All fathers should pay child support

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martin dufresne

She could not and did not.

Caissa

An anonymous sperm donor has no obligation, financial or otherwise to any resulting children conceived using his sperm.

martin dufresne

Like an anonymous poster to any consequence of his words...Wink

Caissa

To be serious, Martin, I believe this issue of the state's obligation to the child is the more important question.

Caissa

Did you miss Martin's Wink Ktown?

Ktown

 

yep. I did.

remind remind's picture

Actually, this is a very interesting discussion for a variety of reasons. However, first I would ask why do men donate sperm to a sperm bank?

Snert Snert's picture

Quote:

She could not and did not.

 

Presumably, someone did then. I'd have assumed that a woman would have to sign some sort of consent document, and that that document would indicate that the sperm donor will be anonymous, and will not be financially responsible for any children that result from the procedure. Surely nobody signs up for IVF at an anonymous sperm bank with the assumption that if they ever need to, they can contact the donor for financial support.

Quote:
However, first I would ask why do men donate sperm to a sperm bank?

This is purely anecdotal, but a buddy of mine, many years ago, signed up to be a donor. I think he got paid something like $50 for a donation, and was told that his donations would be used for up to ten conceptions. He was in school at the time, and a little money meant groceries. I recall we joked about having made many "donations" since puberty that were not compensated at $50/per.

Ghislaine

Anything other than the legitimate measure of having the sperm donor's name on an original birth certificate, which a child has a right to access at age 18 (in addition to anonymous medical info in an emergency) would totally ruin the chances of any woman or couple accessing ivf with sperm donors. No men are going to donate sperm if they are on the hook for child support - especially if they don't even get a one night stand at the same time.

feather sky, I fully agree with every other example where a men willingly engages in sex (and should know from sex ed what the results can be and that contraception fails and the excuse of a women "lying about being on birth control" is irrelevant) he should be on the hook for child support.

As martin points out, there are many other things that need to occur policy-wise in conjunction that also tie in to a pregnant woman feeling like she actually does have a choice and is supported by society in adequately caring for herself and her child.

In terms of sperm donors being on the hook for child support, I don't think the homosexual community, couple unable to conceive, etc. ,etc. are going to in any way support that type of thing as inevitably available sperm will disappear.

Snert Snert's picture

Similarly, how could anyone ever put their child up for adoption, if their connection and obligation to their child transcends any kind of legal agreements?  Basically, you could either keep and financially support your offspring, or not keep but still financially support your offspring (if that financial support ever became desirable).  I imagine that would put a lot of parents, particularly single mothers, in a bind.

remind remind's picture

All this has got me thinking.

What are the implications for sperm donars remaining anonymous, yet having children elsewhere, who may end up running into their biological half sibling, as it seems there are many floating around at 10 shots out of one depsoit only, and their getting together and having children?

Moreover, I believe some men deposit sperm, and not just for a fast buck, who want to have progenity, without the responsibility. Is this acceptable?

martin dufresne

Mothers groups such as Welfare Warriors start from a very common sense imperative: Children have to eat three times a day.

If you tie meeting that need to fathers becoming moral enough to supply the money for that, children starve. This is why people have fought for and obtained from the State some measure of family allocations and welfare - although these are being cut back in a big way, tied to workfare obligations, even "marry the father or else" politics in some US states, etc.

I think the system is terrified at seeing women having - probably for the first time in recorded history - the possibility of leaving men and raising children (or not) without feeding, clothing, caring for (and being fucked by) a man in the bargain, and it is working very hard to shut down those options.

Using "children's rights" is often part of that drive, the promise of eventual support is being dangled to justify re-empowering men qua fathers. "Fathers rights" group use "no taxation without representation" rhetoric to clamor for control rights. Which is why all persons and corporations must pay child support, not just fathers.

It's Me D

remind wrote:
I believe some men deposit sperm, and not just for a fast buck, who want to have progenity, without the responsibility.

Do you have a reason for that belief? I'd love to know why you think that.

martin dufresne

"...one case in the early 1990's when a fertility doctor in Virginia was found to have fathered as many as 75 children by inseminating patients with his own sperm(...)"

