Monday, February 14

Sperm Donor or Birthdad?

What qualifies a man as a birthdad versus a sperm donor? Is one really better than the other? Does having one or the other make the decision to place any easier?

For me during my pregnancy, there was no question that E was to be a birthdad (I didn't know the term existed though!) once B was born. Aside from the cheating on me, he treated me as if this was our child through my whole pregnancy. His older brother had always joked not to let E get me pregnant because he would just run. Well, E did not run. He went to my doctor appointments with me. He indulged my cravings. When times were so tight that we only had the money to feed one of us, it was I that ate. For these things, I will always love him.
There is nothing that will take away the bond we have -- of loving B and wanting to parent him but giving that dream up so B may thrive. Having his support was priceless. Sometimes, though, I think he is slipping into sperm donor territory. He all but refuses to talk about B. I know it is painful for him to even think about the adoption, but darned it that is his son. He has not yet made the call to apologize for the ridiculous things he said about T's children. He does not intend to.
Now that he is moving back to Va (he left Saturday), he is going to solidify himself as birthfather or sperm donor. I never imagined that sliding scale. I NEVER thought E would be towards the disappointing end of it. I feel like placement would have been so much easier if he started on the sperm donor end. I know he would have supported me if we decided to raise B. I sometimes wish that I never would have had that option.
Birthmoms tend to be birthmoms for life. There is no rescinding that title. Do birthdads have that same right, no matter their actions towards the adoption? Does E's distance from B, be it from pain, fear or stupidity, somehow change where he sits in the adoption?
In the beginning I thought adoption was a thing. Now I know it is more an animal -- living, breathing, always changing. I can't wait for the next chapter.


  1. Debbbb Dang you!! You always make me think your even more me.. and then you make me think DAMN YOU! I dont like thinking!;) <3 Once again to pounder I must! mucho lub!

  2. Wow, I had never thought about this. You really are thought provoking! Would be very interesting to hear what birthdads think.

  3. Since I'm still in a relationship with my daughter's birthdad, I can perhaps offer a different point of view to this. I think what makes the difference between a birthdad and a sperm donor is what they do AFTER the child is born. Like you said, we're rather stuck with the "title" and all the pluses and minuses that go with that. But birthdads can SO easily become just sperm donors if they don't continue to make the effort both in their relationship with you and their relationship with their child. I know that it causes them pain and confusion at least to a certain extent (especially if they were with you like E was throughout your pregnancy). I know for N - he told me that seeing her and talking about her reminds him of all the things he's missing. He agrees with the decision we made. He knows it's the right one. But other than talking about her occasionally when I hear something new, and the visits we've gone on already, I pretty much don't bring her up. Last week, N surprised me. I casually mentioned that I'd heard from T (amom) and said a couple of things about what she'd said in the email. He actually said that it was time for a visit in his eyes. He usually goes along with it, but doesn't initiate. That to me signified that he truly wants to be a birthdad. I hope that E does the same thing. Whether he makes strides in a relationship with you or not, I hope that he makes an effort in a relationship with your son...and that he becomes more than a sperm donor - like he was during your pregnancy. :-)

  4. MONIKA! I love you! I love N, at least his relationship and love for M! You are right that it is the relationship AFTER birth for men (in my eyes) that makes or breaks it, but why,then, is the title permanent for a woman? Is a birthmom who slides away from birthmom/open adoption/communication then a life donor? There is just something strange about how the dynamic of adoption is different for biomom than biodad that has me intreagued!