* Author Topic: Telling the child and other people, Chat/Support thread  (Read 186197 times)

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Offline estrella

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Re: Telling the child, Chat/Support thread
« Reply #110 on: 17/03/11, 17:46 »
Hi there,
I am delighted to say I am 38 weeks pregnant and extremely excited. We used donor sperm from xytex and have told only my sister and we will be telling the child. My concern is how we have chosen not to tell our other family or friends, and the reasons for this are because I certainly couldnt tell my mother as she is an alcoholic and cannot be trusted, and my father has remarried and I dont get on at all with my stepmum. My sister is extremely happy for us and as I mentioned we will tell the child. Does anyone feel it will be a problem that we have told some family and not others? How will the child feel when she/he knows only certain members of the family have been told? DP says he will tell his family in time but as it stands at the moment he just wants us to know.
Is this situation getting 'messy'? Or is it fine just to tell the child and let them tell who they like?
E xx

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    Offline Spaykay

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    Re: Telling the child, Chat/Support thread
    « Reply #111 on: 17/03/11, 19:17 »
    I often wonder about why we find it so hard to tell others. I keep thinking, if we'd adopted EG then we would let people know from day dot, why do I find this so much harder, peoples ignorance I guess. People just don't seem to understand the idea of a donor. I hope I manage to let EG know in a natural way. Where can I ask advice now on how to explain thather sibling will have been concieved with mummy's eggs after her coming from a special ladies eggs? How can I make this all normal for her? ADVICE?

    Kay xxx

    Offline LV.

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    Re: Telling the child, Chat/Support thread
    « Reply #112 on: 18/03/11, 08:29 »
    Hello all,


    Hope you don't mind if i say hi, I've been a lurker on this thread on and off for a while. We've been on the IVF treadmill for about 3 years, been told my eggs had kharked it and had made my peace with moving on to DE. Initially when we thinking about DE I was scared, embarrassed, ashamed and insecure and didn't want to tell a soul, let alone any child, about any DE treatment.  The more reading I've done around the subject and have become relatively educated about it I know that it's absolutely the right thing to tell the child and I'm a total supporter of telling and I'm 100% comfortable with this now. Our first DE cycle failed but the clinic in Athens has been absolutely  wonderful and it was suggested for the first time ever that DH's sperm was not up to the job and they suggested we should also consider DS. Last month we decided completely on the spur of the moment (literally I spoke to the clinic, got a +ve ovulation test and flew off to the clinic that day) to try DS IUI and low and behold, bingo - a BFP last week.


    What has been more apparent in my thoughts recently is that if we tell the child than we'll definitely have to tell others too and we did tell a few close family members and friends about our decision to try DE, but as the DS cycle was so impulsive we'd not really filled anyone in. Of course (amongst the inevitable early pg fear and crazy) I've been thinking about this more and wondering why it seems harder to tell other people about donor conception, and why it seems more daunting than telling the child.


    Spaykay - I read your post and it echoed my own thoughts the discussions we recently had at the DCN meeting. We splintered into small groups after the main talk and the points I brought away were that many people in the group who had donor conceived children had experienced at some point an element of shame attached to the conception of their children. Those that had managed to move on from that and 100% accept and embrace their child's beginnings and be comfortable themselves were having a much more positive experience with the "outside world". I stress this wasn't shame about their children who they obviously adored, just about the mechanism of conception and I feel this is where I need to get to. The other thing I took away as practical advice was experiences shared about how they told others as the delivery of the news to others tended to match the reaction received. So if the news is told to others, for example, as an apology with hunched shoulders, muttered breath and generally negative body language the recipient of the news tended to receive the news badly and with judgment, whereas if the news is given with a smile, confidence, being loud and proud (as it were) then the recipient would generally be accepting and non-judgemental and it not be given a second thought. The other interesting point was that many in the room reported that friends and family would frequently actually forget about a child's donor conception and it was stressed that as parents (to-be) of donor conceived children, we're more bothered about it than other people are. Others have their own busy lives and of course their priorities are themselves, rather than us and the story of how our babies came to the world.


    I do think for us there will be lots of people we don't tell but it was discussed in our group that is a difference between secrecy and privacy. At some point it becomes the child's news to tell and not ours and I think this should be respected before considering telling everyone and anyone, I think there's a delicate balance to achieve.


    Ooo that was a bit of a ramble.


    Would love to hear other people's  storie, experiences and thoughts of telling others!


