Back in the day, we called a man who sired hundreds offspring "a stud," or "Mongolian warrior-king." Now he's a sperm donor. This sperm donation shit is out of control!
When it comes to societal freak-outs over fertilization technology, sperm donation usually takes a back seat to female-centric procedures like egg donation and surrogacy. After all, it's just sperm; dudes produce gallons and gallons of it and spray it everywhere whenever they get bored.
But today the New York Times dives into the world of sperm donation and finds it's as worthy of gaping at in an unsettling combination of awe and dread as any other fertilization technology. Turns out those college guys who donate sperm for the simple reason that, dude, you get paid to look at porn, are now the unknowing fathers of entire NFL teams-worth of babies (including support staff!).
One donor fathered 150 kids. And, yes, this really does make it more likely that half-sisters and half-brothers might accidentally get it on. From the Times:
"My daughter knows her donor's number for this very reason," said the mother of a teenager conceived via sperm donation in California who asked that her name be withheld to protect her daughter's privacy. "She's been in school with numerous kids who were born through donors. She's had crushes on boys who are donor children. It's become part of sex education" for her.
Could I get your number? No, your sperm donor number.
ABC News talked to an anguished donor last year who was told that he had so many kids—"hundreds"—that "we can only use your sperm if someone orders it from out of state." Would love to see this guy's face when his daughter tells him she met a cute boy at college who really reminds her of him.
With all the uncertainty, you can understand why donor kids would want to track down their biological fathers and siblings with the help of an online database. But this hunt can lead to even more unsettling discoveries. Here's a "success story" from DonorSiblingRegistry.com:
My name is Devin O'Neil. I was bored one day and on a whim decided to join the registry. I had remembered a physical description that my mom had given me of my donor when I was 12. She had also mentioned that He was from the Fairfax VA cryobank. I used the browse by clinic feature and found a description that kind of fit what I had remembered. Not so long story short I met the guy after an email I sent and got a dna test. Turns out he was a match. The guy turned out to be Richard Hatch from that Survivor show on CBS.