Setting a Date

I just turned 29. All the time I hear “you’re so young” “wait for Mr. Right” “you’ve got plenty of time” from people I talk to about my choice to become a single mother. I’m not exactly shouting it from the rooftops, but I’m not shy about it either. People think I have plenty of time, but I don’t feel like I have plenty of time. And ultimately, its my choice. So the term “thinker” doesn’t seem to fit me anymore. I consider myself a “planner”. I’m making plans, getting things ready.

I want to have an awesome 30th birthday party. I have my girlfriends all ready to do something big. It’s going to be my bachelorette. I think that’s reasonable. I’m going to go from single girl to mother. That’s way more of a commitment of time, energy, and freedom than getting married. I’m settling down, just not with a man. So before I dive into the world of basal body temp, OPKs, and cervical mucus; let’s party! Then its down to business.

I have gone over all my finances (several times now). I want x amount of money in the bank; x amount for the actual TTCing cost. I want to have my will, estate plan, guardianship, insurance and all of that in order. There are things I want to do to the house (like add stairs on to my deck so I don’t have to walk down to the basement while I’m pregnant to let the dog out). I feel like I can have everything ready in a year. I feel like 30 is a good age to do this. If I thought I could just throw all caution to the wind, I would start trying tomorrow. I’m just not that type of person. I do have some time, so I want to be as prepared as I can. (prepared…for parenthood? Is anyone really?) So…I’m waiting. Waiting to try. Waiting to wait to ovulate…to wait to test…to wait to try again…to wait to have the baby. I’m not the best at waiting…

So I felt like I should set a date. Somehow it felt really important to me so say “this” is when I’m going to start. Not, sometime next year, but a real date. I’m still on the pill (isn’t it strange how much of our lives we go to really great lengths NOT to get pregnant?) so I counted my weeks. I will have a period February 1st 2012. So that will be my first charting cycle. I talked to my OBGYN and she said I need a clean cycle without the birth control pills and to be on the prenatal vitamins before I start trying. So assuming it all works out… I’ll have my period on the first of February; chart the month of February; have another period somewhere around March 1st; and, assuming my cycles are even kind of normal, be ready to have my first insemination around mid March. Woah! A date! Something I can actually count down to! Even though I’m not doing any more to work toward becoming a mother than I was before…somehow it feels like I am. Each day is a day closer.

I feel better having a date. Will it all go according to plan? Probably not. A year can be a long time for something to go wrong. But, for now, I have a plan. I have a date and a time when I really begin my journey to become a mother. I hope this year goes by quickly, and uneventfully. 354 days to go!

25 thoughts on “Setting a Date”

  1. Ok.. my turn! Im 27 and have been wanting to become a SMC for 2 years now. I have endometriosis and im so afraid that if I wait to long I’ll miss my chance. I know that those with endo can still concieve but the very first dr who told me i had it said i needed toget pregnant then or have a hysterectomy, i was 19! So i think that has stuck with me and made this fear much larger than it should be.I keep hearing that I am too young and that I need to wait for mr right, but I feel like im going to make the wrong choice because i want a baby.. I go through these options day by day and I am getting so stressed out. I just wish this wasnt even an existing issue!

  2. I turned 30 in July of this year and started ‘planning’ for becoming a SMC in April. I haven’t done an IUI yet, but like you, Jessica, chart my cycles almost religiously and know when I should be ovulating. I ordered sperm and — ironically, or maybe fatefully — it arrived at my local clinic on my 30th birthday. It’s still there waiting for me, but it won’t be staying there for long! I plan to start no later than January 2013.

    It’s so nice to see others that are our age thinking about this now, and not waiting. I have many friends who are in their later 30’s and just starting on the same journey. I don’t tell people most of the time, unless they are taking the same journey, because I am so sick of hearing “you’re so young, you have plenty of time”. When I was 27 I had an ovary removed (due to a benign tumor on it), and that really kicked me into high gear when it came to not putting this off any more.

    I know you wrote this blog post last year, but if there is a SMC’s under 30 club, I’d certainly be interested. Hope your journey has been successful thus far!

