After I told Dr. X that my best friend Dan was going to be my sperm donor, he directed me to the 3rd Party Donor consultant, Abby.
“Come on in,” Abby said. She was a very tiny woman with a girlish voice. She opened my file and looked at it for a moment. “So, you already have a donor?” She handed me a folder.
“Which sperm bank are you using?”
“Oh, no. No sperm bank. It’s a friend of mine,” I said. I wondered why she asked about a sperm bank since she had just read my file. I saw Dr. X write “DONOR: GAY BEST FRIEND” in big, black pen.
I thought a 3rd party donor meant you knew the donor and I thought she was the 3rd party donor consultant. “What exactly does 3rd party donor mean?” I asked. Clearly, I was confused.
“It means you have a donor,” She said.
That’s what I thought. I think.
She took back the folder that she had given me and switched it with different one.
I was going to try not to cry during this meeting, but I thought I’d warn her just in case. “By the way, if I cry, it’s OK. I’m not upset. I’m just an emotional person.”
Abby looked up at me; panicked. “Why? What’s wrong?”
“I’m just emotional,” I repeated. It was so weird how no one here seemed prepared for crying.
“OK,” She said, looking really uncomfortable.
There was a real, “crying is bad,” attitude all around. Ironic. Babies cry.
She opened the correct folder and explained that before we got started on any procedures, Dan and I would each need lawyers and Dan needed a letter from a psychologist. There was a page of psychologist referrals and then a page of lawyer referrals.
“We don’t need these lawyers, “I told her. “We were just going to have papers drawn up on our own.”
Abby almost flipped out. “Uh, you actually have to get the legal stuff done a certain way. We need you to each have a lawyer and have the paperwork sent to us. Just call the ones on this list. They’ll know what to do.”
“Why?” I asked.”Why do you guys need legal papers from us? Is it about us not suing you or what?”
Abby was flustered. “They, um… it um…. It needs to be done a certain way. So you should try these.” She tapped the lawyer paper as she didn’t answer my question.
“How much will it cost?”
“Umm, about $1000. For each lawyer.”
I cried, of course.
“Its okay, its okay,” she said, freaked out.
I was so annoyed. “Dan and I are best friends. We have talked about having this baby a lot and it’s all worked out. We aren’t going to sue you guys. Is that what this is about?”
“But…” She stammers. “But… you aren’t married.”
“Married?!! “ I glared at her. I was horrified that that was her only response.
She laughed nervously. “Well, just call these lawyers. They will be able to tell you what you need.” Abby still hadn’t told me why. I felt like she didn’t know. “Here are a list of psychologists. He will need an analysis and a note from one of them, saying he is in stable condition to be a donor.”
“If we were married, would he need a psychologist letter?” I ask.
“No,” she said, “He needs the letter because he’s a donor.”
Ugh. She was driving me crazy. We stared at each other.
I hated this place a tiny bit more.
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