Jason Patric’s custody battle: I’m not a sperm donor. I’m ‘a willing co-parent’

Jason Patric

You haven’t forgotten Jason Patric, have you? Dude peaked in the 1980s and will forever live on in infamy as the skeptical recruit of The Lost Boys. He also edged into gossip territory in the 1990s after he ran off with Julia Roberts while she was engaged to poor Kiefer Sutherland. That was some juicy stuff, but all parties recovered and moved onto different partners.

On a more serious note, Jason is neck deep in a very serious custody battle for his biological son. This is no cut-and-dried case because Jason is considered a “sperm donor” in the eyes of the law. Here’s what happened: Jason was dating a woman named Danielle Schriber for years. They broke up in 2009. Jason then gave his sperm to Danielle. At some point, they got back together as a couple and were seen on a happy family beach trip in 2011. Then Jason and Danielle broke up, and she kicked him out of Gus’ life. Jason went to court but was denied all custody rights in February 2013. Late last year, Jason made it known that he was going to keep fighting for his parental rights and was promoting legislation to grant parental rights to sperm donors under certain conditions.

Fast forward until now. Jason is seeking to change the official story. He hasn’t been allowed to see Gus in over a year, but Jason says he and Danielle were very much together when he donated the sperm. He says they tried to conceive a child for years, but she could only get pregnant through in vitro. I’m pretty sure the law would be on Jason’s side if he and Danielle had been married, but that’s not how it went down. Here are more details:

Jason Patric insists he was not merely a sperm donor to his ex-girlfriend of 10 years, Danielle Schreiber, with whom he’s currently locked in a bitter custody battle over their 4-year-old son, Gus.

“I was a willing co-parent and still am,” Patric, 47, who hasn’t been allowed to see the boy for one year and counting, insists in an interview with PEOPLE. “Danielle and I tried to conceive a child for three years. The only reason we did in vitro fertilization is because she could not conceive naturally. That does not make me a donor.”

Schreiber, 41, a massage therapist, argues that that’s exactly what Patric was. “When Jason offered me his sperm, it was under the condition that his donation never be made public and that he would not be a father to the child,” she has stated. “I chose to use a known donor over a stranger, but only after I knew the law would protect my ability to make the best decisions for my son.”

Patric says their relationship soured after he broke up with Schreiber in June 2012, when Gus was 2. Soon, he says, she began withholding access to the boy. After he filed a paternity case for custody a month later, a Los Angeles judge eventually ruled in Feb. 2013 he was a donor and therefore, by California law, not the natural father.

Having abandoned hope at amending the law, Patric is now hoping to win a pending appeal on the custody ruling. He’s also since launched Stand Up for Gus, an L.A.-based effort to raise funds for awareness of parental alienation.

Schreiber, however, has filed a restraining order request against Patric, to forbid him from speaking about their son in public or private without her permission. A hearing is set for April 17.

“I had a loving relationship with my son and it’s gone now,” says Patric. “Danielle is completely erasing me from my child’s life. I’m leaving a public trail so he’ll know I did everything I could to be with him, that he wasn’t abandoned.”

[From People]

This is a heartbreaking story no matter what — and especially if Jason’s side of the story is true. Jason has appealed the court’s ruling that denied him custody rights. The appeal will be heard in May. Jason’s new foundation, Stand Up For Gus, has created a new website for the cause. The foundation seeks to fight parental alienation under a broad brush. Jason has recorded a heartening video that he shot in Gus’ bedroom:

Jason vows to “fight until I’m dead” to regain rights to see his son. The case will be heard again in May. Here are some pictures of Jason’s late 2013 gala to raise funds and awareness for the Gus foundation. Matt Damon and Sarah Silverman lent their mugs to the cause. Jason really shouldn’t have invited Mel Gibson, whose face doesn’t help any cause.

Jason Patric

Jason Patric

Photos courtesy of WENN

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104 Responses to “Jason Patric’s custody battle: I’m not a sperm donor. I’m ‘a willing co-parent’”

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  1. Sayrah says:

    That’s new information. If it’s true and they had tried for years only to have to use IVF to conceive, I might have thought differently. But if I remember didn’t he draw up paperwork saying he wanted no ties to the child when she got his spern?

    • Algernon says:

      Was it a letter? It seems like at some point he was like, “I don’t want to participate,” then they got back together and he spent some time with the kid and bonded, and now he wants to participate. It isn’t cut and dry, however you cut it.

      • LadySlippers says:

        I think they actually had attorney’s draw up the docs. It made the news — he was a known donor and that’s it. Those sentiments were VERY clear too. It was shocking because Jason Patric came across as very cold and that wasn’t the mental picture the public had of him.

    • Bridget says:

      That was a part of the initial coverage of the case. They had paperwork drawn up that clearly stated that Patric was just a sperm donor, that he had no obligation and no part of this kid’s life. But then they got back together and didn’t change the paperwork, so when they broke up he didn’t have a legal leg to stand on, even though they’d been living as a family. So, he’s leaving out some very pertinent info on the case. And honestly, both parties here make me angry. I can’t believe that neither changed that paperwork. That was so irresponsible of both of them, but especially Patric. He had ample opportunity to deal with this in the legal manner and protect himself and his relationship with his child. Those laws about sperm donors are there to protect those families that use donors.

