Kansas Presses Sperm Donor to Pay Child Support to Lesbian Couple

William Marotta, a Kansas sperm donor who answered an online ad placed by a lesbian couple three years ago, is now being pressed by the state to provide child support. The state says that despite the fact an agreement was signed waiving his rights, the man is responsible based on the fact that a doctor was not used for the insemination.

SpermThe AP reports:

Marotta, a 46-year-old Topeka resident, answered an online ad in 2009 from a local couple, Angela Bauer and Jennifer Schreiner, who said they were seeking a sperm donor. After exchanging emails and meeting, the three signed an agreement relieving Marotta of any financial or paternal responsibility.

But instead of working with a doctor, Marotta agreed to drop off a container with his sperm at the couple's home and the women successfully handled the artificial insemination themselves. Schreiner become pregnant with a girl.

Late last year, after she and Bauer broke up, Schreiner received public assistance from the state to help care for the girl.

The state says Marotta is responsible for $6,000 that the child's biological mother received through public assistance and future child support.


  1. Dback says

    This strikes me, on the surface at least, as a classic example of conservatives and the judiciary acting like those “activists” they always complain about. These people signed a contract in good faith; why is he now being punished? Is it because he was assisting a gay couple? Surely there are more egregious examples of delinquent parenting/child support out there than this?

    (Remember way back, Kansas prosecuted a gay teenager as an adult for statutory rape when he had consensual sex with a male teenage partner, despite the fact that under the state’s “Romeo and Juliet” law, heterosexual teens would’ve been let off with a wrist slap.)

  2. TampaZeke says

    So the mother has NO financial responsibility for the child; only the father or the government?

  3. Steve says

    The obvious solution to this is course to allow gay couples to adopt (at least second parent adoption). If the other mother were a legal parent, she’d be responsible for supporting the child.

  4. Lucrece says

    What a wonderful way to kill the goodwill of straight people towards aiding gay couples obtain children.

    Thanks, government.

  5. Nigel says

    Well it is a good thing that ALL the unwanted kids, orphans and foster children were successfully placed in stable homes with loving parents before this new child was conceived.

  6. don't do it yourself says

    Please, you’re over-reacting. It says they didn’t use a doctor. That’s why he’s being punished. It’s just one professional (lawyer) looking out for another (doctor).

    Can you imagine the loss of revenue if everyone started using turkey basters instead of going to fertility clinics?

  7. Billy says

    I know a lot of straight guys who are gonna claim they just “dropped off” some sperm at their girlfriend’s house and they shouldn’t be responsible for the baby. Hilarious. Oh, heteros, never change.

  8. Billy says

    I know a lot of straight guys who are gonna claim they just “dropped off” some sperm at their girlfriend’s house and they shouldn’t be responsible for the baby. Hilarious. Oh, heteros, never change.

  9. Darren says

    Why if these woman chose not to use a doctor should the donor be punished.
    It also stands to reason that the government go back in time and punish everyone, gay and straight.
    Obviously these woman were not responsible enough to be parents and didn’t think it through. Every parent that is receiving assistance should be expected of the same repayment.
    A break up is always a possibility..why does it not fall back on the two individuals that made the choice to have the child before it falls back on the individual that chose to help them in THEIR choice.?

  10. ratbastard says

    Gawd…some of these TR posts make my eyes water. The donor is the biological father. If he didn’t donate his seed in a legalese fashion, he has it cumming to him. Pun intended. What the hay makes this lesbian[s] think it’s cool to get artificially inseminated, pregnant and give birth to a child without the means to support such child? Why do they think they can just ‘collect’?

    Social assistance was NEVER originally designed o enable a certain dysfunctional lifestyle. It was designed to help especially women with children who generally through no fault of their own lost their husband and father of the children, through death, abandonment, etc.,Today, it’s used primarily to enable dysfunctional people [mostly women] to live their ‘lifestyle’. I believe fully in helping those in need, especially dire need. And I’m not a ‘neocon’ or ‘teabagger’ or whatever other cliche some so-called ‘progressives’ love throwing around because it sounds cool and catchy. Far from it. And yes, I also a strong opponent of corporate welfare in all it’s forms, along with our out of control military/industrial complex.

  11. Former Kansan says

    Kansas is very backward in terms of the governance of such matters. This poor bastard is being punished for no reason at all ‘cept for the fact that the parties involved “…did it themselves.” as DDIY points out.

  12. ratbastard says

    @Former Kansan,

    Backward or not, it’s not the issue; the DNA doesn’t lie. The biological ‘father’ is this guy.

    I feel very bad for children who are born and raised under such circumstances. Adult women and men can be incredibly selfish and thoughtless.

  13. Kevin_BGFH says

    @RATBASTARD – Your justification for social assistance is exactly what happened here. “It was designed to help especially women with children who generally through no fault of their own lost their husband and father of the children, through death, abandonment, etc.”