    LadyV xx




    Offline olivia m

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    Re: Telling the child, Chat/Support thread
    « Reply #113 on: 18/03/11, 12:37 »
    Hi Estrella, Spaykay and Ladyverte

    Estrella:  Experience in DC Network has shown that it is helpful for a child if immediate family, on both sides, know about donor conception so that if/when the child chooses to speak about it, the news is not a shock.   Have a look at our Telling and Talking booklet for parents of 0-7s for further support, guidance and practical suggestions about language to use around this.  Our philosophy is that it is the responsibility of parents to share the information with those who need to know up to the point when it is appropriate to hand over the information to the child to share with whoever they choose.  The age at which this starts to happen tends to be between 8 and 10 with parents and children consulting with each other during this time and the information being handed over for good by the time the child is in secondary school.  We have no evidence that children resent when older the fact that parents shared information about their conception with others during their younger years.  Comfortable parents share information in ways that help children in turn feel comfortable with information which is received as normal and unproblematic.
    Children over the age of seven or so can understand that there are some people whom it might be better not to tell about DC, either because they really don't need to know or because they wouldn't understand.  Under that age, they may get a confusing message (implicating shame) if told that they shouldn't talk about it with certain people.  Our experience is that young children of heterosexual couples rarely talk about DC because it is of little interest to them, partly because they have not really grasped the whole story yet and partly because they have more interesting things to talk about!  Children in single parent and lesbian families are often asked very direct questions about daddies by other children so they have to grapple with DC issues much earlier than children of heterosexual couples.

    Spaykay:  I understand your concern, but in DCN we have many mixed conception families, including one with egg donation twins followed by two spontaneous singleton pregnancies.  If you are not already a member do join us to connect to others sharing your situation.

    Ladyverte:  Thanks so much for bringing your experience of our recent national meeting to FF.  I of course support all you say.  HOW news is shared so often reflects how the speaker themself feels, so it is really worth a time of reflection, research and talking with others in a similar situation - reviewing DCN materials etc - before sharing information with others.  And people do forget...they really do.

    Olivia

    Offline DizziSquirrel

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    Re: Telling the child, Chat/Support thread
    « Reply #114 on: 18/03/11, 14:24 »
    Spaykay your thoughts echo mine too and I was going to say my plan is to explain to Abbie that its private to our family ( those in the know) and that she can choose who she shares the information with,

    LadyV thank you for your post, I found it really helpful and your so right, those who know do forget !! I will be refering back to it in the future for sure!

    Oliva
    Quote
    Comfortable parents share information in ways that help children in turn feel comfortable with information which is received as normal and unproblematic.
    Children over the age of seven or so can understand that there are some people whom it might be better not to tell about DC, either because they really don't need to know or because they wouldn't understand
    very true, thank you, I will get round to getting the telling and talking books one of these days!

    ~Dizzi~

    Offline leoaimee

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    Re: Telling the child, Chat/Support thread
    « Reply #115 on: 19/03/11, 19:00 »
    spaykay MEGAMEGA congratulations!!!!!  soooooooooooooo pleased for you!!  havent been much around the ff boards these days and havent seen your news on another thread.

     :-* :-* ^hugme^ ^hugme^ ^hugme^


    Offline Spaykay

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    Re: Telling the child, Chat/Support thread
    « Reply #116 on: 19/03/11, 20:53 »
    thanks aimee...ooo, new name!

    Not worried about telling as, even though some have said "Oh, so you're are not her mum" ermmmmm....yes! But just worried I'll get the telling EG wrong. Just fears of her not knowing about 1 side of her genetic make up and her sibling knowing. Whether to make comments about sibling looking like me, my family etc when she doesn't, although of course she'll get other atributes. I'm sure as time passes it will all fall together. She just needs to know that she is our world, full stop :)

    kay xxx

    Offline olivia m

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    Re: Telling the child, Chat/Support thread
    « Reply #117 on: 23/03/11, 22:17 »
    Hi all
    For those looking through this thread who are not clear about the benefits of openness, here is a link to Why Openness is Best for Children and Families on the DC Network site, http://www.donor-conception-network.org/WHY%20OPENNESS%20ABOUT%20DONOR%20CONCEPTION.pdf

    Olivia

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    Offline Spaykay

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    Re: Telling the child, Chat/Support thread
    « Reply #118 on: 25/03/11, 07:03 »
    Can i join dc network although i love abroad? What support is there abroaad?

    Kay x

    Offline olivia m

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    Re: Telling the child, Chat/Support thread
    « Reply #119 on: 25/03/11, 09:08 »
    Hi Kay
    Anyone who is part of a donor conception family is welcome to join DCN wherever they live in the world.  You would receive a Contact List of people you can email, get our monthly eBulletin of news and information, receive our twice yearly Journal of longer articles by email, be able to request contacts to be put in touch with others who share your situation (but who are not on the Contact List) and be invited to come to our national meetings held twice a year.  On several occasions we have had members attending these meetings from places in Europe (am I right in thinking you live in Spain?).   You could also come over for a Telling and Talking workshop - although these are open to non-members as well.  The only services not available to you would be borrowing books and films from our library and attending local meetings.
    Do join us.
    Olivia