Tag Archives: ttc

Choosing Your Sperm Donor as an SMC

Michele Ottey - Fairfax CryoThis post was sponsored by Fairfax Cryobank

When someone is ready to start their family using donor sperm, they have many choices ahead of them.  It can be a fun, exciting, and empowering process to navigate. Choosing a sperm donor is incredibly personal and there is no one right way to get started.  When selecting a sperm donor, one is choosing fifty percent of the genetic contribution to their child, therefore my first recommendation is to work with a dependable Cryobank. With Fairfax Cryobank, the trusted source for donor sperm since 1986, our recipients can be confident that they will be choosing from the best tested donors and will be receiving the highest quality donor sperm. Knowing that, they can move on to finding the donor that meets their needs. 

When asked how to choose a sperm donor, I recommend asking yourself, “what do I admire and value in the … Continue reading

When You’re Ready to be a Mother but Don’t Have a Partner

Infertility is defined as “not being able to get pregnant after one year of unprotected sex”. But what about the women who are single and ready to be an SMC? We don’t take the conventional path to become pregnant, so we must rely on fertility treatments.

Deciding that you want to pursue single motherhood is only the beginning of a long journey towards getting pregnant. Since many of these women are in their mid-30’s to early 40’s, they are finding out that getting pregnant later in life is not that easy.

It’s been 6 months since I decided to become a single mom by choice, and I haven’t even attempted to get pregnant yet. That’s not because I haven’t wanted to, but because of all of the hoops I’ve had to jump through as a single woman. We don’t have the romantic trying to conceive nights with cuddles and a … Continue reading

Giving in to Grief

I was 34 when I first heard about a woman choosing to have a baby on her own. It was over margaritas with my friends one night. One friend told us about a co-worker who was 40, single and had decided to try to have a baby on her own. I remember the moment vividly, my eyes wide and terrified that was where I was headed if I didn’t buckle down and find a man. I thought, “I can’t let that be my life.”

Four years later, as I am in the thick of trying to conceive (TTC), I’ve gone through a lot of emotional processing and grieving that comes with choosing single motherhood.

My first part of grief came when I was 35 and froze my eggs. I did it as a way to buy myself time and hopefully relax in my dating process. But I remember feeling depressed … Continue reading

Keeping Your Sanity and Your Self While Trying to Conceive

House on tree-lined streetHow do you keep your sanity during this stressful time? I am past the Trying to Conceive (TTC) stage, so I say this with some perspective.

Some of it is simply that who you are is changing. The version of you who could afford this vacation, and that fancy dinner, and whatever else – – that woman is changing. She is planning for her future differently. So if you were saving for a down payment on a house, or saving vacation time so you could go spend a month in Australia next year, or other major investments of time and/or money, who we are and how we allocate our resources changes.

You may be looking at your social life, realizing that all those dinners out are pretty expensive, and choosing to eat out less to save money. That can happen for lots of reasons, not just TTC. It happens with … Continue reading

Making the Leap

Woman with fingers crossedI just purchased my first vials for intrauterine insemination (IUI)! I was terrified to pull the trigger, but I feel surprisingly excited and relieved! After almost 4 years of “thinking” it feels so good to take control and actually move forward. I thought it might make me really sad to actually purchase the vials because it would mean it is all becoming very real that I’m doing it on my own. But it actually made me feel so happy to know it is now becoming real and I am one step closer to having a baby!

After purchasing, I called my mom and announced, “I am now the proud owner of $4000 worth of semen!” We both laughed hysterically. When I told her I joined the “Semen Club” to get special discounts and offers, she almost peed her pants!! I have found that keeping a sense of humor about this … Continue reading

Having an Army of Support

Pregnant womanWhen I began the Trying to Conceive (TTC) process,  I  joined Single Mothers by Choice (SMC).  As I lay here, 32 weeks pregnant with twins on bed rest, I didn’t consider how important a community of support would be before my babies arrived.

While I realize that many SMCs choose to be very private about their decision, I decided very early on to be very open with friends and family. I wanted and needed for people to cheer me on, to support me, and to be a part of my exciting journey. Fortunately, almost everyone “got on the bus” very quickly.

I got pregnant on my 5th cycle and was surprised to learn that I was pregnant with twins. I hoped for a smooth pregnancy but knew the risks. I don’t have family nearby. I live on the East Coast, and my family is in Michigan. At 26 weeks, my … Continue reading

Keep On Keeping On

Woman walking on path in woody areaA word to everyone out there who is on the Trying to Conceive (TTC) roller-coaster… whether you just got on the ride or you’ve been on the ride for years and you’re desperately ready to get off, and wonder if it’s EVER going to end…  Our SMC discussion Forums can often focus so much on the difficult parts of this journey, and sometimes it helps to have someone say something different, so…

Keep on keeping on. It is frequently a hard and brutal journey, and it is almost always more difficult than we anticipated. It’s often emotionally overwhelming to be SO ready to move forward at the same time that you’re grieving over the fairy tale. And the longer the ride goes on the greater the emotional toll and the more you question yourself. But be strong and just think about how the last mile of a marathon is always … Continue reading

Contentedness and Complacency

Profound Thoughts on Starting IVF #2

I have this feeling that my life is going to change. I think the start of every IVF brings this feeling. I remember it last time.

Which brings me to profound thoughts about happiness and change. For those of you who have never met me, or never knew me before I was trying to conceive (TTC), I’m generally a happy person. And even as a child, I was a “resilient” child. I have faced obstacles like other humans, but I bounce back faster. I’ve always felt lucky to be blessed with such a personality trait, especially as I have watched friends sometimes be dragged down for years after major events like breakups.

However, TTC for so long has made me face unhappiness and adversity for longer (and deeper) than ever before in my life. I hesitate to call it “unhappiness,” because it’s more like … Continue reading

Choosing My Donor

 How does one choose the other half of their child’s genetics? On what do you base that kind of decision? In a typical nuclear family, the other half of a child is chosen by love. You fall in love and want to produce a child that is half of each of you. Well…I didn’t fall in love yet. I didn’t get married yet. I just want a child. So what do I use to pick that genetic “other half”?

I can tell you it’s a stressful process. I “know”, in my mind, that no matter what sperm I choose, I will have the child I was meant to have. I “know” that whatever choice I make will be the perfect one. But I can’t convince my emotional side. I really thought I could take the emotion out of it. My rational side wins out a fair amount of the time, … Continue reading

Inspiration and Fear

I’ve learned so much from others since starting this journey.

Once you make that big decision to become a Single Mother by Choice (SMC), your thinking changes.  Even though I’m not a mom yet, and I’m convinced that everything will change again once I have my child in my arms, I know I’ve already started to think more like a mother, to identify more with the stories of other women, other mothers.

The private online SMC members’ Forum, blogs like this one, and even Facebook give you the opportunity to peek into other women’s motherhood experiences.  It’s inspiring to see women conquer infertility.  It’s inspiring to see women make single parenting of multiples look not only doable, but joyful.  (Parenting isn’t easy, but it should be joyful, IMHO.)

In addition to the inspiration there is support.  The value of a kind word from someone who has “been there, done that” … Continue reading