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prescottchels's Avatar prescottchels 11:29 PM 08-23-2013

As in you used a sperm donor or had a fling & got pregnant & decided to keep the baby w/o involvement of the father, or adopted as a single person...

Please no divorcees...That's a whole different genre of single parenting bow2.gif


Who's out there in this boat?

After a failed engagement I committed to becoming a SMC back in '09, tried a few times, but didn't have much luck in the private donor realm (vs. shelling out big bucks at a sperm bank). Since then I've had a couple relationships that seemed ever so promising only to turn out poorly a few months later. Sooooo now I'm back on the SMC bandwagon and I was telling a guy friend about my plans the other day and he offered to be my donor right there on the spot! I think we'll start trying at the end of Sept biggrinbounce.gif

aml1676's Avatar aml1676 07:55 PM 08-27-2013

Me! *raises hand*


I'm currently pregnant, due in March, with #1. It took me 4 IUIs to get here over a little more than a year - lots of stops and starts along the way. I used anonymous frozen donor sperm - I don't know anyone I would ask to be a donor, and the implications of using a known donor are just more than I want to deal with. My child can seek information about the donor when he/she turns 18; it's up to the donor whether or not he responds.


I decided to take this road because at 36 (then), I figured I can meet Mr. Right at any age, but I only have so many more years to have a baby. Friends and family that I've told are very supportive; every time I talk to my dad he asks how I'm feeling :) I'm stuck now trying to figure out how to tell everyone else... I have a few more close friends that didn't know I was trying, and it seems weird now to tell them I'm pregnant. And work is just a whole other story, though I'm not crossing that bridge for a few more weeks.


Good luck!

prescottchels's Avatar prescottchels 08:41 PM 08-27-2013

That's awesome! Congratulations!!  joy.gif
I'm 36 right now & I've felt the same as you regarding the fact that I can find Mr. Right anytime, but babymaking years are so so limited.

I told everyone under the sun back in '09 that I was going to be an SMC in my Christmas letter lol.gif and emails & such. (I wasn't on Facebook then) because I wanted everyone to hear all the facts straight from me and not through the grapevine. I asked in my letter that if anyone had anything other than support & positive things to say to tell someone else, not me, and I lost a couple friends over it, but found out a few surprise supporters too so all in all I'd say it worked out well. My mom was really the only family member that had choice words to say to me about it so I banned the subject entirely with her. Just a couple weeks ago I got another hint that she still won't be supportive of this choice, but she'll have to deal... I've only told a couple friends about my newest donor plans so far and probably won't make any sort of announcement about it until I'm a few months along. Heck, maybe I'll have another whizz bang Christmas letter to send out this year winky.gif   fingersx.gif   praying.gif

My dad has been super sweet all along too love.gif 


I'm so glad you showed up here! I was starting to wonder...Years ago we had quite a little SMC community here. It was great!!

ILoveMyBabyBird's Avatar ILoveMyBabyBird 05:46 PM 08-29-2013

I am not going to judge you but seeing how I am a product of a 'fling' and never met my bio father, the emotional turmoil I have felt has stayed with me to this day and I am currently in search of my bio father via dna testing. What steps are you taking for the psychological issues that may face your children due to being brought into this world without knowing their bio father? I am just speaking from experience, that as a child from this type of situation, it has been very difficult and I hated my mother a lot for it. Obviously every situation and child is different, but there are whole forums dedicated to children in search of their unknown fathers and even more adopted children in search of their bio families, so I am not the only one who has had issue with not knowing their roots. 

aml1676's Avatar aml1676 06:59 PM 08-29-2013

I'm not sure what preparations I *could* make for something that may never be an issue. I have all the information about the donor that is available from the cryobank, and while he is an anonymous donor, if he's okay with contact in 18 years, I certainly wouldn't stop my child from initiating contact. By no means do I intend to hide my child's origins, from him/her or anyone else... I expect to have lots of conversations about why I decided to do this. What do you think your mom could have done differently to help your situation? I'm certainly open to suggestions.

prescottchels's Avatar prescottchels 09:42 PM 08-29-2013

ILoveMyBabyBird-that is a topic I have thought a lot about and one of the reasons (beside cost) that I've wanted to get a local known donor who's willing to know their kid, whom I already click with, but don't necessarily want to have an intimate relationship with, which I think I've found. My plan is for the donor to waive his rights as a parent so I have sole custody and so that he's protected financially, but for us all to get together regularly to hang out, share a meal, go for a hike, whatever... I want my child to know where they come from. I think that's really important. AND my best friend is a holistic practitioner and she has helped me through a lot of emotional issues in my life so I trust (and she has promised) that when/if any issues come up for the child that she will help me & the child get those issues resolved.

