An Australian hairdresser who was donating sperm to a lesbian couple was shocked when he received a text from them last month informing him they no longer wanted to use his seed because of the current conflict in Gaza.
Jay Lazarus, 37, who describes himself as a proud South African-born, Australian-raised gay Jewish man, told The Post he was left reeling by their decision.
The journey began in October 2022 when the Perth-based stylist, who knew he had always wanted to donate sperm to help couples, joined a Facebook group which helps couples find sperm donors.
Lazarus says he was struck by a Queensland couple’s story and decided he wanted to help them.
Fertility laws are very different Down Under and Lazarus underwent months of genetic testing, medical tests, and in-person counseling sessions with his partner. He also became close with the duo, speaking to them on Zoom chats and keeping in weekly contact via texts and calls.
The couple knew from the get-go that Lazarus was Jewish.
He was also very open to how much they wanted him in their child’s life. He was happy to be an “uncle” figure who would be known as the biological father or if they preferred, to have no contact at all.
He donated sperm in September 2023 and it was immediately frozen for three months until more testing was done.
After Oct. 7th, Lazarus shared Instagram posts supporting Israel, none critical of the Palestinian people. The couple made no mention of the posts or commented on them.
However, the relationship was severed last month, when they abruptly texted him.
While they expressed “deep gratitude” and acknowledged that he had been “absolutely amazing through out this entire journey,” they didn’t feel comfortable continuing to use his sperm to conceive because they were “deeply affected” by the “war between Israel and Gaza.”
“We are down a rabbit hole with the depth of our emotions and the ethical challenges,” the text read in part. “And truth be told we feel out of our depth proceeding.”
They stressed that they are “about love and kindness” but didn’t feel that they had “the capacity to navigate parts of your identity in this donor relationship so we are respectfully ending this now.”
Lazarus was devastated and sat on it for weeks before deciding to share his story on social media to “share what I’ve learned.”
“Prejudice is still persuasive, even in progressive circles that champion ‘kindness and love,’” he wrote. “Antisemitism is not just a relic of the past but a living, breathing prejudice that continues today.
He acknowledged that he “can’t change their view” but “I refuse to let it diminish my pride or lose hope.
“I’m proud to be gay, proud to be Jewish, and proud to stand against hate.”
Lazarus says that he has only received supportive comments and “there has not been one negative comment. It’s been incredible actually and I’ve been blown away by them.”
He has heard from the Queensland couple, who sent him a message but admits he has yet to open it.
“I’m in Melbourne right now,” he explained,” and I’m having a good time with my friends for a wedding. “I don’t want to ruin my weekend and get angry.”
Lazarus, who got married in December, hasn’t given up on sperm donation.
He’s currently involved with another couple, who sadly suffered a miscarriage but will try again in March.
“They’ve been so supportive and awesome,” he shared. “I think they were worried that I was going to pull the pin on them.”