United States children born to fertility doctors instead of sperm donors

The United States is grappling with a wave of children who have discovered their fathers are not sperm donors, instead, they're their mother's fertility doctor.

Many people are discovering their parentage isn't what they thought due to the rise in at-home DNA kits, which have unearthed decades-old secrets, the New York Times reports.

Texas is the latest state to legislate against so-called "fertility fraud" after lobbying from Eve Wiley, 32, who realised her mother's fertility doctor was her biological father in 2018. 

Wiley said it was extremely upsetting, especially as she had met the man she believed to be her biological father and called him "dad".

"You build your whole life on your genetic identity, and that's the foundation," she told the New York Times

"But when those bottom bricks have been removed or altered, it can be devastating."

Wiley met with legislators about the issue and Texas passed a law against the practice in June, identifying the crime as sexual assault.

Indiana and California are the only other states to have laws against fertility fraud, but neither of them goes as far as Texas.

"There's a physical aspect to it - there is a medical device that is being used to penetrate these women to deliver the genetic material," Texas state representative and sponsor of the Bill Stephanie Klick said. 

"I equate it with rape, because there's no consent... It violates so many different boundaries on a professional level."

But there are some that say classifying it as sexual assault is a step too far.

"Using that language, and imposing the ramifications that assault imposes, is highly problematic and more harmful than helpful," Northern Kentucky University dean of law Judith Daar told the New York Times.

The New York Times contacted Dr Kim McMorries, who treated Wiley's mother, but he refused to comment.


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