Da Brat and Jesseca ‘Judy’ DuPart are awaiting the arrival of their new baby boy. The two have made it clear in several interviews that both faced issues when it came to getting pregnant. They went back and forth about who would carry the child. In the end the couple decided on Da Brat who underwent IVF. For the couple’s process DuPart’s egg was fertilized with sperm from a donor then implanted in Da Brat’s uterus. DuPart has been supporting Brat throughout the entire pregnancy as this is Brat’s first. Dupart has three other children from a previous relationship.
In an interview with The Root, Da Brat shared her journey of finding a sperm donor for their new baby. She mentioned that the pool of potential sperm donors did not have many Black men. The couple started out with about one thousand candidates and had to rule some out due to issues with Dupart’s genetics. That brought them down to 300 candidates and only one was Black.
“And that [dude] looked like Jiminy Cricket,” Brat said. “I was like, “I’m sorry but that wasn’t gonna be my choice.”
Now, the expectant mothers are facing backlash over Brat’s comment. DuPart quickly came to her wife’s defense.
The Struggles Of Finding A Black Sperm Donor
DuPart hopped on Instagram Wednesday to clear the air. She let everyone know that, while distasteful, Da Brat’s comments were made in a light-hearted manner. She also reaffirmed that there weren’t many Black men to choose from in their process.
“Black men make up 5% or less of the sperm donation pool,” she said in the video.
She’s not wrong. According to a report by The Washington Post, there is currently a Black sperm donor shortage and it affects Black women tremendously. Currently, Black women between the ages of 35 and 45 are more likely to remain unmarried than women from other racial groups. Some in that age bracket may turn to sperm donation in hopes of starting a family on their own. However, Black men account for fewer than 2 percent of the total donors at the country’s four largest sperm banks. This leads to Black women having to choose between raising a biracial child or putting their trust in online ads and apps for a Black sperm donor. This is exactly what Da Brat and DuPart were faced with, resulting in them choosing a white donor.
Regina Townsend is the founder of the Broken Brown Egg. The infertility nonprofit organization supports Black women. Townsend told the Washington Post that a lot of the stipulations are placed on Black men as it is. Those may be to blame, in part, for the shortage.
“It has been drilled into their psyche that Black men are not good fathers, they’re absent, they don’t go to the doctor, and now you turn around and tell them that they should now trust the medical industry with their genetics, and help create children they aren’t going to see. That’s a big obstacle,” Townsend said.
The issue surrounding the lack of Black sperm donors affects Black women who want to start families of their own daily. The issue is now, how to incentivize Black men and make them more comfortable with donating after decades of the health care system failures.