Follow Oli as he meets his family from across the pond in this incredible BBC documentary
BY SOPHIE GRIFFITHS, IMAGE VIA BBC
A new BBC documentary, 25 Siblings & Me, tells the incredible story of London-based Oli Benjamin, a young man with Asperger’s syndrome who overnight discovers he has 25 brothers and sisters from the same sperm donor based across the pond in the U.S.
The documentary follows Oli as he travels to the US in the hopes of meeting his donor, joining his siblings for a mass reunion and forming a true family connection.
Oli was born in 1999 to mother Jody and her female partner. He was conceived using sperm from a US-based man, named Daley, after his birth mothers decided to have a child via IVF and embryo transfer. The couple had to have the procedure in the U.S. as it was not offered to lesbian couples in the UK at the time.
Oli’s mum, Jody told DIVA: “I couldn’t be more proud of Oli. He has navigated his way through this journey in his own way and stayed true to himself throughout it all.”
From an early age, Oli was aware that he had been conceived using donor sperm and when he turned 18 he signed up to a website that helps children of donors to find each other.
Oli first received an email from Jordan, who reveals she is his half-sister and drops the bombshell that not only has their donor, Daley, revoked his anonymity, but that he has 25 siblings in total.
In the BBC documentary, each of the siblings discuss their own stories, with some even revealing that they weren’t aware that they were conceived via a sperm donor.
Full of humour and heart, this fascinating documentary explores family formation and how fragile those bonds can sometimes be.
Only reading DIVA online? You’re missing out. For more news, reviews and commentary, check out the latest issue. It’s pretty badass, if we do say so ourselves.