Friday, December 30, 2011


A good friend of mine has miraculously discovered it might be possible for me to find SOMETHING out. Records about donors were apparently kept at the fertility clinic where I was most probably (or quite possibly?) conceived, although donor conception was not official at the time (1981) or in any way regulated by the law.

So, possibly, in some filing cabinet, the idetity of my real father might lurk (although I actually don't yet know for a FACT that I AM donor conceived - although I KNOW it based on family rumors and the fact that I look absolutely nothing like my "father" and neither do my kids).

And it would be illegal for them to reveal the identity to me.

So I asked the friend's friend - a person with connections among the doctors - to ask about the following things that really concern me, in order of importance:

1. Did my mother have fertility treatment there and what kind - IUI or IVF? Was her husband's sperm used or a donor's?

2. If a donor's sperm was used, what information am I entitled to? Can I know his name OR surame (as this does not infringe on anonymity)? His ethnicity? Occupation? Level and area of education? Color of hair, eyes, height, blood type, medical history, ANYTHING?

(Hey, medical history comes last for me. It's often touted as the reason we might want to know about the donors. Not for me. I don't need more stuff to worry about.)

3. Could the clinic contact the donor and ask him if he'd be open to anonymously - or not, whichever he prefers - exchanging a couple of emails with his biological offspring for the purpose of gathering general information which wouldn't necessarily jeopardize anonymity? Or could the clinic act as middleman in such communication? (I'm interested in general, harmless stuff, such as family interests, aptitudes, hobbies, temperaments, nothing scary.)

4. If it was IVF, how many embryos were there in total?

(I find it's important to me if I have discarded siblings that didn't make it for any reason. As in, Why me?)


What would YOU want to know if you couldn't know the PERSON? What information would you try to get?

Friday, December 23, 2011

And another one

A good read

My father

Is most probably of a different ethnicity than most of my previously supposed family, but the same ethnicity as my mother's father. Which would make me 75% that ethnicity. I don't even know the language. But I look like "them" and have always really, really liked them and felt a sympathy and affinity for them.

I never imagined him or fantasized about him. It seemed useless. But I'll never meet him. DC wasn't part of any official system at the time. There are probably no records. The clinic won't reply AT ALL to even my most mildly worded emails ("I am wondering if donor insemination was practiced by your clinic in 1981 and if there are any extant records.")

And then one night I prayed to see him. And then I had a very vivid fantasy in which I managed to find him and he was a nice, warm, sweet man I look like a lot. Interested in literature or languages or psychology - it kept changing.

It was easy to see him as kind because he most probably received no money - it was a time before remuneration for donors.

And I felt peace and closure.

How learning about being DC helped me love MY kids (x-posted)

There's a reason why being donor conceived matters practically in my journey.

Finding out about NPD has opened many healing pathways for me. I have felt angry and relieved and happy and alive since I found out.

But only since I found out I was donor conceived have I allowed myself to feel sad. And to grieve. Because I know I've always somehow known that I couldn't really expect my father to love me. I've always known that. I've always known at some level that he owed me nothing. And I couldn't bring myself to grieve the father he couldn't be because of his personality disorder. All I could feel was the sheer relief of not having to think of him as the perfect father any longer.

But there was still a black hole I was unable to face because I didn't know it was there.

When I allowed myself to believe there was a father out there I'll probably never know, I started grieving. And feeling sad at times.

And being more alive than ever.

And finally really, truly, totally, madly loving my children.

It's the strangest thing. It just happened. It's like something snapped inside me. Like something burst inside me, releasing liquid joy, allowing me to really love my kids.

A voice inside me said: "They're mine. They're deliciously, wonderfully, tangibly mine. They smell mine and taste mine when I kiss them. There's a bodily joy in the fact that they're mine and no one can take that away from me."

This changed everything. Everything. I wasn't a bad mom before. I did stuff right. I felt a tender love for them before.

But the difference is indescribable. I love them like a mother loves her children. Like an animal loves her cubs. This is real and physical and intense.

There was a block there. And the block was a little voice inside my head saying "Parents can't really love children," which I apparently learned from my childhood. This script didn't fully go away once I reinterpreted it as "NARCISSISTIC parents can't really love children." Part of the script always included also "NARCISSISTIC parents can't really love OTHER FATHERS' children." That was the full script I had learned. And only when it all came out was I capable of unlearning it. Because my children are mine.

Does that make any sense at all? I know it sounds crazy. But it's true.