(Source: "Are You My Sperm Donor? Few Clinics Will Say", New York Times, 2006)

It's Me D

Thanks martin, I hope that example isn't typical! Although if it is I suppose there's no concern of the sperm banks drying up.

Ghislaine

remind wrote:

All this has got me thinking.

What are the implications for sperm donars remaining anonymous, yet having children elsewhere, who may end up running into their biological half sibling, as it seems there are many floating around at 10 shots out of one depsoit only, and their getting together and having children?

Moreover, I believe some men deposit sperm, and not just for a fast buck, who want to have progenity, without the responsibility. Is this acceptable?

Wow, remind. Those are really good points. Reasons I had not even thought of re: why an individual should have the right to know who their biological parents are.

I am sure the chances are slim - but there is a possibility of ignorant incest out there, isn't there? Especially if one person donates a lot in the same city.

remind remind's picture

One of my friends is adopted, and was seeking her birth mother in part to see if she had siblings, and her adoptive family were whacked, as she was adopted to provide sex to the father, that the mother did not want to give. Horrendous story, and she is in the middle of a court battle with the BC Ministy right now and is suing her adoptive family, as well. Her "religious" adoptive mother actually admitted that is why they adopted her.

Anyhow, beyond that aside, when the search comes back she finds out that she knows her half sister, and indeed me too, as I have been friends with her half sister for decades now, while being friends with her too. And I knew they were both looking, the one was looking for her sister that was apprehended and adopted out, while the other was looking for he biological family and what a surprise it was to find out they were one in the same searches. They were from differnt parts of the country even. One was raised in Toronto, while the other on the Sunshine Coast of BC. Though the sister from Toronto moved to Vancouver Island, as that was where her family were originally from, when the sister was apprehended, and that is how she met her sister, and not through me either.  Now if one would have been male, they could have easily been set up by me to meet as prospective partners, or in running into each as they did, they could have easily hooked up. That was when I realized the need for adoptive children to know, but I had not extended that realization to those who were the result of sperm donation.

 

martin dufresne

The UK has interesting protocols in place to try and avoid genetic kerfuffles and empower children to access information when they turn 18 (New Scientist story).

As for accidentally birthing children with a half-sibling, systematic DNA tests ought to be a simpler way to avoid that.

Ghislaine

remind, that is a disgusting story. My heart goes out to your friend who was abused. Having received training in and participated in screening of potential adoptive parents, I can say it is extremely rigorous and invasive now and adoptive parents are asked about everything - including sex life and frequency. (this however does not affect the oppressive manner in which some children end up in care).

martin: I am not sure what you mean by systematic DNA tests? If someone doesn't know who one or both of their bio parents are they should ask for a DNA test from any person they wish to sleep with?

martin dufresne

The way I see it is more like "If two people want to birth a child between themselves, they should each have a DNA test to verify whether they are "too close for comfort" - I don't even know if benchmarks have been set to that effect. Simply having sex with a half-sibling shouldn't be a problem if none of you two know you are (half-siblings, not having sex...).

Snert Snert's picture

Quote:

Moreover, I believe some men deposit sperm, and not just for a fast buck, who want to have progenity, without the responsibility. Is this acceptable?

You don't have to approve, but I don't think there's much anyone can do about it. Make it illegal to donate sperm in the hope of joining the gene pool and men would just say "Oh, I'm here for the money". In that regard, it's similar to the debate over whether parents should be permitted to abort a pregnancy if they know their child will be overweight or not blue-eyed, or whatever. It's a (somewhat) interesting cocktail party debate, but if you accept abortion on demand then you accept that sometimes people will have reasons you don't like, but more importantly, reasons you simply cannot police anyway.

 

In the specific case of IVF, it still seems like a willing buyer/willing seller arrangement, regardless of whether the donor is in it for what we would call the right reasons.

remind remind's picture

Well ghislaine it is worse than that, she has her Ministry records going all the way back, and indeed one social worker, male, had the gall to write in her records that it did not matter if she was sexually abused by her adoptive father, as her lot in life would not have been any different had she not been apprehended and adopted out.  Hence the court battle with the province.

