top of page

SMBC life is reader-supported making our site free for all to enjoy. When you buy through select links on our site, we may earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Learn more >

Becoming a Single Mother by Choice: A Personal Reflection from Caroline

Welcome to 'SMBC Stories: Insights from the Journey'. In this heartfelt series, we delve into the lives of remarkable women who have embraced solo motherhood by choice. Through candid interviews, we aim to inspire, educate, and uplift those considering or embarking on this transformative journey. Join us as we share stories of resilience, courage, and determination, offering support to all navigating the journey to become a single mother by choice.

Caroline, a single mother by choice, holding her son

Caroline Hall, 42

The tests were brutal—I knew my fertility wasn’t exactly spring chicken level, but hearing that it was even lower than expected for my age was a gut punch! The consultant didn’t sugarcoat it—it was gonna be a tough ride.

The decision-making process

How did you navigate the decision-making process? I am one of four and always dreamed of travelling, having epic romances, and eventually starting a family. I figured it would all fall into place once I found the right partner to share my life with. After years of adventures and epic romances, I had a revelation: if I truly wanted a family of my own, I needed to take matters into my own hands! Growing up, I saw my mom raise four of us single-handedly, proving that a traditional family isn’t the only path to happiness. Deciding that my family would consist of just me and a little one was the first step. Once I made that decision, I dove into researching all my options. Living abroad, I knew I’d have to head back to the UK to either adopt or pursue fertility treatment—solo parenting wasn’t really a thing in the countries I was in! So, I started saving up like a pro! When a break in contracts finally allowed me to move back to the UK, I had done my homework and knew exactly what I wanted. Fertility treatment was my top choice, with adoption as a backup plan. I even weighed the pros and cons of going private versus NHS. Considering my age, I opted for the private route!

becoming a single mother by choice: My FERTILITY JOURNEY

Can you share your experiences with fertility treatments or the path you took to concieve?

Back in the UK in July 2020, smack dab between the two COVID lockdowns, I had already scoped out my fertility clinic, which conveniently had branches in London and Liverpool—places I was considering settling down. Despite not having a steady job, I was in pretty good health and financially stable as I could be! While I was figuring out where to plant my roots—scouting rentals and job scenes—I jumped into fertility tests to gauge whether I needed to kickstart things right away or if I had a bit of leeway. At 40, I knew time wasn’t exactly on my side, especially with COVID looming. Little did I know how spot-on I’d be about needing backup plans with the possibility of another lockdown! The tests were brutal—I knew my fertility wasn’t exactly spring chicken level, but hearing that it was even lower than expected for my age was a gut punch! The consultant didn’t sugarcoat it—it was gonna be a tough ride. Decision time—ASAP it was! So, while settling in Liverpool and job hunting, I picked my sperm donor and shifted my file over to the Liverpool clinic. Initially, I opted for medicated IUI, but the Liverpool consultant set me straight—basically said it would be throwing money down the drain (okay, maybe with more colourful language). He broke down the odds based on my fertility, giving me another choice to mull over. IVF with donor sperm it was! Ordered from a European Sperm Bank since COVID made finding a donor in the UK a headache. Once that was sorted, I geared up for the rollercoaster ride—those injections were no joke. Everything seemed to be sailing smoothly until the day of egg collection in Manchester—turns out, there was nothing to harvest. Talk about a gut-wrenching blow. After a counselling session and a frank talk with my consultant (seriously, he was brutally honest—gun to my head, donor eggs were the way to go, his words!), I went for it. Chose an egg donor, had the magic happen, and boom—six top-notch embryos in the bank! Four FETs and four negative results—tested my patience, positivity, and faith that this would pan out. Toughest part? Knowing I was pulling out all the stops to conceive, yet nothing was sticking. Embryo number five didn’t make it, and by the time embryo six rolled around, I was all but resigned. But I soldiered on through the motions. I vividly recall sitting on the bathroom floor, tears streaming, asking the clinic receptionist what two lines on a test meant! Even then, it didn’t fully sink in that I was actually pregnant until around week 20!


How did your friends and family react to your decision, and what kind of support did you receive?

