Sperm Donor TV Show

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Alissa_Sal's picture
Joined: 06/29/06
Posts: 6427
Sperm Donor TV Show

http://marquee.blogs.cnn.com/2011/09/27/sperm-donor-documentary-comes-to-style/

It's finally come to this.

Just when we thought the TV industry had run out of ideas in terms of reality shows, the folks over at the Style Network present us with the documentary "Sperm Donor."

The one-hour show follows Ben, a donor whose generosity has led to more than 70 children – that he knows of.We meet Ben and his fiancee, who says it's "overwhelming" to imagine that her future husband has that many biological children out there. And of course some of the kids want to meet him.

1) Would you/do you watch this show?
2) Do you think it's ethical for the parents to allow their kids to be on a show about meeting their "sperm donor" - like, is that or should that be a more private moment for the kids than something broadcasted on network TV?
3) Would you have a problem with finding out that your fiance had fathered a child through sperm donation? What about 70?

zefroim's picture
Joined: 05/18/06
Posts: 126

1) Would you/do you watch this show? HE** NO!!!
2) Do you think it's ethical for the parents to allow their kids to be on a show about meeting their "sperm donor" - like, is that or should that be a more private moment for the kids than something broadcasted on network TV? NO!!!
3) Would you have a problem with finding out that your fiance had fathered a child through sperm donation? What about 70? YES!!!

Just a big, fat EEEEWWWWW all the way around.

elleon17's picture
Joined: 01/26/09
Posts: 1981

I saw an article about this on aol yesterday

1) Would you/do you watch this show?
I like bad reality tv, but not interested in this one

2) Do you think it's ethical for the parents to allow their kids to be on a show about meeting their "sperm donor" - like, is that or should that be a more private moment for the kids than something broadcasted on network TV? I think that those moments have been shown on TV in many different ways before (adoption stories, lost family members, etc) and I don't see much of a difference for this one. I hope it is done tastefully. The clip I saw was that he was telling his fiancee he had been contacted by 15-20 kids in the past that he fathered. For me, NO, but I'm not one to want to be on reality TV.....I just admit to watching it....ALOT

3) Would you have a problem with finding out that your fiance had fathered a child through sperm donation? What about 70? Wow, that is so hard to answer. I think if my fiancee had been a donor, I wouldn't have an issue. I think it is because at that moment it is just a thought. YOu don't even know if his "donation" was ever used or resulted in a successful pregnancy. At that moment it is not a real living person who looks likes, acts like him. When you put the reality of an actual number of childern I think it would be overwhelming to anyone. Definitely something to work through. If it happened in the beginning of the relationship, I would probably run. If I am in love and invested, I'm not sure what I would do

I would like to say though that I do not think that sperm donation is a bad thing. I think for some couples, or singles it can be a loving donation that allows them to bring a child into the world.
I looked into donating eggs in my early 20s. I ultimately decided against it because of the drugs you have to go on to release multiple eggs. I was fully aware I would have a child out there, but my outlook was (and still is) that is was something loving I could do for someone else. Yes, that child would have my genes, but the woman who carried it, loved it, raised it would be it's mother. (sorry for the use of it....very impersonal, but easier than typing he/she over & over)

Joined: 11/29/06
Posts: 1316

1) Would you/do you watch this show?
I have to admit that I would probably tune in. I may not set my alarm so I never miss an episode. But I would probably watch out of pure curiosity, as I do with all other sorts of shows.

2) Do you think it's ethical for the parents to allow their kids to be on a show about meeting their "sperm donor" - like, is that or should that be a more private moment for the kids than something broadcasted on network TV?
No. If I were a parent to one of those children and they wanted to meet their donor but it was going to be televised - NO WAY! I think that those meets can be emotional enough without a TV crew hanging around filming every moment of it.

3) Would you have a problem with finding out that your fiance had fathered a child through sperm donation? What about 70?
I think if he had a whole ton of children with different women who he has slept with I'd have a problem, but to provide donor sperm is different. It would be tough, but I think I'd be okay with it.

Joined: 06/04/07
Posts: 1368

1) Would you/do you watch this show? Yeah, curiosity would get the best of me so I would watch at least one episode.
2) Do you think it's ethical for the parents to allow their kids to be on a show about meeting their "sperm donor" - like, is that or should that be a more private moment for the kids than something broadcasted on network TV? If under 18 (I don't know how old his 70 kids are) I absolutely would not allow kids on as I do see it as a private moment. Over 18, it's up to the kid.
3) Would you have a problem with finding out that your fiance had fathered a child through sperm donation? What about 70? I'd really question 70+, like did he have some financial issues that he was so dependent on contributing? Is it a fetish of his? That number just seems so high. If it were a few, then I'd think it's pretty kewl. But at the same time, I'd be curious about them as well.

