Adult Swim: What my sisters in sperm (and a global pandemic ) taught me about modern family values.

When I first moved to California, I bought a bright blue VW beetle and drove up Highway 1, taking in the freedom of the West (Ok, I admit, a bit cliche). I was escaping New York because, on the cusp of forty, I hadn’t yet married and had a baby. I wanted to find a new life and identity outside the social pressures of wifehood and motherhood. Pretty soon, I fell madly in love. Not with a man but with a community on the houseboat docks of Sausalito, California, a place famous for its collectivist values. This romance gave me the courage to conceive my son, on my own, as a single mother by choice because I lived around so many people who supported me. 

So much changed after his conception. A year before the pandemic, on a warm Sunday morning,  my son and I took on a different kind … 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

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

How I Made the Decision

I joined Single Mothers by Choice (SMC) a few months ago and I have been reading every post on the members’ Forum since then. The first and only time I posted I shared how I’ve been “thinking” for nearly two years. I was overwhelmed by the support and kind messages everyone wrote in response. But it’s been the posts by everyone else struggling with the same decision, the shared fears and excitement that have truly helped me make the right choice for me. I cannot say thank you enough for letting me, a stranger, into such an important part of your lives.

So this is how I made the decision: I had planned a weekend away with my mother and my goal was to have made a decision – one way or another – by the time we were flying home. We had fun, we enjoyed the vacation and we … Continue reading

Who You Talking To?

Every time someone calls me “Mom” I look behind me, like, “are you speaking to me?”

I mean, I diaper, feed and cuddle my girl all day long, but I still can’t wrap my head around being a mom officially. I saw a documentary called “First Comes Love” about a single woman having a kid, and I remember she had been told that the “mom part” of her would emerge slowly. I totally get that.

I’m keeping my daughter (even saying that is so weird!) off of social media for now, but she’s super, super cute. Like, I walk down the street with her and people stop me to tell me she is beautiful. I say thank you, even though I can’t take credit for her creation.

I feel like I should call her Ms. Tittsina on here for privacy’s sake.

Tonight I have a night sitter– she … 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, 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

Our Members Speak – How You Can Help

We asked our Single Mothers by Choice (SMC) membershow 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 the Continue reading

How I Made the Decision

So this is how I made the decision: I had planned a weekend away with my mother and my goal was to have made a decision – one way or another – by the time we were flying home. We had fun, we enjoyed the vacation and we talked. It was the most wonderful experience of my adult life to share everything I thought and everything I felt with my mother without hesitation and without filtering anything. I’m 35yr old (financially stable, professionally successful, home owner) and although she had initially thought I should wait until I was closer to 40, after really sharing with each other, she is the one who helped me decide to start trying. She is now 100% supportive and excited. And has an opinion about everything!

Last weekend I sat down with the rest of my family (which is no easy feat), my father, my … Continue reading

What is a “Single Mothers by Choice”?

I met my friend Rhonda through a local chapter of the national organization Single Mothers by Choice (SMC). She and I both joined around the same time. The first time we met in person I got out of my car, and I was greeted by a tiny woman in a shimmering magenta jogging suit, her eyes hidden behind big round black sunglasses. We nervously shook hands and began talking about who we were and where we came from and how far along we were in our journey as we walked a 3-mile loop that winds along the Mississippi River and back downtown.

The second time we met we sat in a crowded coffee bar, and I drank a decaf latte a week after my second insemination. I played with the lid on my drink and told her that I didn’t want to sound terribly shallow but I was afraid of … Continue reading

The Cat’s Out of the Bag

When I was pregnant and finally told people (or let my mother tell people), I got the most amazing phone calls. My mom told her sister and I swear within minutes, I got calls from both her sons, my first cousins, telling me that this would be the most amazing journey of my life and the best thing I could do.

When I started to tell my friends, they were uniformly supportive. One friend called her brother who called me and said that of all the people he knew, he knew I would thrive at this because I took such good care of them all in college. (I was the one who routinely held someone’s hair out of the toilet after s/he drank too much.)

So why did I want to have a child? What was that yearning that told me to push forward partnerless?

I wanted to re-experience the … Continue reading

“I've been a member for 14 years. From deciding to start trying through my child’s high school years. I've found SMC to be a trustworthy, valuable online community. I highly recommend tapping into this brain trust of experienced single moms who chose this path.”

– Anonymous