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AMA

I’m a solo mum by choice AMA

80 replies

SoloMamabyChoice · 02/05/2023 11:56

As per the title I become a single mother by choice using a donor. Ask me anything. 😀

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neverknowinglyunreasonable · 02/05/2023 11:57

Are you always exhausted? Do you have help?

SoloMamabyChoice · 02/05/2023 11:57

became - I can spell… 😉

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SoloMamabyChoice · 02/05/2023 11:58

neverknowinglyunreasonable · 02/05/2023 11:57

Are you always exhausted? Do you have help?

No and no. It’s been pretty easy so far to be honest. Baby is six months old, so maybe once the toddler years hit. No help, though have a cleaner once a fortnight (since before before baby).

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BreakfastGold · 02/05/2023 12:02

This is something I'm considering myself but whenever it comes up on Mumsnet or other forums there are lots of comments about how it's unfair to bring a child into the world knowing they'll never know their second parent, or know half of their identity. Is this something you think about, how do you counter that? I don't think I agree but I'd be lying if I said I didn't worry about being judged if I went ahead.

SoloMamabyChoice · 02/05/2023 12:12

BreakfastGold · 02/05/2023 12:02

This is something I'm considering myself but whenever it comes up on Mumsnet or other forums there are lots of comments about how it's unfair to bring a child into the world knowing they'll never know their second parent, or know half of their identity. Is this something you think about, how do you counter that? I don't think I agree but I'd be lying if I said I didn't worry about being judged if I went ahead.

It is definitely something I have a lot of thought. Actually the research shows that children of SMBCs do as well as children from nuclear families on all outcomes. As a huge percentage of marriages fail, the SMBC route is protective of the trauma of fighting parents, exposure to domestic abuse, parental separation, potential abandonment by one parent etc etc. I chose a donor via a sperm bank (with a pregnancy limit, ie not fifty million half siblings) who had lots of information which I can share with my child. This includes pictures, a letter to DC, a voice interview as well the expected medical hx and other facts.
I have a large local friendship network of SMBCs so my child will grow up with many friends of the same background.

I also expected judgement but am completely open about my route to motherhood with friends, colleagues and strangers and have had only one singular negative comment. Incidentally by a man who treats his wife like shit… not giving that much weight as I very much hope she doesn’t have children with him.

All I can say is research it and go for it. It is the absolutely best thing I have ever done.

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SoloMamabyChoice · 02/05/2023 12:14

BreakfastGold · 02/05/2023 12:02

This is something I'm considering myself but whenever it comes up on Mumsnet or other forums there are lots of comments about how it's unfair to bring a child into the world knowing they'll never know their second parent, or know half of their identity. Is this something you think about, how do you counter that? I don't think I agree but I'd be lying if I said I didn't worry about being judged if I went ahead.

Also sorry forgot to say, my child can contact donor at 18 and I letter he indicated he’d be happy about that too if DC want to. Plus with 23+me DC could realistically find identity much sooner should they do wish. I am also on a site to make contact with any donor half siblings for her.

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Mumoftwoinprimary · 02/05/2023 12:15

How old are you? (Ie was it a “now or never” decision for you?)

Holly60 · 02/05/2023 12:17

Did you have any thoughts about the sex of your baby before you got pregnant? I.e as a single mother did you have a preference for a girl as you are one, or a boy as a different experience or because you might worry more about a teenage girl etc? I know these can be worries or thoughts for all parents but I wonder if your single female status had any bearing?

SoloMamabyChoice · 02/05/2023 12:18

Mumoftwoinprimary · 02/05/2023 12:15

How old are you? (Ie was it a “now or never” decision for you?)

Mid thirties. Guess had a couple more years or so to try and meet a partner but I just came to the conclusion that this is what I wanted. Also to some extend yes in that I know I would have forever regretted missing out on having children if it hadn’t worked later on.

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Holly60 · 02/05/2023 12:19

Also would you consider having any more children, or did you just want the one?

Would you use the same donor if you did?

SoloMamabyChoice · 02/05/2023 12:21

Holly60 · 02/05/2023 12:17

Did you have any thoughts about the sex of your baby before you got pregnant? I.e as a single mother did you have a preference for a girl as you are one, or a boy as a different experience or because you might worry more about a teenage girl etc? I know these can be worries or thoughts for all parents but I wonder if your single female status had any bearing?

