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Open Access De behoeften aan openheid, lotgenotencontact en gespecialiseerde counseling voor donorkinderen1

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Being a donor-child: wishes for parental support, peer support and counseling

Most studies on donor-conceived offspring have shown that secrets in families about the genetic origin of the child can harm the parent-child relationship and as a consequence early disclosure of donor conception is recommended. Data on whether donor-conceived offspring appreciate guidance to cope with their questions and feelings related to being a donor-child are not available. We held semi-structured in-depth interviews with male and female donor-conceived offspring (Mage = 26.9, range 17-41) born within father-mother (n = 11), two-mother (n = 7), or single mother families (n = 6). The majority of donor offspring (n = 20) were descendants of anonymous donors. The interviews were fully transcribed and analyzed using the constant comparative method. Donor-conceived offspring would have appreciated openness from their parents about being a donor-child and wished that their parents would have received specialist guidance before donor sperm treatment. They valued the availability of peer contact to exchange stories and would have liked assistance in getting access to trustful information about characteristics and identifying information of their donor. Donor-conceived offspring wished to know where to find counsellors for guidance when needed. Donor-conceived offspring missed guidance by their parents, appreciated peer-support and the availability of guidance by counsellors for themselves. Our findings demonstrate that peer support and guidance by counsellors for donor-conceived offspring should be available for those who need it. The findings also support counselling to intended parents before donor sperm treatment.
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Keywords: counseling; disclosure; donor sperm treatment; donor-conceived offspring; peer support

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2018

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  • Het tijdschrift Pedagogiek stelt zich ten doel de wetenschappelijke discussie over opvoeding, onderwijs en vorming binnen het Nederlands taalgebied (Nederland en Vlaanderen) te stimuleren en te ondersteunen. Pedagogiek beoogt naast een bijdrage aan het wetenschappelijke debat ook de maatschappelijke discussie op de terreinen van opvoeding, onderwijs en vorming te bevorderen. Bijdragen zullen dan ook uitdrukkelijk worden beoordeeld op zowel hun wetenschappelijke als maatschappelijke relevantie. Pedagogiek biedt: (1) wetenschappelijke verslagen van empirisch, theoretisch en historisch onderzoek op het gebied van opvoeding, onderwijs en vorming, alsmede review studies op onderhavige terreinen; (2) opiniërende bijdragen van wetenschappelijk niveau (Forumbijdragen); (3) boekbesprekingen.

    The journal Pedagogiek (Pedagogy) aims to stimulate and support the scholarly discourse on child rearing, education and training within the Dutch language area (The Netherlands and the Flemish region). Pedagogiek strives to contribute to the scholarly debate, but also desires to boost the public debate on the subject of child rearing, education and training. Therefore, contributions will be judged explicitly on both their scholarly merit and their social relevance. Pedagogiek offers: (1) scholarly articles reporting on empirical, theoretical and historical research in the field of child rearing, education and training, and review studies in the same field; (2) opinion pieces on a scholarly level (panel discussions); (3) book reviews.

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