Ghislaine

martin dufresne wrote:

The way I see it is more like "If two people want to birth a child between themselves, they should each have a DNA test to verify whether they are "too close for comfort" - I don't even know if benchmarks have been set to that effect. Simply having sex with a half-sibling shouldn't be a problem if none of you two know you are (half-siblings, not having sex...).

 

ok...but pregnancies are not always planned you know.

Ghislaine

remind wrote:

Well ghislaine it is worse than that, she has her Ministry records going all the way back, and indeed one social worker, male, had the gall to write in her records that it did not matter if she was sexually abused by her adoptive father, as her lot in life would not have been any different had she not been apprehended and adopted out.  Hence the court battle with the province.

ugh! Makes ones blood boil. off-topic but I thought I woudl share a happy store. Gay couples were allowed to adopt here about a year before my first year in practice. we had 12 year old girl who had been sexually abused, was uncomfortable around men and obviously of an age that is difficult to find an adoptive home for. A lesbian couple adopted her and it they are all extremely happy. the girl does not have to share any personal space with men and the couple have  a wonderful daughter.

Just thought I would add a little happy anecdote in here :)

remind remind's picture

I think IVF, should be taken under the ministry of health dictates and funded by the government, with any for profit activities on the part of the service provider taken out of it.

Moroever, this would insure official health record keeping that could be accessed if needed. Plus it would stop the horrendous litter births occuring today.

Snert, I wasn't approving or disproving actually.

Refuge Refuge's picture

martin dufresne wrote:

As for accidentally birthing children with a half-sibling, systematic DNA tests ought to be a simpler way to avoid that.

Just on this note my ex husband was adopted. After we met, before we got serious, I went to my mom and made sure about my parentage being correct and told her exactly why. She told me I was all hers. I have a friend, now in her mid twenties who is the result of one of the earliest IVFs through sperm donation and she always asks about adoption etc when she is dating someone. In this case it comes down to trusting your parents (and yes Martin, if my mom would have admitted needing a little help I would have gotten a DNA test to make sure before getting serious with my ex-husband).

Refuge Refuge's picture

Wilf Day wrote:

One argument in Ontario which may have been made is based on s.158(6) of the Child and Family Services Act. It says all relationships between the adopted child and others shall be determined in accordance with the adoption order but this does "not apply for the purposes of the laws relating to incest and the prohibited degrees of marriage to remove a person from a relationship." So I am entitled to know who my sister or half-sister is before I get married, in case it's her.

So does that mean that when the parent adopts the child they have a legal duty to tell the child they are adopted to avoid this?

Wilf Day

Refuge wrote:
So does that mean that when the parent adopts the child they have a legal duty to tell the child they are adopted to avoid this?

I have never seen a decision on this. But if the parents know the birth famly, they would certainly have a duty to warn off their adoptive child if the child started to develop a relationship with a biological sibling.

In Ontario the adoptive family can obtain non-identifying information about the birth family. I don't know if one has even asked a court to order that they have the right to know the identity of siblings in order to prevent incest.

   

Refuge Refuge's picture

I think that would be struck down because a simple DNA test would show this so why not get that instead of trying to make the adoption industry more open (just to clarify not making any comment on if it should or shouldn't be more open).

What would be interesting if parents didn't know the birth family but did not disclose to the child they were adopted.  If the child or the spouse then filed suit with any of the parties involved (the adopted family knowing the possibility of a sibling or the birth family who knew that there was a sibling out there) for not disclosing.  I wonder if there would be a case for that.

I had thought of it only on moral / ethical grounds, not on legal grounds.

Wilf Day

Laura Colella wrote:
So I guess what  I need is to understand why an adopted person has the right to know who his/her biological parent(s) are/is.

