A sperm donor who sent gifts signed "Dad" to his biological son has been slapped with a child-support order, 18 years after helping his friend get pregnant.It seems that you can be either a sperm donor or a father, but if you go into the gray zone between the two, the child gets a father.
The Nassau County man donated his sperm to a work colleague, and included his name on the child's birth certificate, saying it would give the boy an identity, courts documents revealed.
He then blurred the lines between donor and full-time father by sending money, presents and cards signed "Dad" and "Daddy," and having phone chats with the now college-bound teen.
But the man's goodwill backfired: A court ruling says he is now liable for financial support of the 18-year-old, who lives with his mother in Oregon.
"He was assured that he would have no responsibility on his part and of course 18 years has elapsed where there hasn't been responsibility," [the man's lawyer] said.Assured? By whom? Surely not by the baby — unborn or born — and not by the little boy who was led to think he had a daddy.
"He did not anticipate this would happen now, when the child is almost an adult, that the mother would come forward for child support."Did not anticipate that an 18-year-old would perceive a strong need for money and remember that there was a man — a doctor — who called himself Daddy? Just outright forgot about the whole notion of college? Never contemplated the prospect that the boy would develop a mind of his own and be capable of analyzing his own needs and interests?
ADDED: Meanwhile, in the UK:
[Andy] Bathie, a fireman from Enfield, north London, said ... "These women wanted to be parents and take on all the responsibilities that brings. I would never have agreed to this unless they had been living as a committed family. And now I can't afford to have children with my own wife - it's crippling me financially"....
"We would warn men providing genetic material that the only time they are not the father is when they donate through a licensed fertility clinic. This does not apply to unlicensed websites or home insemination."