Sperm Donors’ Involvement in Children’s Lives

Lesbian parents often prefer to conceive with the assistance of known sperm donors, who have varying degrees of involvement in the women’s and children’s lives.

Known sperm donors may be completely uninvolved or have a considerable degree of contact with lesbian-parented families. At one end of the spectrum, the sperm donor may have very little or no involvement with the children, with the agreement being that his identity will be disclosed to the children at some point in the future. Further along the continuum of involvement, the donor may socialize with the women and children, or visit occasionally. Less frequently, known sperm donors may be regular visitors or coparents with substantial caregiving responsibilities and entitlements. In an Australian study of lesbian-parented families, Ruth McNair and her ...

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