I've never felt more alive or more joyful. I'm actually on good terms with my social father at the moment and pray for him. My heart aches for my real father, whom I'll never meet. And I'm the happiest I've ever been.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Wanted, chosen, selected: oh my

So many things in ART land that are couched in positive Orwellian Newspeak are actually scary when you see them from the child's perspective.

You were wanted? Well, not you - their child was, but you'll have to do, so try extra hard to fulfill all their hopes and dreams and soothe their infertility pain. That's the reason you exist. If you're not good enough, you may just cease to exist - they made you for that, after all. How does that make you feel?

You were chosen? Well, not exactly - you were adopted because they wanted a child and you were available, although in some cases adoptive parents pass up an offered child if it has an alcoholic or addicted mother. How does that make you feel?

And if you're a product of IVF, it's possible you were selected. That is, genetic testing was done on all your brothers and sisters, and you showed no signs of abnormalities, so the doctors selected you. Your defective siblings are probably destroyed. You were lucky not to be among them. How does that make you feel?

The truth is, ART are just not pretty. So a fairy-tale ways of narrating the stories of these conceptions were developed to deny that. But reality lurks behind them all. And the children will come to know this reality when they outgrow the fairy-tale stage.

Cloning is better

With cloning, the child knows what genetically influenced stuff to expect. The child knows her parents - they are her actual grandparents. The child is biologically identical to a parent, which might endear her to him or her.

I'm being facetious as I don't exactly endorse cloning. But it's still true.

Friday, December 9, 2011

You're Ours

Does every child have a foundling / changeling fantasy? Or just those children growing up in a (narcissistically) dysfunctional family? Or just those children picking up on some level on being donor conceived / adopted?

Whichever it is, I shared a fantasy of this sort with my parents once: "So," I asked smilingly, "isn't it possible that I was confused with another child at the hospital and that I'm not really yours?"

"You're ours," they replied with a stern, concerned look on their faces. "That much is certain. Never doubt it." My mother told me about seeing me for the first time at the hospital and seeing that I had her eyes. This proved it I was theirs.

Not only did I know then that to question this was irrational. Emotionally, I discovered it was somehow unpleasant for them and forbidden for me.

Narcissism and Having Children

This is a fascinating issue that is so commonly swept under the rug. What is the role of narcissism in the process of people having children? It's a simple enough question. But it's something no one really wants to ponder.

If you believe - like I do - that narcissism is a spectrum thing and that most people have certain relatively sane levels of narcissism that don't impede their functioning as human beings - then you'll concur that most parents out there are somewhat narcissistic, though they don't have Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

Narcissistic Personality Disorder prevents people from being able to actually relate to any human being in any real way. It prevents real parenting, period, whether the child is genetically related or not.

Now, sane levels of narcissism we can all relate to, right? I sure can. Thinking that something is cool about the color of your eyes. Or your aptitude for literary creation and interpretation. Or your musical talents. But that those engineers are just not quite as fun as your kind of people - no offense, right? Can we all relate to this? Or am I really very narcissistic for sometimes feeling this way?

Sane narcissism seems to conspire with genetic heritage in order to help kids get the unconditional love they need from their parents. You love who you are and you love your partner so together you get kids who resemble yourself and your partner. You're likely to favor these kids over other humans out there and invest in them. Thus the species survives. It makes sense.

Now, completely non-narcissistic people who truly love all humans in the world non-discriminately and have absolutely NO preferences at all for, say, their musical penchant over someone else's tone-deaf hatred of all music, will likely make quite suitable parents for other people's children - through adoption or unknown gamete donors (though this will not necessarily answer all the issues these children may face in not knowing their genetic parents). These rare godlike perfectly altruistic people will make perfect parents for anyone.

The rest of us imperfect parents have to concede that we we enjoy seeing our traits, penchants, temperaments - and those of our beloved partner, and our ancestors, and his ancestors - in our children. It's really sweet. It's delightful. Can't help it.

It's a form of sane narcissism. The sort of sane narcissism that has quite possibly allowed the human race to survive.

This is the stuff that compels many people to want to have kids.

That makes people go through all sorts of unpleasant infertility treatments before considering donor conception or adoption.

That makes many people who eventually do turn to donor conception or adoption as last resorts have, well, issues. Natural issues. Issues that shouldn't be suppressed. Issues their (")children(") are likely to have, too, because they will likely want to think of their traits / ethnicity / heritage as good, and valuable, and important. These issues cannot be wished away.

