Eggs, Apartments, and Ethnicity

The XX Factor
What Women Really Think
July 23 2009 8:05 AM

Eggs, Apartments, and Ethnicity


This week's fascinating conversation about surrogacy has got me wondering: Where does race fit into this already complicated picture? It has to, somehow-doesn't it?


Way back in the early aughts, when I was a fresh-faced college graduate, an urban legend began circulating among my crowd: A girl had been approached by a friend who asked if she would consider donating some of her eggs, so that he and his partner could have a baby. In exchange, he'd buy her a classic six on the Upper West Side. She declined.

I know! I know! But that's the way the story gets told. And frankly, I can't say I would have done differently. Even then, when my real estate lust was nowhere near the fever pitch it's at now, I knew that a big Manhattan apartment represented some pretty sweet compensation. But I always hesitated, and usually decided that I would have turned it down, too-and it always came down to race.

I'm biracial, which means that, perhaps more than most people, I'm constantly aware of the fact that I'm the product of two very specific people's very specific genetic make-ups. If you see me alone with my light-skinned, Chinese mother, we don't make much sense as a unit-until my Indian father enters the picture. Obviously, I don't think genes determine "family"; I know too many blended families, and families with adopted kids, to believe that. But given my personal history, the thought of a kid out there who looked half like me, but wasn't mine , made me uneasy in a very weird, very primal way.

Double X ers who have donated eggs or are members of the surrogacy community-care to share your thoughts? How often does race come into play in these kinds of transactions?

Photograph by George Doyle/Getty Images.



The Ebola Story

How our minds build narratives out of disaster.

The Budget Disaster That Completely Sabotaged the WHO’s Response to Ebola

PowerPoint Is the Worst, and Now It’s the Latest Way to Hack Into Your Computer

The Shooting Tragedies That Forged Canada’s Gun Politics

A Highly Unscientific Ranking of Crazy-Old German Beers


Welcome to 13th Grade!

Some high schools are offering a fifth year. That’s a great idea.


The Actual World

“Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.

Want Kids to Delay Sex? Let Planned Parenthood Teach Them Sex Ed.

Would You Trust Walmart to Provide Your Health Care? (You Should.)

  News & Politics
Oct. 22 2014 9:42 PM Landslide Landrieu Can the Louisiana Democrat use the powers of incumbency to save herself one more time?
Continuously Operating
Oct. 22 2014 2:38 PM Crack Open an Old One A highly unscientific evaluation of Germany’s oldest breweries.
Gentleman Scholar
Oct. 22 2014 5:54 PM May I Offer to Sharpen My Friends’ Knives? Or would that be rude?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 22 2014 4:27 PM Three Ways Your Text Messages Change After You Get Married
  Slate Plus
Tv Club
Oct. 22 2014 5:27 PM The Slate Walking Dead Podcast A spoiler-filled discussion of Episodes 1 and 2.
Oct. 22 2014 11:54 PM The Actual World “Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.
Future Tense
Oct. 22 2014 5:33 PM One More Reason Not to Use PowerPoint: It’s The Gateway for a Serious Windows Vulnerability
  Health & Science
Wild Things
Oct. 22 2014 2:42 PM Orcas, Via Drone, for the First Time Ever
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.
Oct. 22 2014 11:52 PMThe Ebola StoryHow our minds build narratives out of disaster.
Oct. 22 2014 11:54 PMThe Actual World“Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.
The World
Oct. 22 2014 6:30 PMThe Tragedies That Have Shaped Canada's Gun Politics