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To keep a baby conceived during a short fling?

(157 Posts)
cabalenica Thu 21-Feb-19 17:34:24

Namechanged for obvious reasons, although I've only posted a few times before anyway.

I'm 36 and very much want to have children, but have been single for several years.

A few months ago I met someone while visiting friends abroad (in the US) and he recently came over to the UK to visit me. We'd been texting/skyping and at the time I genuinely thought it might go somewhere. However, after 5 days in close quarters it's clear we're not very compatible - nothing major wrong with him, we just didn't click really. We did have a lot of sex over the 5 days though and I've just taken a pregnancy test and got a positive result.

In the last couple of years I've considered whether I might eventually look at sperm donors and having a baby by myself, if I didn't meet anyone; plus I don't really want to be 40 and trying to conceive my first child. On the other hand it's a huge thing to attempt by yourself. My family are lovely but live in another part of the country. I have very kind caring friends nearby but most of them don't have kids yet either, and obviously a bit of help from friends is not the same as having a partner.

He is also in his 30s and already has a daughter, who lives near him with her mum and the mum's new partner. He pays child support for her. I don't think I would want to ask him for any money if I did have the baby. (And no idea whether you can make someone pay child support if they're outside of the UK anyway)

I've actually never had so much as a pregnancy scare before so never had to think about this seriously. I don't have any moral objection to terminations, and would quickly have had an abortion if I was much much younger, but I don't want to end a pregnancy when I really want a baby, and then not have this chance again. Obviously I'd rather have a baby with someone I loved, but I'd rather have one alone than not at all... I think?

I have a pretty decent job (small company though so not great maternity benefits) and I own my flat. However, I am intimidated by the costs of childcare if I had to work and take care of a baby. Haven't got to the point of figuring out how it would work financially, yet.

I'm just looking for any thoughts, esp from anyone who has been in a similar position. Is there anything I should consider that I might not have thought of yet?

SpinningSister Thu 21-Feb-19 17:35:58

As someone whose recently had a baby, I’d say keep it.
Sometimes these things happen.

Congratulations

Lifeisabeach09 Thu 21-Feb-19 17:42:14

OP, I ended up pregnant without any home or money but with lots of family help.
I was on benefits for a while then got a job then went to university to retrain. I've been a professional for two years now.
It is doable.
Check your maternity package, check how much you'd get in terms of government financial support as a single parent and find out if the dad wants to be involved. Once you have more information, you can decide.
It's also ok to raise your child in a one bedroom flat contrary to what some Mumsnetters might say.
HTH.

RexMyDarling Thu 21-Feb-19 17:49:07

Keep it. If you don’t and decide to go the sperm donor route in a few years and it doesn’t happen you’ll kick yourself.

Sperm donors are expensive and there’s not many of them in the UK.

If I’d been in your position at 36 I’d have kept it. I’m not, I’m married and had my daughter at 36. I can imagine doing it by yourself is daunting but 1000s of people manage it. Childcare is only for a few years til they’re 3.

Wanting a child and not getting one is the worse thing in the world. It took me 10 years: fertility tablets and three rounds of ivf. All of that is much worse if you have to do that alone and you would if you’re thinking of a sperm donor in a couple of years.

It’s a no-brainer to me.

niceupthedanceagain Thu 21-Feb-19 17:51:46

I was in a similar position and went for it.
I was freelance at the time and was very ill during my pregnancy and was unable to work, which had repercussions including having to sell my flat when DS was 11 months old.
I had no family support and no friends with kids so it was ridiculously lonely. I joined NCT but as I was a single mum I didn't really fit in and they started meeting up without me.
Ended up moving across the country to be nearer family.
Found lone parenting excruciatingly hard - turns out DS has autism but didn't know that for the first 7 years. Could you manage without family support or if you had a SN child?
I ended up going to university and retraining as lone parents get extra benefits and child care to facilitate this. I couldn't have afforded nursery otherwise.
When DS was 5 I met DP and we have a blended family which can present its own challenges, but is definitely a happy ending.

I'd say the two essentials to lone parenthood are savings/money and support. I wouldn't do it again without both those things. But don't let me put you off grin

WorraLiberty Thu 21-Feb-19 17:51:50

My first thought would be to get yourself checked for STI's.

Other than that, I'd keep it if you can afford to.

ShadyLady53 Thu 21-Feb-19 17:53:36

Keep it. This might be your only chance - maybe this baby is just meant to be!

Elllicam Thu 21-Feb-19 17:55:47

If you want a baby, at 36 I would go for it.

FermatsTheorem Thu 21-Feb-19 17:55:58

Congratulations. Keep the baby.

The only possible (and weak) argument against would be that it was somehow unfair to do so without the father's consent, but any man who has reached adulthood should know that as a man you only get one "decision point" in this game - the point at which you decide whether or not to put the condom on. And it's not like you tricked him (nor can you pursue him for child support - in fact, unless he's prepared to fly back when the baby's born, I don't think you can even put him on the birth certificate).

