Sociodemographic characteristics and attitudes towards motherhood among single women compared with cohabiting women treated with donor semen: a Danish multicenter study

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OBJECTIVE: To examine sociodemographic characteristics, family backgrounds, reproductive histories, and attitudes towards motherhood in single vs. cohabiting women seeking treatment with donor semen.

DESIGN: Baseline data collection in a multicenter cohort study.

SETTING: All nine public fertility clinics in Denmark.

SAMPLE: In total n = 311 childless women initiating assisted reproduction using donor semen.

METHODS: Self-reported questionnaire responses from n = 184 single women seeking treatment by using donor semen were compared with responses from n = 127 cohabiting women.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Sociodemographic characteristics, family backgrounds, reproductive histories, attitudes towards motherhood.

RESULTS: Single women were 3.5 years older on average when initiating treatment compared with cohabiting women. No significant differences were found regarding sociodemographic characteristics, previous long-term relationships, previous pregnancies, or attitudes towards motherhood between single women and cohabiting women. The vast majority of single women wanted to achieve parenthood with a partner, 85.8% wished to have a partner in the future, and approximately half of them preferred for a partner to take parental responsibilities.

CONCLUSIONS: In this study single women seeking treatment with donor semen in the public health system did not differ from cohabiting women, except that they were older. To be a single mother by choice is not their preferred way of parenthood, but a solution they needed to accept.

Original languageEnglish
JournalActa Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica
Issue number5
Pages (from-to)473-481
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2015

ID: 142463676