Blessings on your search for your father.

ILoveMyBabyBird's Avatar ILoveMyBabyBird 02:10 PM 08-31-2013

Obviously my situation was very different than yours. For me I had a lot of self identity issues, mostly stemming from the fact that my mom said my dad was hispanic, and so I always wondered if I was and was drawn the culture etc, eventhough I am finding I am not. I also coveted a father/daughter relationship. I really felt like I was losing out, and then of course the fact that according to my mom it was a one night stand, I found it really selfish for my mom to keep me to herself, to be so careless etc. I was actually very turned off by sex in general as a teen/young adult because of how I came into this world. I suppose that every teen/child has their issues and single parents are much more common. I am a single parent now, and I emphasize to my 7 year old that many kids, xxx at school, etc parents are divorced so he doesn't feel so different, like I did growing up without a father. I would say definitely be open conversation about it. Let them know they are not the only ones etc. We struggled ALOT financially  when i was a kid so I was very irritated at my mom for bring me into all that as well. And above all, make sure your kids have a good support network throughout their lives, because without a second parent, if something happens to you, it will be much more difficult for a child, even an adult child to adjust. My mom died when I was 21 and I felt completely alone in the world, that I had lost my best friend etc. I still feel like that a lot. I think overall it is every persons choice on how and when etc they decide to have a baby, and if I hadn't gotten married and had 2 with my ex I may have considered going the solo route as well as a single parent! I am sure you all are great mothers!

prescottchels's Avatar prescottchels 03:38 PM 08-31-2013

In the single mama groups online that I was a part of before they really encourage mamas to create a great support network if they don't already have one (I do), designate someone to look after your child in case of death/disability, find men in your network to act as role models for your child, be financially stable, etc. I feel good about where I'm at in my life and really look forward to being a mama. I've spent so much of my life looking after other people's children it just made me want my own even more!

The issues you describe are the very ones I've been looking to avoid by using anonymous donor sperm or going downtown for a night on the town. You wouldn't believe how many people have encouraged me to go have a few drinks and pick a nice looking guy to spend the night with! I'm so not that kind of person and I don't even like alcohol so it's pretty funny for good friends to even suggest such a thing besides the complications that creates for the potential child in not being able to meet their father, etc... I don't judge how anyone chooses to brings a child into this world cuz I know how strong the drive is in myself to have a child, I just know what feels right for me :thumb

aml1676's Avatar aml1676 05:56 PM 08-31-2013

ILoveMyBabyBird - I agree it's a bit of a different situation, and it sounds like yours was less than ideal :( Your suggestions are good, though - having a support network, making sure you're financially stable, etc. I'm 37 years old, and have a good, stable job that pays well enough for me to support children on my own. I also feel like I have a good support network; my dad is over the moon about becoming a grandpa again, and I have a close circle of girlfriends, a couple of which have been single moms themselves. I went to an SMBC meetup in Chicago last spring, and one of the things we talked about in regards to the support network was that it's always surprising who really ends up being involved in your child's life... it may not be the people you thought you'd be able to count on.


One of the things I considered when I made this decision (when I was still a "thinker") was the fact that there are many, many women with partners who are still, in essence, single moms. They get zero help from their partner. At least in my house, I won't feel obligated to include someone else in decision-making, and I won't have to worry about a partner who isn't as involved as I think he should be.