I'm a single mum, have been since the get-go, and yes, it's hard, but it's doable, and far and away the best thing I've ever done.

SpinningSister Thu 21-Feb-19 17:57:08

I’m also 36 and conceive naturally after 12 years of infertility but I didn’t do IVF we couldn’t be bothered with the heartache of it not working.

I’ve spent all that time in RL and on MN calling myself childfree and in reality now I’ve got my baby it’s hands down the best thing I’ve ever done.

If you really think you’d live in abject poverty or end up homeless or something maybe give this more thought but if not keep your baby and have the time of your life.

I am even though I thought it wasn’t possible and someone’s quite rude about children - just protecting my broken heart I suppose

Waveysnail Thu 21-Feb-19 18:02:11

You want a baby then keep the baby

Shitonthebloodything Thu 21-Feb-19 18:03:20

Personally I'd keep it and although lots would disagree, I wouldn't tell the father. My eldest sons father and I split before he was born, the man has made my life as miserable as possible over the past 13 years and brings nothing positive to ds's life but I can't prevent him being a part of it.wony bore you with the back story but upshot is, I would give nothing and expect nothing as far as the father is concerned.

Good luck to you x

KickBishopBrennanUpTheArse Thu 21-Feb-19 18:03:23

Definitely keep the baby. Can you really picture yourself sitting in the waiting room waiting for a termination? There's no way you wouldn't stand up and walk out.

I found myself in the same situation 18 years ago with a FWB. Slightly easier in that he's local so dd has a relationship with him but I've been single since 3 minutes after conception and no local family.

I've never regretted it for a second. I was skint for a few years but it's amazing how much less you can live on when you have to.

Congratulations flowers

HJWT Thu 21-Feb-19 18:03:42

Just do it, you wont regret it smile

cabalenica Thu 21-Feb-19 18:09:44

Thanks for really nice replies.

Yes, I think the lack of family support nearby is what worries me most, but I suppose I could try it to start with and if it started to seem impossible I'd have to find a way to move closer to them.

It's helpful to hear how other people have managed so thank you.

PtahNeith Thu 21-Feb-19 18:10:24

Practical pros and cons lists aside, what does your gut say? Because ultimately you have to live with this decision; all the practical stuff can be problem solved to work with the decision you make, but what about your emotions and instincts?

Imagine yourself a year, 5 years, and 10 years from today on each path. What's your immediate gut response?

Once you can identify that, everything else is just a matter of research/planning to make it work for you, isn't it?

I just get the impression you'll regret it more if you don't keep it than if you do, but only you know that. Live the life you have right now the best way that you can, rather than trying to keep space for a possible life that you hope might possibly maybe happen... "Don't sacrifice the present for a future that might never happen."

MissingSilence Thu 21-Feb-19 18:13:54

Single mother by choice here, so slightly different situation but also very similar. I have a 14 month DD.
I would definitely say keep the baby. Fertility treatment can take multiple attempts and may not be successful, and the fact is your really want this baby and imagine having a child in your future.
I get some help with childcare through Universal Credit (it’s not amazing but it helps). I recommend signing up for that before you go on mat leave as you have to go in for an interview and you may be entitled to some money while you get maternity pay (I was).
I have a lot of support from my parents as they live close by and I think it would be hard without them around, but certainly not impossible. They’re away at the moment actually and me and little one are doing just fine.
Congratulations and wishing you all the best x

MissingSilence Thu 21-Feb-19 18:16:25

Oh and I would also say that some things are actually easier when you’re single! So it’s certainly not all hard work smile

tattooq Thu 21-Feb-19 18:16:43

Check if you're entitled to any tax credits or other child related benefits as a single parent, that may well make maternity leave and later childcare more viable. If it will be a squeeze but doable I would go ahead with the pregnancy. You could also consider moving back to be closer to family so you have support. I'm sure there is a way of making things work as you are in a good position as a homeowner.

DocusDiplo Thu 21-Feb-19 18:17:27

I would not do this unless I was very determined and financially secure. It will be incredibly difficult to juggle childcare with no family support. For example, what if you get really ill for a week?

I am a single parent now to two slightly older ones and its very difficult, I am not sure I would walk into it with my eyes open.

However, if you are financially secure, it will be OK.

It may be unfashionable to ask, but should one be in a relationship to have a child so that child has 2 role models and caregivers?

SpinningSister Thu 21-Feb-19 18:17:38

Could you tell your family now and look at moving near to them before you decide you have problems ?

IvanaPee Thu 21-Feb-19 18:18:01

I think you’ll regret not keeping it from the way you’re posting.

It sounds doable. Secure job, homeowner...you have options I think.

At 36, I would keep it! Congratulations 😊

Subeccoo Thu 21-Feb-19 18:18:10

In your position, I would definitely keep the baby! Like another poster said, maybe it was meant to be.
You definitely need to tell him though, both father and child deserve to know of the other's existence.
Congratulations!

