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Title: Donor insemination : an exploration of the psychological issues for couples who undergo treatment and those who have a DI child
Author: Salter-Ling, Natasha
Awarding Body: University of London
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 1998
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This descriptive study examines the psychological effects on men and women of fertility treatment by donor insemination. Issues considered are: telling the child, levels of distress and adjustment and views on counselling and information needs. Participants were drawn from two settings, a local hospital clinic and the support group, DI Network, and totalled 43 men and women in treatment and 83 who were successful in having a DI child. Measures used were the HADS, the more recent Fertility Adjustment Scale (FAS) and a questionnaire designed specifically for this study. For those in treatment the study found relatively high levels of distress and anxiety, and results on the FAS suggest men and women experience difficulties adjusting to their fertility problems. The concerns of couples in treatment were preoccupied with becoming pregnant and donor issues. For those couples who have a child main concerns were about telling the child and the child's right to information about the donor. Gender differences were also found. There were few requests for counselling and couples reported getting little information on the emotional impact of DI or how to tell your child. Distress levels were significantly higher in the group who was uncertain about telling their child and findings indicate that the educational level of couples is a possible factor in deciding to tell the child about his/her origins. The effects of secrecy and stigma in DI are also considered. Accounts from couples who have told their child indicate that it can be a difficult process, and more research is clearly needed in this area. The implications of these findings are discussed in the light of current literature and service needs.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available