Facebook Post About Choosing Single Motherhood?

 

I recently saw a post on Facebook by BabyCenter.com about making the choice to become a single mother. Actually, the article posted was a bit ridiculous — it was all about celebrities becoming Single Mothers and asking “would you consider it?”, which I think is a completely different question than “regular people” becoming single mothers due to financial means, full time assistance, etc.  But, the 245 comments that followed about single motherhood were very interesting, so I thought I’d give my thoughts on some of them).


sandra bullock

“I’m a single mom, I didn’t chose it. I don’t think anyone in their right mind would actually chose it over a 2 parent family. Unless they are totally insane and live off of copious amounts of stress and frustration…”

Um, OK then!  So, did I choose this?  Yes, absolutely.  Would I have preferred to have a 2 parent family?  Absolutely. But, would I regret waiting until the “man of my dreams” came along, only to find out that it was too late for me to have a child?  Absolutely.  Might I be insane?  Absolutely! 🙂

“I don’t think I would choose to be a single parent. It’s difficult enough with me and my husband… Plus I truly believe children need a mother AND a father. I can’t imagine not having a dad.”

I agree completely that children need male and female role models. (see my post The Importance of a Father Influence). Whether it’s a boy or a girl, both influences are important.  For me, I DO plan on getting married, and hope it won’t be too long before that happens!  But in the meantime, I will need to find a plan to ensure that my child has enough male influence in his/her life.

“If the choice was to have a child as a single mother or not at all, then OF COURSE I WOULD! Couldn’t even imagine not being a mommy!! It’s such a blessing and unbelievable experience that nothing can replace!!”

Well said!!

“Being in a relationship where your significant other is not around much physically is not the same as choosing to be a single mom. My ex and I have a good relationship and our son is great, but looking back, I’m sorry for all the times he asked why daddy wasn’t home. I don’t mean to offend anyone who made the choice have a child as a single mom, but I believe it’s selfish to knowingly do that to a child.”

“You’re making a choice for the child. every child needs both parents for their development and self esteem. I grew up with mom and no dad, I wished my dad would have been there more!”

Divorce is VERY tough on children, and even tougher when one of the parents is not reliable.  I think this creates trust issues in relationships. So in an SMC family, while it’s not ideal to not have a father figure around on a regular basis, I do believe it is less harmful to children because they KNOW there is no father, rather than being disappointed when he may be unreliable or not around a lot.

Selfish?  I’ll go back to that in a second. But, technically divorce was ALSO a choice!  But, selfish, really?  I’m going to be doing so much for my baby, physically, emotionally, financially, etc., that I don’t even understand know it can be perceived as selfish.  The woman below said it well actually.

“I conceived my son with a donor after a year of trying because being mama was so important to me. So it’s selfish of me that I chose to devote my entire life to being the sole provider for my son? Is it selfish of me that I happily gave up some of the activities and lifestyle I had before pregnancy to be a loving mom to my son? Is it selfish of me that whatever I need or want either comes last or not at all because my son’s needs and wants come first? Is it selfish when I am up at 4 a.m. feeding and playing with him when I know I have to get up soon to start our day? I think a woman who chooses to build a family without a partner is FAR from being selfish.”

Again, well said!

“Statistics prove that without a father in the life of a child, children are more likely to not graduate, get pregnant, have low self-esteem, and even have higher suicide rates. What good mother would choose that for their child?”

Again, this is another arguement I hear a lot. But those numbers are for divorced parents!  There aren’t enough SMCs to affect that data yet, and no SMC-only studies have been done to my knowledge.  I don’t see how a woman who makes such a major life choice to become an SMC is going to allow those things to happen to her child (yes, we can’t control everything, but I just don’t see it happening more than in the general population!).

“Becky, those stats do not account or disseminate for those children raised by CHOICE by a single mother who was situationally able to do so and those raised by a single mother who was abandoned by the father-often times unable to provide for the needs of her child. I think there is a huge difference. I almost made the choice myself: 35 years old, unmarried, career in place, head on straight, supportive family, and stable home. Women are told that our “choice” to have children later in life is irresponsible (due to possible health issues for mother and child). But, if we don’t have a proper partner in our life at the time, does that mean we should remain motherless? Relationships can come at any time, the window to have a child is so much smaller.”

Agree!