Pinkyyy Thu 21-Feb-19 18:19:45

OP it sounds like you've convinced yourself that this is your one and only chance to have a baby. It's definitely not. Don't feel like if you don't keep this baby there will never be another, you're only 36.

Stopwoofing Thu 21-Feb-19 18:21:04

I echo the other posters - you need to think about the baby’s support network, especially if you’ll be working a lot. If you have nice family that want to help, consider a move, very seriously.

How much do you know about this man - is he a good dad? Any hereditary illnesses? I’d want to know a bit more about his background before I made a decision - one family member had a baby after a fling and the man turned out to have a lot of mh problems.

IvanaPee Thu 21-Feb-19 18:22:05

Does it matter if he’s a good dad? I mean, he’ll be on the other side of the Atlantic!

PaintingOwls Thu 21-Feb-19 18:23:25

I always thought I'd get rid under those circumstances but here I am struggling to conceive and now I think grab the opportunity whilst you can.

TokyoSushi Thu 21-Feb-19 18:24:12

If you really want the baby then I'd keep it, you can do it OP! Congratulations!

Stopwoofing Thu 21-Feb-19 18:24:59

I didn’t mean is he a good day from the POV of his involvement, more from whether he’s going to make a pest of himself acting strangely or have something terrible in his family background.

hibbledibble Thu 21-Feb-19 18:29:58

It's never unreasonable to keep a pregnancy you want.

Congratulations.

The practicalities have a habit of working themselves out generally.

The dad may or may not be involved, and you cannot compel him to pay child support, but if he is a decent person then he will do

LittleDoritt Thu 21-Feb-19 18:31:58

Congratulations! Definitely keep the baby.

hatriet Thu 21-Feb-19 18:37:14

Congratulations OP. I would continue with t he pregnancy - I imagine these weren't the circumstances you have planned to be in, but it is doable.

Practically:
Can you start saving to have a few hours extra help a week? Someone to watch the baby for you or maybe get someone to come and put laundry through for you? Just a bit of a cushion. I'd spend money on this over NCT. Lots of local mums set up their own groups anyway via facebook.

In terms of paying for childcare: id get a plan ASAP. Childcare is much cheaper in our area of London if you move out a bit (not sure where you are based). See when the free hours kick in for you, it might be worth taking a hit for a year or so until the free hours kick in.

Rtmhwales Thu 21-Feb-19 18:37:37

You can get a support order for the baby in the UK and have it enforced in a number of countries (including the US) through REMO (https://www.gov.uk/remo-unit-helpline). I know that wasn't your real question, and it can be a bit difficult to do, but is doable. I am currently doing that with my DS in North America with his British father - different situation as we were married and separated before finding out I was pregnant, but I've been through the logistics.

Obviously he's an adult and knows the potential outcome but he might be upset about this development. It will be his child, too, and he won't be able to see either child effectively. He will likely have to pick one over the other and I'd imagine his current DD will be the chosen one. But still, he should really be told, regardless of maintenance or not.

MatildaTheCat Thu 21-Feb-19 18:38:30

Sounds a lot like Catastrophe!

If I’m honest it sounds as if you consciously or unconsciously wanted this to happen. You had repeated unprotected ( seemingly) sex for several days so it can’t be so much a surprise as an, ‘omg it’s happened’?

So look at ways of making it work and give him the option of being involved since you have both allowed this to happen. There’s no reason why it can’t be a great success but it’s time to do your sums and figout how to make it work and yes, it’s shockingly expensive.

Toomuchworking Thu 21-Feb-19 18:38:54

I'm definitely not being judgey at any decision as it would make me a total hypocrite, but just be aware that it can take a long time to get over a termination. It's not just a case of getting it done and moving on for most women, I still have huge pangs of guilt, remorse and upset 15 years on, and like you I am pro choice, but for me at least it was much harder (still is) than I could have imagined. It's definitely not the easy option!! If I was in your position and was considering going it alone anyway I would keep it, although that is with hindsight.
Good luck whatever you decide.

Rtmhwales Thu 21-Feb-19 18:44:07

From a practical point, if you're going to need childcare can you afford to put away close to that amount until you give birth?

Ideally if you could put away the amount for childcare now, then you've covered a good chunk of payments for at least one of the years between maternity leave ending and 30 hours childcare kicking in when you combine it with the 80/20 childcare.

My situation is a bit different as Canada really supports single mothers and tops up they're reduced income until the child is at school full time but I still saved as much as I could toward childcare costs in the lead up to giving birth. I even got a second job on weekends and evenings just to stockpile funds.

DS is eight months old now and totally worth every sacrifice. You make it work somehow.

WorraLiberty Thu 21-Feb-19 18:47:34

Have you had an STI check OP?

Pinkyyy Thu 21-Feb-19 18:49:18

I think it's very unkind of people to congratulate the OP when she isn't yet sure whether or not she's going to keep the baby. She has asked for advice and by congratulating her you are pushing her to feel like the decision is already made.

