A man from the San Francisco Bay area has fathered 14 children in the last five years through free sperm donations to childless couples he meets on the Internet — and is now in trouble with the federal government. Trent Arsenault says he donates sperm out of a sense of service to help people who want to have children but can’t afford conventional sperm banks. The 36-year-old minister’s son has four more children on the way. “I always had known through people praying at church that there’s fertility issues,” Arsenault told The Associated Press on Monday. “I thought it would just be a neat way of service to help the community.”
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration sent Arsenault a cease-and-desist letter late last year telling him he must stop because he does not follow the agency’s requirements for getting tested for sexually transmitted diseases within seven days before giving sperm.
Testing for STDs is, of course, crucial. It would also be great if somebody got this guy and the people who use his services into a psych evaluation.
I used to know somebody who donated sperm to a lesbian couple of very close friends. Of course, he was very involved in the boy’s life and the kid always knew that he had two Mommies and a Daddy. This is a normal, healthy situation where nobody suffers.
What is it, though, that the folks who use this man’s services tell their kids? How do they introduce the idea that the child’s father is a guy who donates sperm to all and sundry online? What do they do about all the siblings their kid has? I don’t think they get to know the names and addresses of other beneficiaries of this sperm-donating extravaganza. So how do they ensure that the kid doesn’t meet and sleep with one of his or her siblings? Or several? The man obviously has issues. How about the kid inheriting his psychological problems?
Of course, you can always conceal the truth from the child and hope that s/he will be lucky and never meet the siblings or discover his or her origins. But you have to be a really miserable, nasty human being to do that.