Take the Decision

The decision to have a child can be individual or be taken by the couple. In both cases, there are numerous aspects to consider before moving forward.

It is important not to be afraid to ask questions, some of which oneself, and to try to anticipate what it means to have a child, in the various quarters of your life.

For those who are alone the main concerns related to having a child usually include, amongst others i) the fear of not having another adult to take care of the child if something happens to her; ii) the time management for the everyday professional and domestic tasks. How will I have time for everything? Where is the child when I go to work or when I need a little time for myself?

These issues are not exclusive to lesbian women nor to single-parent families. All mothers, all parents, at one time or another, live these anxieties. Of course, if there are grandparents, uncles, friends who might be around, everything becomes simpler. If possible, involve them in this decision.

A different question concerns the anticipation of how the child will be explained the circumstances of his birth and of what a lesbian family consists of.

In most situations, this is not a problem. Children have an enormous ability to understand everything that is properly explained to them, and the difference is not for them so much as a problem as it is for most adults.

You will lose many nights of sleep, you will have more difficulty going out to have coffee with friends, to date or even to read a book or watch a movie. You’re going to be physically and psychologically tired. Your budget will have new (and expensive) rubrics but if the decision is made and the advance scenario makes you smile then it will be worth every moment.

When the question comes the couple, there are other factors to consider.

Does your partner want it too? Or do you just want to support a decision that is yours? As a couple you are you prepared for some loss of intimacy? The point is not only to have less time or to be more tired, it is to have a new element in the family, to share your intimacy, almost permanently.

If the decision to have a child is made, there are several options. Although there are options that at first glance may seem simpler, even because they depend almost exclusively on you, these may not be the best. Many lesbian women who decide to have a child equate the possibility of getting pregnant by having a relationship with a friend or a partner chosen exclusively for that purpose. This strategy has great risks. You are involving another person in a decision that is yours and whose consequences you do not intend to share. If, in fact, you become pregnant, how will you face the other person? Does not count? Does it involve you in the matter? (não percebi) Suddenly you can get stuck in a relationship you would not want. Not to mention all the discomfort inherent to the situation.

So if you want to have a child and this is an individual decision, do so without involving others besides you (and your partner if the decision is of the both of you). In this context, your options are basically two. Either you choose a single adoption (if you are alone) or a couple adoption (as long as you have had a marital relationship -marriage or partnership with your partner for more than a few years) or you choose to use a medically assisted reproduction technique using an (anonymous) sperm donor. In this last scenario, and if it is a decision as the couple, you’ll have to decide which of the two will become pregnant. This decision will weigh, on the one hand, the individual desire of each one against pregnancy and, on the other hand, the physical conditions (including the age) of each.