27 Jul 4 Top Tips for making the decision to become a solo mum
By Reproclinic Editorial Committee
Wanting children in your mid 30s and beyond but having no partner to try naturally with has recently started to be referred to as social infertility.
This is the situation I found myself in, when at 37 yet another short-term romance ended. Once again, I wondered would I be able to meet a partner before my fertility started to go into serious decline, potentially jeopardising my chance to have a baby.
After careful consideration, I finally came to the conclusion that I would try for a baby on my own using donor sperm and IVF. I can safely say it has been the best decision I have ever made. As soon as I made that final decision I have never looked back and have a beautiful 15-month-old daughter as a result.
I have shared 4 considerations to help support you to make the decision of whether solo motherhood is the right route for you.
1. Consider the alternatives
There are four key alternatives to solo motherhood.
- Reach an acceptance that you might never have children and start to come to terms with a life without children.
- Wait to meet the right partner and accept that if that happens for you too late you might miss out on having children.
- Freeze your eggs so that if you meet a suitable partner later on, you have the possibility to use frozen eggs (although this is no guarantee).
- Look to create your family in an alternative way, through adoption or becoming a step parent as part of a blended family.
Consider if you believe any of these would be an acceptable option for you. If you feel you can’t come to terms with any of these alternatives, solo motherhood could be the best path for you to take.
2. Review the support network available to you
The more people you have in your support network the easier you will find it to be a solo mum. Consider who would be there for you to offer emotional, practical and childcare support.
It is possible to manage alone, and many people have done this very successfully, but the more people you have to help you, the easier it becomes.
Start to identify who would be able to help you and what support they would be able to offer you. If there are areas you feel you wouldn’t have sufficient support in, think about whether you have any options to find the additional support.
3. Identify male role models
Some women are anxious about starting down the path to solo motherhood due to their views of donor conception and the fairness of bringing a baby into the world without a father. Rather than worry about the impact of a child not having a father in their life, you can identify some suitable male role models for your child to learn from.
4. Analyze and address your anxieties
Sometimes, you may be being held back from making a decision to become a solo mum by fear. It is important to try to identify the source of any fear you are holding, so that you can decide whether you can manage it or not.
Dr. Arqué, Medical Director at Reproclinic, says: “Before making a decision to become a solo mum, there are several considerations to make. It is important to be fully informed of all your options and alternatives and I would strongly recommend having a coaching session to discuss any concerns or worries that you might have about how to address a situation that might be challenging and frightening. The good news are that you don’t need to wait for anyone to come into your life to fulfill your dream of becoming a mother. We work as a multidisciplinary team to offer our patients the best care from a holistic approach, taking excellent care not only of the medical procedure, but also of the experience and the emotions that go along with the fertility treatment.”.
Are you concerned about how you will practically manage alone, or do you have financial concerns? Are you worried about what people will think of your decision and whether you will feel judged?
All these worries can be worked through and addressed, but it is important to identify them in order to be able to address them.
Mel Johnson The Stork and I
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Medical Director at Reproclinic
Specialist in Obstetrics/Gynecology and Reproductive Medicine