Why search for a sperm donor online? The experiences of women searching for & contacting sperm donors on the internet
April 28, 2017
Whilst studies have examined the experiences of women who use clinic donors, to date there has been limited research investigating women’s motivations and experiences of searching for a sperm donor online. A total of 429 women looking for a sperm donor on Pride Angel (a website that facilitates contact between donors and recipients) completed an online survey. Fifty-eight percent (249) saw advantages of obtaining donated sperm online with the most common advantage reported as being able to connect with and meet the donor (n = 50 (24%)). A third (n = 157 (37%)) of the participants gave disadvantages, the most common reported was encountering ‘dishonest donors’ (n = 63 (40%)). Most recipients (n = 181 (61%)) wanted the donor to be ‘just a donor’ (i.e. to provide sperm and have no further contact). Whilst it was important for recipients to know the identity of the donor, some did not see this as important for the child and thus the level of information that parents have about the donor, and that which the child has, can differ. Finding a donor online blurs the distinction between categories of ‘anonymous’, ‘known’ and ‘identity release’ donations. Whilst the survey had a large sample size, the representativeness of the sample is not known.