Sperm Donor Kid

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 (Courtesy of Maybell Murphy-Sylla)

I’ve known my whole life that I’m a sperm donor child. It’s never been something my moms have tried to hide from me. In fact, my mom says that it helped her answer the “how are babies made” question when I was very young. I considered it completely normal.

When I was about eight, I started to hear otherwise. I received many apologies from my peers when I told them that I didn’t have a dad. Even my closest friend told me that she felt bad for me. I was asked if I would call the sperm donor “dad” when I turned 18 and met him.

Kids weren’t the only ones to ask questions. My mom had a work friend who inquired about what my life was like being a sperm donor kid. She even asked if I wished my moms hadn’t told me about it, or if I wished I had a “normal” situation.

I never took offense from these comments, as they were meant with compassion and curiosity. However, I was still confused as to why people would say things like that. I didn’t understand why they felt the way they did, or why they were asking such absurd questions. Only years later did I realize why. They were thinking about if their father was just ripped from their lives without notice. Many kids my age couldn’t even imagine their lives without their dads. Kids were apologizing to me as if my father had died, not as if he hadn’t existed in the first place. I didn’t know how to explain to a bunch of nine-year-olds, or adults for that matter, my feelings about being a sperm donor kid.

I wish that people knew how I felt before they apologized. I don’t wish I had my biological dad in my life, because I have never had that experience. Being a sperm donor child has had so much impact on my life, and yet virtually none. I am proud to exist and I couldn’t have done that without a sperm donor, but it doesn’t affect me in my daily life. I wake up like everyone else. I eat breakfast, go to school, come home, do homework, eat dinner, and go back to bed. I hardly ever ponder the fact that I am a sperm donor kid, just like no one ponders the fact that their dad is their father.


I don’t find my form of creation a curse or a blessing. It is a part of me that I will never forget, and yet will hardly need to think about. So please don’t apologize.

With a Perspective, I am Maybell Murphy-Sylla.

Maybell Murphy-Sylla is an eighth grader at Kent Middle School in Kentfield.