The Stork and I
S3: 6 The journey to solo fatherhood

S3: 6 The journey to solo fatherhood

June 9, 2021
In todays episode I chat to David Watkins AKA @the_dadness. David is a solo dad by choice to his son Miles who he conceived using an egg donor and a surrogate. I was really excited to chat to him to hear his perspective of embarking on the journey to solo parenthood as a single man.  
 
In this episode we cover: 
 
- The experience of seeing other people with their children and the feelings that brings about
- Exploring adoption as a single man
- Considering co-parenting with a friend and the complications surrounding that decision
- What wanting to be a dad really means
- How the surrogacy process works in the UK
- The barriers to becoming a solo dad by choice
- Choosing an egg donor
- The experience of parenting solo 
- Why it can be challenging to admit parenting is tough when you have gone through such a process to get there
- Why David created Dad. Be to support other men in similar situations
 
and much more!
 
You can connect with David on his Instagram account @the_dadness
 
S3: 5: Writing a book about solo motherhood

S3: 5: Writing a book about solo motherhood

June 2, 2021
In this episode I chat to Louisa Pateman, author of Single Again and Again and Again, this month's very first Stork and I Book Club book. 
 
Louisa is a solo mum to a 10 year old and has documented her story in this amazing book which I couldn't put down and highly recommend.  
 
In this episode we cover:  
 
- How we keep adjusting our plans from how we originally thought our life would play out
- The baby calculator 
- Why we can't use the same approach in our lives to dating as we do with every other aspect of our lives
- Our views on whether living abroad impacts our chances of meeting a partner
- Why Louisa coined the term SWC35+ and what it means!
- Why some men view solo motherhood very positively
- Our experiences of internet dating and why there is sometimes a temptation to lower our standards
- Understanding our entrenched beliefs
- Why we sometimes make poor relationship choices because we want a baby
- Is it fair bringing a child into the universe knowing it only has one parent
- Experiencing labour solo 
- Talking to our children about donor conception
- The importance of changing the narrative around being single
and much more...!
 
You can find Louisa's book Single Again and Again and Again on Amazon and I highly recommend giving it a read.
S3: 4: Managing a career whilst solo parenting 2 children

S3: 4: Managing a career whilst solo parenting 2 children

May 26, 2021
In today's episode I chat to Sarah Camlett, solo mum to 2 children. A 2 year old son and a 6 year old daughter. Sarah has a successful career in film and TV that has taken her all around the world and I was really interested to chat to her about how she manages to balance family life and career. 
 
In today's episode we cover: 
 
- Doing the maths on whether there is really time to meet someone to have a baby with
- Preferences when choosing a sperm donor
- Watching the IUI procedure happening on the screen and the amazingness of science!
- Telling people you're pregnant when they had no clue you were trying to have a baby (and enjoying their surprise!)
- How active we were able to remain during pregnancy
- Who to have as a birth partner and the benefits of having a doula
- How to make your job work whilst solo parenting
- How being a parent makes you more productive
- The decision to have a 2nd child
- The reality of solo parenting 2 children
- and much more
 
S3: 3 Solo parenting with twins

S3: 3 Solo parenting with twins

May 20, 2021

In todays episode, I chat to Harriet, a solo mum to twin boys. Harriet conceived whilst living in New York, but when she found out she was having twins decided to move back to the UK, to get the support of her family. 

In this episode we cover:

- The impact of living abroad on meeting a partner

- The considerations when deciding to transfer 2 embryos

- The benefits of living with parents

- The realities of being a solo mum to twins

- The experience of being pregnant with twins

- Juggling work with motherhood and managing the different pulls on our time

- Asking for and accepting help

- Dating as a solo mum with kids

and much more 

Harriet is a member of The Stork and I Mum Tribe Facebook Group and can be contacted there if you'd like to connect with her.  

 

 

S3:2 Solo Parenting with a Chronic Illness

S3:2 Solo Parenting with a Chronic Illness

May 5, 2021
In todays episode I chat to Julie Seal @the_chronicoptimist, solo mum to her daughter Betsy. 
 
Julie contracted Lyme disease following a mosquito bite whilst in Greece and we discuss the impact of that, on her solo motherhood journey. 
 
In this episode we cover:
 
- Dating when wanting a baby
- Wanting to transfer 2 embryos, but being told no
- Managing the two week wait
- Having your mum as your birth partner
- How covid has helped with flexibility of where to live and enabled us to move closer to family
- How our egos sometimes stand in our way
- Approaching motherhood with a chronic illness
- Choosing a sperm donor
- The importance of mindset
 
and much more!
 
You can follow Julie on Instagram @the_chronicoptimist
S3:1 Egg Freezing with Amy Hart

S3:1 Egg Freezing with Amy Hart

April 28, 2021

The first episode of series 3 is all about Egg Freezing as a way of Fertility Preservation. In this episode I chat to Amy Hart, best known for Love Island and Celebs Go Dating and as she says in our interview, who is famously single. 