“Even though I am married, I feel like [a single mom]. Work full time, do all the house work and all of the cooking. Nothing would change – except I could have cereal dinner every night and no one would complain that there wasn’t a hot meal.”

I’ve heard a lot of people say this to me.  Not that I think it’s incredibly common that the husband does NOTHING to help (including financially), it IS a possibility.

 

So what are your thoughts on the above? I know I’ve expressed some opinions that not everyone will agree with!

 

Acronyms, Acronyms and more Acronyms!

 

I feel like every day, I learn a new acronym in this process, so I thought I’d start an ongoing list. Let me know if you have any to add!

Acronyms

AF = Aunt Flow – that’s your period!

AFC = Antral Follicle Count. It’s the number of follicles you have in your ovaries.  A low AFC indicates a poor ovarian reserve.

AI = Artificial Insemination

B2B = Back-to-Back IUIs (one the day of the LH surge, one the day after)

BFN = Big Fat Negative (negative pregnancy test)

BFP = Big Fat Positive (positive pregnancy test)

CD = Cycle day

CM = Cervical mucus

DE = Donor Egg

DI = Donor Insemination

DPO = Days past ovulation

DS = Donor Sperm

EDD = Estimated Delivery (Due) Date

EWCM = Egg white cervical mucus

EWS = Egg white substance – helps tell you when you’re ovulating

HSG = Hysterosalpingogram. It’s an X-ray test that looks at the inside of the uterus and fallopian tubes and the area around them. It checks to ensure your tubes are open

ICI = Intracervical insemination

ICSI = Intracytoplasmic sperm injection. Per About.com, ICSI may be used as part of an IVF treatment. In normal IVF, many sperm are placed together with an egg, in hopes that one of the sperm will enter and fertilize the egg. With ICSI, the embryologist takes a single sperm and injects it directly into an egg.

IF = Infertile

IUI = Intrauterine insemination, places sperm directly into a woman’s uterus to aid in conception

IVF =  In vitro fertilization — adding sperm to the female eggs in the laboratory to produce embryos

KD = Known donor

LP = Luteal Phase (part of your cycle between ovulation and period)

OPK = Ovulation predictor kid

OTD = Official test day (the day you take your pregnancy test)

POAS = Pee on a stick

SMC = Single Mother by Choice

TTC = Trying to Conceive

 

Should I Be Using My Frozen Eggs and Embryos?

 

I had a phone consultation today with my Doctor to talk about my frozen eggs and embryos (I froze them back in 2009).  I have been thinking a lot about them Questionlately, because it suddenly dawned on me that it’s strange that I originally went through the process to do what I could to preserve my fertility, but instead, I’m just becoming a Single Mom (Single Mom by Choice “SMC”) to be sure I’ll be able to have a baby. Maybe I should wait a few years and see if I meet someone, and use my stored goods then? And, the other side of my thought process, is… should I be going through all the ups and downs each month like I am now, versus just using what I have in storage that has a much better likelihood of success versus the 7% each month of an IUI.

Here are a few things the Doctor told me:

  • I have 3 frozen embryos: 1 is excellent quality, and 2 are so-so quality
    • Excellent one – 30% chance of pregnancy with that one
    • So-so ones – 20% chance of pregnancy with each one
  • I have 8 frozen eggs, and my chance of pregnancy with the whole lot of eggs is 20-50%
  • Overall, the Doctor said that using all my frozen eggs and embryos, I have 60-70% chance of pregnancy. (apparently, I need a degree in statistics to understand why just adding the above isn’t correct. But, they confirmed that it’s not cumulative like I’m adding the numbers up)
  • The cause of fertility going down as you age is due to the quality of the eggs, and not your body. So, there’s little downside of waiting a few years to use what I have in storage. Even the chance of miscarriage doesn’t increase, because miscarriage is mostly due to egg quality. The only slight issue is that it would be a higher risk pregnancy, and a slighly higher risk of a premature baby
  • Chance of pregnancy
    • IUI at my age is 7%
    • IVF at my age is 25%
    • So overall, 6 IUIs + 1 IVF for women at my age is 75% chance of pregnancy
  • My AMH level (ovarian reserve) is over 2. This is good. (I don’t even remember having this test done)
  • The results of my embryo freezing were not great. Most of the reasons for that COULD be reasons that would cause me to have trouble getting pregnant now
  • Implanting the embryos will cost $3K
  • His recommendation is to use the 2 so-so embryos on my next cycle (because then I’d have a good sense of what I have leftover in storage)
  • The cost to thaw the eggs is pretty expensive — it’s $8,200 (plus possibly an additional $1K for medication that may or may not be covered by insurance)!  And, because it’s expensive, they typically do all the eggs at once, and then you pay $1,500 to freeze any leftover embryos. The reason they typically do all the eggs at once is so you’re not continuing to pay the $8,200 each time, but also because if you only do a few, and none successfully fertilize, you’d have nothing. The other downside for me of doing that is that the reason I initially did the eggs was to keep them “sperm-free” so I could use my future husband’s sperm.  If I fertilized them all, that option would be gone.

