Strangers become a family, thanks to DSR

To kick off Labor Day weekend, my husband and I took our children to a gathering of several of our children's half-siblings and their parents. Our twins, at seven, were the youngest of the group. The others who were present are 11, 12;, 14, 15, and 16. Several known half-sibs were missing (aged 6, 12 and 13). This is the second summer we have done this. A few of us have known each other for about a year and a half, but a couple of the mothers have known each other since their children were infants. Two families became known to us this summer, one of which was present at the party.

We are the only 'traditional' sperm donor family (married couple, infertile dad) in the bunch. One of the other mothers is married now, but was single when she had her child. There are three lesbian couples, and three moms are single. Most of us moved tentatively toward connecting with each other. Some of those with older children were pulled ahead by the children's desires; I was held back at first by my children's youth and my husband's reluctance. We all wondered, not only whether it would be a good experience for our children to meet their half-siblings, but what kind of relationship we would forge with the other parents.

All of us now see how the children delight in their brothers and sisters, and take our own delight in this unusual extended family. Maybe we have just been lucky, but we all really like each other, and probably get along better than many traditional in-laws! Also, each of us enjoys seeing and getting to know the other children. They resemble our own, not just physically, not just in some of their interests and abilities, but in their sweetness and their loving hearts. None of these children has more than one sibling in his home, but, thanks to the DSR, they will always have a larger circle of love and support from their half-siblings. We are all very lucky parents and very grateful to the unknown man who made it possible for us to have these children, whoever he is, whatever his motivation. And of course, we are grateful to Wendy and Ryan Kramer, who made it possible for us to find each other.