    In this case, she was in a lesbian relationship and was later abandoned. Would you deny social assistance to a heterosexual couple who adopted and then the father ditched the family? The state should be suing the lesbian partner, not the donor.

  14. Kevin_BGFH says

    Almost completely tangential: My twin brother was sued by the State of Kansas for child support more than 20 years ago. In fairness, she had been his live-in girlfriend, though they had broken up and he claimed it was not his kid. No one in the family believed him, but it turns out he was right. His (now former) best friend ended up paying the child support.

  15. kpo5 says

    The Fox “News” writeup on this was a nice little anti-gay hit-piece as well. Despite the fact that this is only occurring due to Kansas’s bigoted laws, they made it sound like it was the fault of le gays.

    Don’t feed the Rat. He only sees in two colors.

  16. Bob says

    this is ridiculous. They guy should sue for full custody of the child. I bet that would shut this down.

  17. MichaelJ says

    If anyone other than the state should help the mother and child it should be the other lesbian. She signed the agreement that relieved the sperm donor of financial responsibility and she live in the same home and in a meaningful way was a parent of the child, not the donor. Shared genes should not automatically be considered a more important, more real connection between people than are relationships based on caregiving, support, commitment and love.

  18. mon says

    this is why gay people are discriminated against having babies, adopted or what not…almost all relationships do not last and the children are left to suffer in the end…and now, even the donors..wth??

  19. James H says

    How does the state even know who the donor was? The parties involved were fools if his name appears on the birth certificate.

  20. ratbastard says


    Yeah, in a sense you’re right. HOWEVER, the whole concept that you hook up [homo or hetero], conceive and birth a baby [in this case go to the trouble of actually having some random male donate his sperm], then breaking up [abandoning?], then ‘collecting'; I have problems with this no matter who does it, not just gays. And the fact we live i n a society where it’s now extremely common for families with children to break up and for one of the parents to ‘abandon’ the child/family, leaving no recourse in many cases but for the child’s ‘guardian’ caregiver to ‘collect’ bennies, says a lot about our society. Like I said in my previous post, we as a society should not be actively enabling, and as far as pop culture, some marketers, and even some political and social ideologies are concerned, actively encouraging this type of behavior that has such negative impacts on totally innocent children, our society at large and economically.

    My own personal belief is you ‘donated’ the sperm, you’re the child’s biological father, and that’s not something that should be casually dealt with of thrown away because you signed a legal release form. And in this case BOTH the ex-partner and sperm doner should be sued by the state for the taxpayers financial burden in caring for the poor child. I don’t know what Kansas state laws are regarding this issue though, some states don’t even recognize common law marriages, let alone gay common law marriages. All the adults from the sperm doner to the lesbian couple are IMO narcissistic, thoughtless and culpable in this matter.



    What? Did I say something on another thread that got your panties in a bunch? I mentioned a generally taboo topic as far as ‘progressives’ are concerned?

    I am not racist. I do not judge individual people by such trivial matter as their birth, their so-called ‘ethnicity’, so-called ‘race’, and so-on MAYBE if there wasn’t so much deliberate and contrived division for political and ideological purposes [and marketing technique] on such sensitive matters, maybe there would be far less of a problem. I’ve only said in other posts and here what MANY people [gay and non-gay, white and non-white] think, but are often afraid to openly talk about.

  21. Diogenes Arktos says

    Can someone explain the Kansas law – especially about the role of a doctor? How can they consistently deal with anonymous donors?

    Ratbastard’s comments about welfare enabling the breakdown of the family are not new – they’ve been around for decades.

  22. says

    A sperm donor should be just that: a donor of sperm. Not a parent, unless there is a written agreement that the donor will assume a parental role and therefore have parental responsibilities. (He should also have been better informed before dishing it out, so to speak.) And the 2 lesbians should have been able to both be legal parents to the child so that, in the event of a breakup, both of them would be responsible for support of the child (instead of the non-birth mother, presumably, being legally off the hook because she was never a legal parent), as would be the case when a heterosexual couple breaks up. (Not that those cases can’t be equally messy.)

    The problem is that laws for gay parents–and anyone who helps them become a parent–are either downright discriminatory or ambiguous due to the insane patchwork of marriage and parenting laws across the country, leaving everyone open to problems and the whims of the state and the court system. In this case, archaic law prevents Kansas from going after the other mother, who should be the one putting out $.

    And, of course, gay parents aren’t immune from the pettiness and instability that heterosexuals have brought to the role for centuries.

  23. MichaelJ says

    @MON Where is your evidence that “almost all relationships do not last and are left to suffer in the end”? That certainly is not true of the gay parents I have known, though I don’t think any one person’s personal observations count as evidence. And you should find some evidence that gay couple with children are more likely to break up than heterosexual ones before you make sweeping statements.
    And what about all the heterosexual couples with children that end in separation or divorce? Do these children not suffer in the end? I do know that some studies find that children whose parents are unhappy being together do better if the parents separate amiably separation than those whose parents decide to stay together for the children.