One argument in Ontario which may have been made is based on s.158(6) of the Child and Family Services Act. It says all relationships between the adopted child and others shall be determined in accordance with the adoption order but this does "not apply for the purposes of the laws relating to incest and the prohibited degrees of marriage to remove a person from a relationship." So I am entitled to know who my sister or half-sister is before I get married, in case it's her.

Laura Colella wrote:
if the custody arrangement is 50/50, there can still be child support.  In a joint custody situation, if a parent makes substantially more than the other parent, he or she might still have to pay child support.  In a situation where the non-custodial parent has 40% or less access rights with his/her child, he/she will have to pay child support in most cases.   

. . . some people will leave their jobs, disappear, hide revenue, or ask for joint custody in order to avoid having to paid child support.

Yes, except in Ontario we use the term "shared custody" for 50/50 arrangements. Lots of separated parents use the term "joint custody" for a variety of reasons: it is less exclusionary, it means that the surviving parent will have custody in case the other dies, it means that the parent with primary residence cannot change the child's surname without the consent of the other, it gives both parents the right to consent to blood transfusions (handy if the residential parent is a Jehovah's Witness), and (pragmatically) it makes the non-residential parent feel he has gotten something of value even if it is only symbolic. But "joint custody" does not mean 50/50.

Feather Sky wrote:
a fathers obligation is to the child, not to the mother, so the mother can not give away or sign away or sell the rights of the child because they are not hers to give.

This is true. Some fathers unwisely make an arrangement to pay "lump-sum child support" only to find the child, at age 16 or later, saying "I never signed." And more often they find the Ministry of Community and Social Services saying "sorry, but she's now on social assistance, and we never signed either."

 

Wilf Day

Refuge wrote:
What would be interesting if parents didn't know the birth family but did not disclose to the child they were adopted.  If the child or the spouse then filed suit with any of the parties involved (the adopted family knowing the possibility of a sibling or the birth family who knew that there was a sibling out there) for not disclosing.  I wonder if there would be a case for that.

Not much of a case if there was no harm done. The interesting test case would be a couple who had a child with disabling birth defects requiring life-long care, who then discovered they were biological siblings and the birth defect was a result of the affinity. I would advise them to sue the Ontario government for not taking steps to prevent such a foreseeable circumstance. Anyone heard of such a case anywhere?

 

Jingles

Since most children are accidents, I suggest the following remedy:

Vasectomys for all!

Then, if you want to breed, you must pass a series of rigorous tests.

If you do pass, your sperm is stored and given out by lottery to those who wish to have children.

Benefits:

No more unplanned, unwanted pregnancies.

Reduce population.

Reduce or eliminate child abuse.

Fewer annoying children.

No more religious dirtbags spawning like aphids and passing their kids around to their buddies.

Ghislaine

Jingles, I hope you are joking - that is a very offensive comment. Considering the oppressive history of forced sterilization in provinces in Alberta - I think you should be more mindful of how your comments could affect others.

Michelle

There are provinces in Alberta? ;)

Anyhow, don't mind Jingles.  He's a disciple of the Human Extinction school of thought, and every so often contributes a little over-the-top screed for our amusement. 

That said, you're right about forced sterilization, and that's part of the reproductive rights fight that feminists of colour have criticized white feminists for overlooking.  In our fight for abortion rights, we also need to recognize that while white women's babies are in demand and prized by the zealots who want control over our bodies, women of colour have traditionally been demonized for their decision to HAVE children.

Jingles

Quote:
He's a disciple of the Human Extinction school of thought

[url=http://vhemt.org/]"May we live long and die out"[/url]

Quote:
that is a very offensive comment.

Nothing may be discussed or offered in the off-chance that someone may be offended. Okay.

Ghislaine

Sorry..meant "such as Alberta" - whose forced sterilization went on until the early 70s for some citizens considered too imperfect to risk reproducing.

Jingles, you should know that I more than anyone am as pro-free speech as they come. However, everyone else has the right to call someone else out, point out offensive statements and hopefully help to explain why something is offensive. This happens all the time on babble.

Bubbles

The way the population is aging, the pension contributions are drying up and the proportion of workers to pensioners is shrinking, there could be a case made for the state, the finacial institutions and the corporations to pay child rearing expenses.