Yes I did. In the end my thought process was that if I had a boy I a) have plenty of lovely male friends in my/his life as role models and b) having children with a partner does not guarantee a lovely good paternal figure in the child’s life.

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SoloMamabyChoice · 02/05/2023 12:22

Holly60 · 02/05/2023 12:19

Also would you consider having any more children, or did you just want the one?

Would you use the same donor if you did?

Yes. I would absolutely love more. Would very much like to use the same donor if possible. Because of the full genetic siblings aspect but mostly because it resulted in the most perfect child the first time around 😉

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camping2023 · 02/05/2023 12:33

What are your plans if something was to happen to you for your kid?

KickAssMumma · 02/05/2023 12:40

As someone doing this alone, not by choice. (More bad choice re partner at the time, and the biological clock meaning I felt like my boy- due in 10 days by c section, was meant to be). I am happy to be doing this alone but my mental health has really suffered this pregnancy (lot of other traumatic issues didn’t help my mental health, but I’m now settled and prepared for his arrival- we have everything we need for any eventuality except nuclear holocaust of some kind! So things are better now). But I’m still half scared for his arrival, and half “bring it on”! Hahaha. Soooo.. as someone doing it by choice, I have a few questions I hope are ok.

Can I ask about your birth recovery?
Did you have a c section- if so, how was it?

Do you have a lot of support, re the early days and weeks did this support help you? (I have little on hand support but lots of medical and perinatal mental health support)

How did you find doing everything alone? I have gone overboard on devices and all kinds to ensure that I get rest including batch cooking to excess haha- everyone keeps telling me how little time I’ll have to myself alone so anything to grab a little extra time including a dish washer to limit time doing things like that. You get the picture! So did you struggle with the early days?

Did you breastfeed and if so, did it really restrict your time/ sleep/ ability to have a quiet half hour? Since you have no one to help? Or did you formula feed to make it easier? (I have boobies and also formula at the ready just Incase haha).

Please don’t feel you need to answer anything that I might have asked if it’s too personal. Just trying to come to terms with being alone myself and everyone keeps telling me “oh you’ll get no rest” “oh you’ll not get any sleep” “just wait for all the shitty nappies and baby screaming” and it’s really ruined the experience and made my anxiety and mental health so much worse. I’m imagining never having a second to myself ever. Not being able to sleep. Nothing but stress. Because of the constant comments since I’m alone. So this thread is really really interesting and might go a little way to help my anxieties over it! So thank you for posting this. 😊

CaloriecountMay2023 · 02/05/2023 13:01

Do you claim any benefits?

SoloMamabyChoice · 02/05/2023 13:47

camping2023 · 02/05/2023 12:33

What are your plans if something was to happen to you for your kid?

That was/is my absolutely biggest fear. While of course any couple could also both eg die in a car crash, there is just more of a contingency. I wrote a will, picked guardians who I discussed this with in close detail, have life insurance, have death in service pension and have discussed the possibility with friends who I have no doubt would rally around DC. Other than that all I can do is to live as healthy as I can.

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SoloMamabyChoice · 02/05/2023 13:59

KickAssMumma · 02/05/2023 12:40

As someone doing this alone, not by choice. (More bad choice re partner at the time, and the biological clock meaning I felt like my boy- due in 10 days by c section, was meant to be). I am happy to be doing this alone but my mental health has really suffered this pregnancy (lot of other traumatic issues didn’t help my mental health, but I’m now settled and prepared for his arrival- we have everything we need for any eventuality except nuclear holocaust of some kind! So things are better now). But I’m still half scared for his arrival, and half “bring it on”! Hahaha. Soooo.. as someone doing it by choice, I have a few questions I hope are ok.

Can I ask about your birth recovery?
Did you have a c section- if so, how was it?

Do you have a lot of support, re the early days and weeks did this support help you? (I have little on hand support but lots of medical and perinatal mental health support)

How did you find doing everything alone? I have gone overboard on devices and all kinds to ensure that I get rest including batch cooking to excess haha- everyone keeps telling me how little time I’ll have to myself alone so anything to grab a little extra time including a dish washer to limit time doing things like that. You get the picture! So did you struggle with the early days?

Did you breastfeed and if so, did it really restrict your time/ sleep/ ability to have a quiet half hour? Since you have no one to help? Or did you formula feed to make it easier? (I have boobies and also formula at the ready just Incase haha).