      • Mich says:

        Hindsight is 20/20.

      • Sam says:

        The problem is that while the contract was initially valid and proper, from the way they made it sound, BOTH Jason and his ex breached the contract, which in theory voids it.

        The contract spelled out that Jason was merely provided sperm. However, it was also a forebearance contract on the ex’s part. She promised to legally forego any support she and the child would otherwise be entitled to under the law. meaning, even if Jason attempted to have a relationship with the son and provide support, the ex had a duty to refuse to maintain the contract. From the way he tells it, she gladly accepted his support for about two years and then attempted to severe contact.

        It’s a legal concept called mutual breach. When neither party seems to behave in a way that is contractually consistent, judges will often merely void the contract, since neither party seems to care about it. Personally, the law is sound, but it sounds like here Patric will have better chances on appeal.

      • LadySlippers says:

        @Sam: If it is about mutual breach — wouldn’t both court cases (one in family court and the other probably in civil court) considered that already? Just trying to play devil’s advocate here. Lol. I tend to do that a lot.

      • Sam says:

        LadySlippers: Only if the attorneys bring it up. The impression that I got was that Jason’s attorney made an entire argument based upon the sperm donor statute and what was in the best interests of the child. The court can only rule upon the arguments that are presented to it. Frankly, to me, this was never a family matter at all. This is a contractual matter. Also, as far as I can tell, the civil court only ruled that the contract was facially valid – which is a perfectly reasonable argument. I have no doubt that the contract was valid and legal when they signed it. However, the real issue is the contract’s ongoing validity, given that neither parent really abided by it. Personally, I have no clue why the attorneys would not pursue the mutual breach theory – it’s certainly the first thing that pops into my mind. The ex had a duty of forebearance that she violated (IF Jason’s version of the events is legit).

      • mercy says:

        If I were a judge, I would declare the contract null and void the minute she let him bond with the child and he proved his intent to continue their father-son relationship on a consistent basis.

    • Tazina says:

      Jason is more than a sperm donor. Why did she allow him to bond with the child? It will blow up in her face one day. The father will be able to communicate with the child via the Internet. The boy will soon find out that he was denied access to his father. He will be able to find the photos online of him as a baby with his father. What goes around comes around and eventually she will be distrusted by her son and she will wish she had behaved much differently. Put the child first for once.

      • Mich says:

        Yep. That child is going to HATE her one day. No doubt about it.

      • Bridget says:

        We’re only getting one side here, though. There could be a very good reason why Patric was cut out of this kid’s life, but it’s not like he’s going to publicly admit to that. He’s not even mentioning that she’s within her legal rights because of the contract that he signed, that he fully knew gave up all of his parental rights. He’s the sperm donor, and now he hasthe exact same rights as any boyfriend the mother may have – which is none.

      • LadySlippers says:

        The fact that he’s not acknowledging the truth that he originally wanted nothing to do with his child (which was shocking to most people) makes me think there is something fishy about the story. It doesn’t seem to be a simple, ‘I was wrong and fell in love with my son after meeting him’ kinda story. He’s making it sound like something else entirely and skipping over any wrong doing on his part.

      • bluhare says:

        It could be as simple as not wanting to acknowledge it because people would then thrown their hands in the air saying, “There you have it!”. I can see that.

        Interesting that with all the people refusing to pay and not seeing their child, here’s one person who wants to and is being shut down. I guess Pauly D would be the other.

  2. bammer says:

    This should be about the child. Let him have a relationship with his Father. They already bonded.

    • Stef Leppard says:

      Danielle seems very selfish to me.

    • Rayche says:

      this. the mother seems self interested.

    • Anonny says:

      No one has the right to judge the mother here.

      Regardless of how she feels about the father, this is not about her…it’s about her child’s right to have a relationship with both of his parents. Yeah, they effed up by not changing the paperwork once the nature of the relationship changed, 20:20 hindsight yada yada, but they can still do the right thing.

      Not a fan of Jason Patric (I’ve always thought him a bit of a douche), but he is allowed to have a change of heart, especially since men view babies as abstract concepts. If he’s guilty of anything, it’s being naive about what this child would mean to him.

      • Sarah says:

        Yes, this. It’s about the child. Whatever the circumstances of his conception, he had a 2 year relationship with his biological father that the mother has unilaterally terminated. This is not okay and not good for the child. Good on him for fighting for the kid to have a relationship with him.

      • bluhare says:

        Of course we do. We’ve got as much right to judge her as we do him. Which you just did big time. Can’t have it both ways.

      • Greyson says:

        I’m judging her. She let the child and father BOND. It was a mutual breach and she is being selfish. And yes, if she succeeds in her quest to alienate the boy from his dad when he is old enough to read the internet he was find out that truth, that his dad fought to be in his life, and yes he will hate her for what she has done.

    • mercy says:

      +1 She let him back in. Her choice. Now that they’ve bonded, it shouldn’t be up to her anymore unless she can show a relationship with his father would be detrimental to their son.

  3. Aims says:

    What I don’t understand is; when she got pregnant or he gave is donation, did he sign papers stating he was just a donor ? I would think he would have some rights to his son if he hadn’t signed papers. Also is his name on the birth certificat?

