Sperm Donors, One-Night-Stands, and”The Best Interests of Children”

Utah Supreme Court Upholds “Rights” of One-Night-Stand “Sperm Donor”

By Ken K. Gourdin

The Utah Supreme Court has upheld the rights of a father who was unaware that his [whatever-one-calls-the-other-partner-in-a-one-night-stand]* had given the baby that resulted from their—Ahem!—coupling up for adoption. The Salt Lake Tribune’s story is here (this and all links last accessed July 4, 2016): http://www.sltrib.com/news/4078609-155/unwed-father-can-contest-daughters-adoption. The Utah Supreme Court’s opinion can be found here: https://www.utcourts.gov/opinions/supopin/In%20re%20Baby%20Q.20160701.pdf.

I commented as follows on Tribune coverage:

As much as I sympathize with this father’s plight, why not stick around? That way, your baby won’t be a surprise, mom doesn’t get the sole say (at least initially) in what happens to your baby, and most (if not all) of these problems are avoided. As much sympathy as I have for this father, there’s a name for fathers who don’t stick around: they’re called “sperm donors.”

Ostensibly, family law is supposed to be about the best interests of children, but that proposition comes with a huge caveat: Family law is about the best interests of children only insofar as those interests do not conflict with the rights of an adult. Personally, I can’t fathom how it could be in the baby’s best interest to take her away from the only family she’s ever known. Dad wants to exercise his rights? Fine. The best way to do that is to not sleep around, or, if he is going to sleep around, to stick around afterward and take responsibility for the results.

*The son of a friend of mine got a girl pregnant under similar circumstances (although the couple stayed together, at least for awhile, and tried to work it out). My friend introduced the girl as her son’s girlfriend, and her son later chastised her. When relating this anecdote, she asked, “What was I supposed to do, introduce her as the girl my son had sex with?!”


About kenngo1969

Just as others must breathe to live, I must write. I have been writing creatively almost ever since I learned to write, period! I have written fiction, book- and article-length nonfiction, award-winning poetry, news, sports, features, and op-eds. I hope, one day, to write some motivational nonfiction, a decent-selling novel, a stage play, and a screen play.
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