IvanaPee Thu 21-Feb-19 18:51:51

but I don't want to end a pregnancy when I really want a baby, and then not have this chance again

She said she wants the baby. Congratulating her isn’t pushing her. I hardly think a woman of 36 will become a mother because randomers on the internet have said congratulations hmm

HollowTalk Thu 21-Feb-19 18:52:52

I wouldn't have a child in these circumstances unless the child could know his/her father. If you could keep in contact with him, if he showed an interest in the baby, if he was prepared to visit etc, then I'd consider it, but otherwise I wouldn't. I wouldn't want to explain that to my child.

SabineUndine Thu 21-Feb-19 18:54:32

A friend of mine did this and kept the baby. Her child is now a teenager and a delight. If you want a baby, have this one.

NopeNi Thu 21-Feb-19 18:54:31

Thinking from the future child's point of view, not yours - what about their future relationship with their father?

They'll want one, and maybe he'll want one too. How are you about facilitating that? What if he wants joint custody or visitation or something? How are you feeling about a lifetime of sharing this connection with him? How will you feel if he wants nothing and you have to explain that?

Pinkyyy Thu 21-Feb-19 18:56:46

@IvanaPee I disagree. People are all influenced in different ways. If I had lots of people congratulating me on a pregnancy, it would make it considerably more difficult for me to terminate. It's extremely unfair to do that to the OP.

TinTinBanana Thu 21-Feb-19 19:03:16

I was 36 when I found myself in a similar situation. I never had any doubts about proceeding with the pregnancy. It was the best thing that ever happened to me. I don't have a lot of family support and I had no friends with children. It has often been difficult but don't regret it for a moment.

cabalenica Thu 21-Feb-19 19:05:20

@WorraLiberty - to put your mind at rest, yes I have.

@Rtmhwales and hatriet - that's a very good point re. saving. I am a good saver when I have something to work towards and have got extra jobs before (e.g. when saving up for flat deposit) so this would definitely be a priority.

@Pinkyyy - Totally appreciate your concern re the congratulations; in this case I'm not feeling stressed out by them though. The general sense of 'yes, go for it' is certainly making me feel a bit more optimistic about it. I'm sure I'll go back and forth about it some more though, and how my family react will be influential.

It's helpful to get some practical ideas and hear what other people have done though.

OnlyFoolsnMothers Thu 21-Feb-19 19:07:09

Any potential of moving closer to your family? Friends say they I’ll help but they honestly don’t so count them out.

Haffdonga Thu 21-Feb-19 19:07:24

You want a baby. You're pregnant. Result.

I realise you have sensible concerns about childcare and finances etc which are logical, but frankly if we only had children when we had big bank balances, childcare sorted and the perfect local support network then the great majority of babies would never be born.

My friend is a single parent to a lovely ds whose dad is American. She and her ds have a lovely relationship with his df's family and have visited his grandparents and cousins in the US several times.

Pinkyyy Thu 21-Feb-19 19:08:21

I'm glad it's not affecting you, OP. I just didn't want it to make you feel like the decision had already been made for you. I'm sure you'll find plenty of support, no matter what your decision

RuLu Thu 21-Feb-19 19:08:35

I was in a similar position 7 years ago aged 33! I decided to have the baby, I never saw the man who got me pregnant again though, he disappeared. I was worried what people would think as I have a professional job with a lot of responsibility, but no one batted an eye lid. I now have a 6 year old, am married & also have a 2 year old. My husband is Dad to both children. The first couple of years on my own were hard but worth it. I had some support although the support promised by friends didn't come to anything but I don't regret it! I met my husband nearly 4 years ago & he now has parental responsibility for my eldest (would have to trace the 'sperm donor' to go down the adoption route). Good luck with whatever you decide!

EvaHarknessRose Thu 21-Feb-19 19:14:55

Tell him now though - in this age of DNA ancestry checks it will inevitably come out in future and then you won't have to explain to him and dc why you didn't. He also has a right to be as involved as he wants, even though you don't necessarily want it. I know it's more complicated, but it is morally important.

WorraLiberty Thu 21-Feb-19 19:18:43

I agree with pps who say you should tell him if you decide to proceed.

If anything because there may be certain hereditary conditions, you'll want to know about.

apparentlyso Thu 21-Feb-19 19:34:35

Congratulations op you should definitely keep the baby if you want it, it sounds like you are in just as good position as most to have a child.
Definitely tell the father, he might be a great asset, and even he isn't at least he lives miles away.

