Many patients require donor sperm, eggs, or embryos to be able to have a family, including single women, same-sex, and heterosexual couples. Their journey to parenthood is more complicated (and more expensive) than others going through a natural pregnancy or even IVF, however, they also have another hurdle to overcome: how and when should you tell your child about their donor?
One of our patients who used donor sperm to conceive sent us a message about how she told her six-year-old daughter Matilda about her donor. She has given us permission to share their story in the hope it inspires and helps others going through donation and IVF.
"I sat down with Matilda who is almost 6 and opened up the discussion about her donor conception. I found a wonderful book on Amazon called "You Were Meant To Be!" by Sherry Keen that explained a family's 'missing piece' and the special people that help these families.
Matilda listened intently as we read the book and then she had some questions about who in our family had the missing piece and who helped us find that piece? She asked some questions about her donor, so I got out our donor profile and we had a little look through. She discovered that she's very tall like her donor but she has brown eyes just like mummy.
Matilda thought that 'donor' sounds like 'donut' and so now talks about having a mummy, a daddy, and a donut! 🍩😆😆
After reading the story and the donor profile, Matilda asked if we could make our own book about us and her donor, so we sat down and went through some photos and created a very special book that had our pages and a copy of her donor's profile. I wasn't sure whether six was a tad late for introducing the topic but I'm so happy with how it went and Matilda has really embraced this special part of who she is."
This really touched our hearts and we want to say thank you so much for sharing what is a very personal story ❤️
If you are considering your own approach, we’ve found the Victorian Assisted Reproductive Treatment Authority (VARTA) has really good tips on how to tell your child about donor conception including: