To my sperm donor

I'm good at compartmentalizing. Scratch that. I'm great at it. Mainly, I'm good at boxing away the things that I know should be significant into places that are hard to find. Underneath loose floorboards, in ordinary boxes that are filled with moments passed, in the far reaches of my mind where cobwebs stretch quickly over...

It should be of significance that I called my sperm donor (SD) earlier this year. I hadn't spoken to him in about 15 years. My ma had discovered that she was unable to get her business license because she had unpaid parking tickets. That didn't sound like my goody gumdrop ma. I looked into this. On the City of Chicago site it said that the tickets were for a car owned by her then husband, my biological father, and they were for violations from 1997. 1997. The city is so broke that they had to go back to the 90s to collect money most people had long forgotten about.

The car was SD's but for some reason it was showing up on my ma's record. The tickets were $700 worth. Not wanting to talk to a scumbag who blatantly cheated on her and abused her, she refused to call him. I was so fond of getting justice that I found his number on the internet and dialed. I wasn't nervous. This wasn't a reunion. I just wanted him to do the right thing.

I didn't care that his new wife picked up.

I didn't even care when I told him my name and he asked how he knew me.

I did care that he kept referring to me as "betta" a term of endearment only people who love you use.

I did care that he claimed not to have any recollection of this car (although I have a picture of him standing in front of it).

I did care that he refused to pay for the tickets.

I did care that his tone was condescending when he said $700 was nothing because to people like my ma, who work 6 days a week to pay for a mortgage alone, who came home every day for over 20 years to cook and clean alone, to pay for the schooling of 2 girls alone, for someone who works 12 hours a day alone, for someone who tried to be there 24/7 even when she couldn't, alone, $700 is a lot. $700 is money that should have gone to her retirement.

So, to you, the sperm donor who merely contributed to my genes but not who my sister and I have become, you mean nothing. I know I should care that you have a wife and kids you actually stuck around for, but it doesn't matter.

To the people who think that kids who are products of divorced parents are any more broken than the rest, you're wrong.

To the statistics that say kids without fathers are more likely to end up in jail or on drugs, you were wrong about us.

To the people who like to link my preference in older men, my hang ups about men, or any of my bad history with men to having "daddy issues," stop looking for reasons why because somethings simply are. You're not a psychologist. And if you are, Freud, Jung and the rest didn't always have it right.

Not everything that we compartmentalize has a place in the front of our minds. Not all moments, even something like this, has the kind of deep impact on someone you'd think it should.

So to the sperm donor.

You still mean nothing.
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  • fb_avatar

    Wow, blown away.
    It’s as if I got punched in the gut.
    Powerful, powerful piece.
    I am so sorry.

  • I need to get in the habit of reading your posts before you change the slug/url or even delete them.

    My father was a SD too. He was not present in my life though I did meet him once or twice and confirmed that he was a douche bag.

  • In reply to Michael Messinger:

    Meeting them usually only confirms their douche-baggery. Thanks for reading, Michael. And I'm sorry your SD sucks, too.

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