Friday, December 1, 2006


When I started the embryo donation process, I was certain that the most crucial trait of my recipients would be Jewish heritage, for reasons discussed below. I initially phrased my donation listing to make it clear that either Jewish heterosexuals or Jewish lesbians would be considered.

We were contacted by lots of straight couples, but not a single one of them had even one Jewish partner. It was rather annoying that none of these couples had really read my listing and chosen not to respect my criteria. I found this arrogant. Straight couples expect to get pregnant to have their kids. When these couples could not, they felt in some way entitled to ask for these embryos despite the fact that I had made the importance of different recipients so clear.

These inappropriate inquiries got me thinking. Straight couples can adopt together, unlike lesbian couples who must go through two adoptions per child due to bigoted laws. Straight couples can adopt from foreign countries, whereas lesbians must lie to do so. There are thousands of adoptable children in the United States who can only go to straight couples and who are available immediately, as long as the couple in question can open their heart to a child who is Black, Hispanic, biracial or disabled. Lesbian couples do not have this option in most states.

It became clear to me that embryo donation was an opportunity for me to do my little part to help redress these wrongs. In limiting my donation only to lesbian couples I could level the playing field a tiny bit and help women become moms who otherwise would have very limited ability to do so. My wife and I revised our listing. Now we would consider only lesbian couples, preferably Jewish ones. But were there any infertile Jewish lesbian couples out there? We waited to find out.