And where does that leave the true narcissist, the parent with Narcissistic Personality Disorder? He will never be a true father to any child, biological or not. But a non-biological child he has to pretend he has fathered so he could present himself as fertile will never ever even theoretically be able to please him.

Omen and Rosemary's Baby

Let's face it: these movies aren't really about the fear the world has of the Antichrist which will be its scourge. These movies are about the impact of a stranger's child on nice, decent, well-off couples with fertility issues. In them, we don't see the Antichrist grow up and rule the world and bring it closer to destruction. We see families suffering through the early stages of raising the Devil's spawn.

There is something about the Unknown that makes it fertile ground for fear or fantasy.

The "birth mother" could so easily be an addicted demented teen. The "donor" could so easily be a sleazy, amoral creep jerking off into a cup while looking at cheap porn for a small allowance. And so the child could so easily be just like his parents, although we choose to believe that we will be his only real parents and the only ones to impact him in any meaningful way.

We are told to believe that. We consciously might even believe it. But our collective unconscious seems to break out in movies such as these. The overwhelming fear of raising someone else's child, who might be sired by the Devil himself, for all you know, has to break out somewhere!

Isn't it only rational to imagine that parents who know that they don't know their child's parents will constantly have fears and doubts about the child they're raising? That every time the child misbehaves, or displays a difficult trait, or does or says something strange, the parents will see that Strange Other in the child and retreat from it in fear?

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


My origin was carefully concealed from me. Yet I've always somehow known on a subconscious level. You can hide this sort of thing from the child forever and never have them consciously suspect anything, but on some level the child will know something and just be confused and blame herself for feeling weird.

Here are some of the scattered hints I've had through the years of being donor conceived:

When I was 6 or so, I asked my maternal grandfather where babies come from. He said something to the effect of "Mom goes to a doctor and he puts the baby in her." For a long time, this was weird to me only to the extent that a man born in 1906 would say this instead of using a more traditional stork or cabbage story.

The weird part was how my social father reacted when I told him about this. He went pale. He was upset and angry. And he said "From now on, always ask me about everything!"

I interpreted this as being angry for my grandfather being dishonest about the facts of life. But his anger was still an overreaction difficult to understand.

When I was 7, I really wanted a baby sister. I was told this was impossible, without any explanations. Even afterwards, when I expressed this desire again, pointing out to them that I know my mother still has her period and that I know they have sex, I got no explanation at all beyond the customary "It's impossible" followed by an awkward silence and exchanged glances. No "We've been trying, but you know we have fertility issues" or "We don't want another child" or any rationalization at all.

When I was 16, I became very interested in the myths of ancient Gnosticism, particularly the story of the Demiurge / Ialdabaoth, the false god of this world, stealing the gift of life from the real Unknown Father, putting Adam on this Earth, and persuading him there are no fathers except him. I wrote a play depicting this myth. The character of Ialdabaoth was so easy and natural to create. He was a comical narcissistic pathetic little meanie saying things like "I'm your Daddy... there are no daddies but me... say Daddy" to the newly created Adam.

In the Gnostic myth, Adam eventually finds out his real father is the unknown God beyond the cosmos.

When I was 18 and became sexually active, my mother told me, in a whispering voice, not to think I won't get pregnant easily just because they had trouble conceiving. "Your father was the one with fertility problems. He didn't have enough living sperm." It was said with fear and guilt for revealing something no one was supposed to know, so it didn't even occur to me to enquire further. I tried to forget I knew as much, because I knew he'd be angry if he knew I knew. She was the one who took the "blame" for infertility publicly in front of others.

My husband remembers me saying, much before I was told by my aunt that I was donor conceived, that I think of my mother's family as my "ancestors", and not my father's family. In our patriarchal culture, this is really quite strange, and he asked me "How come?" I didn't know. I answered "I just do. I look like them, I am like them, I feel like I'm descended from them more."

When my children were born, I didn't expect them to look anything like my father. I didn't know why. He said once my second daughter looked like him, and I laughed - it sounded like a joke. It was impossible. I had no idea why, but the very notion sounded ridiculous. I rationalized it to myself as follows: "I look like my mother and nothing like my father, everyone knows that. So I guess I don't expect my kids to look like him, either. But genetics don't work that way and I know it. Traits skip generations. So why do I still expect my kids to look nothing like him?"

