Sperm is 'marital asset', says UK donor's wife

Sperm donor

A British woman whose husband donated sperm secretly has called for a change in law since sperm is a 'marital asset' and wants clinics to obtain the wife's consent before the husband can donate sperm.

The Surrey-based woman has not been named in the Daily Mail, but she reportedly fears that children fathered with the sperm who would be half-brothers or sisters of her son may one day 'disrupt' the family by getting in touch.

The businesswoman has written to the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) calling for guidelines on sperm donation to include the spouse's views, and says the sperm should be treated as a joint 'marital asset'.

The tabloid reported today that a controversial ruling in 2005 meant that children born through sperm donation up to ten families are allowed per donor have the right to trace their biological father when they reach adulthood.

In a letter to the fertility authority, the woman wrote that if the children her husband fathers to help infertile couples or single women contacted her in the future, she would 'not feel able to push them away'.

The businesswoman wrote, "Despite my contacting the clinic (I never received an acknowledgement), this sperm may already have been used to father children who in 18 years' time may come knocking on our door, disrupting family life and unsettling our own children."

She wants that the procedure for sperm donation "should also include the wife or partner being asked about their views and signalling consent. I think it is a decision both parties should make. It (the sperm) must be some sort of marital asset."

An HFEA spokesman said, "Donors must, by law, be offered counselling to discuss their donation before it takes place. This helps to ensure consent is fully formed freely and properly thought through."

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