My partner and I have been continuing our research into having a child. She contacted the fertility clinics to get more information about donor sperm and artificial insemination. One of the clinics - The Royal Hospital for Women in Sydney - informed her this morning that they have limited sperm stock. My partner was honest and upfront about the arrangement and explained that we are a lesbian couple. The woman disappeared for quite some time and when she returned said to my partner that no sperm is available at this time. My partner asked whether this applied to everyone or only to her. The woman said that she could not say.
Neither the news about the sperm shortage nor what came across as a clear act of discrimination really surprised me when she told me the outcome. I have read numerous articles and news pieces on the shortages in donated sperm in Australia. This shortage seems to have been exacerbated by the recent legislation that requires that donors disclose their identities to be made available upon request to the children of donors when they turn 18. To my shock and with some ironic amusement, I heard on the news a few months ago that politicians had been written a letter from one of Australia's largest fertility clinics requesting that they consider donating sperm. I read recently on the Internet that the clinic has received no replies. Perhaps a mixed blessing - I'm not sure which irks me more: the idea that there is an extreme sperm shortage in Australia in fertility clinics or that there would be a very high chance of aquiring sperm from one of Australia's politicians if we proceeded to try to have a child.