The fact remained: my kids look nothing like him, either.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011


I find some of the euphemistic labels used by the fertility industry quite unsettling. An extreme example is using "egg donor / pregnancy surrogate" for what in actual reality is in effect the mother of the child.

What prospective "intended" parents of children created through this must know in advance is that the children may not agree with these labels. They might put their own labels on the persons involved in their creation and upbringing.

For instance, I can't help thinking of my "donor" as my actual father, much like a mysterious stranger who might have knocked up my mother in a one-night stand, never to appear again.

And I think of my social father as... well, an impostor. A thief. A usurper.

At best, a stepfather.

Conditional Love

I found it interesting to discover in my research that being raised by narcissistic parents and being donor conceived leads to some very similar issues that the children face.

Low self esteem. Eagerness to please. Self-destructive behavior. Substance abuse.

Both situations involve a substantial barrier to parents being able to love these children unconditionally - exactly and precisely for who they are. A narcissist is unable to love and uses his children as a prop, an extension of the self, and source of narcissistic supply. The non-biological parent(s) of the donor conceived may do their best and even truly love the child - but despite the child's strange and mysterious features, aptitudes, temperament, and not for them. The children must pick up on that.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Parents vs. Children

When children end up in families they are partly or completely unrelated to this invariably seems to end in these parents and children somehow existentially pitted against each other.

The children have at least part of their identity concealed or unacceptable or, at best, neglected and unknown. Even the most benevolent adoptive parents cannot, say, help their adopted kids develop parts of themselves that derive from their genetic heritage.

The children's feelings of loss are not allowed and they are expected to conform to the family as defined by the parents. I see this as potentially problematic in direct proportion to the number of genetically unrelated persons that the child has to refer to as "parents" in that child's life.

On the other side are the parents. They really want to create their perfect family. They really believe they can use other people's children as materials. When those children beg to differ - even other DC adults or adoptees on the Internet - the very essence of all their hopes and dreams seems to be shaken.

This shows there's something fundamentally wrong about selling the idea that you can solve your infertility issues and create your very own perfect family out of other people's kids. You can't.

I'm not necessarily against adoption or even donor insemination in all cases. But I definitely don't believe they should be allowed to keep being touted as ways for infertile couples to become parents. Infertile couples can take care of other people's kids through adoption - and how about trying to restrict this to genuine orphans? But they should not be guaranteed the right to claim these children as their own and it is up to the children to be allowed to define their families according to their own criteria.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

On Being Wanted: Existential Debt and Existential Fear

Children from narcissistic families often grow up feeling their purpose in life was to please their parents.

Having been created with this purpose and having your very existence predicated upon it takes this to a whole new level.

I didn't know I was donor conceived when I was growing up. But when my aunt told me this only six months ago, I wasn't really surprised. It felt like the missing piece of the puzzle.

I'd always been told indirectly, you see, that I had to be especially grateful and happy about having been so very wanted. They got me, after all, after 12 years of marriage, 20 years of dating, when they were 39 and 40 (why I never enquired into this miraculous birth can be explained only by the deep knowledge that I wasn't supposed to). Which meant they were better parents who loved me more than anyone else out there.

And which meant I owed them much more than normal kids owe their parents.

I hated hearing this even when I was younger and didn't know what I know now.

Now I realize the depth of my existential debt. Created after 12 years of marriage. To a profoundly narcissistic social father. As a last resort, at the latest possible moment (fertility treatment is still not readily available to women over 40 in my country). Amid what must have been a great deal of ambivalence. I should be grateful - he let me exist, after all. That's actually how I do feel - only now it's out in the open and clear to me why I've always felt this way and tried so hard to please him and tried even harder not to displease him.

Even now, I keep feeling like if I do anything to anger him, he'll somehow take my very existence away. This is something I hadn't come across on other blogs by adult children of narcissists - this absolute, gripping, existential fear. I knew there was something else, something dark there, but couldn't quite put my finger on it.

I rationalized this fear: he'll try to take my kids away (although he's shown very little interest in them), he'll get me fired (he doesn't even really know where I work), he'll throw my family out of our home (he could legally do that, but he's renting out my apartment for money, so it would make no sense at all for him to do that - but I've spent many a sleepless night obsessing over this danger).