    1. Thank you for your comment. And yes, SMC has other members, in addition to Jessica, who are under 30, and you are welcome to join us. I hope you will!

  3. I am glad to see there are so many other women who have experienced or are about to experience single motherhood by choice. I will be 35 in three months and have been trying to make a decision for the past 6-8 months on when I should try my first insementation.

  4. I understand completly! I will be 30 in 2 months and have decided I’m tired of waiting for Mr Right. I will be getting artificially inseminated this August with help from a known donor and I cannot be more excited! We all know being a single mother is difficult but the joy and love from a baby you’ve been wanting so much is worth it!

  5. I’m 33 and have to say I’m so shocked to see so many 29 yr olds here! I think it’s great that you all feel so strongly and are courageous enough to take such a big step at this point in your lives. I’m excited and nervous about trying starting in February 2012. I’m praying it works quickly. I wish you all warm best wishes in your journeys.

  6. Congratulations to all who have chosen this route. I wished I had done the same. This is better to do when you are younger.

  7. I’m also 29! I didn’t know I would find anyone my age doing this, but from the comments it looks like it’s not terribly unusual. Now is the time to start planning, time is just starting to run low at this age. I can’t continue to put my life on hold waiting for someone who isn’t coming.

  8. I started trying at 32. It took over 2 years and $18,000 to concieve. I did 12 IUIs, 3 fresh insems, and 1 IVF cycle (that worked!!!). I wasn’t waiting to meet someone, just to have my finances in order. Every day of my pregnancy I feel grateful to be finally experiencing my dream – and every painful, heartbreaking day of the process was a step on the journey to the baby in my belly whom I love so much and can’t wait to see and hold in my arms, but… I can’t help but wish I had started earlier. Although I don’t know how I could have.

  9. I always “knew” I wanted my first child at 27; however, I’m now three months from 30-no kids/no husband/not expecting. I’ve been considering becoming a SMC for a while and have it planned for my 32nd b’day (at the latest). Honestly, I’m ready for a baby tomorrow, but I feel good at least having a final ‘end all’ deadline.

    Like many others, I always assumed I would get married/find “the one”, but it just hasn’t happened. I realized a few years back that, financially I could pretty much make it work alone (not extravagantly, but everything a kid(s) would need–and when I look back my childhood wasn’t extravagant but, I never knew it at the time).

    For now, I’m trying to get as ready as I can: I telecommute, so I’ve been considering moving to a more affordable/child-friendly city where public schools may be an option and overall COL will be lower. And also trying to ‘tick things off my list of ‘things to do before kids’.

    I will say, those of you who have support are LUCKY! I have casually floated the idea with my family (they are old-school southern and just ignore it if they here something they don’t like-which is how they treated this)..and friends (who gave me the–you should wait…). Only, like many others, I know at 30, the clock is majorly ticking and waiting for the “right” guy could mean missing out. Like others said-if he hasn’t shown up in 14+ years of dating, why will he suddenly appear now? Good luck to all, and I’d love to find a group where we can all follow & support each other through this process!!

  10. I can’t tell you what a relief it is to know that there are other women my age who are working toward becoming a single mother by choice! I’m also 29 and have been in the planning phase for a couple of years. I’m working through what feels like a very long to-do list before I can begin trying. I’m hoping to begin in 1-2 years. In the past year, I’ve begun telling people in my life about my intention to become a single parent and have received mostly the “you have so much time” reaction, which can be really frustrating. I haven’t met anyone else my age who is considering single parenthood, so reading this was a big to help to me!

      1. Good question! Although our blog is not a place for discussion, we do have an online 24/7 members Forum, where there’s LOTS of discussion on every possible aspect of becoming and/or being a Single Mothers by Choice, and if you’d like to join SMC, we’d love to have you! You can join on our website, http://www.singlemothersbychoice.org.

        SMC

  11. Hi Jessica! I’ve been thinking about this seriously for the last year and I’m 30, which also seemed a bit young based on the SMC communities I was aware of. It would be wonderful to be in touch with others who are planning at our age.

