• Switzerland's news in English

Gay sperm donor frozen out by lesbian mums

Lyssandra Sears · 24 Jan 2012, 10:37

Published: 24 Jan 2012 11:45 GMT+01:00
Updated: 24 Jan 2012 10:37 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Four years ago, Peter Conti donated sperm to lesbian friends. He was promised a role in the upbringing of the child, but those promises were never met.

Peter Conti, the name given the anonymous Tages Anzeiger interviewee, had known the lesbian couple for several years before they asked him for a sperm donation. He knew the pair desperately wanted a child and that they had made several requests to other men who had all turned them down.

Conti’s homosexual partner had never wanted children and it had never been an issue between them. In any event, at that time, adoption for homosexual couples was not possible, and it had therefore never been up for discussion.

Conti saw the women’s request as an “opportunity to accompany a child growing up”, a prospect that he relished. The women had promised him regular access to the child and so he had consented.

But even as the pregnancy was starting to develop, Conti could feel the tide turning. Although he was “suspicious”, he put the resistance down to the emotions of a pregnant woman.

Conti now thinks the women had presumed he would not want to be actively involved in the child’s life. The more interest he showed, the more the women, particularly the child’s non-biological mother, pulled back.

Following the birth of his son, Conti found the situation increasingly difficult, particularly because he had not anticipated quite the strength of emotion he experienced at being a father. The moment of his son’s birth, he said, “turned a switch in [his] head”.

Conti struggled with having to give up his paternal rights, although he knew that it was important for him to keep a certain distance in order for the child to develop its place in the mother-mother-child relationship.

Story continues below…

After the imposition of an increasingly strict regime, with a decreasing frequency of visits, Conti finally introduced a lawyer into the equation, which helped secure him better arrangements.

Nevertheless, the relationship had broken down so much that after 15 stressful visits, and although he dearly wanted to see his son, Conti has decided he has to stay away. In a few years, Conti hopes the child will choose himself to have his father in his life.

Lyssandra Sears (news@thelocal.ch)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

2012-01-26 05:44:38 by volvoman9
This is truly sad. Having experienced this situation after fathering a child out of wedlock and through a casual encounter I shared the same estrangement from my child and was forced to take legal action to secure my rights. The notion that only a mother can properly raise a child is preposterous and does serious harm to children and fathers alike. Interesting circumstances though.
Today's headlines
Illegal immigrant dies after setting himself on fire
The victim was treated at University Hospital Zurich. Photo: University Hospital Zurich

The 45-year-old Tunisian was threatened with deportation.

Swiss government rejects call for second immigration vote
Photo: Justus Blumer/Christophe G

The Swiss government has rejected a popular initiative calling for a revote on plans to limit immigration.

Bern: companies should report salary inequality by law
File photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP

The Swiss government wants to force small companies to examine their rates of pay every four years.

Husband in custody after Orbe body identified
File photo: Bas Leenders

The deceased is a 55-year-old woman who lived in the house with her husband.

Presented by MoneyPark
How to get a mortgage in Switzerland
Houses in Zürich. Photo: Pixabay.

Ready to buy? Here’s what you need to know as an expat about Swiss regulations, how to finance your purchase, and why you should use a broker.

Autumn in Switzerland: ten stunning Instagram photos
Photo: Swiss Tourism/Jan Geerk

Switzerland is beautiful in all seasons, but as these photos show, autumn is a special time in the alpine country.

Report: Swiss progress slows on gender equality
File photo: David Soulivet

Globally, it will take 170 years to achieve gender equality, according to the World Economic Forum.

Brothers go to court to stop suicide of sibling
File photo: Lisa Edmonds

Two men have filed a legal bid to prevent the Swiss assisted suicide association Exit from helping their older brother to kill himself.

Wawrinka snubs past form to reach Basel second round
Wawrinka beat local wildcard Marco Chiudinelli. Photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP

US Open champion Stan Wawrinka has reached the second round in Basel after going out in the first round for the past four years.

Villagers asked to help fund bridge renovations
The bridge links the two villages of Veltheim (pictured) and Holderbank. Photo: Lutz Fischer-Lamprecht

The crowdfunding campaign by the two communes is the first of its kind in Switzerland.

Photo: Unterirdisch Ueberleben
Inside Switzerland’s largest nuclear bunker – 40 years on
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Photo: The Local
Ticino firefighters rescue cow from swimming pool
Photo: Antoni Da Campo
Vegan wins battle to be accepted by Swiss army
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Ten Swiss ski resorts named most expensive in Europe
Photo: Randy Kashka
Swiss women will ‘work for free’ for the rest of year
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Montreux throws hat in Olympic rings
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Seven things you’ll miss about Switzerland if you leave
Photo: Richard Juilliard/AFP
Man makes Geneva airport bomb threat ‘for a joke’
Photo: AFP
Solar Impulse team reveals plans for unmanned plane
File photo: Martin Abegglen
Swiss to vote on passport rules for 3rd gen foreigners
Photo: AFP
Swiss wingsuit hotspot Lauterbrunnen won’t impose ban
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Six reasons Switzerland isn’t as boring as you might think
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Report: Switzerland one of world’s best places for girls
Photo: The Local
Thief returns Swiss cow bells worth thousands
File photo: Wikimedia Commons
One in three rapists isn’t locked up: statistics
Photo: activistin.ch
Tampon-tax protest turns Zurich fountains red
Photo: AFP
Geneva police to lift ban on bearded officers
Photo: Marcel Gillieron/AFP
Suicide chef’s restaurant keeps Michelin stars
Photo: Lara de Salis
11 things the Swiss get tired of hearing abroad
Photo:  Ivo Scholz/Swiss-image.ch
Survey: expats in Switzerland have money but few friends
Photo: AFP
Swiss press criticize Bern’s 'capitulation' on immigration
Photo: Jura Trois Lacs tourism
German ex-policeman is Swiss city’s new hermit
Photo: Dmitry A. Mottl
Ticino votes to favour local workers over foreigners
jobs available