The author of this extensively researched book is the mother of two children conceived by insemination with a known donor. The first part of the book explores issues relevant to women who are making the decision about whether to pursue single motherhood. This includes assessing motivation, financial implications, grieving the childhood dream of raising children within a loving relationship, community reactions and the impact on a child of not having a father.
The next section covers choosing the method, including the known donor option, anonymous and open identity donors. As the book is written for US readers some of the information about legal issues and donor selection may not be relevant here, but the ethical issues remain relevant. There is a chapter on adoption which reflects US ploicies.
The section entitled day to day parenting includes coping with stress, the importance of a support system, a discussion on talking with children and others about their conception, and confronting identity issues. It is helpful that some accounts of difficult experiences are included, including a moving account from a mother of two children with special needs. There is information about policies around the world, including the removal of donor anonymity in the UK.
Of great interst to me as the mother of an 8 year old, was the chapter which includes interviews with young adults and teenagers raised by Choice Moms, as the author refers to them. It was a small sample consisting only of those who were willing to share their thoughts, but most of them were well adjusted and reported healthy and nurturing relationships with their mothers. There is an extensive list of references and resources at the end of the book, including website addresses.
The book is a useful addition to the literature available for single women considering parenthood, as well as those of us who already have children.