OK, so the 2 big decisions to make are:

1) Using the frozen goods now instead of IUI’s

This is one of the questions running around in my head. Why am I spending $1200/cycle on IUIs when the chance is so low?  Instead, I could use the frozen eggs or embryos and save myself some money and stress.

Reasons to use the frozen now

  • Potentially save money versus 6 IUIs
  • Save a lot of stress of the ups and downs of going through the IUIs each month
  • I’m not even sure I’ll want to have a 2nd child (doing it as an SMC scares me; and it’s possible I won’t meet someone while I’m still young enough to want to be a new Mom again). If I don’t, there’s no point in saving the frozen stuff.

Reasons not to use the frozen now

  • This decreases what I have in storage for what could be used for a 2nd child (with a man or still as an SMC)
  • I originally did the freezing to maintain my fertility, and to use this as a last ditch effort.   Using them now doesn’t seem like it fits with that.

Overall, I’m feeling like I should save what I have in storage for if I really need it someday. If I don’t end up using it, then that’s too bad.  But, it gave me options, and peace of mind to know that I could use them if I needed them. An insurance policy for the future that may not end up being used.  If I did end up wanting a 2nd child, not having this to use as an option would really suck.

2) Waiting a few years and not becoming an SMC now

It just hit me the other day, that the reason I froze all of this was to maintain my fertility, but instead, now, I’m just going ahead and having a child now due to my age and declining fertility.  So, it got me thinking…. maybe I should just wait a few years and keep trying to meet someone, and if that doesn’t happen, then become an SMC at that time (most likely with the frozen stuff due to my age).

Reasons to wait to become an SMC (and use my frozen then)

  • Becoming an SMC is going to be tough and will change the course of the rest of my life. If I can meet someone and not do it alone, it would be great.  This is a biggie.

Reasons to become an SMC now

  • I’ll be 3 years older at that time…. that just starts feeling old to become a new mom
  • Will I look back at 43/44 and feel “I should have just done it back then”?
  • The older I get, the harder it’s going to be to find a man who still wants children
  • Having a 70% chance of being able to get pregnant with what I have in storage seems low to me. That means 30% chance that I wouldn’t get pregnant at all from everything in storage, which is scary, because that’s all I’d have at that point (fresh probably won’t work).
  • Even if I do get pregnant, there is still the possibility of a miscarriage, and then I’d have nothing left.

This is a toughie.  Overall, I think just the risk that I wouldn’t be able to get pregnant if I waited, or if I had a miscarriage, then I’d be left with nothing, is enough to convince me that I need to move forward with what I’m doing.

Both of these decisions are weighing heavily on me. Obviously, the 2nd one is more time sensitive to decide on versus the first (my next IUI will be in 1 week from now).

UPDATE: Read Still Going Crazy to see what I decided.

What do you think?  What am I missing on either side of both questions?  Are my conclusions sound?

 

Single Mothers by Choice Group (SMC) – Join It!

 

If I haven’t preached about Single Mothers by Choice (SMC) yet, allow me to do so.  This group was invaluable in helping me make my decision to become a Single Mom, and I know it will be invaluable for what it offers after I become one.

There are 3 areas of SMC that I have used:

1) Local Group

The local group meets on a monthly basis in my area. Each time we meet, I learn something new about daycare, getting pregnant, managing as an SMC, etc.  It’s also a great way to just meet other women who are going through what I’m going through, which makes it all feel so much more normal :-).  I know that once I have the baby, we’ll all start leaning on each other a bit more for hand-me-downs, babysitting help and general advice.

Yesterday we had a potluck for Mother’s Day, and it was great just to be able to chat with women and get to know them a bit more.  There’s no way I would be where I am today without the support of this group.