Amy has shared openly her desire to start a family in the future and her decision to freeze her eggs to give her time to meet someone, or to embark on solo motherhood if that doesn't happen for her. 

In this episode we discussed: 

- Why it's frustrating when people tell you, you have plenty of time

- Why Amy decided to freeze her eggs

- Why Amy wants to use her platform to raise awareness on this topic

- Amy's experience of the egg freezing process

- The 10 year egg storage limit and the implications if you want to freeze your eggs in your 20s

- Considerations on whether to freeze embryos

- Amy's thoughts about becoming a solo mum in the future and the support from her family

- I also ask Amy what she thought about the comment made on her appearance on Loose Women that no-one in their right mind would embark on solo motherhood. 

...and much more

 

For anyone considering freezing their eggs, this is a great listen to help get a greater insight into the process. 

 

 

Series 3 Trailer

Series 3 Trailer

April 26, 2021

The trailer for series 3 of the Stork and I Podcast. 

This series is a collection of stories covering a variety of different paths to parenthood and solo motherhood stories. 

S2: Dating mindset with dating coach Hayley Quinn

S2: Dating mindset with dating coach Hayley Quinn

March 10, 2021

In the last episode of Series 2 I chat to Dating Coach Hayley Quinn. 

 
Hayley is an internationally recognised dating coach and founder of the UK’s largest dating coaching company. She has over 2 Million views on her TED talk and over 100,000 YouTube subscribers.
 
She is the spokesperson for Match, the biggest online dating platform in the world. She has been featured on BBC1, Sky and Channel 4 and is a regular columnist for Cosmopolitan.
 
Her goal is to bridge the gap with modern dating and help inspire people to learn to love dating.
 
In this episode we discuss: 
 
- Why it is wise to have a dating strategy
- Why time pressure can negatively impact our decision making
- How we can try to find the process of dating fun and enjoyable
- How we can take control of our dating lives
- The benefits of approaching dating with a completely different mindset
- Tips of how to let go of the outcome of dating
- Why going more slowly can sometimes help you reach your ultimate goal faster
- How long it might take to really get to know if someone will make a suitable partner for you
- The experience of dating as a solo mum
 
You can find more from Hayley at: 
 
Instagram @hayleyquinnx
Facebook @Hayley Quinn
YouTube @Hayley Quinn
 
S2: What the Research Says with Professor Susan Golombok

S2: What the Research Says with Professor Susan Golombok

March 3, 2021
In this episode of the podcast I speak to Professor Susan Golombok. 
 
Susan Golombok is Professor of Family Research, Director of the Centre for Family Research at the University of Cambridge. 
 
Her research examines the impact of new family forms on parenting and child development, specifically lesbian mother families, gay father families, single mothers by choice and families created by assisted reproductive technologies including in vitro fertilisation (IVF), donor insemination, egg donation and surrogacy. 
 
Her research has not only challenged commonly held assumptions about these families but also has contested widely held theories of child development by demonstrating that structural aspects of the family, such as the number, gender, sexual orientation, and genetic relatedness of parents, is less important for children’s psychological wellbeing than the quality of family relationships.
 
In this episode we discuss: 
 
- How Professor Golombok got into researching different family structures and the impact they have on child development
- Why the family structure is less important than the quality of family relationships
- The importance of being open with our children about their conception
- Why it can be useful to start sharing our childrens conception story from birth and the importance of having ongoing communication on it
- The age children really seem to start to understand donor conception 
- How the research findings can help challenge assumptions from society 
- An insight into the research carried out with single mothers by choice
- Whether having male role models is really important to a child growing up without a father in their life
- The subject of donor siblings and how donor conceived children have reported 
 
You can find her book We are Family here
You can also find information about an event she is involved with at the Cambridge Festival:

 

 

 
S2: Doula support with Lorraine from Mama2Mama

S2: Doula support with Lorraine from Mama2Mama

February 24, 2021
In this weeks episode I chat to Lorraine who is a doula otherwise known as Mama2Mama
 
Lorraine offers faces to face support in and around Leeds and Manchester and remote support across the UK. After training with Nurturing Birth, Lorraine has cared for a diverse number of clients with compassion and a tenacity to improve the birthing experience for all. She has experience supporting solo mums at all stages of their journey. 
 
In this episode we talk about: 
 
- What a doula is
- How a doula could support you across your entire solo motherhood journey
- What you should look for in a birth partner
- How being a Doula worked during Covid and what elements can be remote*
- Why it can be beneficial to have no birthing partner if that is your preference
- Why it's important to offer space to talk about your birth experience
- The concept of a post partum PJ party
- Where you can find more out about doula services available
 
You can find Lorraine at: 
 
* This podcast was recorded when there were certain restrictions in place due to Covid, these may be different now
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