    • Stef Leppard says:

      No his name isn’t on the birth cert. And I guess part of the reason he’s not considered the natural father is because they weren’t married. It seems really complicated to me, but the fact that he had a relationship with the son means that he IS more than just a sperm donor.

    • evelena says:

      He specifically had legal papers drawn up to state that he was not the father, only the sperm donor, and that he did not want to have any responsibility for the child.

  4. Len says:

    I remember the facts being verrrrry different—he signed papers and have up all parental rights prior to donating right? My memory is essentially that they were together for so long that after the breakup she was entitled to $$ legally and he provided the donation in lieu of $$.

    • minime says:

      Yes, this new version is a bit strange. Specially when it comes up after so much time. I remember exactly the same as you as being the first and predominant version of this case.

    • Hautie says:

      I recall this the same. And that there were lawyers involved. So he got what he wanted. No responsibility. He wanted it clear he was doing it to settle an issue of financial responsibility, he had to her. So instead of cash, he donated to the baby cause. But that was it.

      And why do I get a huge whiff of Alec Baldwin from this situation. That whiff of douchebaggery behavior.

      As in, Patric is also doing this to torment the ex-girlfriend. I am not exactly on board that she just heartlessly cut him off. I suspect there is so much more to this story. I suspect he is an ass in real life. And she decided it was not worth the mental torment to deal with him.

      And it looks as if he is trying to financially devastate her too, in the process.

      • LadySlippers says:

        @Hautie: I said I thought we were getting only part of the story. Part of me wonders if he’s not a jerk too which is why she cut him off.

        All I know is I am willing to give her the benefit of the doubt. And we’re not getting the whole story here. And he’s changed his story greatly (not that that’s a bad thing — it happens but there are gaps).

      • Andrea says:

        If what you are saying is true and he just wants access to his son to annoy his ex, she should just give in. Let him have time with him and eventually he’ll grow tired of it. But I’m not sure that’s entirely the case. In the end, the only one to loss in this situation is the son

      • minime says:

        “All I know is I am willing to give her the benefit of the doubt. ”

        That’s my opinion too. I think there are two sides to this story and I don’t think everything is being told. Also this guy already had some sketchy behavior before. Not saying that he can’t be right, but just that I’m taking this with a grain of salt (and that Gala is awkward). I think people shouldn’t be so easy on judging this woman. She might believe that this is the best for her child for a million of reasons and maybe she would have compromised with another solution that not the one he’s asking for. I remember seeing an interview with her where she said she would be obviously willing to have him visiting the child. Just saying that there are many open questions out there.

      • LadySlippers says:

        But what if, for example, he’s using again and the mother has legit concerns about Jason as a father? I’m not saying he is, all I’m saying is she might have something about Jason that points to him bring a less than ideal parent. And remember a custody hearing was held and supported her in this too.

      • LadySlippers says:

        Exactly. Whatever it is — we are not hearing the whole story here.

      • Sarah says:

        WHy do we care about the circumstances of conception at this point. The child had a two year relationship with his father until apparently the mother terminated that relationship. This is not okay for the child. Very cruel.

      • evelena says:

        I agree with you. Although I’m sure she must have known that he was a douche when she asked him to donate his sperm in lieu of money he owed her. Everyone on here is saying she’s selfish for not letting the father be in the kid’s life…but maybe she’s not letting him be a part of his life for a reason!

  5. Marigold says:

    I’m actually quite surprised that the best interests of the child did not seem to play a bigger role in this case. The boy spent what, two years with his dad? I’m not well versed in CA law but usually the best interest test would trump contracts etc., especially if the other parent, in this case, the mother, seemingly broke the contract herself by allowing Patric access to his son.

    In MA, there have been cases where a non-biological father has to continue paying support because it was in the best interest of the child. How that passes the smell test and this doesn’t is beyond me. Of course, isn’t the CA court system the one that treated Bode Miller’s baby mother like an incubator and said she should have never left the state while pregnant with his child?

    • Bridget says:

      I thought that was NY that took Miller’s son away from his mother like that. And now every time I see him on the Olympics I hope he eats it and loses.

      Clearly, her allowing Patric access to the son didn’t break the contract, and I blame Patric himself for not ammending this legally when he had the opportunity. And in fact, I have a strong feeling that we’re not hearing the complete story here.

  6. lisa2 says:

    So men that want to actually be a part of their children’s lives are denied. While there are fathers that don’t care to see or have any contact with their children. I don’t understand this at all. I think some women are so not right on this issue. If she had gotten pregnant and he didn’t want the child she could have had the baby and forced him to pay child support. But in this case she doesn’t want him in the child’s life at all; despite the fact that the child was calling him daddy.

    Women have a lot of power in this issue. I say what my mother told my brothers; be careful who you decide to make the mother of your children and where you sow your seed..

    • Virgilia Coriolanus says:

      From the way I remember it, they broke up, and he later donated sperm for her to have the kid–signed all the papers, etc. But then a while later, they got back together and she willingly let him be ‘daddy’ to the kid–but then they broke up two years later, and then she said ‘you’re the sperm donor, not the father’, so he went to court.

