Meet a typical donor
Mark J is aged 43 and from Doncaster.
“Knowing I could change someone’s life for the better and give them the family they didn’t think possible was the reason I became a sperm donor.
“I decided to apply at the most unlikely time – when the new laws removing donor anonymity were removed back in 2005. Although many speculated it would put donors off, it didn’t affect my decision at all. I really didn’t mind that in future years a child could come looking for me, I think they should be able to do that if they want to.
“At the time I wasn’t ready for children of my own, but there was a lot in the news about the lack of donors and it really shocked me that so many couples couldn’t have a family. I just knew I wanted to help, mainly because I imagined how I would feel if that was me. I would like to think someone out there would help.
“So I looked into it via the National Gamete Donation Trust, and came to Manchester Fertility as I knew they actively recruit donors. The screening tests were a success – it’s always a relief to know your sperm is of good quality! - and so far I’ve donated sperm around 19 times.
“It does take a lot of time and commitment, I don’t live nearby to the clinic and it’s a long round trip every time I donate, but all of this pales into insignificance when I think about the people who are benefitting, and I do get expenses which helps.
“Since I started donating, I’ve had two children of my own, and I have a stepson too. My partner can see the joy we’ve got from our own family, and understands how important it is to me that I can help others get what we have. I have consented to helping the maximum of 10 families with my donations. “I know that so far I’ve helped at least two families with my donations so that makes me really happy. I just want other men to consider doing this too. I genuinely didn’t realise that there was such a shortage of sperm donors in this country, or so many people who need donor sperm to get pregnant. Knowing I’ve made a difference to someone is just amazing.”
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