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The Game of 20 Questions, For Our Sperm Donor

By Aela Mass |

Our first appointment with the fertility center is quickly approaching (two days away!), and my wife and I have been wondering what kind of questions sperm donors have to answer when they fill out their paperwork. We assume that medical history, physical characteristics, and other such pertinent – but boring – information is gathered. But what about the tidbits that make people interesting? After visiting with my parents this past weekend and having an in-depth discussion with them about the details of choosing a sperm donor, Sara and I got thinking: What if we could ask our sperm donor any questions we wanted to, aside from (what we’re assuming is) the usual Q&A? So we came up with these 20 questions while driving back from my parents’ house. What would you ask if you were in our position?


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Two Moms Create a Sperm Donor Questionnaire for the Sperm DonorLifestyle

When you were a little boy, what was the first thing you remember wanting to be when you grew up?

We both agree there's something wonderfully sweet about this question, even if it isn't terribly revealing, and we're convinced the answer will be far more interesting than whatever he currently does for a living.
Photo: State Library and Archives of Florida

Main Photo: Marco Belluci

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More of Aela on Babble!
Let’s Go Shopping For Sperm! Day 1 at the Fertility Center
‘Twas the Night Before the Fertility Center

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About Aela Mass


Aela Mass

Aela Mass is a lesbian writer and editor living the dream on Martha's Vineyard with her wife, Sara, and their dog, Darla. She miscarried her twins at 17 weeks and has undergone numerous IVF, FET, and IUI cycles. Her writing has appeared in The Huffington Post among other publications. For more of her work, visit her blog Two Moms Make a Right. Read bio and latest posts → Read Aela's latest posts →

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10 thoughts on “The Game of 20 Questions, For Our Sperm Donor

  1. laura j says:

    one thing I’d add after going through the process myself…how big were you (& any siblings) when you were born? I’m now to the point where I’m wondering just how big this kid is that will one day have to come out of me & knowing that my donor’s sperm was the 6 lb variety would give me peace of mind over wondering if he was a 9.5 lb baby

  2. kay says:

    We took a very different approach – we didn’t need to know anything beyond the big medical stuff. We saw our donor a lot like a blood donor – someone who gave a gift to help make our lives so much better, but his personality and birth size and relationship to his mother meant little to us. There is so little we can control about the process of conception via donor – so much is left to chance.
    As it turned out, I gave birth to a little clone of myself from wht my family tells me; except she has dimples and a hairline like her non-bio mother. ;)

  3. Laurie Schwartz says:

    Besides all the medical questions….
    Do you have musical talent? Play an instrument?
    Good in math and or science?
    Are you technically swift?
    Creative in art?
    Do you have any degrees?
    Any other donor children?
    Are you a compassionate and spiritual soul?

  4. Jessica says:

    Too bad someone dont ask these same questions to the men they are going to marry!!!

  5. Jessica says:

    Too bad some women don’t ask the same questions of the men they are going to marry!!

  6. aelahmass says:

    Laura, that is a GREAT question that I never would have thought of! Here’s to hoping your donor was a 6 lb newborn! :)

    Kay, that was always the way I thought I’d feel — medical is really all that mattered. But as this became more and more real to us, my wife and I thought it’d be nice to know more than basic details about our donor. So that if our child ended up having a love for something neither of us do (say, math), then we’d be able to associate that with our donor — at least to a degree. And of course, like you say, so much is left to chance. Even if by some miracle of science Sara and I were able to conceive a child all our own, there’s no telling, no guarantee, that she or he would detest math like we do ;-)

    Laurie, have you done this before? All of those questions, or some varying form, *are* asked of the donor! :) Except the one about donor children. But the information provided does say whether his sperm resulted in pregnancies. All are always yes. Having multiple donor-siblings is something Sara and I are preparing ourselves for — as it is oh-so-very common. In fact, I’ll be writing a post about it soon!

    Jessica, the amount of planning that goes into creating a family for a gay couple is outrageous! This is just the tip of the iceberg :)

  7. Babou says:

    These questions are fun, but many seem pretty irrelevant to me as they are rather linked to environment more than to genetics (or so it seems according to our current knowledge)

    If someone is pro army or not, likes cat or dogs or gets along with his mom to me is pretty irrelevant… so is if somehone is into heavy metal or something that yells… it changes through life and personally even if I’ve lived with my parents my taste are very different from theirs. So not the top 20 questions I’d ask… I’d rather focus on genetics, mental capacity (did you had trouble learning to read, do you have a good memory, attention span) and physical abilities (sports, agility)…

  8. aelahmass says:

    Babou, the standard questions asked of sperm donors at the sperm banks generally cover all the *really* important stuff – like genetics, learning ability, physical fitness, and the like (And of course, medical history!). My wife and I created this questionnaire to showcase what the ideal attributes of our donor would be – with all the common and hard-fast “musts” (i.e. No family history of breast cancer) aside. We did this with the thought in mind of “getting to know” our donor, so that we had information for our child if he/she ever wondered where her/his love of, say, math came from (since it certainly wouldn’t be from my wife or me!). Cheers, and thanks for reading!

  9. rin says:

    Who are u ppl? Really….? Sorry but i think these q’s are stupid. You actually believe that ur child will come out less romantic just because the donor isn’t or that he might like rock music nd be wild just because the donor is. Who in their right mind thinks this way? And now there’s a “gay gene”……..! Is ppl like u that shouldn’t raise kids……sorry!

  10. aelahmass says:

    You’ve misunderstood this post, Rin. Nowhere do I imply that I think these questions would tell us anything about or predict any characteristics of our future child. These questions were intended as a fun way to get to know our sperm donor better, so that when our child has questions, we could better answer them. Also, these questions are completely pretend, since there is no way we’d ever actually be able to ask our donor any of them – the process of choosing a sperm donor doesn’t work that way. I’m sorry that you took this post so seriously and felt the need to judge me because of it. But that’s OK, because I know I not only deserve to have a family, but that I’ll be a very good mother.

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