Thinking About Becoming An SMC?

At this time of year, SMC usually sees a pop in new members joining the SMC organization, perhaps due to New Year’s resolutions, or maybe just because it’s the start of a new year. And the biggest question for maybe-SMCs (who we call “Thinkers”) is often, “How can I do this? Or, “Can I do this?”

There’s no question that being an SMC is challenging, as well as incredibly wonderful. So I’ve compiled some good tips written by our members on our lively 24/7 online Forum to help answer those questions. For more good advice, join SMC and discuss your “thinking” questions with our members (either online or in person) who are in the same place and/or have been there.  To join, go to: singlemothersbychoice.org/membership 

When my budget would allow it, I hired a babysitter for 2 hours every Wednesday from 4-6 pm.  It really made a difference for me, Continue reading

An SMC via IVF

I waited for a long time to find Mr. Right and start a family but that never happened. Finally, I was at an age where I needed to make a choice.  I investigated adoption and hit many barriers.  So, I decided to see a fertility specialist.  I decided against insemination because of my advanced maternal age (I was 45 at the time), but decided to go the IVF route.  I initially wanted to use my own eggs, and according to my test results, I could have tried.  However, after much research of my own, the percentages I was finding for successful term pregnancies using my own eggs vs. a donor egg were about 5% vs. 50%.

I thought and prayed about it and finally decided that if I was willing to adopt a child, a genetic connection wasn’t all that important to me.  However, knowing that the fetus was well … Continue reading

Unsure, Unsettled, Undecided

From our online SMC discussion Forum: “The pendulum of my SMC decision-making has most recently swung toward NO WAY!! How could anyone ever do this? How could I ever do this? NO, NO, NO!!! I had been more positive about choosing to be an SMC, but I haven’t been able to shake this place I am now in. I could use some feedback about the different stages you have gone through as well as some of your thoughts and feelings about how one can do something seemingly so emotionally, physically, and financially difficult as having and raising a child alone. At the moment, only the model of two parents together works for me, no matter how I turn it around. I would like to get back to a more open place about it.”

Unsure

Dear Unsure:

First of all, you don’t have to do this and that’s okay. Second of Continue reading

If I Could Turn Back Time…

Forty sucks for me right now. I was looking forward to it; now I feel like a fool for having been excited. I am sad that I have not done all I wanted to at this point. I am trying not to focus on the negative, but right now I am not feeling very positive.

I joined Single Mothers by Choice (SMC) and now I am reading posts on the private online discussion Forum. I purposely signed up for this because I wanted to learn from women who are in similar situations to mine and who have been through the journey I am undertaking.

They have several awesome sub-forums you can participate in, including “Thinking/Planning”, “Community”, “Trying to Conceive”, “Pregnancy”,  and groups for women with children in different age groups. I guess I should have waited to read the Trying to Conceive forum, though, because I am hearing about women Continue reading

Thinking About Becoming An SMC? Join us!

At this time of year, SMC usually sees a pop in new members joining the SMC organization. And the biggest question for maybe-SMCs (who we call “Thinkers”) is often, “How can I do this? Or, “Can I do this?”

There’s no question that being an SMC is challenging, as well as incredibly wonderful. So I’ve compiled some good tips written by our members on our lively 24/7 online Forum to help answer those questions. For more good advice, join SMC and discuss your “thinking” questions with our members (either online or in person) who are in the same place and/or have been there.  To join, go to: singlemothersbychoice.org/membership 

When my budget would allow it, I hired a babysitter for 2 hours every Wednesday from 4-6 pm.  It really made a difference for me, emotionally.

For me, having a somewhat satisfying job is important to my being able to be the … Continue reading

Getting Up

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

Refusing To Wallow In My Single Status

As any good English teacher and writer would, when I got to the stage of acting on my decision to have a child, I turned to books, lots of books. One that was touted as a classic for women in my situation, likely because it was one of the first to be written, was Single Mothers by Choice: A Guidebook for Single Women Who Are Considering or Have Chosen Motherhood by Jane Mattes.

I loved the Single Mothers By Choice organization and had already joined. I found the Forum and the information and support there to be super. But the book was published in 1994. A lot has changed since then. The definition of family has expanded a great deal, and non-traditional (divorced, blended, single parent, and gay couple) families actually outnumber traditional families. (A super cool statistic for a liberal chick looking to join these ranks!) It was still … Continue reading

Our Members Speak – How You Can Help

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

Pre-Conception Plans and Decisions

How Single Women Do It.

Adoption or conception. Both are great options, and each appealed to me, for different reasons. Since I can’t have a baby without a little help myself, adoption seemed like a wonderful opportunity to in turn help a woman who needed a loving family for her child. Unfortunately, not all adoption agencies consider a family of one adequate, and even those that do were unaffordable to this single chick without taking out a serious loan, something I’d rather not do if I have another option. Luckily, I’ve always wanted to experience pregnancy. I’ve already got big feet and ankles, so I might as well have something miraculous accompany them, right?

Where?

It never even occurred to me that single women had options for this question. I just assumed if Mr. Right wasn’t doing the job that Dr. Somebody ought to be. Actually, though, there are other Continue reading

On Becoming an SMC

There came a time in my late-20s where I felt like my life was at a crossroad. I was stuck in a job I wasn’t crazy about with a non-existent social life and no change on the horizon.  Something had to give, I just wasn’t sure what.

My first attempt at change landed me in the world of internet dating.  Prior to this, I’d had a few almost-relationships, but nothing that every really got off the ground.  I had several friends who had great luck on the internet, so I thought surely my Prince Charming was also only a few mouse clicks away.  Boy, was I wrong!  I was only attracting creeps, weirdos or men who didn’t want kids, didn’t want any more kids, or didn’t want kids anytime soon.  I realized I wasn’t dating, I was interviewing potential fathers.

Forget dating – lets fix the job situation.  I had … Continue reading

“I felt at home in SMC and being around others who had the same dream was a great help. SMC support gave me confidence and encouragement throughout the process and the benefit of meeting other women who were on the same journey.”

– Anonymous