A six year reproduction strike should convince them in my opinion.

Rexdale_Punjabi Rexdale_Punjabi's picture

Bubbles wrote:

The way the population is aging, the pension contributions are drying up and the proportion of workers to pensioners is shrinking, there could be a case made for the state, the finacial institutions and the corporations to pay child rearing expenses.

A six year reproduction strike should convince them in my opinion.

 

yea not the last part tho. If you wanna not fucc for 6 years go ahead lol :P and yea Michelle is right women of color are demonized for having kids. The stereotype for example that all spanish girls have 12 kids, and all blacc women will have 10 dif kids by 6 dif men or some shit. Proly ones for natives too, and all arabs having huge amounts of kids too. Lot of shit going on with that. The funny part is statistics refute them all. And there's nothing wrong with having a lot of kids ppl have dif reasons for them religion, morals, or playing the "lottery" lol

Bubbles

Rexdale_Punjabi wrote:

Bubbles wrote:

The way the population is aging, the pension contributions are drying up and the proportion of workers to pensioners is shrinking, there could be a case made for the state, the finacial institutions and the corporations to pay child rearing expenses.

A six year reproduction strike should convince them in my opinion.

 

yea not the last part tho. If you wanna not fucc for 6 years go ahead lol :P and yea Michelle is right women of color are demonized for having kids. The stereotype for example that all spanish girls have 12 kids, and all blacc women will have 10 dif kids by 6 dif men or some shit. Proly ones for natives too, and all arabs having huge amounts of kids too. Lot of shit going on with that. The funny part is statistics refute them all. And there's nothing wrong with having a lot of kids ppl have dif reasons for them religion, morals, or playing the "lottery" lol

Hah, I never said anything about not 'fuccing' for six jears. Just make sure the swimmers never meet their target during that time.

Stereotypes are just that, stereotypes.  I am not sure if one group is more stereotyped than another.

Maysie Maysie's picture

Having sex and having children are two different things, although the first often leads to the second, it doesn't have to. The more women are in control of their bodies, who they have sex with, and when (and if) they choose to have children, the better things are in the world.

Ghislaine

And the right to control one's body includes the right to carry a pregnancy to term without having to pass one of Jingles' "tests" for whether one is making the right decision.

Daedalus Daedalus's picture

Ghislaine wrote:
I would agree that children whose fathers were sperm donors deserve to know their identity

 

Disagree. I don't see this as a right at all. The point of the sperm donor process is that it guarantees anonymity (not just to the donor, but to the recipient as well). If a child's rights are being violated by not knowing their parentage, then every young man and young women who meet at a bar and go home together should be sure to exchange driver's licenses and carry a pen and paper, because if, for instance, a woman has a one-night stand and conceives a child as a result, she will be violating that child's rights if she failed to record and verify the identity of the partner. So .. no, I don't believe there is any such right.

In the case of sperm donors, there is no need to reveal identity in any case. A number can be assigned to donors to prevent two offspring from having a child themselves. And any crucial medical information could be tied to the number, rather than the name.

 

Feather Sky wrote:
My son was the result of IVF from a sperm bank. It was a decision I made in haste, and before I became disabled.

Now I am a single mother, with a disability, and barely able to support myself and my child. I have a friend who is in a similar position. The only difference is that the sperm donor of her child was obtained through a one night stand instead of through a sperm bank. What is the difference? The father of my child needs to help support him.

If they had done things like that in the first place, your child would not exist because there would be no donors.

You made the decision "in haste"? What a poor excuse. I'm certain you were told to think long and hard about the decision, you must have ignored that part. And I'm certain you were an adult when you made the decision. If there is a criminal here, it's you - for deliberately having a child on a hasty whim. I don't even have sympathy for people who adopt dogs or cats as a result of a hasty decision!

Feather Sky

Don't you dare judge me. You know nothing about me.

You are a sick, twisted individual and I find your personal attack far beyond the threshold of appropriate.

And how dare you compare my child to adopting a dog.