Joined: 12/10/05
Posts: 1681

1) Would you/do you watch this show?

No... But, I don't have cable so I don't watch many shows Smile

2) Do you think it's ethical for the parents to allow their kids to be on a show about meeting their "sperm donor" - like, is that or should that be a more private moment for the kids than something broadcasted on network TV?

Absolutely not! Meeting a bio parent should be private and not something to make money off of.

3) Would you have a problem with finding out that your fiance had fathered a child through sperm donation? What about 70?

Well, if you knew he donated sperm, it isn't a stretch to assume he's got some children out there. It becomes weird though if they contact each other and try to form whatever "relationship" people should have with their sperm donor "fathers". I don't think I could deal with that sort of baggage.

Spacers's picture
Joined: 12/29/03
Posts: 4100

I don't have cable so I don't hear about most of these shows, and I wouldn't watch them if I could, anyway. I really don't think people should be putting their personal lives and especially their children's lives on TV. Sad And super-especially, private intimate moments like meeting your biological father should not be on TV, super-super-especially if you're still a child. :(:(:(

I'd be OK with my fiance donating sperm before he met me. I don't think you should get to the point of deciding to marry without knowing what baggage each of you brings. If I love him enough to want to marry him, I have to take the baggage he brings. It might be a drum set, it might be an aversion to chocolate ice cream, it might be kids from a prior relationship, you have to decide if you can deal with the other parts of his life. 70 kids from sperm donation is a lot of baggage, but there were enough other things that made me want to marry him in the first place, so I will deal with that baggage.

But as someone else said, 70 kids seems like a lot & I wonder if there's something else going on with him. I actually looked at using a sperm donor 10-11 years ago when DH & I were on the outs about the subject of kids, and back then all of the sperm banks in CA were already limiting the number of kids who could be conceived from any one donor, so 70 kids really seems wrong for such a young man unless he was donating to multiple sperm banks without disclosing it, or making private donations.

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

Oh how I'd love to see a psych work up on this dude. Feels the need to spread his seed far and wide and then agrees to a reality tv show featuring him meeting the children? Talk about narcissist.

I'm a total hater when it comes to any and all reality TV, so no, I won't watch.

I don't know that I would necessarily have a "problem" with the fiance thing ~ but it would certainly be something to seriously think about. I wasn't even willing to date a man who had children from a previous relationship when I was single and I admit that his motivation or thought process behind choosing to donate would be taken into consideration in determining how I felt about it. I would skeeve the thought of children showing up at our door someday to meet "daddy" as it could totally impact the lives of any offspring that we were to make. It would be a big deal, lets put it that way.

Marite13's picture
Joined: 08/07/09
Posts: 3368

I read about this guy recently somewhere else. Apparently he made frequent donations as a way to help pay for law school. He was a popular donor because of his looks, smarts and heritage, if I remember correctly. And, he did what he did and never thought about it much...but apparently the MOTHERS of the children went looking for him, started groups online, etc- they all knew the donor by id number that they had used. So they went looking for him...but then I guess he somehow came across the fact that they were looking for him, and decided to meet some of these kids. And then he said, in the other article I read, that he might actually have more like 120 kids out there. Here's the link to the other article: http://www.boston.com/community/moms/articles/2011/09/15/sperm_donor_has_75_kids_and_counting/?camp=fb

I would probably end up watching this out of sick curiosity. As I understand it, it's not a new series, this is a one-off documentary about him.

My real issue with this is that he did what he did anonymously, and the mothers who accepted he sperm knew that. He was never SUPPOSED to find out about any offspring that came of his sperm. In that article I posted, I think there is one mom that said she started looking for him when her 4 year old just kept insisting that he wanted to meet his daddy. Personally, I think if you choose to go this route, you need to have a "no" response thought out and ready to go for that request- especially for a 4 year old.