There’s also a group of “Thinkers & Triers” who meet monthly at someone’s home. That’s a more intimate group, and we’re more focused on getting to motherhood, rather than being a mother. These are going to be the women I’ll probably support the most, and get the most support from later on.

SMC logo

2) National Forums

When you become a member of the national SMC group, you get access to the online Forums. This is also an incredible resource. It’s VERY active — I feel like every time I post a question (my latest was about choosing a sperm donor), I get about 10 answers within a day.  It’s VERY helpful, and comforting to know that I can reach out and get help so quickly.

3) Book

The founder of SMC wrote a book by the same name Single Mothers by Choice. I read this book while I was in India, and it was great to raise some of the issues I hadn’t thought of, and put me at ease about others.  I highly recommend it.

It costs $55 to join SMC, and is well worth it.

Helping the Decision Making, from the SMC Newsletter

 

In this month’s Single Mothers by Choice newsletter, there was a great section about how some women made the decision to become a Single Mother.  Although I have already made my decision, I found it comforting and helpful to read others’ thoughts.  I thought I’d share:

Realizing that being absolutely, positively, 100% certain I could do this wasn’t a requirement, but having faith that I wanted it enough that I would make it work and figure it out along the way.

If it helps, I just started. I didn’t look at it as “this is going to result in a baby!” so much as “let me take it step by step and we’ll see what happens.”… Take little steps. Pause if you need to. But I think just getting started can help clear away some of the fog and help you know whether you’re moving in the right direction, or not. It’s easy to get frozen in place.

Turning 40 and deciding I don’t want it to be all about me anymore. I want a family that’s me, my dog and a child.

For me, the fear of taking the leap was outweighed by the fear of never being a mother, dying alone, never having grown children, and grandchildren. Of not having any of it.

For me, it was when I realized the only thing holding me back was the fear that my family and friends wouldn’t be supportive or would think conceiving with a sperm donor was just too strange. So my taking the leap was telling my best friend. She was very supportive. So I told my sister. Also supportive. Then I told my other sister. And my mom, and on and on… Of course they’re all supportive!

What do you think?  Anything to add?

It’s Official! I’ve Decided to Become a Single Mom

it's official

I officially made the decision to become a Single Mom!!  Wow, I’m so excited.  If you haven’t read my journey on how I came to this decision, take a read of How I Started Thinking About Becoming a Single MomHelping Me Decide… 2 Months of Craziness and My Thoughts from My Trip to India.  But, it really comes down to not wanting to risk not being able to have a biological child.  It’s too important to me. And, if it means changing how I saw my life being (getting married and then having children) and if it means struggling a bit more financially, that’s OK, because I’m going for what I want, and what’s so important to me.

So, here’s to starting on this journey — Yea!!!

 

My Thoughts from My Trip to India

I just got back from an incredible month-long trip to India and Nepal.  I got invited to a client’s wedding in India, and decided to go, and make a big vacation out of it.  I knew that somehow, this trip would have a profound impact on my life, and particularly my decision to become a single mother or not.

The trip helped make my decision to become a single mother in 3 ways: 1) having downtime, 2) realizing that loving my child is more important than finances, and 3) listening to the story of a woman I met.

Downtime

When I’m at home, I have very little down time.  Even when I am not working or out with friends/family, I’m either watching TV or doing something on the computer.  Going to the gym or a walk are really my only times to really decompress, and even then, it’s only an hour at a time.  I went to India by myself (although I met a group for 2 weeks) so had a lot of downtime. Touring around by myself, or sitting on a bus going from one city to the next, or just being in a temple looking around — there were so many times that I was just thinking, with nothing else to do. Those down times let me just clear my head from the stresses of daily, and to just think!  It’s really hard to get that much down time during a regular life.

Money

Seing the poverty in India also had a profound impact on me.  And, it wasn’t even just the poverty, but just that the majority of people there live a much simpler life then we do here in the US.  And, family is the most important thing to them.  It doesn’t matter if you’re living in the lap of luxury. All that matters is that you’re surrounded by people you love, and love your children the best you can.

One of my biggest concerns about becoming a Single Mom by Choice, was whether I was going to be able to handle it financially. And, I realized on this trip, that with my education, work experience, and drive, I can get a good paying job, but that I don’t need to be living the same life that I grew up with. If I live in a town that isn’t so close to Boston, or live in a smaller condo, or can’t afford to pay for my child’s college education…. we’ll get by.  And, that loving my child is more important than any monetary thing I can provide them with.  Sure, money would be nice, but it became a non-issue for me in this decision anymore.

