Well initially we weren’t going to have children because he had had a vasectomy. He had three grown up children from his first marriage and he didn’t particularly want children. And he was the one that changed his mind initially and said, actually he would like to see if there was some way we could have children.
Okay but once he had the vasectomy there was no way that he could produce sperm in other words is that right?
Ten years ago no. I mean what I don’t know with the improvements in technology since then whether they can now extract sperm directly. I am not sure if that is true any longer. I think perhaps now there would have been other alternatives.
But when you were going through it…?
But when we were going through it, it wasn’t being done. ICSI had just started at that stage was very experimental. And we weren’t really given many other options. It was sort of if you want to try and get pregnant you will need to get donor sperm. And that was when donor sperm was anonymous. Which it isn’t anymore. And one of the problems with people now who want donor sperm is there isn’t any. Because with the anonymity removed from the donor they are almost no donors. So it has sort of, the theory was just to solve one problem for the children, so that they could find out about their natural father later on. But of course, since then there are very few children being born. Which I think is a real shame.
Describe to me the process for you of changing your mind and deciding that you wanted children.
I think my husband brought it up first when we were on holiday. And it was sort of like Pandora’s box once he brought it up I absolutely decided that yes, that I did want children, having always known with him that I wouldn’t be able to have children. I had accepted that as part of the terms of the relationship. But it was like a Pandora’s Box the moment he said that he would like to consider the possibility. I was like right fine we are doing it [laugh]. Both guns blazing. Absolutely determined from that stage that if I could possibly get pregnant I was going to.
And how old were you at that point?
I was, I would have been just before I was 30. Because I was 30 when we married. So right about 30. And I was 35 when the children were born.
Okay. So it took five years?
It took five years, yes.
Right. So why did it take that long?
I think because after the vasectomy reversal I think my husband was determined that it was going to work and that the children would be his, and I don’t think at that point I had actually considered donor sperm as an option. I hadn’t really thought about if the surgery didn’t work, how we were going to try to have a child.
Because as I say it wasn’t until I was at the gynaecologist one day, and she said to me, “Well you could consider donor sperm because obviously the surgery hasn’t worked. Or it may be that you have a problem that you haven’t investigated.” Because at that point actually I hadn’t even though to have myself investigated to see if there was any reason that I couldn’t get pregnant.