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The HRC Fertility Blog is a resource for patients and those seeking infertility related issues and articles. Check back often or subscribe to this blog as it is changed weekly by the HRC staff.

Deciding to Become a Choice Dad

ChoiceDadPhotoMen also hear their biological clocks ticking

Their numbers are small, but a growing movement of men are opting to become single biological parents by using assisted reproductive technologies. Like their single ‘choice mom’ counterparts, prospective single dads want to parent on their terms and have an equally strong desire to parent.   

Reasons why single men become choice dads

On the surface, it may seem easier and more culturally and socially acceptable for single heterosexual men to find female partners with whom they can have children, including as they age. However, this scenario has not worked for many single dads. Many have not had the time to find the right woman to marry because of busy careers. They may feel the opportunity to become an active father is slipping away from them.

Single gay men too can be stymied by both biology and the lack of a loving partner with whom to parent.

These prospective fathers will need both an egg donor and surrogate mother and then will use in vitro fertilization to fulfill their dreams. Becoming a single dad is a costly process, but one that some men are committed to undergo.

Steps intended dads should take

Single men considering this process need to find an egg donor, a surrogate mother and a fertility clinic to perform IVF. They also should hire a reproductive lawyer familiar with surrogacy. It is a complex process, so it best to work with agencies, clinics, and professionals that have extensive experience in the field.

Finding an egg donor

First, single men must find an egg donor unless they know a woman who is willing to donate her eggs. There are many reputable egg donor agencies we can recommend. Most have an online database that will help men narrow their choice to race, ethnicity, physical traits, education and other attributes they desire.

Egg donor agencies also will collect current photographs of the donor as well from her childhood. They will medically and psychologically screen the donors. Most agencies only accept women between the ages of 21 and 29 and they must meet standard height and weight criteria.

Finding a surrogate mother

Many egg donor agencies also recruit and screen surrogate mothers and manage the surrogacy process. Occasionally, they will find a woman who is willing to be both the egg donor and surrogate mother, which is called traditional surrogacy. Even though this is a less expensive option, this can be more complicated from legal and psychological perspectives. The majority of agencies prefer to recruit gestational surrogates, women who carry the child but have no genetic relationship to it.

Finding a surrogate mother, also called a gestational carrier, is more than selecting a woman with the desired criteria. It is also about developing a relationship with the woman and her extended family who will be in your life for at least nine months, if not for a lifetime.

Finding a fertility clinic and a surrogacy attorney

Fertility providers like HRC Fertility provide surrogacy services to a wide variety of patients, including single men. We can make recommendations for a surrogacy attorney as can a third party agency. The lawyer’s role is to protect all parties legally and to set expectations for a successful relationship.

Becoming a mom or dad is an exciting time in any intended parent’s life, including for single fathers who want to forge their own path to parenthood.


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