      Honestly, it just seems like she’s trying to punish him for breaking up with her. Because no matter how good it seems like at the time, I would not be getting into a relationship with my sperm donor and letting him around the kid, unless I wanted them to get attached and form a relationship.

      And yeah–it is sucky that the one time (it seems like) a man actually wants his child from his ex, the woman won’t let him see him. Which, all I have to say to that, is that my mom and my aunts would’ve given everything they had for some of the fathers of their children to actually care about them and come see them AFTER they broke up.

      I have on uncle (my aunt’s ex husband) who still owes her back child support, and the cousin in question is 30 years old right now.

      • Lindy79 says:

        I know it’s easy to say, but even if there were documents, she then went against them and allowed him access, then changed her mind when they broke up so even if he did at the start, things changed, it’s just a pity he didn’t get his legal stuff sorted in the period they were back together.

      • FLORC says:

        I think there’s a lot more going on here. Maybe he is trying to punish her for the break up. From all interviews I’ve seen and read where he talks about this he comes off very cold and bitter towards his ex. I don’t see even a glimmer of affection for his child. Just bitterness.

        And I think this whole situation is impossible to sort out. So much to take into consideration. So much to weigh in the child’s best interest. So much to ponder.

        I would hate to be the one deciding and sorting through this mess. Poor kid.

      • g says:

        @Florc, you mean bitter towards that ex that has denied access to his son for over a year? Seriously?!

  7. Algernon says:

    Setting aside everything else, what you have is a parent who wants to be involved with his child. Maybe he didn’t at the beginning, but he wants to be there now. The only person hurt by separating parent and child like this is the child. If he’s willing to share in the responsibility, let him.

    On a side note, the lesson I have learned from celebrity custody battles is to never use donor sperm from someone you know. If you want a kid but don’t want to co-parent, use anonymous donor sperm. Seems like much less hassle than trying to erase someone from your child’s life, a la Halle Berry and this situation.

  8. Lindy79 says:

    Even if he had signed papers, they were then contradicted by him being a part of his sons life at some point so I don’t see how that can be ignored? Surely this would have a negative effect on the child? If that was the agreement then she as well as he broke it by allowing him access (possibly because they got back together for a period)

    This situation smacks of two immature adults who couldn’t get their shit together enough to put their child first.

  9. mickey says:

    I can’t even begin to formulate an opinion in my mind about the current developments- but geeze- the website? The “gala?” That’s ridiculous.

    Patric’s unique situation about “father’s” rights will get looped in with those nut cases who have truly abandoned their children having relationships and providing financial support. Then they come crawling back wanting to see their kids because it’s conveneint for them. All issues surrounding parenting are complicated and sensitive. For people like Matt Damon (best known for his work as a father), I think it could get on a slippery slope (or what is that phrase?). The two sides seem to have valid arguments. I think it’s doubtful that Patric’s friends were honestly informed of the other side. And when the other side comes out, it’s going to bit someone in the butt.

  10. LadySlippers says:

    @Sayrah @Len:
    I remember that! Thanks for reminding me. I’m guessing that’s how and why he lost his court battle is because those donor docs were probably very clear that he was nothing but a donor and wanted no ties to any offspring his sperm produced. He should have gotten the docs amended when he and his ex got back together.

    It also makes me wonder what else is going on. I just get the feeling we’re not hearing the whole story here.

  11. original kay says:

    so he changed his mind. he signed away rights, they got back together, he loves the kid now. realizes what he missed. she lets him see the kid, form a bond.
    they break and NOW she says no?


    hell hath no fury….

  12. Elaine C says:

    He gave her the sperm and didn’t want to be responsible..then he bonded w the child and changed his tune…same as deadbeat dads who later bond with the child then feel guilty and try to make up…this guy is a BULLY…

    • Lindy79 says:

      I think the waters were muddied though when she allowed him access in that 2 year period.
      If he had signed documents giving up his legal rights, she would have had every right not to allow him access ever.

      Not sure how this one is going to play out…

    • Virgilia Coriolanus says:

      Okay, but the child is still that–a child. He was 2 or 3 when Patric actually sat down and spent time with him…..it’s not like it’s 20, 30 years of your father being this nameless, faceless person who doesn’t want to come and see you…..all that child knows right now is that he has a dad, who isn’t coming to see him anymore, and who knows what the mother is telling him about that.

      All I have to say is that I would’ve loved it, if my sperm donor, who told my mom that I wasn’t his (which he knew was a flat out lie), refused to take a DNA test until they nearly arrested him over it, came back and admitted that he was wrong and wanted to start over. That would be wonderful.

      Because there isn’t a worse feeling in the world, knowing that someone who willingly created you, is actively trying to act like you don’t even exist. And I’m not the only one–I have several other brothers, and a sister who he doesn’t acknowledge, and who I’ve never met.

      • g says:

        Thank you, some people here act like he was gone for years and is now coming back. Unless he is an abusive a-hole and a danger to the child, there is no excuse for what she is doing. Do you how many women would love to have their child’s father want to participate in their children’s lives? Also why is ok for her to default and let him see the kid for 2 years, but now that she got dumped the child is off limit. I get that we are all sisters and the whole rah rah bs but this seems wrong.

