I am single by choice. Did you know weird girls in high school who never wanted to get married (and/or have children)? That was me. I had my own philosophy about what marriage does to a woman’s career choice and trajectory, self esteem, independence, you name it. My mother worried I’d never “get a man” with that attitude.
Though I knew I didn’t want to marry, I was on the fence about becoming a parent. I put it that way because I never wanted to birth a baby. I always knew that I wanted to become a parent through adoption. At the age of 40 – two failed marriages later – I recognized I did indeed want to be a mom. So I dated while preparing to begin the adoption process.
Like many of us, I went the online dating route. My criteria were pretty strict: no kids, wanted or … Continue reading
At times you get knocked down. Life is like that sometimes. You’re humming along, minding your business, and something or someone knocks you down. Even those who seem to live the most charmed lives will not escape this. It’s just the way life goes sometimes.
I can’t help the fact that when I get knocked down, I stay down for longer than I’d like. I’m built for the initial fight, but not for endurance. If something knocks the wind out of me it often takes me a long time to heal from it, longer than I am comfortable with. The one thing that I can say, though, is that I get up. Eventually, after a protracted amount of time, I do get up again. Sometimes I am scarred by the experience. Sometimes, I am left with a deep sense of sadness, resentment, or loss. Sometimes, I foolishly allow someone’s lack … Continue reading
We asked our Single Mothers by Choice (SMC) members how their friends and family can best help and support them. Below is a sampling of some the answers:
During the trying to conceive phase (TTC), be willing to listen. To the minutia, to the details, to the emotions, to the pendulum of certainty/uncertainty, to the fears, to the arrogance. When I was TTC’ing, I didn’t have a good community of SMC friends yet, and my “regular” friends didn’t really want to hear all about it. They were supportive, but weren’t that interested. Trying to conceive is a very self-centered time, and I would have loved to have a very patient, kind, attentive ear. Because we don’t have a partner who is as invested in this road as we are, it helps to have a good friend. That said, be willing to be shut out without having your feelings hurt. Sometimes … Continue reading
My son’s 2nd adoption anniversary is this month. It’s so weird that he has only been my “legal” son for 2 years. It’s almost easy to forget how uncertain things were while I was fostering him and how I lived in fear that something would happen and CPS would take him from me. Now, he’s almost 4 and he has such a personality! He’s also starting to understand “adoption” a little more.
I know there’s so much controversy about celebrating Adoption Days. I don’t really look at it as “celebrating,” I look at it more like “remembering”… talking about how we became a family and reflecting on it. As my son gets older he will have more say in how and what we do to “commemorate” our adoption.
I actually don’t call it “adoption day” or “gotcha day.” I don’t really like those phrases. I refer to it as our … Continue reading
As an SMC, I often get asked “How do you do this alone?” The truth is, while I have chosen to raise my daughter without a partner, I never intended to do it alone. Building a support system of friends, family and fellow SMCs has been a crucial part of my journey. I do believe that it takes a village to raise a child and in my case it also took a village to make a child. My path to motherhood included donor sperm, 4 IUIs, two rounds of IVF, 2 miscarriages, loss and ultimately the birth of my daughter via surrogacy using my remaining frozen embryos. I wouldn’t have had the resilience to continue on my eight year fertility journey or my first years as a mother navigating parenting during a pandemic without a really solid support system.
As I look back on my journey I remember the “Choose … Continue reading
Registration for this event is closed. You can pre-order the video of the event panels and speakers here
Panels and speakers included “Grown Children of SMCs: What was it Like?”, “Fertility 101”, “Donor Families”, “The Daddy Questions”, “Choosing a Donor”, “Dating and Relationships”, “A Day in the Life”, Paths to SMC-hood” and more!… Continue reading
All attendees will receive a full recording of the event in case you miss any sessions or wish to watch both exciting sessions of the two-content tracks.
Download a PDF of the full Agenda here
Saturday October 16
1:00 – 1:15 PM Welcome
Jane Mattes, L.C.S.W, Founder of Single Mothers by Choice & her son, Eric Mattes
1:15 – 2:15 PM Adult SMC Children:What was it like growing up?
… Continue reading
Women considering the path of single motherhood by choice often experience many fears. One fear is that they will never date again if they start a family without a partner. This fear is most commonly experienced by women who are romantically interested in men.
After all, societal narratives often steer men away from dating single mothers. What man would want to raise another man’s kid? If you listen to all the male “romance gurus” on YouTube who dish out advice (while seemingly never having had a meaningful relationship of their own), you could be forgiven for thinking that only an undesirable “simp” would date a single mom. A man so worthless — with so little self-esteem — that he would stoop to the level of considering his partner’s feelings and sacrificing a certain level of freedom, wild sex, and partying to be in a committed relationship. A man so pathetic … Continue reading
Becoming a single mother by choice goes against society’s script. When you announce that you are planning to start a family on your own, you might be disappointed by the response you receive.
Why don’t your friends and family want you to have a baby on your own? Can’t they see that having a child will be a wonderful and joyful addition to your life?
It’s a new concept to them
I still remember when I got my first tattoo as a teenager and my grandfather saw it. He was shocked, even horrified. In his generation a “good girl” would never dream of getting a tattoo. But you know what? He came around. He just needed a little time to adjust.
A similar pattern can occur when a woman tells members of previous generations that she is considering becoming a single mother by choice (SMC). SMCs are something that older … Continue reading
As you might know, in every state, in adoption, a birthmother has the right to change her mind for a set period of time known as the “revocation period”. In New York, for instance, a birthmother has 30 days after she signs the papers to decide she wants to parent. It’s fair, I think, because it’s not the kind of decision you want to find yourself regretting if you have decided to make an adoption plan for your kid.
In Florida, there is no revocation period, which means that after the birth mom signs the papers she cannot change her mind. That’s awesome for an adoptive parent, and why a lot of people try to adopt in Florida.
The one thing is that the birth-mom can’t sign the papers until 72 hours after … Continue reading