IVF for Single Mothers
If you are looking to bear a child but don’t have a partner or aren’t interested in one, then IVF provides you with the opportunity to conceive a child through obtaining sperm from a donor of your choosing. IVF is a procedure that is growing more and more effective every year, with refinements to the procedure making it more cost effective and increasing the chances of success.
IVF and single mothers
IVF may be used by women who wish to have a baby on their own without a partner and cannot get pregnant by other means e.g. artificial insemination. Typically IVF is the better option if there is an established fertility problem, and is otherwise a backup if artificial insemination is used.
Under these circumstances you will need to find a sperm donor, either someone you know or an anonymous donor from a sperm bank or fertility clinic. You may find that the waiting list for donors is a long one unless you use private treatments.
The provision of IVF to pregnant mothers actually been made available for free on the NHS in many trusts, the first of these being the Camden Primary Care Trust in London.
Considerations: IVF and single mothers
Whether or not IVF should be provided, particularly on the NHS, to single mothers remains a subject of considerable controversy. Some argue that such a provision is unnecessary when many health trusts struggle to provide IVF for couples with fertility issues, and others back the point that single mothers and couples should be given equal consideration. Many feel that enabling single mothers to bear children through IVF undermines the traditional family model, and that children need a father figure, while others don’t think that that is the case.
An important point to think about if you are a single mother pursuing an IVF pregnancy is that of finances, particularly if you were to opt for private fertility treatment. A few rounds of IVF might be needed before a successful pregnancy, which can cost several thousands of pounds, and after childbirth you will have to bear the cost of raising the child on your own, whilst also having to watch and look after your child by yourself. If you are considering this option, then you should consider the financial implications and see if you have any potential support from friends, family, or day care centres nearby.
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