      • Sloane Wyatt says:

        Virgilia and G – It seems wrong to me too, yet I get the sense this could be about more than just Danielle Schreiber capriciously erasing Gus’ father from his life out of hurt feelings or spite.

        Really, really good manipulators swoop in and sweep their partner off their feet and repeatedly worm themselves back into their partner’s graces. They are utterly believable. It’s how they do. That would explain why Danielle allowed her former boyfriend/sperm donor to parent his son.

        I can only imagine the horror of discovering a RL ‘Sleeping with the Enemy’ situation. If Jason’s an alcoholic and endangered his son by leaving him alone in the tub, or a sociopathic stalker type that terrified Danielle, or was damaging to little Gus’ in anyway, then Mom had no choice but to cut Jason off for good. It’s plausible and would mean Dannielle living in fear Jason would get even the slightest time with her son.

  13. AlmondJoy says:

    I hate messy situations like this. My main concern is the child and he NEEDS his father. The relationship should not be cut off. So sad 🙁

    • FLORC says:

      The boy does not NEED his father. Let’s be clear on that. And if this is to be believed you would think he would have tried to change or amend the documents where he signed all rights away from his son with nothing to state he could choose to build a relationship with his child later on if he so choosed. They were together for 2 years and he never even started paperwork.

      Maybe she’s protecting her son from a man who wants to be in her life no matter what. Even if that means using their son. Maybe the mother knows something we don’t and that he would be bad for the raising of their child. It’s not far off to assume that.

      Bottom line. We just don’t have all the facts and a lot of this story seems edited and watered down.

      • LadySlippers says:


        Since everyone here is only hearing Jason’s story, I feel the need to point out his ex does not appear (please correct me if I’m wrong) to be spilling her guts to the press. Which means, she is trying to shield her son from the hoopla Jason is creating. That is something a good mother would do.

        Something is fishy here. This isn’t just a mean woman trying to cut off ties to the man that fathered her son. Two different courts stated unequivocally that Jason should not be in his son’s life. One WOULD have considered the relationship Gus had created with his father (custody); whereas the other looked mostly at the legal documents drawn up and legal precedent (sperm donor). NEITHER court found in Jason’s favour. Neither one did. That says a lot. A LOT a lot in fact.

        Children need warm and loving adults/ caretakers in their life. If it’s their parents even better. But since we don’t know all the facts — we don’t know if Gus will hate his mother or thank her or feel something else entirely different. And it’s because we don’t know if Jason, while in his son’s life was a good father. Jason is an addict, IIRC, what if he’s using again? What if he’s abusive? I’m 100% speculating but the bottom line is — we don’t know the whole story so we shouldn’t be assuming she’s bad because he’s the one rounding up the press.

      • Kim1 says:

        His ex has appeared on more than one talk show I saw her on the Today show. Don’t encourage your child to call a man Daddy if he is just a sperm donor. Call him Uncle Jason or Mr. Jason not daddy

      • Ange says:

        If he was that bad why did she get back with him for a couple of years though? Why did she ask him to be a donor for their baby after they broke up? If he is then she picked badly and that’s on her, not the kid. If he’s not a bad father then he should be able to see the boy.

      • Josephine says:

        I can see not starting paperwork – they were existing as a family, and he probably did not imagine that we would need paperwork after being “dad” for two years, and actually being the bio father.

        It’s too bad these parents can’t figure it out. She let the boy call him dad and think of him as dad. Doesn’t seem like a piece of paper that neither of them lived by should govern. She doesn’t want to share the decision-making about the child (that is her primary objection in an interview – she doesn’t want him to have input on the decisions she makes about the kid – I get that), but being a parent means putting the child first.

        If he is unfit, she should say so. But short of that, this just feels like major punishment and retribution.

      • Sloane Wyatt says:

        @Florc, I just got through saying most of the same thing more or less on #12. Schreiber could have a VERY good reason not to disclose the specifics to the public.

        I love good gossip, but I hate it when children are caught up in the middle.

    • CC says:

      Children need their fathers (or parents) if they play a positive role in their lives. When they’re crappy, all you need to know for all purposes is who they are, that they’re bad and to be avoided.

      I’m don’t defend fathers or mothers intrinsic rights just because they managed to spawn a child. Takes no talent or any informed decision all it takes is having sex (or sperm), timing and lack of proper protection (deliberate or not), the stupidest and most irresponsible people managed it throughout the ages. It’s not like you have to take an exam or psychological profile before you’re deemed suitable to become a parent. (Hellooooo Charlie Sheen and Brooke Mueller….and…..millions others).

      So yea, I find the whole “best interest” thing laughable, a large percentage of people wouldn’t deserve to be parents, yet…are.

      He signed off on the kid before he even existed, guy is cold. And made sure that the agreement was legally binding, well he got his wish. Well, he’s still biologically a father, and for guys like this, it should be enough.

  14. lunchcoma says:

    Sigh. This is why known donors are a lousy idea. If you want to be the only person with rights to your child, go the anonymous route.

  15. Irishserra says:

    I think she changed the game once she let Patrick back in the picture and allowed him to play daddy for two years. Her current actions just seem spiteful at this point. I am surprised that after two years of being an active father that the courts would side with the mother on this.