EhlanaOfElenia Thu 21-Feb-19 19:43:37

You want a baby, keep it! But do your homework. In some areas nursery places need to be booked almost at birth, there are so few places. Friends who have needed full time childcare have all said it was easier (but more expensive) when their DC were at nursery. It is when they went to school that it got harder. The graduated starting, not all schools having before and/or after school clubs clubs not running long enough. So check out what schools local to you have, and if it is dire you can plan a move.

themoomoo Thu 21-Feb-19 19:53:05

keep the baby. people always manage and you'll bitterly regret it if this is your only chance

Butteredghost Thu 21-Feb-19 19:57:10

When I read this type of thread I normally say the OP should consider an abortion, but in your case, I think you should have it. You want children, are 36, and were considering sperm donation. The father, although not a romantic match, is seemingly normal (ie not abusive etc). It's a no brainer really.

It will be hard but you are in a better position than many other single mums, having a decent job and owning your own flat.

DarklyDreamingDexter Thu 21-Feb-19 20:02:33

You want a baby, your body clock is ticking and you were even thinking about a sperm donor....seems like fate has stepped in. Sure it will be hard at times as a single mum, but how many people end up single even when they start the pregnancy in a relationship? Lots. They just get on with it. You will have plenty of time to plan for it. In your shoes I would definitely keep it, no question about it.

TakeMe2Insanity Thu 21-Feb-19 20:16:43

Think about it this way, you’ve just saved so much money not having to spend on ivf. It’s perhaps slightly unplanned but good unplanned. My mother was married had a job and she still ended up as a lone parent without family support. So even if you had a dp and family close at hand it might not work the way you intended.

flirtygirl Thu 21-Feb-19 20:46:09

To consider an abortion when you want a child and are 36 is stupid.

ChinUpChestOut Thu 21-Feb-19 20:53:50

I don't normally post about this, but I was in your position too - same age, same feelings about having a baby, and same situation with the father.

DS is now 19. Never regretted it for a second. I kept the father in the picture, facilitated visits all through DS's childhood to him, and acquired a fabulous DH when I was 42, who later adopted DS when he was 10.

My only advice to you is to inform the father, and keep in touch with him for the sake of your child. At some point they will (and do) ask questions - best to have some sort of contact to help with that stage. It's amazing what they will accept as normal, providing you treat it that way too.

KickBishopBrennanUpTheArse Thu 21-Feb-19 20:56:10

I was one of the pp who said congratulations upthread. I apologise if it was insensitive.

The reason was when I was in your situation and was ready to tell people reactions ranged from "oh shit" to "what were you thinking?"

No one said congratulations to me for a really long time. When someone finally did it meant a lot to me.

One question OP. How long ago did you find out? Since then have you had any alcohol? Have you bought any folic acid?

It took me nearly a month to finally make the decision I was going to proceed and not terminate but I started taking folic acid within an hour of poas and didn't drink at all much during that month. Looking back there was never any doubt really about what I was going to do.

LaurenOrdering Thu 21-Feb-19 21:05:38

Your body so your choice. As it's perfectly clear from your explanation & you are thinking about all angles and you've always wanted children then there is your answer: keep baby.
Something else to consider after you have baby, if you do tell your ex & you decide you want him to register as the father then if 'father' is a US citizen then you need to check if baby also gets US citizenship/dual nationality & all this entails. I'm not a lawyer so I would check.
Finally as it sounds very much like you are keeping baby: Congratulations!

user1457017537 Thu 21-Feb-19 21:11:02

If you are worried about managing do you have a spare bedroom you could rent and have the baby in with you? Best wishes flowers

iolaus Thu 21-Feb-19 21:18:42

This is a wanted baby - there is a difference between wanted and planned

Iggypoppie Thu 21-Feb-19 21:18:52

Keep the baby, you'll regret it forever. Lookup turn2us for info on what support you could get for child care.

Nomorepies Thu 21-Feb-19 21:29:16

Do it! I think you really want this and it’ll
make you happy. Maybe it was just meant to be.

Best of luck!

peachgreen Thu 21-Feb-19 21:29:50

Just to provide a lone voice from the other side - I personally wouldn't choose to be a single parent. No judgement on those who do - in fact, endless admiration because I absolutely couldn't do it. My daughter is 1. We don't have any family support nearby and without my husband I couldn't have got this far. I had severe PND after my daughter was born and although I made a really good (and fairly quick) recovery thanks to excellent medical care, it was still extremely tough, and not long after recovering I got ill physically. I was too unwell to care for my daughter for several days and I genuinely don't know what would have happened if I'd been on my own.

If you want to go ahead, you should. But I would very seriously consider moving to be close to family because it would be extremely tough without that kind of support.

cabalenica Fri 22-Feb-19 01:12:04

Just wanted to say thanks to everyone for the kind messages and suggestions. Reading through them, I do think I came on here looking for encouragement as much as anything. I already appreciated it would be vv difficult so it's nice to hear people say they don't regret doing similar.

For instance, @KickBishopBrennanUpTheArse, yes I did start taking folic acid a few days ago when I realised. I don't drink much anyway but haven't at all since then either. Both just seemed like the responsible thing to do, but probably do show which way my mind was going. (Also don't apologise at all for saying congrats, it is indeed nice to hear, although I understood why others thought it might be unsettling if I'd been in a different frame of mind)

To everyone who was concerned about it, yes I would definitely tell the father, it's only fair (on him and the child).