When I spilled the beans, one brother went, ‘About bloody time!’ Classic! Dad jumped in right away, asking if I needed any cash. My family’s just awesome like that. We’re scattered across different countries and cities, but they’ve always got my back. My brother even gave me some hands-on training with his little ones—nephew and niece duty, you know? Moving to Liverpool meant starting from scratch in the friends department. Luckily, I scored some gems at my job, where I’d been holding it down for a year and a half before the bun started baking. These pals were my ride-or-die crew, cheering me on through the ups and downs, almost as stoked as I was when I got the baby news! But I knew I needed more backup, so I hit up a Single Moms By Choice Facebook group. From there, I hopped into a WhatsApp chat and met some kickass ladies whose due dates were all around springtime. Those girls? Lifesavers from pregnancy woes to nappy dilemmas and beyond.

A close up picture of Caroline's son, concieved using donated embryos


Reflecting on your journey, what stands out as the most rewarding aspect of being a single mother by choice?

Watching my boy grow and turn into this curious little dude as he explores the world—it’s everything! And let me tell you, nothing beats that cheeky smile of his to light up my day!


Being a single mother by choice involves unique financial challenges. How do you navigate these challenges and overcome them effectively?

I kicked off this journey with a simple choice: house or baby. Easy call for me—I could always hustle for more house cash later! So, I dove in headfirst, stashing away every spare dime into my baby fund while still keeping tabs on travel and house savings. Weekly budgeting became my jam, although it freaked me out a bit at first. Thankfully, I’ve honed my skills over the years—just had to keep my eyes on the prize and tighten the purse strings. Reviewing my budget monthly became a ritual, helping me tweak what worked and what didn’t. Keeping a separate account for spending kept me from going overboard. I still shuffle my money around like a pro, sticking to a strict budget, but hey, I’ve still got my baby fund and travel stash intact for the essentials and a bit of wanderlust! Once I hop back into the work grind, I plan to divvy up my paycheck much the same way. That way, we can live the good life and I can give my little dude the world. Oh, and I’ve even set up a savings account for him, chipping in each month so when he hits 18, he’ll have a fat stack waiting for either some epic travels or university adventures.


Prioritizing self-care is key; how do you ensure your well-being while managing the responsibilities of single parenthood?

Man, being a Single Mom by Choice (SMBC) is no joke! I totally didn’t expect it to be this tough. It’s a constant work in progress, let me tell you! But hey, I make it a point to sneak in a hot cup of coffee or a quick shower whenever I can catch a breather. And now that my little dude’s munching on solids, we chow down on the same grub, ensuring we both get our healthy fix. Oh, and let’s not forget my monthly eyebrow sesh—gotta treat myself, right? Plus, it’s always a blast catching up with Beth, who’s been by my side through this whole journey. She gets a kick out of seeing my little munchkin too! Instead of drowning in chores, I’ve learned to kick back and relax during nap times—if I’m not catching some Z’s myself, that is. Despite the challenges, I’ve realized that being kind to yourself is key. And hey, a little reminder: social media ain’t raising your kiddo—you are! So, do what works best for you, mama. You got this!


Reflecting on your journey, what valuable lessons have you learned on the path to single motherhood by choice?

Go all in! I was dead set on leaving no stone unturned to score that positive pregnancy test. Every setback only fueled my determination, and knowing I gave it my all left me with zero regrets. If things hadn’t panned out the way they did, I wouldn’t have looked back with a single ounce of regret.


How do you navigate societal perceptions or judgments about being a single mother by choice?

I’m pretty upfront about my journey, and I’ll set the record straight with folks I know if needed. But I’ve learned not to let random comments from strangers get under my skin. This path ain’t easy, and a lot of people just don’t get why we choose it—and that’s totally fine. It was the right call for me, but hey, it’s not one-size-fits-all.


Looking to the future, what are your hopes and aspirations for both yourself and your child?

Our next big move? Snagging our own home and planting ourselves in a fabulous community—just keep on building our dream squad, you know?


If you could share a message with women considering the path of being a SMBC, what would it be?

Hey, if having a family is your thing, don’t let society’s rulebook hold you back. It bums me out when I hear women say, “I wanted this, but…” Nah, no room for “buts” when it’s your heart’s desire—go all in and figure out how to make it work! And hey, don’t go it alone—reach out to someone, like a counselor. They’re golden for helping you navigate the highs and lows of this journey. Trust me, I found bits of myself I never knew existed along the way!

Caroline Hall


We hope you enjoyed this insightful glimpse into Caroline's' journey as a single mother by choice. A big thank you to Caro for sharing. If you want to hear more empowering stories like this one, be sure to subscribe. Want to share your SMBC story? Email Stay tuned for more uplifting tales from other single mothers by choice!


Rated 0 out of 5 stars.
No ratings yet

Add a rating

Get the latest book reviews, top lists, stories and more straight to your inbox!

bottom of page