    • Jayna says:


    • Algernon says:

      I think I get it from the judge’s side if he (she?) is considering precedents. If he rules to favor Patric, who did have an agreement giving up his parental rights in place, it would throw sperm donors open to paternity/child support suits. It could set a potentially disastrous precedent. In that light, I do understand the judge’s ruling. What I don’t get is why someone would so willfully prevent a parent from being involved with their child. So you don’t love him anymore and don’t want to see him, fine. Use a mediator to arbitrate a custody arrangement, or even just a visitation agreement, so that your kid at least gets to have a relationship with his father, even if you don’t want to talk to the guy ever again. There’s no need to punish the kid because things got ugly between the parents.

      • Irishserra says:

        @Algernon: I can see your view point regarding precedence; but is the interests of the child considered in same? I’m asking a genuine question here as I know next to nothing about the ins and outs of family law or whatever this would fall under. Will the best interests of the child be cast off to maintain a precedent or is this situation the first of its kind?

        This is a crazy situation and I hope that it gets resolved soon and does not become or remain to acrimonious.

      • LadySlippers says:

        From my understanding Jason waged two battles here. One is family court (custody) and the other was probably civil court (sperm donor docs). Family court would have considered the relationship between father and son, as well as any legal docs; whereas civil court would have looked almost solely on the docs drawn up and legal precedent. Jason lost both.

      • Irishserra says:

        @LadySlippers: Thank you for that info. I guess what I conclude from that is that most likely there is pertinent information about Jason regarding his relationship with the boy or his behavior as a father figure that we are just not privy to because it appears that the child’s mother is keeping quiet to the media about it. At least I hope that’s the case. I can understand family court not granting custody to Jason in the known circumstances, but what about visitation or some means of relationship? That’s what interests me. But again, we only know one side of the story.

      • Algernon says:


        I’m hardly an expert and LadySlippers seems to have a handle on what, specifically, Jason Patric was up to legal-wise. I did work for a family lawyer for a few years, though, and one of the judges who handled family law in our district was really stringent about trying to keep custody cases from having to be decided upon. She would make every couple go through mediation and counseling to try and come to an out-of-court settlement, because so many of her decisions were impacted by precedence. She always seemed to try and avoid having to make the final decision because if it got to her, she would have to consider not just this case, but any potential case resulting from it.

      • LadySlippers says:

        I unfortunately have had a lot of experience in custody battles. My parents’ weren’t adverse to underhanded tactics either. But I do know that in today’s custody battles, most family court judges wouldn’t want to cut off the father without just cause for the very reasons you stated. Judges want (understandingly) for both parties to create their own outcome so it doesn’t bite them in the a** later.

        So the fact that a judge, any judge, is upholding Danielle’s position is most telling and unusual. Even supervised visits would keep him in his Gus’ life…. Which is why I think we are clearly not hearing the whole story.

      • Algernon says:


        Oh man, I’m sorry you had to go through that. 🙁

        There are only two reasons I can think of for the judge upholding the mother’s side: yes, there is something we don’t know that makes Jason Patric’s custody questionable, or it is because he signed a sperm donor agreement. If that was thrown out, it could set a precedent for sperm donors to face paternity suits down the line, and really, that’s not what that (non)relationship is supposed to be. I tend to think it’s the former simply because of Patric’s increasingly aggressive media campaign (it scans more as pressure against the mother than any kind of statement about the state of paternity rights), but I could see the latter being a real concern.

  16. Dani says:

    I think it comes down to her not wanting him around the child because they aren’t together and that bothers her. If a man doesn’t want his child then he’s wrong and if a man does want his child then he’s also wrong. Hm.

    • Kate says:

      Or maybe it comes down to her protecting her child. He gave up parental rights. He didn’t pay child support. He wasn’t with his son for the first year or so of his life. So, he briefly bonds with the son he wanted nothing to do with and now wants rights? If I were the mother, I’d feel like this was unfair. Now Jason is crying over how this is an “injustice” and how he misses his son. He’s exploiting Gus through a “charity” and trying to get celebrities to rally around him while he plays victim. I have no sympathy for Jason. This isn’t a situation where he didn’t know he had a son and now wants to have rights. HE WANTED NOTHING TO DO WITH GUS until he met him. Period. He can try and spin it any way he wants.

      • Marigold says:

        2 years isn’t really brief and she allowed him that access, happily. They vacationed together and spent every day together. For all intents and purposes, she chose the happy family route-mom, dad and baby-and when the relationship soured, decided to remove this man from their child’s life. She’s not innocent in this at all.

      • Tapioca says:

        The kid is FOUR. When he grows up he’s not going to remember any of the drama surrounding the custody battle. What he will know, however, is that his father wanted to be a parent and that his mother did everything in her power to to prevent him.

        I know a guy who parents divorced when he was very young and his mother (who got primary custody) tried to alienate him from his dad. It worked whilst he was a kid, but as soon as he was old enough to see that he’d been used as a weapon, guess which parent he now has the close relationship with?

        Whatever the legal standpoint, if the mum gives a little now, both she and Gus will likely reap the benefit later on.

      • Dani says:

        Basically what Mari said. Even if he was gone for a year and now showed interest, she should be happy he’s taking that step instead of leaving her son fatherless because it’s what she wants. When the kid is older he can decide if he wants Jason around or not.

