The Donation of Life-Celeste O. (Blog #3)

In page 206, the book says that something sperm banks can do to be completely certified is to test the sperm for Tay-Sachs, thalassemia, sickle cell trait, and or cystic fibrosis. I was really happy when I saw this because I knew ¾ of the diseases said in that sentence. I definitely think that this should be a strict rule when donating. 

“In 1785, famed British surgeon John Hunter helped impregnate the wife of a wealthy businessman.”(Page 211).



This paragraph then goes on to tell, that the doctor made the husband ejaculate in a jar and then he put the sperm into the wife. This is practically what happens now when women go to a sperm bank! So, this process of getting pregnant was around over 200 years ago, the only difference being that women were impregnated with their husband’s sperm. I wonder if this technique is so old, how has it evolved and why does it seem like there is not much of a difference in comparison now to 200 years ago. James Marion Sims, the man was a genius he discovered something that was monumental in the medical field, especially obstetrics. He wrote in his book (Clinical Notes on Uterine Surgery with Special Reference to Sterile Condition)of his findings but no one wanted to even look at him because of what he wrote was so ‘improper’ for the time and society he lived in. I think once again society has struck and censored what was a great discovery just because the way he performed his procedures was considered unacceptable and that his book lacked ‘taste’.


Furthermore, on page 213 “There was no uproar over his cruder experiments when he invited guests to watch as he stitched and restricted slaves’ vaginas without anesthesia. But when Sims went into the bedroom of married white women to help them get pregnant, doctors were enraged.”

This just shows how the lives were weighed, all based on race.


“Italian sperm are highly desired.” (Page 220). “Now, with single women and lesbian couples, the buyers are “more choosy. They’re demanding and aggressive about what they want.” Lesbian couples, she says, “want the ideal man.”” (Page 223).

This is just another loophole people take to create their dream-perfect child. I commented on Pattie A’s blog over the horrors that people are changing their fetus and not letting it grow into what it’s meant to be. I think sometimes discoveries and innovations are amazing (such as the ability to create you dream child) but it’s also at times taken too far. The ability and the fact


that we know that we can change a baby’s appearance is great because it shows what we can do but that’s all it should be, proof of what we can do, it shouldn’t be turned into something that is encouraged. Couples shouldn’t want to change their child just so it can fit into the social norms. I think the same thing is happening here, where couples or single women are choosing the type of man they want, they are being specific on the type of sperm donor they want because then that just means that they are hoping that their child will turn out a certain way and they aren’t just letting nature take its course. To me when people are like this it just means that they will love their children more if they are a certain way.


Is freezing one’s eggs the way our society and women are going? By let’s say


2050, is the majority part of the women population going to be freezing their eggs? It seems so, women in China are having fewer children (albeit because of the now erased law) because they have their careers and are getting married much later, is that the way the world is going? I think so, women in the U.S. are being more empowered to follow their dreams. In the graph, you can see that women were having babies at a much younger age and now they are waiting till later.



This is a picture from the article

I read this recent article on surrogacy in Mexico. The couple above paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to get their triplets which were born from Mexican women. The main problem I have with what the couple says is that they did not like the process they had to go through and that they did not want to get their babies from a third world country. I find this absurd and ignorant. If this couple didn’t want their children from Mexico then why would they even go through with the process, why did they go through with this in Mexico if they didn’t want to? I think this process should be refined around the world so no couple complaints and the babies are healthy.


“But David told the 60 Minutes program he’d “never wanted” to go to Mexico to have children, and that problem began during the pregnancies.”

“We did not want to come to Mexico, we did not want to go to any other third world country. We wanted to have top hospitals, with women that were looked after,” he said.

I have really enjoyed reading this book, it has taught me so much about the path of obstetrics over the years. I am happy that I have finished reading the book now I will let all the information settle in my brain and I will more likely be going back and reading some parts that I found interesting. This is not the end of the book not really because thanks to science there will be more to write about, as the field of obstetrics grows and discoveries are made. 

3 thoughts on “The Donation of Life-Celeste O. (Blog #3)

Add yours

  1. Hi Celeste! I think it’s so interesting how you make a clear point about how sperm banks could have been created MUCH earlier, but the idea never really went on into common use. I wonder what other “failed ideas” will be rediscovered and used commonly in the future. You also make a point to say that with all these other technologies, people are becoming too picky with what their babies look like, or where they come from when they adopt them. Maybe it’s time for them to take a step back, and remember the times when they didn’t get to choose what traits their babies had or didn’t. -Isabella V.

  2. Hey Celeste. I would like to say that your blog post was absolutely incredible. I really enjoyed getting to read your perspective on such a controversial topic. Without further ado, I would like to state that I personally agree with the idea that the parents shouldn’t change or be very selective when it comes to the physical characteristics of their child. But, I do somewhat believe that it is important to allow the parents to be a little bit selective when it comes to the medical history and background of their donor. The only reason as to why I believe this is because there is always the possibility of their child being born with any genetic illness, even though the sperm is tested for genetic illnesses. By being picky about their sperm donors, the parents can feel more relaxed and not be as worried about their child being ill. Overall, I would like to say that physical characteristics and place the donor originates from, is not a factor in which the parents should be selective about. Like Izzy said, nowadays many individuals are worried about the physical characteristics of their child more than anything. -Yoselin R.

  3. Yes I agree with you on that Yoselin, parents should be cautious and ‘choosy’ when it comes to the sperm they choose with regards to diseases and health history and family history of the sperm donor. Of course, parents wouldn’t want their to be child to suffer through those diseases and that is understandable. The thing that bothered me was as you said “physical characteristics” and parents being worried and picky over that, that I just think is horrible because they want their child to be a certain way and not let nature take its course. I think that when one worries more about how the child is going to look than their health it signals shallow people because they want their child to look a certain way because they want their child to be accepted in society. I also think that people who want their children to look a certain way, just want to flaunt their beautiful children and show them off. -Celeste O.

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