But it boils down to this: he allowed me, grudgingly, to come into existence. He created me and owns me. I'd better not displease him, or he'll undo it.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

"You were a child / you're an adult"

A particularly interesting and convoluted argument as to why my donor doesn't matter consists of two parts:

1. When you were a child, your legal parents had the right to define themselves as their parents for you and were thus your parents, and so you didn't lack anything, and you didn't know, anyway, and

2. Now you're an adult so you don't need a father any more. What would you want from him now, anyway? To buy you ice-cream and tell you bedtime stories?

So, before, it was too early; now it's too late.

Friday, December 2, 2011

"It's worse to be orphaned / adopted / abandoned"

It might be. Why compare stuff? It's not a fucking contest and I'm sick and tired of invalidation by comparison - cf. You're hungry? What about the starving children in Africa? You're in pain? What about people dying of cancer?

But is anyone saying it's just wonderful to have children's parents die or surrender them? Is anyone advocating doing this to children on purpose and intentionally? I doubt it. Because everyone realizes that not being raised by your biological family is not the ideal situation. And thus not something to be encouraged and advocated for.

So, by acknowledging that our situation falls under the same category as that of children who by unfortunate circumstances find themselves without their biological parents, shouldn't they also acknowledge that this is something you don't do to children on purpose?

"It doesn't matter, they loved you just the same!"

Well, they didn't love me, but that's a narcissistically-dysfunctional family thing, too.

But the idea that a donor-conceived child is graciously accepted by the social father just like his own would be is scary and eery on several levels:

First, it accepts the supremacy of blood ties for the parents while simultaneously denying it to the children (the father apparently has the right to not accept another man's child with perfect love, although this was his choice, whereas the child can only be grateful for being loved despite not being biologically connected, without the option of not accepting another father as her own, although the situation was certainly not her choice).

Second, it uses the ultimate trump card: "love". Love is all you need: if they claimed they loved you, or pretended they did in public, or told family members and friends they did, then what else do you need? What else dare you ask for? Knowledge and information on who you are? A connection to your actual father? The permission to feel cheated out of that? Why? Love is all you need!

Third, it posits the biological father as somehow inherently inferior - you were fathered by an anonymous donor, but "they loved you just the same"! And I should be grateful that this inferior, unknown, mysterious, dark half of me was not rejected (although it was, and often is). Where's the freedom to think of my real father as potentially superior to my social one? Mine was not a sperm-selling creep - remuneration for donation still doesn't exist in my country. I'm smarter, more successful than and not as fucked up as my parents and have talents and interests different from theirs - so, I can surmise that my biological father must have contributed to that. Where's my freedom to say "Well, I don't love you just the same and I would have preferred to have been raised by my real father, if it had been at all possible"?

Fourth, it states openly the fact that you are a back-up plan while expecting you to be grateful for the only family you know without hoping for a back-up plan of your own - meeting your donor and thinking of him as your real father.

"You should be grateful"

I'm grateful to God for the gift of life in general.

I'm grateful to my real father for jerking off. He was not paid. Donors were not paid in my country at the time.

I'm grateful to my mother for having carried me to term and given birth to me.

I'm grateful to my social father for not having seriously hurt or killed me for not being his.


I'm not grateful for being created in such a way that I'll probably never know my real father.

I'm not grateful for being the object and subject of countless lies.

I'm not grateful for the fact that all the adults involved apparently decided for me that I didn't need to know my real father nor he me.

I'm not grateful for everyone apparently deciding for me that my social father was somehow more deserving of the title "father" than my real father and more valuable and better in every respect than the man who actually fathered me, so that half of me should apparently just be gone.

I'm not grateful to the fertility industry for not checking whether the prospective parents had any psychological issues incompatible with being sane parents. Some people should not have children, and in some cases - like my social father's - it seems like nature knew what she was doing when she made him infertile!

I'm not grateful to the fertility industry for not realizing that a social father with narcissistic personality disorder would not only be a very poor candidate for a parent in general, but would also additionally be an appalling candidate for fathering another man's child, which is difficult enough for a normal man!

"You were wanted"

Was I?

Or was a child desired, for whatever reason? And why does anyone just assume that children are desired for selfless and absolutely altruistic reasons? And why the hell does anyone assume that a wanted child is a loved child?

What happened to welcoming children into this world? Neither of my two daughters was planned. Nor were they avoided. They came at their own time. And were welcomed. We didn't want them, need them, desire them for whatever reason or purpose. We welcomed them.

They were not part of any master plan. They can't fulfill our expectations or disappoint us. They weren't imagined in advance. They just were. They weren't wanted, they just came to us.