      • LadySlippers says:

        But the custody hearing would have considered the fact Jason developed a relationship with his son during their time together. Only the sperm donor one would have been about the documents and legal precedent. And the fact is, even at the custody hearing, Jason lost. And lost badly.

        Y’all that really points that it may be in Gus’ best interest not to have Jason involved.

      • CC says:

        He’ll also get to read about how he signed off his rights just like that.

  17. Mitch Buchanan Rocks! says:

    It is hard to know what to make of this situation – all I can see is a child being used as a pawn.

  18. Marianne says:

    I don’t think it should mater whether or not he was with Danielle romantically when Gus was conceived. He obviously WANTS to be a part of his son’s life now. I think its kind of spiteful on her part to keep them apart.

  19. Jayna says:

    Legally I don’t care if technically he is only considered a sperm donor. To me, even if he gave her the sperm but wasn’t going to be part of the child’s life, once they got back together and she had him in her life as the child’s father and allowed them to bond and develop a relationship and he loves his son, I think it is awful to now go back on that and cut him out of the child’s life because he wants to have legal rights to his son, a legal custody agreement, child support. She is only hurting the child in the long run, no matter how she feels about Jason. At some point, it should only be about the child, and when you hear stories how kids feel growing up not having their parent in their lives, Jason, as a strong father figure, would only benefit this young boy.

    I had a friend once when I was in college who talked about how sad he was when younger that the other boys at school had their dads and would talk about the things they did with their dads, and he said he would get very sad after spending time at their homes playing and seeing that bond and wondering what was wrong with him that his dad didn’t want to be a part of his life. He told me at one stage in his life he used to fantasize about his dad showing up saying how much he had missed him and wanted to be back in his life. A father/son bond is a very important bond and influence in a boy’s life.

    • MSat says:

      I agree with all of this! In the end, it’s the child who suffers the most. So sad.

    • Sullivan says:

      @jayna: your second paragraph was heartbreaking. It’s sad how many kids grow-up yearning for the love and attention of an absent parent.

    • Juliette says:

      I agree, my husband’s father denied he was his in front of him in a courtroom when he was 9 to avoid paying support. It was devastating for him and I can still see the hurt to this day. He denies that he was hurt by it and calls his dad names but I can see how bad it was for him when he speaks of it – which is rarely.
      To make matters worse, his dad had taken him fishing the weekend before and told him that he would always be his son and that he loved him no matter what. Bought him gifts, the whole nine yards. Then goes to court the next week and denies my husband is his.

      What a horrible thing to do to a child. Boys need their dads as much, if not more, than their moms.

  20. Jennifer12 says:

    I don’t understand why she won’t let her son have a father- HIS father. You don’t have to see him or be near him. Is it that she doesn’t like or trust him as a person? But then why did she want him to be the father of her child? She’s punishing the little boy at this point and there will be huge issues when he is older and sees that his dad DID fight for him. Draw up a tight agreement and let him father his son. Be careful who you have kids with because that ties you more tightly to someone than a piece of paper ever could.

    • Virgilia Coriolanus says:

      My mom is a massage therapist, and so she has all sorts of different people on her table, and they all tell her EVERYTHING about themselves while she’s working. There was this one guy who was in an ongoing custody battle for his son.

      Here’s what happened–he and his fiancee had their son, and were getting married. Their son was probably 3 or 4. Now, a while before the wedding, he decided that they weren’t right for each other, for whatever reason–he broke up with her, canceled the wedding. But he still wanted to be his son’s father, and wanted shared custody. Well, the ex fiancee decided that wasn’t good enough, and filed for full custody, with no visitation at all–because he didn’t want to be with her anymore.

      It’s just so sucky to see that when a dude actually wants to do the right thing, sometimes the women won’t let him. And I know that the ‘crazy ex’ is rare, but still. I don’t get how anyone can cut their child off of a parent that wants to be in their lives–unless they’re abusive or something like that.

      Just a few months ago, my dad’s best friend essentially ‘kidnapped’ his two kids, from their mother, because their mother’s new husband ( who is an alcoholic) pulled a loaded shotgun on her, in front of the kids, and threatened to shoot her. She made him go to one of those 30 day rehabs, and then he was right back in the house, and she found nothing wrong with that. Well, my dad’s friend did, so he took the kids and didn’t bring them back–the cops were going to bring him up on charges of kidnapping. But he still did it. Because he felt it was the right thing to do as a father.

      • Jennifer12 says:

        I wish people would understand that kids are not pawns. You don’t have them to get money out of someone, you don’t have them to force a relationship or fix one, and you don’t cut them off from a parent because you are no longer together or hate each other.

      • Virgilia Coriolanus says:

        Also forgot to add–my dad’s friend talked to her, and she agreed that the alcoholic husband would not be in the house, when the boys were at her house. But the minute he was out of rehab, he was right back in there.

  21. Jeanette says:

    I really dont care what the law says..there are pictures out there of the 3 of them enjoying time together. She broke the rules where the sperm donor agreement was concerned, by allowing them ever to bond. When she did that, and broke them up, she took an important figure from her son, and she just expects JP to move on now that they are not in a relationship anymore, how convienent for her. .

    IMO it looks like shes a trick that likes head games..

