Most of you reading this blog probably haven’t thought about MTV for ages. What used to be the music video channel playing all the coolest videos has quickly become a montage of bad reality shows and poor taste. Teen Mom, Snooki & Jwoww, and Ke$ha: My Beautiful Life are what you can find airing on MTV today.
There is one new show that is worth mentioning. A docu-series called Generation Cryo aired on MTV and chronicles the journey of a young lady named Breeanna, 17, whose two moms conceived her through a sperm donor. She discovers she has 15 other half siblings from the donor #1096 and is on a mission to meet her siblings and maybe even the donor.
As she begins meeting her half siblings, they begin to think more about how they came into the world and an array of emotions, feelings, and relationships emerge. The teens all seem pretty excited, except a few, at the prospect of meeting each other and discovering their biological father. The various parents have mixed feelings about discovering the donor because they may fear it could confuse their roles in their children’s lives. Although one of the moms who had twins on her own is hoping the donor is single and looking for love!
Generation Cryo is an interesting look into the complex world of sperm donors and the babies that come from assisted reproductive technology or ART. Just like an adopted child may want to meet their biological parents one day, these “cryo kids” want to meet their biological father. It’s definitely something to think about if you are considering using a sperm donor. I wouldn’t recommend toiling over future unknown scenarios, but at least know in your mind that your future bundle of joy may want to do this very same thing as Breeanna and search out their donor.
LGBT equality is increasingly becoming the norm which means more families with same-sex parents. Around 40% of same sex couples ages 22-55 are raising children and only about 5% are adopted.
Breeanna began her search on the Donor Sibling Registry that has grown from 37 members in 2000 to over 41,000 members today. It consists of donors, parents, and donor-conceived individuals.
While many of the Generation Cryo cast were a bit hesitant to sign up for a show with MTV because of their reputation for shows like, My Super Sweet Sixteen, the more they spoke with the producers the more they saw that MTV was going for a more earnest approach to the new definition of family.
“I signed up for this because I was intrigued by the whole journey,” says Jonah, one of Bree’s half siblings. “Many of my half-siblings were really pushing to find [the donor], and I don’t think the whole process would have been possible, financially or to have a direction to go in, without doing the show. It gave us structure, and helped us glue the pieces together.”
“I was more in it for my half-siblings, since I support them 100 percent in what they want to do,” adds Hilit, Jonah’s sister and Bree’s half sister.
Generation Cryo, if nothing else, has created some pretty strong relationships amongst the half siblings. They seem to help each other figure out who they are and support each other.
“I learned a lot about myself, which really helps you be more secure with yourself,” Bree said. “I started dating this girl who I eventually got into a relationship with, focused on school, and stopped hanging out with people who were bringing me down. I have this big family now, and I know the kind of people I want in my life.”