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Genealogy and Same Sex Marriage

old man emu

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My son has two lady friends who are in a same sex relationship. They have just had a baby and my son has been in contact with them a lot prior to and after the birth. My son is a pretty good bloke, and it made me wonder if he had been the sperm donor. I asked him tonight and he laughed and said, "Nah. It was another friend of theirs." Then I went on to explain to him why I had asked.


My ancestry does not contain any characters of royal blood or great celebrity, if you discount grandfather being a 25th April ANZAC . I come from simple stock, and so it is. However I have managed to track my ancestry back to its roots in England, Scotland and Ireland, so I know where I come from. I'm happy to know this information and have passed it on to my kids and grandson so they can know their heritage. But how will this wanted child know its heritage if the biological father's name does not appear on its birth record? My grandfather's name does not appear on my father's birth record for the usual reason back in the 1920's. However, I am fortunate that my grandfather has acknowledge dad as his son in archived documents. So I can trace my male paternal line back as far as records go.


I can see this becoming a common question in the future as children are conceived from donor genetic material. Does that child have a right to know its ancestry? Are people interested in knowing who came before them. There is that one area that is important, and that's knowing of any hereditary diseases, but that's rare in the scheme of things.

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My heritage can be traced to the 13th century french,irish, english,welsh, what a 57 varieties are our family, but do the younger gen rally care, my son(of my second marriage ) is really into his Welsh background ,but my daughter (they are twins) has no interest, my son of previous marriage has no ties whatsoever he was born in Aus, go figure.


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29 minutes ago, Marty_d said:

Not as if the mums are going to withhold the sperm donor's identity or anything.


7 minutes ago, facthunter said:

A lot of donors were assured of no disclosure

If a donor sperm from a sperm bank is used, then non-disclosure is an option, but it leaves the child without a genetic heritage. I'm sure that donations are screened for known genetically transmitted conditions. 

I was talking about the sort of situation of my son's friends. They know the donor and there is some arrangement for passing on that information to the child at the right time.


What I was thinking of is the concept of inheritance that pervades our legal system. In the past, that was important for the wealthy, and as society got more egalitarian, it filtered down to the poor. It forms the basis of "family", which is supposed to be the glue that holds our society together. We use the word "bastard" for the child of unwed parents.  It's from Old French bastard "acknowledged child of a nobleman by a woman other than his wife", or from fils de bast "packsaddle son," meaning a child conceived on an improvised bed (saddles often doubled as beds while traveling). Compare it to the German bänkling "bastard; child begotten on a bench" (and not in a marriage bed). But with religious marriage now losing favour to civil marriage, or no official marriage at all, does the absence of a father's name on a record mean much at all?


I wanted to address the question posed in the TV series "Who do you think you are?". It's more interesting to know where your ancestors come from, especially as a nation of migrants than to only know your contemporaries. It gives us ancestral roots. 

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