Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Donor Roulette

We are trying desperately to narrow ourselves down to one donor. (The fat lady hasn't sung yet. Co is due to get her period this weekend. It's been a long cycle, due to delayed ovulation....if I didn't know so much about charting, I'd be all excited that she hasn't gotten her period yet, but alas, I know it's nothing notable.)

So here are the two finalists:

Funny Guy: He is half Jewish, half Irish & something else. This makes him a mixture of both of our ethnicities (and since we'd try to use the same donor to get me knocked up down the line, that's attractive). He is into Asian philosophy (as am I) and just seems like a generally nice person (the sperm bank faculty recommended him as being intelligent with a sense of humor). He's a researcher in molecular pharmacology. And, as indicated by his nickname, his whimsical sense of humor shone through in his profile. A drawback: there is some alcoholism in his family (maternal grandmother) and that makes Co uncomfortable because of genes on her side. We've negged lots of donors as soon as we saw any family history of substance abuse, but we got really into this guy somehow before we noticed it, so now she (and I) are torn.

Nerdy Science Guy: He is neither of our ethnicities. He's a genetic researcher, and a self-described science nerd (we both find that charming). He was also recommended by our lovely sperm brokers as a genuinely nice person, intelligent with a sense of humor. He has a son, who he writes about very affectionately. He's artistic as well as brainy.

So, I am begging for any advice or ass-vice. I didn't think the ethnicity stuff mattered to me, and we aren't at all concerned about looks. Our initial first choice donor (Corgi Guy) did not share either of our ethnicities and I would have happily gone with him. But somehow, faced with these two choices, it seems to matter a little bit.



Trista said...

Honestly, I think we put too much weight on genetics in terms of addictions. That's not to say that I don't think they're genetic, I do think there's a genetic component to them, but just because someone hasn't listed a history of alcoholism doesn't mean it isn't there, you know? If this is the ONLY concern you have about funny guy, I'd say go with him. After all, you really don't know that the other guy DOESN'T have that kind of genetic tendency. He could be a liar, or in denial... Funny guy should get props for being honest. Plus, plenty of addicts and alcoholics have sprung from families that don't have a history of addiction, just as plenty of people born of addicts don't have the problem.

This is, of course, providing that Co's concerns aren't overwhelming -- if Co would feel worried and upset and sad about using someone with Funny Guy's history, then don't use him...

Clare said...

Sigh...I think I trista is right... I also think I would go for the science geek with a child. We ended up going with someone with a children. I think that it means they are more likely to have a realistic idea of what having children is - if your child decides to trace them when they are older (which is possible here)...thats my thought anyway.

In terms of the looks thing - we went for someone who looks like Gaye. This is based on my experience of having a child and how often people comment on their looks. My boy looks NOTHING like me - but very much like his Dad... and people comment all the time on that. It is nice to say - 'he has his Dad's eyes etc" I wanted to be able to say - 'yes blue eyes just like his/her mum' this was much more important to me than any connection that may be made from the child being like me. After having one that doesn't I know it doesn't matter!!!

charlotte said...

Crap. I am of NO help here. S and I could not decide, so we opted for using one donor one month, then the other one the next. What does your gut if you had to choose real fast?

It sound to me like you like funny guy better.

And it is ok to have the looks ethnicity thing be important.

Co said...

Just for some context... I'm sure others can rival my family tree. I'm just trying to explain why I already live in fear of my gene pool.

Co's family tree on her father's side (on mom's side they weren't mentally ill or addicts; they just all died young, in their 30s or 50s, which isn't much better):

Paternal grandmother [deceased]:
smoker, emphysema, caffeine addiciton, crazy old Italian lady (although they haven't added that to the DSM-IV yet--I loved my grandmom dearly. She was great, even if she did sometimes throw shoes at me and my brother.)

Paternal grandfather [deceased]:
alcoholism, diagnosed as "paranoid" after returning from WWII, heard voices, physically abusive

Father (deceased):
alcoholism/cross-addicted, smoker, asthma, allergies, physically abusive, cirrhosis, suicide at age 39

Brother (alive):
alcoholism, smoker, asthma, allergies, verbally abusive, physically abusive, criminal convictions (bomb threat, stealing firearms, biased hate crime), former skinhead, one doctor suspects he already has cirrhosis at age 30

asthma, allergies, hypothyroidism, caffeine addiction, no other addictions, no diagnosed mental illnesses

Calliope said...

Going based on how much space you gave each choice- I am going to go with Funny Guy.

(your family background sounds a LOT like mine. I have often thought that if I was pimping myself out as a donor I would NEVER get picked based on my family tree.)


Jen said...

My two cents (which in the whole scheme of things don't really matter)?? :)

After reading your post, it sounds like you should be leaning towards Nerdy Science Guy. Addiction, especially if it runs on both sides, is nothing to mess with. It is proven that it is passed genetically. Co's hesitation and concern with Funny Guy should probably be the deciding factor.

Now, go get pregnant!!! I'm excited to read all about it :)

Amanda said...

i agree with Trista--
Go with the one you guys like more. Funny guy sounds perfect for you, and i wouldn't let that small piece of genetic history get in the way.

Kind of as she said, that one person may have just been driven to drink by their nagging spouse! Okay, that probably wasn't a very funny joke, but anyway...

i'm excited for you guys. Go with your gut. You won't go wrong.

ms.bri said...

I'm useless here because EVERYTHING is a big deal to us when picking a donor. And we have the whole emasculation issue to deal with when doing it, so I couldn't give any insight into process. I just wanted to say good luck.