Michelle

Yeah Daedalus, that was really out of bounds.  Women are not "criminals" for having children for any reason, whether a "whim" or a "surprise" or planned pregnancy.  Sorry, I didn't see this at the time.  That is extremely inappropriate anywhere on a progressive board, much less in the feminism forum here.

Daedalus Daedalus's picture

Thankyou both, for correcting me. That was so completely wrong and I am deeply ashamed. I am so very sorry Feather Sky.

Please understand that I did not mean there actually is any criminal here. Feather Sky made a (hasty, without due consideration) decision to plan to have child and explicitly accepted sole responsibility for bringing it up. She should not look for a criminal, because there isn't one. I was thinking that she should place blame on herself if she wants to place blame, but after considering things, I think really nobody should be blamed at all - except a society which fails to help single mothers and people who become disabled, that is.

Which is an explanation for what I was thinking, but not an excuse for the terrible and vicious way I said it. I am not sure what came out there, but it was sick, ugly and misogynistic.

Wilf Day

I have never been a sperm donor, so perhaps I should not impute thoughts to those who have done so. But it seems to me that I would feel rather strange: I am going to father a child I will never know, with a woman I will never know or even meet.

What could be more mechanical, impersonal, and alienating? The ultimate dissociation and dehumanization.

I would forever wonder what my sperm had wrought. It can't be compared with the feelings of a woman who, after spending nine months bearing a child, gives up her newborn for adoption. Yet it is the only male counterpart, isn't it?

To be told that my sperm had been reconnected with me, that I could know my child, but I would have to pay child support, might even be welcome.

But no doubt most men would say "if a mother gives up her child for adoption, and the child is adopted, that's final; she can never be asked to pay child support. Didn't I give up my sperm for adoption?"

 

Maysie Maysie's picture

Well, this thread certainly has gone up and down a few roller-coasters.

Wilf, although I get what you're trying to say, your argument is flawed. And, though I know you didn't mean it this way, your argument can be, (and IS) used by the anti-choice factions ("Every sperm is sacred", remember?). They constantly make the (non-existent) connection between abortion as the death of a "potential life" and "wasting sperm", via masturbation, donation, or sex involving birth control.

The comparison doesn't work.

Sperm donors, and recipients of the donations of sperm donors, exist. If we want to debate the morality, or the "could I engage in that?" discussion that's fine, but let's leave out parallels. There are no counterparts for men to: becoming pregnant, fearing becoming pregnant, deciding what to do, or being thrilled, terminating, or having a baby. None. Sperm, no offense, are a bunch of cells, or half-cells. They aren't babies and can't be adopted (eww), despite what patriarchal society has brainwashed us into believing.

Interesting that the unfertilized egg, which is bled out every month, isn't equally seen as the "loss of potential life". Actually, not so interesting.

 

remind remind's picture

Excellent points wilf!

Wilf Day

There are no parallels to pregnancy. Didn't I say that already?

And from the child's point of view, a one-year-old would normally see no parallel between missing a mother and an absent father.

But a fifteen-year-old typically recognizes he or she has two biological parents, and sees far more parallels.

 

Feather Sky

I still don't see what the difference is.
A father is a father is a father.

If you sperm produces an offspring from your genetic material, you are the father. Period.
If you get drunk and have a one-night stand, and a child is born as a resut, you are the father.

If you give sperm to a clinic, and that sperm produces a child, you are the father. Period.
It does not matter what papers are signed, it does not remove the fact that you are the father.

A piece of paper does not take away the fact that you may have similar facial features, genes, and medical risks.
A piece of paper does not take away the fact that your DNA has been implanted in your child.

So, my hyptotheses is that:

Every father should support their child
and
Even a sperm donor is the father of a child produced through that process.

If the conclusion is that sperm donors should not have to pay support, then where am I wrong:

Are sperm donors not fathers?
Should not all fathers have to support their children?

One of my assumptions must be wrong here.

Correct me if I am mistaken, but I believe that child support is something that is owed to the child, not the mother.
If so, how can the mother give away that right of the child?

 

 

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