Mostly, I want my child to know how very much he/she was wanted. I did this on my own on purpose, with intention! I hope that counts for something... but if it doesn't, we'll talk about it, and if we need help talking about it, I'll get help.

maia.springgoddess's Avatar maia.springgoddess 01:43 PM 09-15-2013

I am just setting sail in my "single mama by choice" boat. :)


Have been in several loving long term relationships the past few years, but my indescribably intense desire to bring a child into my life has introduced a lot of stress into these relationships because the men weren't ready to be fathers. I am relatively young (24) but have known I wanted to be a mother since I was 12 and it's been on the forefront of my mind for the past 3 years. I recently came to the awareness that before I get into another relationship I need to become my full authentic self. And that means becoming a mother.


I will really appreciate the advice and perspective you all have. So many choices to make! I am excited and totally terrified at the same time. Here's to the start of a great adventure!

prescottchels's Avatar prescottchels 02:22 PM 09-15-2013

Welcome Maia!! If I could have looked ahead 12 years to see where I am now, I might have made it a bigger priority to have a child at 24 too. As I too have known since I was a child that I wanted to be a mama something fierce, but always worked under the assumption that it would come about the traditional way.  And now that it hasn't and I'm 36 & concerned about my fertility...well I just wish it could've happened sooner so that I had one less thing to worry about! I'm definitely in a better place financially now though so there's some balancing that happens, but even still...
I've just reconnected w/a yahoo group of SMC's that is run by Mikki Morrisette, an author & one of the forerunners in everything SMC. It's not a super busy group, but a little more than here. When I was on it 4 years ago it was hoppin, but then so was this one lol
So here are some great resources if you haven't come across them yet!
This is Mikki's yahoo group
This is Mikki's site

This is Mikki's book

This is Jane Mattes' site

This is Jane's book


and I also have this one-great if you're a DIY'er


I would imagine that in a city as big and progressive as PDX that you might find groups to meet up w/in person too if you're looking for that...I would check  and also the finding your tribe sections here.

There might also be meetup sections on the websites I linked for Mikki & Jane. I haven't gotten as far as reexploring them since I recommitted to single mama-hood.
Blessings on your journey!!

Nancy424's Avatar Nancy424 01:46 AM 09-17-2013

Sometimes, I ask myself why I became a single parent. Was this my punishment for being a bad daughter? I used to party a lot. Going home very late, and boom. After a one night stand, I just woke one morning and I got pregnant.


I guess I just missed being able to hangout with friends. I can't do that anymore since I have someone to think of. However, it just made me realize that if I had not become a mother, would have I become worse than I was before? Perhaps I would :)! That's why I'm thankful to have my daughter who actually helps me become a more responsible person :)! So, cheers to all single moms out there :)!

ILoveMyBabyBird's Avatar ILoveMyBabyBird 10:07 AM 09-19-2013
Originally Posted by Nancy424 View Post

Sometimes, I ask myself why I became a single parent. Was this my punishment for being a bad daughter? I used to party a lot. Going home very late, and boom. After a one night stand, I just woke one morning and I got pregnant.


I guess I just missed being able to hangout with friends. I can't do that anymore since I have someone to think of. However, it just made me realize that if I had not become a mother, would have I become worse than I was before? Perhaps I would :)! That's why I'm thankful to have my daughter who actually helps me become a more responsible person :)! So, cheers to all single moms out there :)!


Nancy, I was married for 7 years and during that time had no real friends. I was a mother as well. Now that I am a single mother, not sure if I would say 'by choice' but in essence I did choose to divorce, though my ex is in the kids life and financially supports them. But anyway, I had no friends. Then my marriage fell apart and suddenly I realized how much I missed out on not having friends. Not the partying, getting wasted all night friends, but the true, authentic friends. Ones that would have told me to cut and run the time exdh punched me in the face and gave me a black eye when pregnant with ds. I was embarrassed and never told a soul until 6 years later after DD was born and he slapped me the night I found out he cheated on me with his co-worker. Sorry for all the gory details, but not having true friends hurt me. I have set out to make some true good friends and with kids it is difficult, though not impossible. I think the biggest thing is just like a romantic relationship, a friendship takes time to develop. I have rekindled a friendship with a college classmate, I fb friend people from my past all the time, and add new ones pretty quickly. Do I have that awesome I would share anything with them bff yet? Nope, but I have several new friends that may make it there some day. With being a single parent our priorities change, and sometimes that means making new friends that fit our current lifestyle. 