  12. It’s great to hear so many others that are my age! (I’m the one that wrote the blog) Its funny that no one would think I was too young to have a baby if I were married! I think as a younger SMC we have some different concerns than ladies that are in their late 30s/early 40s. I wonder if Jane could put us in touch with each other. Maybe we could have our own little under 35 club. 🙂

  13. After having my children at 38 and 42, I find myself agreeing with the 30 year-olds that they are not too young and that they shouldn’t wait. 30 is the perfect age.

    What happened to me between 30 and 38 is that I dated a batch of men that was no different from the batch I dated between 20 and 30. Ten years of sampling is enough to determine that Mr. Right isn’t likely to come around in accordance with my psychological calendar or my biological clock. Ten years of investing my time and effort into dating disappointing people was enough. It was time to move on.

    Yet I didn’t, primarily because a married woman at my workplace with excellent reviews got fired after she got divorced and got pregnant despite being declared totally infertile. She was a threat to the men in management. And, I wanted to keep my job, which was one of the best jobs in the world. Putting my family life on hold for another eight years was excruciatingly difficult. Furthermore, it jeopardized my ability to conceive on a timely basis. In my SMC group about one-third of the members had to endure the heartbreak of infertility, perhaps because they waited too long.

    Already, I’ve been the oldest parent at nearly every parent gathering. Now my children are heading off to college and I’m 55 years-old. I’ll be 64 when they’re finished. If they wait until they’re 38 to have children, I’ll be 76 years-old. If they wait until they’re 30, I’ll be 68 years-old. I’ve limited my grand parenting years in order to work and to continue to have the same lousy dating experiences I had previously. If I had it to do all over again, I’d wait, but only because of work. I would not let the shortage of suitable men set my parenting or grand parenting timetable.

    None of the SMCs that I knew dated while raising children. For me, it was a busy and fulfilling time and I wasn’t lonely, nor did I miss having a husband. I’ve checked the dating websites and there are plenty of divorced men with young children who might prefer a female with childrearing experience. More recently, when I asked fellow SMCs if they planned on dating as their children left the nest, they all said they weren’t. Even a married friend said that she’s planning on getting divorced as her children leave. The desire for Mr. Right seems to permanently disappear once children arrive on the scene.

  14. Wow reading this was like reading my own thoughts and feelings! I am currently 29, turning 30 early 2012, and have been thinking about becoming a SMC for 2 years now. In that time I have slowly ticking off things I need to achieve, ie bought a house, get x amount of savings, x amount away for treatment…. etc etc. I also plan to have a massive girly party for my 30th birthday next year and hopefully start trying mid-late 2012.
    Same as what Alexandra said above, I do worry i’m planning all this early (as anyone under 30 is CONSTANTLY told we have plenty of time for mr right blah blah) but i know deep down I am ready for this. I worry about depriving my child of a dad. I have all the worries any possible single mother to be has. But my child will be very much wanted and loved.

  15. It’s good to have a date in mind, and honestly, 29 is not too young to have a date. I had once thought that I would embark on this journey such that I had children before 30. I made the mistake of letting 30 pass by (for a variety of reasons, several of which are sound). It was a brutal mistake. I went prematurely menopausal at the ripe, old age of 32, and instead of the several tries at a relatively low price, it became a $40,000.00 venture to conceive even ONCE. Now, I wouldn’t change anything, whatsoever, about my precious angels, but this DEFINITELY changed the financial picture and made things MUCH harder. I had intended to have one, and then DECIDE whether I had the ability to handle another. I got twins, instead. Now, twins are great, but I had just spent most of the money I had built up to cover the early years of their lives just in conception, so my financial planning (and, I did what you did) was thrown out of the window. You can tell this story to those that are belittling the timing of your decision. You may NOT have plenty of time. For women, it’s a gamble to keep putting it off.

  16. I struggle with the age question as well. I’m 29 and while I do have support from family and friends, I still have doubts. Do I wait? Should I wait? I would not feel I was too young if I was in a relationship, but somehow being single and 29 feels young. There is no one else to say, “let’s do this” and that makes it hard. Having the full responsibility of a child on me is really scary.