I still have a lot to think about and need to talk to my family, but I've gained a bit of confidence from this thread and the practical tips of what to think about are also handy.

So thanks all.

BusySnipingOnCallOfDuty Fri 22-Feb-19 01:25:36

The only negatives to when I was a single parent (twice over, go me...) was a) I had undiagnosed chronic illnesses which I had been led to believe were in my head, and becoming a parent has made it virtually impossible for me to look after my own needs at the best of times, and b) the father of my second was extremely abusive and this continued even after he let us leave.

You're in a different situation and it sounds quite positive. My first was a happy surprise even though I wasn't in a proper relationship with the father and altyough we married, we split not long after she was one. I had told him I was keeping the baby, the decision to stay was his but he disnt do it for the right reasons and that ate him up inside. I had thought I was infertile when I got the BFP, see. Turned out I was wrong. Glad I kept her. Shes this amazing 11.5yr old, shes got SEN (they both do) but theres just something amazing about her.

cabalenica Fri 22-Feb-19 01:34:35

Congrats on your lovely kids, BusySniping. Glad to hear you're happy with how things turned out.

Notquiteagandt Fri 22-Feb-19 01:38:57

I was in a simular position.caught out with avery much wanted but unplanned pregnancy v.v.v early on in anew relationship. He scarpered quicker than ussain bolt. Its been just me ever since.

I am onlh 3 weeksinto parenting zo cant comment properly.

But people have been so lovely and helpful. I have a fantastic support network around me. This has been invalluble.

I had a v.v.v. difficult high risk pregnancy. So someone to rant to in ghe early hours etc and give me a hug when needed was essential.

I have managed to provide everything for my daughter on a low budget (urgh sick pay during pregnancy is the worst!)

Its just a case of yeah financially its hard
But you make it work. Within your budget.

My daughter wants for nothing. I however am making big sacrifices....

Evilspiritgin Fri 22-Feb-19 01:45:01

What happens if dad to be wants to be involved? Would you have to take baby to the states?to facilitate a relationship with his/her sibling Plus presumably in a few years time the child could be sent for holidays by themselves, I’m not sure how it would stand legally?

caringcarer Fri 22-Feb-19 01:46:26

You are pregnant, Congratulations. Fertility goes down very sharply after 35 so you are lucky. If you don;t keep this baby you may never have another. Being a Mum is wonderful and once the baby is born you will wonder how you ever thought of not keeping it. Enjoy your pregnancy. Babies have a habit of being born and parents can not always afford them but somehow they all get brought up to adulthood. Love goes a long way. A baby is a blessing, someone who will love you unconditionally and you will be the centre of their world. I love babies, they melt my heart. If you have a baby I don't think you would ever regret it. They open up a whole new world.

MajesticWhine Fri 22-Feb-19 01:46:56

I think it's a no brainier - you are 36 and your clock is ticking. I really don't think you will regret having this child. You could leave it a while and then not get pregnant and be left thinking about what might have been.

Happydowninthemouth Fri 22-Feb-19 01:49:50

From experience, it may be your only chance so go with your heart. This baby is a gift.

julensaor Fri 22-Feb-19 01:55:32

Keep your baby OP. Your post just shows the usual fears but the underlying emotion is, is it ok to keep my baby? Congratulations and you will work everything out.

ToeToToe Fri 22-Feb-19 01:57:14

I thought of Catastrophe too grin

Congratulations OP. Your OP and subsequent posts did indeed seem like you wanted to be talked into it.

I don't think it'll be something you'll regret. Having a baby is a wonderful thing, you'll never feel love like it smile

Surprisedmom Fri 22-Feb-19 02:05:10

I currently have my gorgeous 1 week old son sleeping on me, who is the result of an 8 month long relationship which ended because I wouldn’t have a termination. I can honestly say I don’t regret it for one second as he’s the most precious thing. However, I was adamant from the start that no matter how hard it was I could do this on my own. As it is I have moved in with my parents for the duration of my maternity leave and it is a godsend to have someone else making me dinner and around to chat to, but I am not passing any of the baby work onto them as I know I have to do everything for myself once I move out.

Ultimately if you’re really torn then go for some counselling either by talking to your doctor or going to an abortion clinic (they offer counselling too).

If you decide to keep the baby then my advice is:

1) for child care look into working family tax credits (you might be surprised at how much you qualify for) and at tax-free childcare (you create a government account and get 20% on top of what you put in up to £8,000).

2) look for local support groups for single parents through gingerbread. I also found others in my area.

3) Once you’re on maternity leave go to the NCT coffee mornings. I did this and I feel extremely supported already by the women there. I also did the antenatal class (and took my mum) and so have met other parents through that, I can honestly say I haven’t felt judged at all and nobody has directly asked about the father beyond one person privately asking if he was involved after a comment I made that suggested he wasn’t. Knowing local parents plus all the breastfeeding counsellors (they also counsel on formula feeding) has already meant I knew who to call when things were hard, so I think the support is invaluable.