Satori's Avatar Satori 05:52 PM 10-18-2013

I'm a SMC with 2 kids and I will say this, make sure your well set up before the baby arrives. Mine were born sick and life has been difficult, my money is long gone and I had to stay home so long my skills are now obsolete and its made finding a decent job difficult, don't think your friends will still be around either, life changes radically when a baby comes into the picture, even more so if the baby is born sick. I don't mean to be a downer but today has been straight from you know where, we now live in poverty and no hope of getting out any time soon. I had a good job when I started the SMC path but like my friends it went away when I had to spend all my time with a sick baby who grew into a sick child. I'm just now going back to work years later and its hard to raise kids on min wage as a single mother. This is not the life I planned all those years ago, guess I didn't plan well enough.

ILoveMyBabyBird's Avatar ILoveMyBabyBird 07:41 PM 10-18-2013
Originally Posted by Satori View Post

I'm a SMC with 2 kids and I will say this, make sure your well set up before the baby arrives. Mine were born sick and life has been difficult, my money is long gone and I had to stay home so long my skills are now obsolete and its made finding a decent job difficult, don't think your friends will still be around either, life changes radically when a baby comes into the picture, even more so if the baby is born sick. I don't mean to be a downer but today has been straight from you know where, we now live in poverty and no hope of getting out any time soon. I had a good job when I started the SMC path but like my friends it went away when I had to spend all my time with a sick baby who grew into a sick child. I'm just now going back to work years later and its hard to raise kids on min wage as a single mother. This is not the life I planned all those years ago, guess I didn't plan well enough.

((Satori)) it must be hard, we have no idea what life will bring our way even if we think we've planned to the best of our abilities. I know true sacrificing love is that we give to our children. It is tough no matter how it is diced. And poverty sucks. I grew up in poverty and right now me and the kids are borderline living on support from exdh but I don't think people realize the self-esteem issues those especially those that have a higher education suffer from taking those low paying jobs after all the time and effort that was put into preparing for a higher paying job. 

girlspn 08:04 PM 12-03-2013

Hello, I am glad to see this thread here. I have a 2.5 year old daughter with my soon-to-be ex-husband. I always expected to have at least 2 or 3, but now with our impending divorce, that's not possible with him. Doesn't change my hope to have more kids though. Now I'm looking into having kids regardless of whether or not I meet someone else...... how do I approach this? I'm financially stable, and have very close relationships to my family, so I'm not worried about support. 

prescottchels's Avatar prescottchels 10:51 PM 12-03-2013

girlspn-there are several options all with their own sets of pros & cons...
The options as I know them given years of reading, research & chatting w/other mamas on the SMC path are something like this:

1. Ask a guy friend to be your donor using a contract so you & he both know what the expectations are 

2. Have a fling w/a guy you don't know & don't necessarily plan to tell if you get pregnant

3. Work with a reproductive clinic to purchase sperm and get the insemination done there

4. Find a sperm bank that will ship to a residence & do home insemination

5. Find a private donor and do home insemination 

6. Adopt


As you can imagine working with a clinic can be quite costly-several thousand dollars minimum, which many insurance plans don't cover. 

And there can be legal ramifications if you use a known donor-like he may want custody or regular visitation with the child years later even if you both sign a contract stating that he waives his paternal rights blah blah

You kinda have to weigh out what your budget is, and what you're willing to risk legally. The other tricky thing legally speaking is that if you get pregnant through sex (vs by turkey baster) the courts can say he's obligated to be a dad & force him to pay child support if say you were to apply for state assistance or he files to get visitation, etc. So there's lots of things to think about...  I can recommend a couple books by the two pioneer mamas in the SMC world. 
I own both of these and both go into some detail about the choices I outlined above and how each of the authors went about it in their own lives.


