How does one go about deciding the genetic fate of their offspring? What a daunting and bizarre experience! I know less about my ex-husbands genetic background than I do about the potential “baby daddy.” Why I chose not to reproduce with him had little to do with genetics, however!!!!
Here are the basics. There is a catalog of donors, which you can access online. The initial list gives the basics-hair color and texture, eye color, height, weight, some screening results, and typically educational background. Then you can review a short profile which gives a bit more family medical background and “essay” type answers to some questions. You can then purchase more information about the perspective donor, including in some cases, baby pictures and current pictures. I have decided to go the “open” donation route, which just means that the donor is open to some amount of contact/disclosure once the child is 18.
Now, I have done more than my share of online dating, and this seems similar in that there are so many choices, you can psyche yourself right out of making a decision. I think my mind is programmed for finding a mate and a good father. It’s difficult to think only in terms of genetic selection. There are some obvious rule outs based on my own family medical history, but hair color, eye color, height, weight, even educational background. How much do these things really matter? Will I end up regretting my choice of donors? What if my child is short or suffers from obesity? How much of that is controlled by environment? I never realized how difficult this would be to think about.