Pu­blished: 9. Fe­bruary 2022 | Up­dated: 14. De­cember 2023 Author: Jenia Chor­naya | Re­viewed by Jenia Chor­naya

Single mo­thers by choice

Today, ful­fil­ling a woman´s de­sire to have children does not re­quire a com­mitted part­ner­ship, planned solo mo­ther­hood is be­co­ming in­cre­asingly common.

Sin­gles with the de­sire to have children

The number of single women who want to have children is gro­wing and the idea of mo­ther­hood wi­t­hout a partner is be­co­ming in­cre­asingly con­ceivable for many women. Ac­cor­ding to a study by the Fe­deral Mi­nistry for Fa­mily Af­fairs, 34% of child­less women over the age of 30 can ima­gine mo­ther­hood wi­t­hout a man.

How can sperm do­na­tion help sin­gles who want to have children?

Sin­gles who want to have children are de­pen­dent on a sperm do­na­tion. Theo­re­ti­cally, this can either come from a pri­vate donor or from a sperm bank in Ger­many or ab­road.

In com­pa­rison to many other count­ries, an­ony­mous sperm do­na­tions are for­bidden in Ger­many and all per­sonal de­tails of the do­nors must be stored in the sperm donor re­gister. This means that children who have been born with the help of a sperm donor also have the op­por­tu­nity to ob­tain in­for­ma­tion about their bio­lo­gical fa­ther.

Single mothers by choice

The legal si­tua­tion for sin­gles who wish to have children

While so­cie­ty’s idea of a fa­mily no longer ad­heres ex­clu­si­vely to the classic mo­ther-fa­ther-child con­stel­la­tion, sperm do­na­tion for sin­gles re­mains a legal grey area. What is the re­ason for this?

The gui­de­line pu­blished by the German Me­dical As­so­cia­tion pro­hi­bits ac­cep­ting single pa­ti­ents. Even though the re­com­men­da­tion is not le­gally bin­ding, many Fer­ti­lity Cen­tres ad­here to it and re­fuse to help single women who wish to have children.

Ho­wever, German re­pro­duc­tive me­di­cine is go­verned by the 1990 Em­bryo Pro­tec­tion Act, which does not ex­pli­citly men­tion sperm do­na­tion. In ge­neral, it is al­lowed for he­te­ro­se­xual and les­bian cou­ples as well as for sin­gles who wish to have children, as long as there is so­meone who ack­now­ledges pa­ter­nity for the child.

Ho­wever, due to the in­suf­fi­cient legal re­gu­la­tion, in the event of a dis­pute, the trea­ting doctor can be named as the legal fa­ther for the child, and be ob­liged to make main­ten­ance pay­ments.
After the legal de­cision on the donor re­gister in 2017, this si­tua­tion has eased, but many doc­tors are still afraid of being re­co­g­nised as the person who caused the pregnancy and the­r­e­fore re­fuse to treat sin­gles who wish to have children.

Sin­gles with the de­sire to have children and their op­tions

Nevert­heless, there are some op­tions for sin­gles who wish to have children. In Ger­many, for ex­ample, there are some sperm banks and fer­ti­lity cli­nics that — de­spite the patchy legal si­tua­tion — also treat sin­gles or les­bian cou­ples who wish to have children. In ad­di­tion, they offer coun­sel­ling ser­vices on the costs, donor sel­ec­tion, as well as the chal­lenges that a single woman with a child wish should be pre­pared for.

In se­veral Eu­ro­pean count­ries, sperm do­na­tion for single women is also part of ever­yday re­pro­duc­tive me­di­cine. Count­ries such as Spain and Den­mark are known for their li­beral le­gis­la­tion and are po­pular de­sti­na­tions for sin­gles who wish to have children.

About Fer­tilly

At Fer­tilly, we have made it our mis­sion to ac­com­pany cou­ples (ho­mo­se­xual and he­te­ro­se­xual) and sin­gles on the way to ful­fil­ling their child wish. In doing so, it is im­portant to us to create trans­pa­rency in the area of fer­ti­lity ser­vices, to pro­vide in­for­ma­tion and know­ledge on the to­pics of pregnancy and fer­ti­lity and to help you to find the most sui­table Fer­ti­lity Center. Th­rough co­ope­ra­tion with first-class Fer­ti­lity Cen­tres and cli­nics in Eu­rope, en­qui­ries about Fer­tilly are given pre­fe­ren­tial tre­at­ment. This means that our pa­ti­ents avoid the usually long wai­ting times and get ap­point­ments more quickly.

If you would like more in­for­ma­tion about Fer­ti­lity Cen­ters, suc­cess rates and prices, please contact us using this ques­ti­on­n­aire. We will ad­vise you free of charge and wi­t­hout any ob­li­ga­tion.

  • Answer the first ques­tions in the on­line form in order to book an ap­point­ment. This way we can better ad­dress your needs du­ring the con­ver­sa­tion.

  • We will find the best contact person for your in­di­vi­dual needs. Sche­dule 20 mi­nutes for the con­sul­ta­tion.

  • We will in­tro­duce you to the right fer­ti­lity clinic from our net­work, make an ap­point­ment and ac­com­pany you until your wish for a child is ful­filled.

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