I loved this one!


and just came across this one looking for the others lol-just added it to my reading list!




feel free to pick my brain :thumb  and blessings on your divorce-may it unfold with ease & grace

girlspn 12:14 PM 12-04-2013

prescottchels, thank you for these recommendations. I will check them out. I am so glad to know there are options to motherhood available to single women. How long did you start planning before actually getting pregnant?


I thought of asking a guy friend about this, but am not sure how I can be sure of the health of his sperm. Is the donor sperm route is 'safer' because the sperm is screened?


There are no sperm banks on the island that I live on, so I would have to look into options on the mainland. What is the best way to go about deciding on which one is best?

prescottchels's Avatar prescottchels 06:27 PM 12-04-2013

I actually haven't gotten pregnant yet... I started on the path about 4 years ago and have tried off & on, but haven't succeeded yet-booo.  Still hoping I can make it happen sometime in the next few months.

Sperm health is definitely something to consider when you choose the known donor route. I made a list when I first started of all the guys I know that I'd consider asking and then proceeded to cross them all off :lol for one reason or another-they smoke, they're on lots of meds, they're older...blah blah  Even though men continue to make new sperm the health & vitality of it decreases with age just like our eggs do. So now I won't have a donor over 35. 

When you purchase sperm from a bank they screen it and quarantine it and screen it again and they don't allow men to donate past a certain age so they trust they're getting the best sperm available. 

It doesn't matter how far the sperm banks are from you because regardless of whether you choose to inseminate at home or a clinic the sperm has to get shipped somewhere. The banks don't do any of the procedures they just receive & house the sperm. So you have to choose which method works better for your situation & choose the bank that fits that scenario that has the donor you want. Many/most banks have an online matching service similar to dating sites so that you can find the donor that best fits what you're looking for in regard to ethnicity, hair & eye color, etc  I used to have a spread sheet of all the banks and their basic info...I'll have to see if it's still around, but if you google search sperm banks you'll find the main ones like xytex, california cryobank, & fairfax. There are many others, but those are the biggys. You also have to decide if you want an open ID donor or not-a donor who's willing to meet their offspring. Most aren't willing so that can be a limiting factor and certain banks allow contact at a young age, but most make it the standard 18 yrs old deal.  
Gotta run, but keep asking questions!

girlspn 12:26 AM 12-06-2013
Thanks for all this info. Wow, 4 years.. what routes have you tried?

I'm already thinking I would use donor sperm and no open ID. My challenge is how to let my family know. I'm very close to them, and I rely greatly on their emotional support. They're very conservative, and I don't think SMC is even thought of with them. My brother commented the other day that it seems irresponsible to let my dd grow up without a father.

I've started reading Mikki Morissette's book, and googling sperm bank/donor to prep myself for all this. I can see this could get expensive...
farmermomma's Avatar farmermomma 03:08 AM 12-06-2013
After my first unplanned baby, I broke up with the father in first trimester, I was looking into SMC. I read several books. Looked into banks and interviewed friends. I wanted to plan baby around my seasonal business but whenever time was right I was giving this or that relationship a try. Now I have a second unplanned baby with a boyfriend that lives 1.5 hrs away. We're trying to figure things out. I will have a 3rd babe in a few more years. Will use my known donor friend unless something drastic improves with my boyfriend (often I don't even think of him as my boyfriend and in fact told him this part is done, but he's more than a baby daddy cause we still all hang out.) Glad to see this thread and consider SMC. It's weird to think about since I kinda have a partner, but good perspective for options.
prescottchels's Avatar prescottchels 11:50 AM 12-06-2013

I've TTC'd w/private donors and a real live partner :wink, and I've asked a few guy friends, but it hasn't gone past the asking stage for them for various reasons. I don't have the resources right now to buy sperm & home insem, which I'd do if I could. I've also considered adopting from foster care, but my home is teeny tiny, not enough room to have a kid by their standards. So that's on the back burner for now.
When I first made the decision to become a SMC I sent a letter out to everyone in my family and all my friends and even acquaintances that I felt a connection with and told them of my plans. I wanted everyone to hear it straight from me-no room for gossip or rumors that way. I lost a couple friends over it and I was also pleasantly surprised by who some of my supporters were. In my immediate family only my mom was a real problem so I had to ban this subject from all future conversations, and we still don't talk about it, but I have plenty of other people that have my back so it's alright. 
Perhaps you could invite your brother to take a more active role in the lives of your child(ren) so they have a positive male role model. Sometimes people just need to be given a job, made to feel important to change the attitude and reduce the judgments. 