    For shame on her…

  22. Izzy says:

    Well, the IVF claim should be easy enough to prove or disprove – it’s a medical procedure, those medical records will exist, and in a case such as this where they are entirely relevant, they would be deemed admissible.

    This whole thing seems sketchy to me from many angles.

  23. stinky says:


    • LadySlippers says:

      @stinky: IIRC he’s a recovering addict. He might also be a jerk but that’s fuzzy too. There was some other yucky behavior whispered about but nothing I can firmly remember. Sorry.

  24. Talie says:

    He signed his rights away willingly from what I’ve read, BUT if he wants to be a father to this baby who is part of him — I don’t see why they can’t just figure this out. The kid is really the one being screwed, as usual.

  25. sapphoandgrits says:

    We are only getting one side of the story here, his. It’s very telling he is fudging what actually happened.

    Not just the documents are at play here, that isn’t the only reason he’s been denied. If it was, he would be squawking about it. Courts don’t just give women custody JUST BECAUSE, no matter what MRA sites say.

    Not every child needs a mother, not every child needs a father. All they need is a loving parent and loving role models of both genders they are close to, be it an aunt, an uncle, a family friend, whatever. Not every parent should be allowed to parent. Just because he wants access doesn’t mean he should have that access, it also doesn’t make him loving.

    I will wait to hear the full story on this one.

  26. Foxlife says:

    I remember him when he was Robin Wright’s boyfriend and made the best looking young Hollywood couple back in 1990 and I remember how piss I was when she left him for that ugly D-bag Sean Penn. Somebody said, I think It was lainey, that he never forgot her and when she an Penn had they off periods Jason was always by her side, to lend a “shoulder” to cry

  27. Asiyah says:

    This story is so sad. It’s also very complex and I find it difficult to choose a side. Not that my choice matters (LOL) it’s just that this is one case that my opinionated self can’t form an opinion about. On the one hand, I feel maybe the mother is trying to protect the kid from an unstable, fickle father. On the other hand, I see her as fickle and unstable and not that different from him, and the kid and Jason bonded, so why not have them continue bonding? Very complicated indeed.

  28. Itsetsyou says:

    Reminds me of that ancient fable about two mothers who each claimed to be the real mother to a child and one of them was ready to have the baby cut in half just to have it her way.

  29. Lucky Charm says:

    I recall reading a story about a lesbian couple that had a friend donate sperm so that they could have a child. When they broke up and were fighting over custody, the courts ruled the sperm donor and the biological mother were the two legal parents and made the “father” pay child support, and the other mom was basically shut out of the child’s life. Very sad case all around for everyone.

    There are enough problems with custoday when having kids the regular old-fashioned way, and the potential for even crazier problems just increase with all the various other methods available. But the common theme among all of them is that it is the child that suffers from having formed a bond with a parent, and then that bond is suddenly severed, seemingly for no reason.

  30. Vilodemeanus says:

    There is another interesting fact in all of this. Her father, he supports the daughter and grandson – Gus. He pays for all the attorney fees to keep Jason Patric away from his own child. I read about it a while ago otherwise I’d link the story but the dad’s involvement is really strrrrrrrrrrrange. All I have to think is, by doing this they are going to look very bad in a child’s eyes, he will resent them keeping him away from his own father, he will hate them both and turn on them. They aren’t helping the child but fighting over him like a toy and the kid will know it sooner than later from other kids that his father always wanted him and they spent years keeping his dad away will be found out in just a few years and they will be living with a very angry child who doesn’t trust them and never will. It would be better to just share a happy child rather than inspire hatred from a child you tried to own. (Daddy issues)

  31. Stephanie says:

    There has been no claim of abuse or harmful behavior, but instead the complaint (from Schreiber) argues that Patric never had any parental rights due to their donor contract. Because the two reconnected after the birth of Gus and Patric supported their son both emotionally and financially, the contract was made null and void by both Schreiber and Patric. Because Gus saw Patric as his father and because Schreiber allowed and supported this, he should not be denied this relationship.
    Regardless the complexities of the argument (both known and unknown), it seems Gus would be best served by continuing his existing relationship with the man he called “daddy.” This has long been an issue in the gay and lesbian community wherein a couple breakup and despite both people acting as parents to their child, one person will try to deny rights to the other based on their lack of legal rights or the more complicated arena of donation and the legality of parental rights as such. Unfortunately, the child suffers the consequences of a legal system that is slow to catch up to changing times. Had Patric’s donation been made with no further contact or communication between himself and Gus, and had the mother ensured this connection not be made, Patric would be among the many who have surrendered their rights in order to provide his sperm and nothing more. In these cases, the rights of the recipient and child are best served by “no contact” as no relationship exists between the donor and recipient beyond their contract; however, this was not the case for Patric and Schreiber and any judge ought to be able to differentiate between these two very plausible and reasonable arguments for and against parental rights.
    It is unfortunate that adults who decide to parent children cannot behave in a manner that reflects their love for said child/children, and even worse when one parent uses their anger and bitterness as weaponry against the child they claim to love and cherish. If Schreiber has “other reasons” for denying Patric access to Gus, she has not made them known, therefore I must reasonably assume her reasons are limited to those she made public, which do not strike me as sufficient or just.