June 01, 2007

Sperm Donors Undervalued

Be on the look out for an upcoming article in the June issue of the American Sociological Review by US Sociologist Rene Almeling. Her comparative study between egg donors and sperm donors reveals that sperm donors are undervalued fiscally, and are also treated with less appreciation, and are less prepared for the emotional consequences of being genetic donors. Almeling speculates that these inequalitites are perpetuated by gender-stereotyped social attitudes towards motherhood and fatherhood. Egg donors are made to feel like they are doing something very special for the recipient couple, while sperm donors are treated as though they are getting paid for something they would do anyway. Hopefully Almeling's research will lead to better informed consent for sperm donors to help them consider the long-term implications of participating in a collaborative reproductive process.

-Andrea Kalfoglou

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