What child is really wanted? How can anyone say to anyone "You were wanted"? How would the parents know who'd come to them in the first place?

And in the case of donor conception, I was most certainly not wanted. I was the compromise. The back-up plan.

A child was wanted, yes. To prove my social father's fertility. To continue the family name. To make them proud. Not to be loved for exactly who she was and is.

Some parents who really want a child will not love her and will make crappy parents.

"Genes don't matter / It's just biology / Nurture over nature"

There's been an ongoing debate on nature vs. nurture for millennia now, and I'm expected to buy the "nurture is everything" side of the story as the absolute truth just because I'm donor conceived and thus expected to? Says who?

I'm sure couples opting for donor insemination like to believe that nurture trumps nature and that the real father and the one who impacts the child more meaningfully is the man raising this child. This is probably how they can arrive at the decision to use donor insemination in the first place. And that's fine.

But who says their offspring are somehow morally bound to subscribe to this idea? Has no one ever heard of children believing in different things than the people who raised them? Atheist children of fundamentalist parents? Traditionally minded children of hippies? Childfree children of the Quiverful movement?

Surely it is not inconceivable that a child raised by people who believe and claim that blood and kinship ties are relatively unimportant can beg to differ! And feel the loss of her real father, according to her definition of fatherhood!

If my father had, say, died before I was born and my mother had, say, married another man who accepted me and supported me, wouldn't I still be entitled to call my real father my real father? And wouldn't I be justified in wanting to at least know his name, his ethnicity, his religion? To see a picture of his? To meet his half of my family tree? To hear stories about him when he was a little boy? Something?

So, what's different about donor insemination? Intent? How does intent change the facts and how is it supposed to change the child's interpretation of the facts, when it was not the child's intent to be fathered by a person not intending to raise her?

"Would you rather not exist?"

There are questions and statements I'm angry about and feel the need to answer in advance. Because I've been made my whole life to feel guilty for not feeling perfect gratitude for having such perfect parents I keep attacking myself and then needing to defend myself from myself. But these attacks are out there as well, I didn't invent them. So I'll start with my personal favorite: "Would you rather not exist?"

Because, apparently, not feeling just wonderful about one's conception and parentage means you'd rather not exist.

It doesn't make sense. I could be the product of rape, a drunken one-night-stand, incest, a silly teenage relationship that ended before I was born, you name it - and still not wish my existence away. And not be expected to love the circumstances of my conception.

But this question does reveal something else to me - I do feel and always, it seems to me, have felt, an ambivalence towards my very existence. I have felt worthless and depressed and unworthy of love and life and at times suicidal. A failure. Never good enough. Incapable of pleasing.

I am now convinced this has something to do with my parents' ambivalence towards my existence.

I was proof of my father's fertility in public, a source of his shame in secret.

I was my mother's dream come true, and a source of her guilt in front of her husband for getting her genetic child when he didn't get his, which is why she probably allowed him to appropriate me and sabotage my relationship with her from the very start, when he persuaded her she couldn't nurse me, although she wanted to.

I was someone who constantly had to be lied to and about.

A part of who I was was unacceptable to them. And I just didn't know which part, as I had tried so very hard to completely please them. And still there was this sadness and anger and hatred in my "father"'s eyes. And this guilt and fear and retreat in my mother's.

Why am I writing this?

I have known for a while now that my father has narcissistic personality disorder and that this has impacted me in many negative ways. Connecting the dots and experiencing that "aha" lightbulb moment was very healing and liberating for me. However, I had a distinct feeling that a piece of the puzzle was still missing.

Then I was told by my aunt that my father was actually not my father. As soon as I allowed myself to actually believe that, everything started making perfect sense and my relief was total. The feelings that have been there for a long, long time, but always suppressed, were finally allowed to emerge. A cold, terrifying distance from my social father. A real love for my real children which I had forbidden myself from freely enjoying. And a deep sense of loss and yearning for my real father, whom I will never meet and whom I will probably never know anything about.

Obviously, I am not the happy poster kid for donor conception. My case may not be typical and my experiences not average. But that should not invalidate them. If anything, it should at least prove that not all families opting for donor conception are perfect loving families just dying to shower a child, any child, with pure unconditional love.

Because wanting a child does not equal loving that particular child.

Forgive me for being angry about a lot of things. This is my safe place to be angry. If my anger offends you, please stay away. This is the first time in my life I have been allowed to feel angry. The first time I have allowed myself to feel anything but perfect gratitude towards my parents.