Telling donor-conceived children about their origins

This information was correct at the time of publishing. It may not reflect our current practices.

How and when should you tell a child born through egg or sperm donation about their origins? 

In the news this week was a feature about people who found out years down the line that they were donor-conceived, and their attitude towards the discovery. 

All of the people featured were unable to find out the identity of their donors, as all were conceived before 2005, when the law was changed to give donor-conceived people the right to find out who their donor is.

The question of explaining to a child their origins is an issue we address at length with you when you come to us for treatment using donor sperm or donor eggs.

Our counsellors will talk to you about ways you can approach the topic with your child, when the time might be right to do so and how you can explain to them the nature of their conception so they can understand how they came to be born. 

We’ll also talk to you about what your child’s rights are, including the fact that they can apply to HFEA when they turn 18 to get their donor’s details if they so wish to.

All of our egg and sperm donors complete detailed profiles to help you decide if they are the right donor for you, with many donors drafting a personal goodwill message to any child you may have, which can also be shared your child in future so they can understand more about their donor and their motivations for donating.

Our team is here to support and guide you through the many different implications of using donated sperm or eggs, with your wellbeing – and that of any child you may have – at the forefront of everything we do. 

If you’ve got any questions or need our advice, contact our friendly team on 0161 300 2730. 


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