Good luck!

Antonin Fri 22-Feb-19 02:10:43

Remember OP that it’s normal and prudent for many women, married or not, to worry about managing. Regard this accidental pregnancy as serendipitous .. You may not have felt brave enough to have proceeded to have a planned single pregnancy in the future or you may find you are unable to conceive.
It won’t be easy but if you truly want a child it will be the best decision of your life
Good luck

SofiaAmes Fri 22-Feb-19 02:11:12

Keep it!!!!!
Make sure to take Vitamin D too. More important than Folic Acid.
It's much easier to get child support enforced in the USA than in the UK. I am still trying to get REMO (via the Child Support Agency in California) to get even a penny out of exh (he's in the UK, I'm in the USA). REMO pretends that they can't find him even though I have given them a copy of the deed to the flat that he lives in plus all his personal information.
Anyway, your child will be entitled to dual citizenship which might be useful at some point.

Smotheroffive Fri 22-Feb-19 02:13:52

The child maintenance thing depends upon which country, as the UK does have conventions for enforcing paternity payments in certain cases.

He willingly had unprotected sex with you, so his risk and potential responsibility too.

It's down to how you feel at the end of the day. There are so so many amazing mothers that have done amazing at bringing up their DC singlehandedly, and there's absolutely no reason you wouldn't too. In fact stats show the DC do the same as or better with just mother as parent (for whatever reason)!

You will manage, so long as its what you want as its jolly hard work at times and also a bit scarescarey at times

Congratulations and good luck with your future(s) flowers

Chelseajunior Fri 22-Feb-19 02:13:52

You will regret having an abortion, but will never regret holding your little baby..
It's the right time for you!
Congrats x

Dohee Fri 22-Feb-19 02:15:12

Please don't base your decision on what your family says. It's your baby. Your decision. If you decide to continue with the pregnancy, you'll be a Mum. You won't just be a daughter anymore.

It might be the only chance you get. As a single parent, life is very very tough. But, they are extremely attached to you as you're all they've got!

It can be mentally draining to the point of developing PND etc.

When you get over the hump, it can be fabulous.

It is isolating when they're babies as you sound like me. No friends with babies etc.

Whatever your family thinks is entirely irrelevant. Yes, maybe they will babysit once in a while, but you're ultimately the only one you need to consult on this.

The other side of it is questions from dc further down the line as to who Daddy is. And it won't be too far down the line either. They start asking from when they can talk and hear about other Daddies at preschool etc.

Your circumstances are very similar to mine. I genuinely feel she was a gift. She was sent to save me and I think I was chosen as the best person to raise this particular child.

Given how you're talking about it, I am going to take a leap and say Congratulations!!!!!!!!

Italiangreyhound Fri 22-Feb-19 02:17:31

OP "I'm just looking for any thoughts, esp from anyone who has been in a similar position. Is there anything I should consider that I might not have thought of yet?"

Keep the baby. Don't wait to conceive using expensive donor sperm in a few year's time when your fertility has dropped.

Keep this baby and make a great life for them and you.

Excellent advice from some posters on maternity leave and benefits etc.

FermatsTheorem "The only possible (and weak) argument against would be that it was somehow unfair to do so without the father's consent..." The father donated his sperm to the OP. What her body has done with that sperm is not somehow unfair to him!

MissedTheBoatAgain Fri 22-Feb-19 02:17:41

To OP

Tell the father ASAP. If you decide to keep the child you also need to discuss how the father will help you financially as cost of raising a child is high.

Child support can be obtained from someone who lives outside the UK via the REMO system, but it can be a long drawn out process before it is sorted.

Apologies of this seem to be a pure financial consideration, but the cost of supporting a child from birth to age 18, or longer if they attend University, will be huge.

Good luck.

Smotheroffive Fri 22-Feb-19 02:25:15

OP had his chance to ensure no pregnancy ensued, he wasn't that bothered, and its happened,its now out of his hands and only OPs life decisions, she does not need to contact him asapasap! How ridiculous frankly. This is her decision, her body, her pregnancy, her lives, until birth anyway.

Smotheroffive Fri 22-Feb-19 02:26:29

I think it's worth considering how you would feel if this were your only chance for a family, as you never know, it could be.

