, and I wonder who it might be and what he's like and what he likes and what his ethnicity is and whether he shares some of the talents I share with neither parent) it matters that it mattered to them.

Sorry. That's just the way I feel.

Edit: So I did apologize. For my feelings. Just realized that. ACoN to the core ;)

1 comment:

  1. Yep, you did-but you caught it so good on you! : )
    I feel helpless to offer any assistance because in reality, none is needed. Your journey is yours alone. I do have the sense through of what happens when "big family secrets" explode or slowly unravel in these families with a pdparent(s). Trust, the foundation of all relationships is destroyed, yet these new revelations explain so many things and often lead to more questions. If the parent(s) had simply been honest from the get, treated the "big deal" as a matter-of-fact-of-life we wouldn't have floundered alone for so many years with so many, many "unexplain-ables."
    Truly, I have often thought in my own family this collusion in "secret-keeping" (which is going to become manifest sooner or later) reflected the pdparent(s) entitled sense to "fashion" the "Picture Perfect Family" which was in fact rotten to the core. What mattered first, last and always was the Narc Parent's agenda.....and in that world, a child is not a child but rather a "prop" to the disingenuous production they call "My Life, Starring MEEEEEEE."
    And don't you EVER forget that (sez the 'parent'.)


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