A Woman’s Story

One night during my trip, my group went to a cooking class in Orchha, at a local woman’s indian foodhome. She told us her story about how she started teaching these classes, their struggle financially, and eventually told us about her struggle to have children.  She and her husband had tried and tried to conceive with no luck. Having children is very important in Indian culture, and her in-laws even started questioning whether they had made a good choice for their son in a wife (arranged marriage).  She decided she would do everything she could to have children, including figuring out how to make enough money to pay for her own IVF procedure. For someone poor, that was a MAJOR financial burden on her, but having children was important enough for her, that she committed herself to it, and made it happen by starting the cooking classes.  She was inspiring!

Through that experience, I realized that yes, this was too, so important to me. I don’t want to risk not being able to have a child, so I’m going to go through whatever it takes to make that happen.  At the end of the night, I asked her to keep me in her heart, and pray for my fertility (she’s fairly religious).

Helping Me Decide… 2 Months of Craziness

 

After a very busy December, I decided that after coming back from my annual trip to Chicago for New Year’s, that I was going to jump feet first into trying to decide if I wanted to become a single mom (SMC, Single Mother by Choice).  When I dedicate myself to something, I really go for it, and I wanted to give this decision my all.  So… here’s what I did for the next 2 months:

Attended SMC meetings

I found out about the Single Mother’s by Choice (SMC) group from a friend who is now an SMC. I attended my first monthly meeting in January, and was blown away, by how many other women were there, and how they were all somehow managing positively with being Single Mom’s. I could see myself in a lot of them, so it really helped to be there. At the beginning of the meetings, women go around and say if they are a “Thinker”, “Trier”, “Planner” or Mom.  I remember, I couldn’t even call myself a “Thinker” at that time… I just said a “Pre-Thinker”.

I also attended 2 separate meetings just for “Thinkers and Triers”, which were also amazing, but different from the larger meeting.  Getting to talk to women who recently made the decision or were going through the decision process now was invaluable.

Met with my Doctor

I had 2 initial meetings with my Doctor… 1 mid-January, and 1 mid-February. At the meeting in January, I didn’t have any testing done, except for the testing that had been done 2 years before when I was freezing my eggs and embryos. Because I only ended up with 3 frozen embryos, and because I’m now 40, the Doctor told me that I’d need to try to get pregnant in the next 3-6 months!!  And, that even includes that I have the eggs and embryos as backup. Wow, that was shocking!  I was just at the beginning of the decision process, and wasn’t thinking I’d be ready to start right away after making the decision.fire under my butt

He recommended that we do some more testing to see where I stand now. He tested my AMH, sent me for an HSG test, and to a therapist who specializes in fertility.  When I reviewed all of this with him in mid-Feb, he was much more optimistic, so I didn’t need to rush as much. But by that point, I already had a fire under my butt to make this decision 🙂

Spoke to other SMCs

I also spent time talking to a number of SMCs I met through the group, and through friends. I focused on my 3 areas of concern: money, doing it alone and dating.

Worked on my Budget

I put a budget together for handling the expenses after the baby is born. I came to the conclusion that I would need to leave consulting and go back to a regular full-time job, to help with health care, maternity leave, and generally be more stable.

Read a few books

I read a few books on the topic to help see if it would help raise any issues or help the decision at all:

Spent time on the SMC forums

I spent a lot of time on the SMC online forums to see what other women were talking about, and to help address some of my concerns.

Went to India

I happened to be going on a trip to India, which turned out to really help my decision making process.

All of these steps I went through were really helpful in making the final decision, and I am glad I spent the time to think through it all.

 

 

Telling My Parents I’m Considering Being A Single Mom, Part 2

This is a continuation from Part 1 – Telling My Parents I’m Considering Being A Single Mom

I’m assuming this was a big topic of discussion at my parents’ dinner with D’s parents, but I don’t know.  From what I hear, D’s parents were not in favor of her decision to become a Single Mom, but after she had the baby, that changed.  It became real, and they embraced it.  Hopefully some of that rubbed off on my parents 🙂

Dinner with My Parents…

I thought my Dad or my Mom would end up bringing up the topic at dinner, but they didn’t. I wasn’t quite sure if I had the courage to, but all of a sudden just found myself saying “Do you want to talk about me maybe becoming a Single Mom?” I don’t know where I got the strength to do that, but I did. I just didn’t want it to be the big elephant in the room, and knew it was important to discuss.

