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Choosing Single Motherhood: The Thinking Woman's Guideby Mikki Morrissette
Synopses & Reviews
The comprehensive guide for single women interested in proactively becoming and being a mother—includes the essential tools needed to decide whether to take this step, information on how best to follow through, and insight about answering the childs questions and needs over time.
Choosing Single Motherhood, written by a longtime journalist and Choice Mother (a woman who chooses to conceive or adopt without a life partner), will become the indispensable tool for women looking for both support and insight. Based on extensive up-to-date research, advice from child experts and family therapists, as well as interviews with more than one hundred single women, this book explores
common questions and concerns of women facing this decision, including: Can I afford to do this? Should I wait longer to see if life turns a new corner? How do Choice Mothers handle the stress of solo parenting?
what the research says about growing up in a single-parent household how to answer a childs daddy” questions the facts about adoption, anonymous donor insemination, and finding a known donor how the children of pioneering Choice Mothers feel about their lives
Written in a lively style that never sugarcoats or sweeps problems under the rug, Choosing Single Motherhood covers the topic clearly, concisely, and with a great deal of heart.
About the Author
MIKKI MORRISSETTE is a Choice Mother of two and a longtime journalist. She has been both a writer and an editor at Time Inc. and has written and edited special projects for the New York Times. She is now married and lives with her family in Minneapolis.
Table of Contents
STAGE 1: TYPICAL INNER CONFLICTS 1 1. AM I SINGLE-MOTHER MATERIAL? 5 Can I handle it? Do I have the proper motivation? Is it fair to the child? Do I have enough resources to be a good single parent? . . . transitioning to motherhood 2. CAN I AFFORD IT? 22 Spending habits . . . childcare costs and tips . . . big-ticket expenses . . . long-term issues . . . the cost of conception 3. GRIEVING THE CHILDHOOD DREAM 43 Living with grief . . . choosing to wait . . . getting to the roots . . . when you keep walking 4. WILL MY COMMUNITY ACCEPT US? 60 You are selfish” . . . why the opposition? . . . why do we care? . . . helping the child . . . . revisiting the Murphy Brown vs. Quayle debate
STAGE 2: IS IT FAIR TO THE CHILD? 83 5. THE IMPACT OF A SINGLE-PARENT HOME 85 What the research says . . . portrait of a successful single parent . . . how Choice Moms succeed . . . moral parenting 6. GROWING UP WITHOUT A FATHER 115 The skepticism . . . two loving parents . . . balance . . .
gender identification . . . self-control . . . kids perceptions of fathers
STAGE 3: CHOOSING THE METHOD 139 7. KNOWN DONOR: PROS AND CONS 141 What can go wrong . . . what can go right: childs identity and medical history . . . questions to ask and understand . . .
reflections on being a known donor 8. USING DONOR INSEMINATION 171 Alphabet soup . . . the ethics . . . open-identity option . . .
who are the donors? . . . choosing a donor . . . the process 9. CHOOSING ADOPTION 201 Thinking about age, race, special needs, contact with birth family . . . expense . . . finding assistance . . . the home study . . . transracial adoption
STAGE 4: DAY-TO-DAY PARENTING 229 10. DEALING WITH THE STRESS 231 How to reduce stress . . . how do we handle it alone? . . .
the difference a partner makes . . . tips for the caregivers soul . . . having two 11. ANSWERING THE DADDY QUESTION 259 Answering what kids really want to know . . . basic dos and donts . . . age-appropriate expert advice . . . when kids meet donor dads 12. CONFRONTING IDENTITY ISSUES 282 Why it matters to the kids . . . typical ages and stages . . .
the donor-conceived child . . . the adopted child . . . the transracial family 13. HOW TO RAISE A WELL-BALANCED CHILD 313 Meet the experts . . . the basics . . . understanding the child . . . community . . . mutual respect . . . authoritative parenting . . . the four-point game plan . . . raising a boy
STAGE 5: THE LEGACY OF CHOICE 337 14. OF POLITICS AND POLICY 339 Who gets to try? . . . I was turned away five times” . . .
who can be a donor? . . . taking it to court . . . rights around the world . . . changes in adoption . . . where gays and lesbians need not apply . . . insurance . . . how marriage policy pertains 15. HOW ARE THE KIDS TURNING OUT? 365 Social development . . . effect of stigma . . . will Choice Kids marry? . . . the mothers perspectives . . . strengths and weaknesses . . . conversations with Kyla, Greg, Cambra, Laurabeth, Ryan, Grace, Zac
Conclusion: Connecting the Dots 394 Notes 405 Resources 420
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