  17. I’m so glad to read another young woman’s perspective, and congratulations on having a date! I am 28 and a widow since 24. Everyone keeps telling me that I am young and should wait, but I don’t know when I’m going to feel ready to marry again and I am completely positive I am ready to be a mom at 30. I like what you said about becoming a mom being a bigger commitment than marriage, and settling down in an even more profound way. I bet a lot of married women don’t do as much soul searching and preparation for motherhood as we do! Our children are so lucky for that!
    Planning for my date….
    Lauren

  18. Hi Kristin,

    You raise great questions. This blog is not a discussion forum but on our SMC email lists we discuss these kinds of thing every day. If you’d like to become a member of SMC and take part in the discussion, please join us!

    Jane Mattes for SMC

  19. I’m so releaved to see that there are so many other strong and independent women that have the same agenda as myself. I’ve been talking about becoming a single mother as well with family and friends. Most of my family are 100% behind me and ready to help as much as they can. Others keep telling me I Need to date and wait for Mr right. I’ve tried dating, maybe not as much as I should but honestly I enjoy being single. I’ve always been mature for my age and very independent (maybe due to me being raised by a single mother) I purchased my first home on my own at 23 years old and have been living on my own for a 5 years now. Im set I’m my carreer making enough money to be a single parent. I’ve been working for the same company for 10 years and recently got a big promotion. I have had this huge desire to become a mother. Its the hardest feeling to try to explain. Not many people understand my desire. But I’ve made the decision to do it. I started planning in February. I went off the pill and started taking prenatals. I’ve also started planning to get things fixed around the house like new carpet and paint. My only dilemma now is deciding between using a known donor or going to a clinic. I have weighed the pros and cons of both but I’m still pretty confused. I’ve researched sperm banks to get an idea. Does anyone have any insight or experience with either of these options. I would love to get others opinions on this!

    1. Known Donor vs Sperm Bank – The issue I’ve found in researching the idea of using a known sperm donor is that there are no legal protections for anyone involved in the state I live in. The policies and laws are moving away from being able to sign away paternity in the name of protecting the interests of the father. My research has shown that many hospitals will urge/force you to name the father and you can be denied public assistance, if the need ever arises, if you do not name the father. This would then make the known donor responsible. If you can find a legal way around this in the state you live in, then a known donor would be really appealing! My first attempts were with a friend until he got scared of the financial and emotional entanglement. Now, I am research open sperm donors. Anonymous is often cheaper, but the researcher is pointing in favor of open sperm donors.

  20. I hear you on setting the date. I am very picking in who I want to settle down with after 2 divorces, 1 car accident that killed my 6 year daughter in my arm from a drunk driver and a hell of a lot of advisaries that seem to pop out of now where and for nothing I have been wanting to have another baby but have not met “Mr. Right or Mr. Perfect for me”. I still have many goals that I want to do so I have decided that after 2012 Crossfit Games that is when I will begin to go at this alone. At first I thought that I must be crazy or selfish but after careful consideration and review of the reasons why I want a baby I know that I can provide a loving, safe, sound and healthy environment for the baby.

    I know that meeting Mr. Right will always be a myth just because I have high standards of who I would want to be my baby’s father. So I have bought some sperm already and will purchase some more since it may take upto 14 tries or more but I have 16 months to plan and then during the conception time.

    I did grow up without a dad so I know how that may affect the child but if I have wonderful men friends that can be there the child will know that there are terrific men out there instead of not having no male influence in their life. Plus, I do have a son from a previous marriage and he is crazy about having a new addition to the family…..he ask me all the time when are you going to get married and have a baby….if it were only that simple…..I will not settle therefore I will remain single rather than waste my time on men that go no where.

    I have a good job and can support my family and I so I will not be a burden to the tax payers by being on wal-fare, cash aide or any other social system need. I will be setting up a college 529 plan for this child just as I do for my son and I will take full responsibility for my child.

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