I don't think it's fair for the kids to expect anything from him (not even a relationship) and I don't think he should feel any responsibility to them. But I think the whole situation is a million shades of gray as well.

culturedmom's picture
Joined: 09/30/06
Posts: 1131

1) Would you/do you watch this show? No. I like reality tv but this is not one I would watch. I don't see any entertainment value in it.
2) Do you think it's ethical for the parents to allow their kids to be on a show about meeting their "sperm donor" - like, is that or should that be a more private moment for the kids than something broadcasted on network TV? What is the difference between parents who let their kids be on any show? It doesn't matter what I think about what someone else should or should not do with their kids. There are a lot of things I would not allow my kids to do (or I would not do) but I watch on tv.
3) Would you have a problem with finding out that your fiance had fathered a child through sperm donation? What about 70?Well, I would not marry someone who had donated sperm because we obviously would not have the same views on family and children. So actually I would be glad to find out because better to find out before we get married then after. That said, I would never say never, but I think 70 is a big number and that says alot about his views on children and family.

Starryblue702's picture
Joined: 04/06/11
Posts: 5454

1) Would you/do you watch this show? Absolutely not, it sounds ridiculous.
2) Do you think it's ethical for the parents to allow their kids to be on a show about meeting their "sperm donor" - like, is that or should that be a more private moment for the kids than something broadcasted on network TV? If everyone in the family is in agreement, this should be a private thing (but then again, most of reality TV is stuff that should be done in private).
3) Would you have a problem with finding out that your fiance had fathered a child through sperm donation? What about 70? I think I would have a problem with the fact that he knew the count of donations that resulted in children. I would never be down for something like that if I were the one donating... I wouldn't want to know that my donation resulted in a child... it just makes it to weird.

elleon17's picture
Joined: 01/26/09
Posts: 1981

"Marite13" wrote:

My real issue with this is that he did what he did anonymously, and the mothers who accepted he sperm knew that. He was never SUPPOSED to find out about any offspring that came of his sperm. In that article I posted, I think there is one mom that said she started looking for him when her 4 year old just kept insisting that he wanted to meet his daddy. Personally, I think if you choose to go this route, you need to have a "no" response thought out and ready to go for that request- especially for a 4 year old.

I don't think it's fair for the kids to expect anything from him (not even a relationship) and I don't think he should feel any responsibility to them. But I think the whole situation is a million shades of gray as well.

I was wondering about this too. How does he know there are 70?

If I was someone who used a sperm donor, with the exception of illness that could be helped by a genetic connection (bone marrow, etc), I don't think that I would allow my child to contact until a much older age.

Joined: 03/08/03
Posts: 3187

1) Would you/do you watch this show?
I wouldn't, but it's not the kind of tv I watch anyway.
2) Do you think it's ethical for the parents to allow their kids to be on a show about meeting their "sperm donor" - like, is that or should that be a more private moment for the kids than something broadcasted on network TV?
I think it's deplorable, but it's also to be expected in the current culture in which we live, where people are so desperate for their fifteen minutes of fame, and it's so easily available through the hundreds of reality shows. It saddens me greatly and I think it does a lot of harm.
3) Would you have a problem with finding out that your fiance had fathered a child through sperm donation? What about 70?
I would only have a problem with it if he didn't tell me before we made (or as we were making) a serious commitment. I think donating sperm is pretty great as there are so many deserving moms-to-be and parents-to-be out there, but I would expect to know, understanding that despite all intentions to the contrary, a kid or two (or 70) could show up on our doorstep.

Alissa_Sal's picture
Joined: 06/29/06
Posts: 6427

1) Would you/do you watch this show?
No, but this isn't the kind of show that I'm really into anyway.
2) Do you think it's ethical for the parents to allow their kids to be on a show about meeting their "sperm donor" - like, is that or should that be a more private moment for the kids than something broadcasted on network TV?
I agree with Laurie on this one - I think it's sad and harmful, but not unexpected in our current culture. If the "kids" are over 18, then I think it is their decision whether they want to have what I believe should be a private moment made public. But if the kids are minors, I think it's sad and harmful that their parents aren't sheilding them from that.
3) Would you have a problem with finding out that your fiance had fathered a child through sperm donation? What about 70?
In theory, I have no problem with the idea that "my man" had donated sperm. I think that donating sperm/eggs helps many couples that might not otherwise have a chance to have a baby. But, I think that if I really thought that some of the children might contact us and want a relationship, that would give me pause. I'm not saying that I wouldn't want to marry him, because when I was single I think I would have dated a man with children through the more traditional means as long as he had a strong relationship with them. But it would give me pause, none the less, especially if we were talking about 70 of them. 70 kids that all want to be a part of this man's life would probably be a deal breaker for me.