Wednesday, July 24, 2013

In which the author of this blog answers a Dear Prudence letter

From a letter to Dear Prudence, from, posted July 18, 2013


My husband wants to donate sperm to his ex-wife. Should I let him?

I am a young woman who recently married a very successful athlete. He is caring, kind, and thoughtful. We both want children, but in a world where so many children are without loving homes, I can't imagine having biological offspring when we could provide a wonderful life for children who would never otherwise have one. My husband has always been supportive of this, but recently he brought up an interesting proposition. His ex-wife, who is older than me and has never remarried, asked him to be a sperm donor. She has a successful career and would not need financial support, but I think the proposition is bizarre. He argues that they both have excellent genetics that would be "wasted" if they do not jump at what could be their only chance to have biological children. He said it is no different from donating sperm to a bank, except that he knows the mother will be able to provide well for his offspring. The two split amicably due to pressures of both of their careers. Am I being selfish to say she should find another sperm donor?

—Confused Wife

Dear Confused Wife,

To hold such notions as you and your husband do is to involve oneself with nothing more than   preposterous absurdity at best, moral corruption at worst. Though I am hardly a gambling man, I would be most willing to wager three hundred ducats upon the likelihood of your family being of Yankee-doodle descent.  For need I remind my regular readers that ‘tis very common in American society for people to regard the word successful (as in the phrase “I am married to a very successful athlete”) as meaning either full of merit or, as they like to say, filthy rich?

I am struck by the rarity of this entire situation, for I wonder what curious miracle of fate brought two such people as yourselves together, a wife who cares not whose child she has, as long it be an adopted  orphan, and a husband who cares not what lady , including his loving wife, might ultimately have his child. You two complement one another in a rather perverse manner. Doubtless, he would prefer (as you claim he says) to impregnate only those members of the fair sex who are known for their superior genes. Yet consider this point, madam, if every young wife at the beginning of her marriage had decided, as you did, to adopt an orphan rather than have a child herself, then sooner or later there shall be no more orphans left in the world, and neither any people.

As for your husband, I must universally condemn all those activities whereby a man is compelled to ejaculate his oily balsamic liquid into a little saucer for any purposes other than official scientific inquiry. For if there is any procedure in the world more morally corrupt than that of manual inseminandus, as it now exists under capitalist societies, I know not what that may be. The ability for us to purchase human life is unholy because blasphemous against the Almighty Creator. Still, you should be warned that in-vitro fertilization, as it is called by the doctors, is a very expensive procedure, and it requires you to visit those damnable for-profit baby factories known as sperm banks. Such services as they provide create a society in which the wealthy are enabled to use their gold to purchase human life---as they now can use their gold to compel their children to read books---whilst the poor are put under a certain disadvantage, shall we say, of being unable to afford to produce sires. Therefore, I must pronounce against this entire method of begetting children, and urge your husband to reserve his kernels for no one but you.

By the way, mayhap you convince your husband’s former wife, that rather than desire to buy her own child using your husband’s, or some other gentleman's, organic leakage, she might charitably consider investing 15,000 ducats upon some poor London chimney sweep. What say you to this plan, madam?

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