Coyoacan Fri 22-Feb-19 02:46:09

I would also say go for it and congratulations

Kennehora Fri 22-Feb-19 02:46:59

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Bitzer Fri 22-Feb-19 02:58:25

Congratulations! I say go for it smile

sunnyaussiegirl Fri 22-Feb-19 03:30:46

Op, just two things I wanted to add to the excellent advice and first hand experiences here, one, don't discount friends' support, it seems some people here have been let down but it is not always the case, we have no family near, and our friends have been invaluable support (today my DH is picking up friends' DCs form school because their dad has an unexpected meeting for example)

second, a friend of mine got pregnant in a less than stable relationship, she was 40, the dad to be told her he didn't want it, reluctantly, she had a termination, she never did have a baby, it is her greatest regret, and honestly I don't think she fully recovered ever from that, and is today a very unhappy person, just to say there are risks either way, termination is not necessarily the "safe" option

Smotheroffive Fri 22-Feb-19 03:35:29

sunnyaussiegirl
I wonder how relationships go on after something so devastating as been imposed upon a woman by someone who claims to love them. How does she not resent his imposition, that's the loss of her one and only baby. So sad

Surprisedmom Fri 22-Feb-19 05:54:50

@smotheroffive I totally agree. I told my ex that so far as I was concerned if he forced me into an abortion then we were over anyway and so his choice was to be involved with the baby or not. Ultimately no matter how much I loved him I couldn’t choose him over my baby, which is what he was really asking me to do.

todayiwin Fri 22-Feb-19 06:11:19

This was EXACTLY me 6 years ago.

My DC is amazing. Keep it, it's the best thing that ever happened to me

AlaskanOilBaron Fri 22-Feb-19 06:32:56

I would keep it, but I wouldn't tell the father, I'd want something as close to a sperm donor as possible to keep my life uncomplicated.

ThriftyMcThrifty Fri 22-Feb-19 06:49:10

Hi op, I conceived my first child aged 29, a total accident. I’d only been with my boyfriend three months so had lots of concerns. A well paid job but no savings, still paying off my student credit card, had just moved countries. It was awful timing. I kept the baby, after a lot of thought, and have zero regrets. I’m 38 now, and pregnant with my third - all the same dad as my boyfriend and I worked out and got married. However, I know that even if we hadn’t and I was a single mum to an eight year old, I would be very happy with my life. Good luck!!

Firstimer703 Fri 22-Feb-19 06:59:03

I'm married with a reasonable income and paying for childcare is still a nightmare!

Still, you want a baby and you're pregnant so I would keep it and the rest will come together.

Got a 6 month old & it's worth all the hard work xx

KickBishopBrennanUpTheArse Fri 22-Feb-19 07:09:34

OP just a couple more thoughts from my experience.

Re the father. Of course you should tell him and give him the benefit of the doubt. You got on with him well enough over text and it sounds like he's been a reasonable father to his other dc. And while I know money is important actually an amicable relationship that allows your dc to know him and bond with him is priceless so I would really try to keep it on good terms as much as you possibly can. (Without getting taken advantage of / risking your dc).

In terms of support - I got quite a bit of support from my family even though they live 2 hours away. It would have been easier if they were round the corner but my mum was always on the end of the phone and my dad would come up for the weekend to fix my toilet if required!

My friends were great although most didn't have kids so I tried not to talk about nappies too much!

My biggest mistake in the early days was not going to antenatal/ baby massage / NCT classes. I thought everyone would be in couples and I felt silly. I didn't really make any mum friends but looking back I really needed them and was quite isolated for the first 2 years until my friends started having babies.

And lots of people will tell you that being a single parent is really really hard. I might be wrong because I've never coparented but I see friends with lazy or busy or abusive or cheating or heavy drinking / gambling partners and I think I've got it so much easier. A good partner is better than no partner but being single and having control of your own decisions, money and parenting style is great! Also when you get out of bed at 4 am for the 4th time that night because your baby is being a dick teething it makes you far more pissed off and resentful to have a snoring man next to you than if you are being superwoman and doing it alone. Plus you can cosleep until they are 8!

Doormat247 Fri 22-Feb-19 07:25:14

I recently had a similar thing although I am in a relationship rather than it being a fling. We hadn't been together long so weren't fully stable. He made it clear he didn't want the baby and I couldn't face going through it alone as a single parent or dragging along someone who didn't really want to be a parent.

I'm 34 and like you had never had a pregnancy scare. I do want a family and think this possibly may have been my only chance at motherhood.

My family wouldn't be able to provide help and neither would his so I'd have been very much alone. My job pays decently but I wouldn't be able to continue in it with a baby and the job prospects round here are not good. I knew that I didn't want to rely on financial help or benefits so took the difficult decision of terminating my baby.

I know that decision was the right thing if I wanted my baby to grow up knowing it was wanted by both parents and to not be struggling for money.

Good luck with everything and do what's best for your situation. I got a lot of nasty comments when I posted my situation on here and people got very angry that I decided on termination.
However, I would advise that if you choose termination to do it as early as possible as I waited 3mths and it made it more difficult.

LuckyAmy1986 Fri 22-Feb-19 07:42:59

I would keep it, but I wouldn't tell the father, I'd want something as close to a sperm donor as possible to keep my life uncomplicated

Might make life easier for the OP, not really fair on the child though is it?

Crockof Fri 22-Feb-19 08:07:01

Often I read about planned for babies with married parents splitting up just before or after birth. Nothing is guaranteed, go for it.

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