Can LGBTQ+ People Donate Sperm?25th May 2023
This June is Pride Month, an international month of celebration that aims to honour the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer individuals all around the world.
This year, in honour of LGBT+ Pride Month, we wanted to raise awareness about a common misconception - that LGBT+ people, such as gay individuals or those who are transgender, cannot donate their sperm! While also sharing helpful information for those who may be considering donating but are unsure of the criteria or if they are eligible.
Are members of the LGBT+ community able to donate sperm?
At Semovo, we welcome donors from all backgrounds, regardless of their sexual orientation or personal pronouns - in line with guidance from HFEA, the Human Fertilisation & Embryology Authority.
Semovo donor sperm comes from UK-based donors who undergo necessary health screens before the sperm is used in fertility treatments, such as IVF or IUI, to help others complete their families.
Unlike other forms of donation, such as blood donation, that historically excluded gay or bisexual people, there are no limitations in the UK on LGBT+ individuals donating sperm. Those who are gay, regardless of whether they are single or in a relationship, are more than welcome to donate sperm with Semovo so long as they meet our eligibility criteria, just as everyone else must.
People who are transgender may be eligible to donate, however if they have already started HRT, also known as hormone replacement therapy, it can affect the quality and concentration of sperm and therefore affect their samples - making it unlikely that they would pass our eligibility criteria. However, for transgender people who are yet to undergo HRT or gender affirmation surgery, donating sperm may still be possible, so long as their sperm is in good health. It is worth noting though, that donor conceived people may request identifying information about their donors once they reach the age of 18, including their name and previous names, and this may inadvertently reveal that their donor has gender transitioned.
Regardless of their background, all we ask from our donors is their ongoing dedication to the donation process and that they meet a few simple criteria.
What criteria must an LGBT+ sperm donor meet?
We want to assure all potential sperm donors that who they love or their gender identity will never impact their ability to donate. As such, our LGBT+ sperm donors have to meet the exact same criteria as our non-LGBT+ sperm donors do.
Sperm Donor Criteria:
- Be between the ages of 18 and 46
- Be willing to undergo screening for medical conditions
- Have no known serious medical condition or a family history of hereditary disorders
- Be able to provide a detailed family medical history - including children, siblings, parents and grandparents
- Agree to be registered with the Human Fertilisation & Embryology Authority as a donor
- Practice safe sex during the whole donation period to not put yourself at risk of sexually transmitted infections (STIs)
Do LGBT+ people need donor sperm for fertility treatments?
Many LGBT+ people may need donor sperm for fertility treatment, especially same-sex female couples and those who have undergone HRT and gender affirmation surgery. Some fertility treatments that may require the use of donor sperm are IUI, reciprocal IVF or surrogacy if sperm cannot be provided by an intended parent.
This year, if you're a member of the LGBT+ community and you've been considering donating, there's no better time than Pride Month! If you've been considering becoming a donor, we encourage you to apply online to become a Semovo sperm donor.