Compiled by Roger Clarke, Curator
Helping couples to have a baby from donor eggs or sperm was always a sensitive issue. Successes in assisted reproductive technology (ART) meant that more donors were always needed. Clinics ran discrete recruitment campaigns; the media published the occasional story. Protection of donor identity was paramount. Sperm and egg donors’ came forward under an umbrella of anonymity and few believed they would ever meet their offspring.
Breaking down the barriers of anonymity happened slowly. Children born as a result of assisted reproductive technology (ART) are curious about their beginnings. Donors discovered information about their offspring. Donor conceived children and parents gained access to their donors’ identities. Contacts were made and relationships formed. Society accepts that children have a right to know about their biology. An era of openness begins.