The conversation went very similar to how it did with my Mom, except that he seemed less excited about the actual baby. His thoughts were… it’s going to be tough financially, we can’t help you financially, but we’ll support you in any other way we can.  OK, well, at least it wasn’t “This is a terrible idea, and I can’t believe you’re even thinking about it”, which is what I was expecting.  At least I have their support which is more than I expected at this point.

Telling My Sister…

I was at my Sister’s house for dinner that week also, and just basically whispered to her “I’m thinking about becoming a Single Mom.”  She was like “What?? OMG, can we talk about this another time?”  Funny, it definitely was my first experience with this, where I know I’ve been thinking so much about this, so it’s common place for me to be talking about it, but it’s not that way for other people. Oops, probably not the best delivery on my part.

Anyway, so I called her the next day to talk more about it. She is a stay-at-home Mom of 3 (ages 10, 8, 6), who has no financial considerations, and can hire a babysitter any time she wants.  Her reaction was basically… This is crazy — I’m stressed out enough with a husband who supports the household financially and who helps with the kids, I can’t imagine doing it alone.  OK, well, pretty much what I expected.  I think probably when you have a Husband to help, you can’t imagine life without that Husband. But if a Husband was never in the picture, you don’t feel the lack as much.

So, at least I have the support of my Parents, which is really good.

Telling My Parents I’m Considering Being A Single Mom

 

On Sunday, I got together with “D”, who just became a Single Mom 1 month ago!  She also happens to be from the same town I’m from (she’s a few years younger than I am), and our parents are still good friends.  We haven’t been in touch really except through Facebook, but have been connecting more recently about this decision.  I went to visit her new baby “J” on Sunday – she’s adorable!! 🙂

Given how quickly I am moving on trying to make a decision about all of this (see my later post about my 2 Months of Craziness), I was thinking that I should let my parents know I’m thinking of going down this route, so it doesn’t come as so much of a shock if I end up doing it!  This is a crazy thought to me, given I really just started seriously thinking about this a month ago!  D thought that was a good idea. She also told me, though, that my Dad has expressed his disapproval about D’s decision to D’s parents multiple times (not a major surprise to me), so I knew it wasn’t going to be easy.  Coincidentally, this week, this is what’s on the schedule:

Sunday – Plans with D
Tuesday – I’m having lunch with my Mom
Tuesday night – My parent’s are having dinner with D’s parents
Wednesday night – I’m having dinner with my parents

It looked pretty good… I’ll tell my Mom, she’ll tell my Dad (just because they’re married :-)), they’ll talk to D’s parents about it, and then I’ll talk to my parents about it.  Sounded like a good plan!  Amazing how it happened that way.

Telling My Mom…

So I just put it out there… “I’ve been starting to think about becoming a Single Mom”.  She said she wasn’t surprised.  Really?  I guess they figured since I had frozen my eggs and embryos a few years ago, that this wasn’t too far behind.  I told her that my 3 big concerns are 1) money, 2) doing it alone, 3) dating.  She seemed to understand.  She obviously warned me that the big issue is the finances, and wanted to make sure that I’ve thought that through.  I told her it concerns me too, but I also think that I’ll just be able to make it work, if this is something that’s important to me.

In the past, there have been a few decisions I’ve made that my parents haven’t approved of, and they couldn’t quite get to a place where they’d support me anyway. So, that was a concern for me in this case… that they wouldn’t approve, and wouldn’t end up helping at all with the baby. My parents are very involved in my sister’s kids’ lives. My Mom takes care of them once a week, they sleep over at my parent’s house once a month, in addition to other random times they take care of them.  I’d love to have that same support as a Single Mom, but if they don’t approve of my decision, that may not happen.  She said she’d help me in the same way she helps my sister.  HUGE relief.

She confirmed that they wouldn’t be able to help me financially, which I expected, and didn’t ask for.  My parents live a comfortable life, but are certainly not rolling in money.  She was actually really excited to have a baby around!  And, reiterated that she would support me in any way she could.

That went well!

This post is getting long, so I’m going to continue it in Part 2!