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The Future of Sperm
Posted July 20, 2010 to photo album "The Future of Sperm"
The reproductive technology at the heart of The Kids Are All Right is, as Joel Bleifuss reports, part of the wild and wacky history around artificial insemination.
Slide 12: The Future of Family Secrets
If sperm is an input, the child is the output—an estimated 30,000 to 60,000 of such children are born every year in the United States. Above Cynthia Nixon and Ricky Martin are shown with their children, born with the aid of artificial insemination. Psychologists uniformly agree that children should know about the origins of their birth. Carole Lieber Wilkins advises parents of children conceived with the help of a sperm contributor to tell their children about the nature of their conception from birth, so that the parents can get used to vocalizing what might be an uncomfortable story during the time children are preverbal. Gayle Peterson, a family therapist, writes online: “All children love to hear the journey parents went through to have them. Whether it be driving through the proverbial ‘snowstorm’ to be born or finding the necessary combination to bring their bright little souls into their rightful place in your family, your children will bask in the glow of being ‘wanted’ and the efforts you went through to bring them into your lives.” While Jenifer Taubenheim cautions parents: “To lie and cover it up is to show that we believe that there is something wrong with the way that the child was conceived or the way that they came to be ‘ours.’ ”