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How it feels to be a child of donor insemination

BMJ 2002; 324 doi: (Published 30 March 2002) Cite this as: BMJ 2002;324:797

For 58 years donor insemination (DI) has been used in the United Kingdom. Yet the voice of DI children has never been heard. I would like to tell my story—how it feels to be one of those children.

For 16 years I have known. My mum told me, my dad was embarrassed, and no one other than my parents knew. The topic was taboo and I was not to tell friends or family. To this day I still have not been able to discuss it at all with my dad, nor with my sister (also conceived by donor insemination). For years I have been prevented from exploring my feelings. I feel guilty writing this, even anonymously. It is as if I am betraying my family. I am scared that people will think that I am ungrateful. But I hope that through my experiences others will realise that they are not alone and those who can help us gain an insight into our isolation.

When I am with my dad's family I feel as if I am betraying …

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