A Single Mother by Choice: from Career Goals to Baby Dreams
Helle Rasmussen didn’t spend her 20s dreaming of a nuclear family like most of her friends. Much less, of having a baby on her own. But when her sister became a mother, Helle started reflecting on her own life choices.
Helle Rasmussen was focused on her career as a lawyer. She loved her life and enjoyed the challenges that came with the job. But when her sister became a mother, Helle started reflecting on her own life and her future.
“I was dedicating my time to solving other people’s problems. I started wondering if this was what I wanted my life to be about or if a family of my own would make me happier.”
From then on, her priorities changed. She knew she wanted to become a mother one day.
Her boyfriend didn’t want more children
A few years later, Helle was in a relationship with a guy who she hoped would become the father of her future child. He already had two kids from previous relationships. Despite this, Helle hoped that her dream of having a family was still possible. She was heartbroken when it became clear that her boyfriend didn’t want another child. Helle had to figure out what was most important to her – becoming a mother or keeping her boyfriend. It was a difficult decision to make.
“I felt torn between two feelings. On the one hand, I had the rational feeling that he was not the one for me. After all, he couldn’t fulfil my biggest wish. On the other hand, I felt an irrational question weighing on my mind. Would we be together forever if having a baby weren’t an issue?”
In the end, Helle couldn’t give up her dream of having a baby of her own. After three years together, the couple split.
Searching for the father of her future children
While searching for the right father for her future child, Helle started dating again.
“I was desperately dating guys hoping to find my true soulmate to start a family with. The dream of a husband and a child dominated all my thoughts, and I wasn’t ready to give it up. It became a time-consuming project and I felt like I was racing against time.”
She didn’t find the man of her dreams that time around. Looking back, Helle believes she was in the wrong state of mind to get involved with someone – even if the right man turned up. She was too consumed by her dream to really get to know another person.
Making the decision to become a single mother by choice
While searching intensely for a future baby daddy, Helle noticed women around her were choosing to have babies on their own. She had never thought about starting a family without a man, but the idea seemed strangely appealing. Still, she wasn’t sure if she was ready to give up the dream of a nuclear family.
“I was so focused on finding the man and then having the child. The possibility of turning the order on its head hadn’t crossed my mind. Having a child without a man and then hoping for a man to enter our life later became a rational solution.”
Next, Helle got an appointment at her gynaecologist to talk about her options. She was relieved to find that the gynaecologist advised her to get started right away. That message gave her the final push she needed.
“I was in a place in my life where I felt like I had a lot to offer. I had the house, the car and the job. The only thing missing was the man and the child. After talking to the gynaecologist, I felt certain. I was ready for this journey.”
Finding a sperm donor that looked like herself was vital
Helle started her search for a sperm donor at European Sperm Bank. She chose this sperm bank because her gynaecologist and a lot of women online recommended it.
“The most important thing for me was that the donor looked like myself. Actually, I only looked at donors with pictures of them as a baby. Donor profiles without images never interested me. I also considered the vibe I got from donors seeing as I was looking for someone I found appealing. It had to be someone with a personality I would consider dating as an adult in real life. The process was almost like online dating. If the picture and profile didn’t speak to me, I was on to the next. These factors, along with the donor’s medical history and his nationality, were really important to me.”
6 inseminations and 4 IVF treatments later
The following year, Helle went through 6 inseminations and 4 IVF treatments. Each time, her doctor advised her to choose a new sperm donor to ensure that it wasn’t a bad biological match between her and the donor that kept her from getting pregnant.
“It was a hard time emotionally and financially. Every time an insemination proved unsuccessful, I thought to myself: “is this really what I want to do?” And every time the answer was yes. So I kept going.”
Her luck finally turned on the tenth attempt and this time, Helle was expecting twins. During week nine, Helle lost one of the twins. But the remaining twin kept growing bigger and stronger.
Being single and pregnant wasn’t an issue for Helle. She was prepared and she had thought it through. She was so on board with going through the process alone that she didn’t feel the need to involve anybody else. In October 2017, she gave birth to a beautiful baby girl.
Today, Helle and her daughter are thriving. Helle is so happy that she chose project baby before finding the man of her dreams.
“This is how it was meant to be for us. I’m so obsessed with her and for the moment I can’t imagine our life in any other way.”
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