The Sperm Bank of California has been helping individuals and families build their families since 1982, and we are proud to have a 30-year track record of providing safe, ethical, and high-quality sperm donation services. Here’s a collection of heartfelt stories and experiences shared by our clients, who have graciously offered to share their journeys with others.
We really, really are grateful for the role that TSBC has played in growing our family, and for the thoughtful programming and support you all have provided as we think through how to engage with our roles as queer parents of a donor-conceived child. We count TSBC as a vital and beautiful part of [our child’s] story. Thanks so much for all you all do!
~Queer parents from NY
Just a quick email to say thank you!!! Our entire experience was so amazing with you. Recently, our oldest turned 18 and has been slowly working with you to find out more about the donor through identity release. We think of your organization and it’s mission frequently and both girls thank us all the time for choosing the [Identity-Release(r) Program] pathway.
~TSBC parents Sarah and Richard
I also presume you have seen the article that was in the NY Times Magazine this past week, a photo essay by a donor-conceived child. The more I’ve looked at it and the more I’ve talked to my adult daughter, the more immensely grateful I am for your program and your level of ethics. The kid in this article was so full of angst about his situation- the number of siblings making him feel “mass produced,” – the anonymity of it all, and what seemed like a cloud of uncertainty or instability over his whole life because of it. I asked my daughter if she felt – or if she ever sensed from her siblings – angst like this, and she said she never did, and never sensed it from her dibs. I can only attribute that to our being able to assure her that she had control over whether or not [to learn more about the donor at age 18], and also from the beginning being able to tell her that we thought there was a limit of [10 families] that might have kids with the same donor. So it was a known number, and hopefully not too overwhelming.
~Betsy, a TSBC mom, TSBC experience with donor conception, July 2019
We wanted to thank TSBC for being such a key support to us throughout our journey into pregnancy and parenthood. In particular, we wanted to express our thanks for the family contact list. We so appreciate the thoughtful, evidence-based, queer-friendly resources TSBC provides for this program and for its other services. We’re so glad we were able to work with TSBC in our path to becoming parents.
~TSBC Moms, November 2017
Honestly, right now there is only one sperm bank that I can recommend, and that is The Sperm Bank of California.
~Wendy Kramer, Co-founder and Director of The Donor Sibling Registry, from the Huffington Post “Choosing a Sperm Bank…What to Know” 8/23/17, August 2017
We can’t thank you enough for all your hard work with us today. I can’t imagine any of the other banks we considered would have put this much thought, support, honesty, and understanding into helping us.
~Meghan, January 2017
Thanks so much for your help and prompt email. Honestly, in that short conversation you proved to be the kindest person I think my husband I have worked with in this whole process – thank you!
~Jennifer, January 2017
Perfect!! I really appreciate working with TSBC, you have been so tolerant and empathetic, thank you.
~R, April 2016
Thanks! I really appreciate how helpful and responsive you all have been. This process, especially as a single woman, is so intense and can feel difficult in unexpected ways. I have just loved every interaction I have had with TSBC so far.
~Erica, April 2016
We have two wonderful children using The Sperm Bank of California who are healthy and happy. We talk about where they came from, and the oldest explains, ‘Mama and Mom wanted kids, so you got a seed from a donor to make us. After I reported the first birth, we bought vials and had a second baby from the same donor. Initially, we chose this Berkeley sperm bank for their commitment to sharing donor identities with adult children, but since that is a long way off, we joined The Sperm Bank of California’s optional family contact list, giving us the satisfaction of current contact with other kids who share the same donor. I feel comfortable knowing there are only ten families per donor, which I think is half of most for-profit sperm banks limits. Because of the ten family limit, eventually our two adult children will have perhaps a smaller set of donor siblings who might be in contact with their donor. If there is mutual interest from the donor and our children, I imagine that less of a crowd would make for a calmer environment for early contact.
~Rebekah, TSBC mom of two, August 2011
Another vote for The Sperm Bank of California. I researched 2 or 3 other banks in California and others nationwide. Despite the fact that TSBC offered NO donor photos, voice recordings etc, I still chose them over other banks due to low family limit per donor, well supported Identity-Release® Program, vial prices and general accessibility/professionalism. Since I first became a client (2007), TSBC has started offering photos of donors providing the donors choose to provide one. Luckily for us, our Identity-Release® donor was one that decided to add photos! Yay!
~Kim, July 2011 on Choicemoms.org
The Sperm Bank of California does not dilute their sperm with fillers like many other banks do. An ejaculate yields two vials. Some sperm banks expand that natural amount to six vials. You can imagine what that does to potency.
~Rachel, May 2011 on Choicemoms.org
The Sperm Bank of California was great & easy to deal with. Their website is simple, but not flashy; their profiles are very personal & thorough. Their ethics are great for both the donors & recipients. And they are very open-minded: more than half of their clients are single women or lesbian couples! I’m expecting my little one in ~6weeks!
~Evelyn, April 2011 on Choicemoms.org
I worked with TSBC (The Sperm Bank of CA) and highly highly recommend them for a host of reasons. In no particular order.
- They are a non-profit (only one in the country to my knowledge.)
- They’ve got roots in a feminist health center (tells me that they’ve got a history of being woman-centered and feminist, both important for me.)
- They have a long standing (even pioneering, I think) donor Identity-Release® Program (win-win for the child and mom, in my opinion, and jibes w my research pointing to ‘the less secrecy the better’ for families using donor-conception.)
- They do extensive social research on the well-being of donor-conceived individuals. (I’m glad that my child has the option of getting identifying information about the donor, particularly from these folks who seem to care so much about the donor-conceived children.)
- They are small, and therefore can offer a surprisingly personal interaction during the process (for example, I talked about one of my possible donor choices w a staff member, and it was clear she actually knew who he was, and she passed along small details that weren’t in the short or long profiles, such as general demeanor, quirkiness, etc.)
- Although they are in Berkeley, CA about as far from me as they could be, they’re on a street I’ve actually been on. (Strange, I know, but it was another thing that made me want to use them!)
- They had useful/helpful advice when I wanted it (on website, in written materials, on phone.)
- They have an unusually low family limit for each donor, thereby greatly reducing the number of half siblings my child has.
- They were completely and swiftly honest when snafus happened. (My first, and agonizingly/obsessively deliberated-over, donor choice turned out to have the special distinction of being only the second donor in their history to be ‘taken off the shelves’, and the director herself called me to explain the situation, apologize, and make a plan for what to do about it.)
And of course, I mostly love TSBC because they helped me become a mom, which has been the greatest joy in my entire life.
~Chrissy, April 2011 on Choicemoms.org