Money, Money, Money!!

I stumbled into trying to be a being a single mother by choice. A friend of mine was close to 40 and decided she was going to make the leap to be a mother. She enlisted me to do all the necessary research. Research is my thing so I was happy to get the ball rolling. I couldn’t believe all the information I found.

I discovered Single Mothers by Choice (SMC). We went to a meeting and filled in the blanks to many lingering questions.  We met thinkers, tryers and mothers.  What I noticed was these women came from many walks of life.  The common factor was no husband and the desire to have children before the option was taken off the table.

I continued my research and realized I desired the same thing.  I wanted to be a mother. The next question is how to go about it?

What I learned quickly is that money was the biggest factor for me.  I felt insecure that I went to college have a professional job, and cannot afford motherhood.  In my delusion I made the assumption that these women were more financial responsible then I was.  I continued my research that now was more of an obsession.  I started watching documentaries on the topic of being a Single Mother by Choice.  I concluded that all these women were not wealthy or even upper middle class. Some went into great debt to be mothers.  They took out equity loans, second mortgages, drained 401Ks, and charged up credit cards to be a mother.  The sad part is that not all of the debt ended up with babies.

I have a house, a 401K, and credit cards.  I should be able to do the same to be a mother. At another time. I could possibly pull out that money.  The state of the economy right now prevents me from using those options.  My mortgage on my home is upside down.  My 401K isn’t worth anything at the moment.  I have not had a raise in several years.  Things are getting more expensive and paychecks are not increasing.  I could borrow the money at an obscene interest rate. The question is how will I pay it back and support a child by myself?

There are many irresponsible ways I could have a baby.  I try not to let my thoughts go that way. The older I get the more my thoughts get desperate.  My fertile years are passing me by.  I am still trying to make a choice about what my next step will be. Whatever the choice it will not be easy, and I have to admit I am resentful.


7 thoughts on “Money, Money, Money!!”

  1. Yes it does stink that money can play such a big part in becoming a mom. When I think of all of the years I spent using birth control trying not to get pg – only to have spent more than $30K now still trying to become a mom–am still not–and I have the BEST insurance coverage! First it was money for the sperm, then sperm storage, then med copays. Then I moved to donor egg – $5K for the agency, $7K for the donor, $700 for the legal, $ for meds, money for egg storage and more sperm. When that didn’t work it was $10K for adoption down payment for an adoption agency and $1K to design/print a profile. I’m still waiting to see what my final costs will be once I get a match. And, because I’m adopting, not giving birth, my company isn’t paying any part of my FMLA. If I gave birth I’d get 60 percent of my pay for 9 wks. Adoption – nada. So I have saved to have enough $ for FMLA.

    Foster to adopt is probably one of the least expensive routes to go, but if not, the next cheapest way to go is to get pg with your own eggs – and that means not waiting until you’re in your upper 30s/early 40s. The more help you need to make a baby via fertility treatments, the more it will cost. Many times I wished I had started younger/was ready younger. If there’s any way to swing it now, get started. You can even order sperm from a sperm bank and have it sent right to your home and do a home insem – I got pg one time doing this; but it ended in a very early m/c.

    One of the things I did to afford this was rent out rooms in my house via It was a great service and only $20 a month. Most of the roommates were great – Ph.D. students, people in transition – maybe who got hired in the Chicago area and needed a temporary place while they were house hunting. I did a month to month lease with me having the power to ask them to leave for any reason. I charged $500 plus utilities. I usually only had one roommate, but sometimes I had two – the extra $1200 a month made a huge difference. I did that for 9 of the 11 years I lived here. Over the years, it really paid for my fertility treatments and adoption costs.

    The roommates were as busy as me and hardly home, so I didn’t feel too invaded – and sometimes in between roommates I would take a couple of months to have the house to myself. I’ve had some people say, how could you live with a roommate, I don’t know if I could do that. But you do what you have to. I wanted to be a mom, I needed the $. Actually it was overall a pleasant experience. It’s different when you’re the landlord than when you’re sharing an apartment with someone. And it’s different when you’re older – it’s not like college. People are decent and respectful – grownups sharing a house. Just an idea for those of you still trying to finance your way to motherhood.

  2. Reading these posts really validated a lot of thoughts and feelings I am having. Money and my financial well being is perhaps the biggest and only reason why I haven’t jumped in and began to try to conceive and have a child on my own. I am a single professional woman and my job is sometimes not the normal 9-5 and includes some travel. I wonder how can I really afford child care. I’m tired of planning my life around my job and I know truly that I am meant to be a mother, but scared of putting myself and most of all a child in a bad position. Several friends have shared with me that even when you do have a significant other, many still don’t know how they will make it work. Their is reassurance in that thought and also knowing that there are other women out there having the same thoughts and feelings.
    A while ago I read something in Oprah…yes somewhat cliche but very true…It said, ask yourself when you are afraid of something….”If you weren’t afraid what would you do?” The answer is often/if not all of the time….”I would do what I was afraid of!”
    Thanks again for sharing your thoughts!

  3. Well, it is never going to get cheaper to have a child, so I say if you really want one, jump in and have faith that everything will work out OK. I would not trade being a mom for any sum. My daughter is in the 6th grade at a great public school. We are not rich, I am in debt, but we are rich in love. What will you regret at the end of your life, not having money or not having a child? I wish you peace with whatever decision you make.

  4. I feel you. Just today I got another announcement from a friend who is pregnant and it pretty much sent me into a tailspin. I’ve put down bit of money at a fertility clinic, have a donor etc but one round of IVF is very expensive. All of that would come out of savings, and my job would not afford me any extras with a child.
    I hate feeling bitter, sad, etc. but emails from SMC friends help remind me that there are other options.

  5. Money is a big limit for me as well; my career isn’t going “as planned” (does anything, ever?) and I’m faced with having to find a new job, when I wasn’t exactly doing great in my old one. So what am I supposed to do? If I go with my dreams, there’s no way I can afford the child care. If I go with what I used to do, I’m going to be miserable and probably won’t be able to afford it, anyway. At any rate, I feel horrid that my future child isn’t going to have the advantages in education that were given to me by my parents, unless I find a cheap private school…. So what do I do? Go headlong into disaster and believe in myself? Believing in myself has gotten me into trouble before.

  6. You might think about adopting through foster care. My son came into my life at 11 days old as a foster child. Two years later, I was able to adopt him. It “cost” a lot emotionally, but the state paid for his daycare while he was in foster care, he gets medicaid until he is 18, I still get a small subsidy for him each month (every little bit helps), and he will have his college paid for if he goes to a public state university, and I still received the adoption tax credit. He isn’t perfect – he has ADHD, but other than that he is extremely intelligent, loving, beautiful, and a great kid. I’m sure there are lots of other children like him through the foster care system. True, that part is no fun, but it allows you to overcome the financial aspect, and become the mother you dream of being.

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