Please don’t feel you need to answer anything that I might have asked if it’s too personal. Just trying to come to terms with being alone myself and everyone keeps telling me “oh you’ll get no rest” “oh you’ll not get any sleep” “just wait for all the shitty nappies and baby screaming” and it’s really ruined the experience and made my anxiety and mental health so much worse. I’m imagining never having a second to myself ever. Not being able to sleep. Nothing but stress. Because of the constant comments since I’m alone. So this thread is really really interesting and might go a little way to help my anxieties over it! So thank you for posting this. 😊

congratulations how exciting!
I’ll try and answer all of them:
Yes had emergency section. Recovery was a breeze and was absolutely fine by day two on paracetamol and did not need any help. Top tip you don’t actually have to wait six weeks to drive just need to feel fully recovered and be able to make an emergency stop. Just email your insurance to confirm when you feel ready.
i did. have help lined up for first two weeks. Friend was meant to stay and help out of recovery was bad but ended up not needing her to stay over.

I combi fed but not by choice. Started out just BF but did not produce enough even with regular pumping. Yes first few weeks were sleep deprived and I found BF super painful (only for three days then was fine, so worth persisting if you have the same issue). Baby sleeps pretty much all the time between feeds at the start so you’ll have plenty of time ‘to yourself’ - you’ll just be tired. Get lots and lots of baby bouncers/baskets etc (cost pennies on marketplace) and have one anywhere you may need to plonk baby down, eg bathroom so you can shower. Also sling is amazing for getting on with your day while still having baby with you.

amazing re meal prep. I did. the same plus found friends brought so much food over the next few weeks that I didn’t really need to cook for three months 😂

ignore other people. Honestly it’s kind of interesting but I am in several baby groups, one large nct type group and one smbc one. The former seem utterly miserable: resentful of partners not pulling their weight, another adult strewing their stuff around the house, etc. The later seem to mirror my experience of loving mat leave and finding it relatively easy (of course I have had hard days too).

Good luck! I hope the birth goes well and you soon get to meet your amazing little side kick xx

OP posts:
SoloMamabyChoice · 02/05/2023 14:00

CaloriecountMay2023 · 02/05/2023 13:01

Do you claim any benefits?

Normal child benefit yes.

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Ohyay · 02/05/2023 14:58

Interesting thread.

If its not too cheeky. How long did the process take and overall cost?

Congrats x

SoloMamabyChoice · 02/05/2023 15:14

Ohyay · 02/05/2023 14:58

Interesting thread.

If its not too cheeky. How long did the process take and overall cost?

Congrats x

I qualified for IVF on the NHS and was very lucky that things worked on the first try. So around £500 for initial investigations and around £2000 for one vial of sperm (insane right?), plus pregnancy slot, plus shipping etc.

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SoloMamabyChoice · 02/05/2023 15:16

Oh sorry and re length, from referral to positive pregnancy test was around 8 months, around a four months wait to be seen the four months during which had tests appointments etc and then the actual ivf.

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SoloMamabyChoice · 02/05/2023 15:17

If I have a second baby I expect around £10000 in costs for ivf plus sperm and meds. So that’s sobering 😂

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HeidiUpTheMountain · 02/05/2023 15:21

Have you ruled out ever having a long-term relationship, potentially resulting in a second child who would live with both his/her parents, and therefore have a disparity between the status of the two children? Have you considered how you would handle this for your eldest?

SoloMamabyChoice · 02/05/2023 15:26

HeidiUpTheMountain · 02/05/2023 15:21

Have you ruled out ever having a long-term relationship, potentially resulting in a second child who would live with both his/her parents, and therefore have a disparity between the status of the two children? Have you considered how you would handle this for your eldest?

Not ruled it out (life is weird and unexpected things happen) but taking absolutely zero steps towards this and no actual desire for this to ever happen to be honest.
I guess that would be one to tackle if it did, but realistically I am not dating anytime soon even if I wanted to - I mean where would I leave baby? So odds of getting pregnant if I unexpectedly met someone in a few years are pretty slim.
if by some fluke that is how life turns out we’ll cross that bridge. I guess not really any different from someone whose first relationship failed with child no longer seeing father meeting someone new other than my baby not having that sad memory and potential feeling of rejection.

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SoloMamabyChoice · 02/05/2023 15:28

Don’t know them personally but do know of some SMBCs who already have a child with an ex and choose to have second solo. Not heard of any major issues for the kids

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