Welcome FarmerMomma-you have quite a unique situation there! 

girlspn 12:28 PM 12-06-2013

FarmerMomma, I'm envious you're pregnant :)


prescottchels, do you discuss the issue with private donors, and do they relinquish all their rights to their offspring? 


I also think it's really courageous to inform friends and family of your decision like that. I was thinking more along the lines of just getting pregnant and telling them when it can't be hidden anymore.

farmermomma's Avatar farmermomma 12:50 PM 12-06-2013
I'm not pregnant. I have a 6year old and a 6 month old. :-)

When I was talking to friends about SMP a few of them offered their hubby's sperm :-). It was so cool what some of them said. One said "of course I'd donate. I'd donate blood or anything I could to help a friend." Another said he'd donate to "have more happy kids in the world." One possible donor wanted grandparent rights though. Actually it was of their SIL. I have known this family a long time and don't want that grandpa so that was a deal breaker. I feel like an active father knows what he's giving away with sperm and is less likely to pursue parental rights because he already has his hands full.
girlspn 05:15 PM 12-06-2013

Oops, sorry! I meant I'm envious that you're able to get pregnant without planning it. I had a lot of trouble conceiving my dd (2 years of trying plus some infertility treatment).


That is very nice and generous that other women would offer their dh's sperm. I would never have thought about that. I haven't made friends or kept in contact with old friends during my marriage, so now spending some time re-connecting with old friends.

farmermomma's Avatar farmermomma 11:33 PM 12-06-2013
Yep. 2 for 2 unplanned. I planned to plan for #2 but unplanned will do. The planning SMP was kind of strange cause I did no planning for 1st. So from none to single planning of who, when, how, etc. was kind of overload. I'm kind of a throw a dart a map kind of planner anyway. No wonder it turned out this way.
So I feel for anyone TTC but I've never been there. Longed and planned for a second but never actually tried.
prescottchels's Avatar prescottchels 12:49 PM 12-07-2013

girlspn-you can have a private donor sign a contract (you'll find one/some examples in Mikki's book at the end I think) stating your intentions & expectations whatever those may be. Personally, my ideal is to have the donor waive his parental right, but still be loosely/peripherally involved so the child grows up knowing/having a relationship with their father. 
Lots of people choose to wait until they're pregnant to make the announcement. I just find that I talk about it w/folks when it comes up & I didn't want to get to the point of forgetting who I'd told & who I hadn't and have some people not hear about it straight from me and be bummed or not have correct info, etc.


Famermomma-you are lucky indeed. Not having to TTC would be sooooo awesome!

girlspn 05:57 PM 12-07-2013

I'm the opposite of you prescottchels regarding donor sperm-- I don't want any involvement on the father side at all. I worry it would cause conflicts, especially if that person has a family. 


FarmerMomma, you are lucky.. I was only 26 when struggling with TTC. Part of the reason I don't want to wait too long and just get started. 

prescottchels's Avatar prescottchels 07:03 PM 12-07-2013

No two SMC's are exactly alike :wink   While I do want full say over how I raise my child w/o interference from the father I would welcome contact even from the father's extended family. So long as they weren't angling to get the donor & I together as a cohesive family unit. My parents divorced when I was a toddler and both remarried so I had lots of extended family growing up and I really valued that along with the family I've created in the town in which I live which is 2 big states away from most of my blood family. For me it's important to have as many meaningful family type connections as possible. You can never have too much support raising a kiddo as a solo parent. 

girlspn 11:12 PM 12-07-2013

Do you think it's possible that the father (and his family) of the child would be okay at having no say at all? I wonder about that when thinking about the guy friend I'm thinking about. Although I do hear you about the support as a solo parent. 


I've been browsing thru donors at cyrobank.... it feels a little strange choosing a 'father' like this. I mentioned this to a friend and she said, just find a guy for his sperm.

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