2015 Choice Mom Survey Results

In its first day, we had almost 300 responses to the 2015 Choice Mom survey! In total, we had 538 women respond who are Trying, Waiting or Being a single mother by choice. (No questions on this one for Thinkers.)

Here’s what we reported…

Methods to Motherhood

Ranking in order of methods tried (not necessarily leading to motherhood):

  • IUI (78.99% or 421),
  • IVF (43.71% or 233),
  • home insemination without sex (10.51%),
  • home insemination with known donor sex (9.01%),
  • domestic adoption (4.88%),
  • international adoption (3.38%),
  • foster-care adoption (3.19%),
  • gestational carrier (.94%),
  • surrogate (.38%).

Note that the website has more articles about IUI and IVF than it does other methods to motherhood, so it is not surprising that these are the women who have found the survey as they frequent ChoiceMoms.org more often.

More than One Child?

Most of those reporting had one child at the time (214); 91 had two; 64 were still trying to conceive; 50 were currently pregnant; 22 had three or more kids.

Admittedly this question was worded in a confusing way, as I was also trying to find out how many women had twins (at least six) or triplets (at least one). But… most of the women with one child reported they are good with that number (112); 41 women with one child would like to have another, 24 were currently trying for a second, two were almost ready to quit trying for a second, and 16 quit trying to have a second. Others weren’t sure if they wanted a second child. Two women with three or more kids were trying to have another.


  • “Too old to have a second child but would have loved for my daughter to have a sibling.”
  • “Would love to but feel I’m too old now (47) and should be happy with my gorgeous son.”
  • “I would love more but am 45 this year and can’t afford to go through it all again.”
  • “If i had started the process when i was younger and had planned things financially i would definitely want more!”
  • “Would love to have another but I was very sick so the doctors said no more.”
  • “I did want two, but now I would just be thrilled if I could have one.”
  • “I really wanted two kids. But after careful consideration, realized that due to limits on my resources, it’s for the best if I have only one child. I’m not quite happy about the decision, but I’m becoming more at peace with it.”

Conception Variables

Of those who have conceived (whether it led to live birth or not), I queried on multiple factors to give women a better picture of the length of time it can take to conceive the first time, and the method used for first conception.

Method to First Conception

First conception occurred for respondents primarily age 36-38 (151) and 39-41 (149), followed by: 33-35 (73), 42-44 (51), 30-32 (27), under 30 (18), over 45 (12).

IUI/ICI: 262 (13 over the age of 42)
IVF own fresh eggs: 97 (16 over age 42)
Home insemination or sex (no doctor): 59 (6 over 42)
IVF donated eggs: 28 (17 over 42)
IVF own frozen eggs: 17 (7 over 42)
Donated embryo: 7 (new process; 3 over 42)

  • Note that this is for first conception; I did not track whether those led to live delivery, or method to subsequent pregnancies.

Attempts to Conceive by Age, and Method

Please note that this refers to first time conceived — not live delivery. Miscarriage rates tend to be high for older women.

Under 30: 6 conceived the first time they tried, two on second attempt, 2 required 4-6 attempts, 2 required 7-10 attempts, 2 took more than 10 attempts. Of those, 9 conceived via sex, 4 IUI, 2 home insemination, 2 IVF with own fresh eggs, 1 IVF with donated eggs.

Age 30-32: 7 conceived the first time they tried, 6 on second attempt, 4 on third attempt, 6 needed 4-6 times to conceive, 1 needed more than 10 attempts. Of those 20 were IUI, 2 were IVF with own fresh eggs.

Age 33-35: 22 conceived the first time, 15 on second attempt, 11 on third attempt, 17 required 4-6 times, 7 required 7-10 times, 4 took more than 3 attempts. Of those, 47 were IUI, 7 were IVF with own fresh eggs, 3 were IVF with frozen eggs, 1 was donated embryo transfer.

Age 36-38: 43 conceived first time, 27 on second attempt, 21 on third attempt, 34 required 4-6 times, 24 required 7-10 times, 10 required more than 10 attempts. Of those, 103 were IUI, 27 with own fresh eggs, 3 with frozen eggs.

Age 39-41: 43 conceived first time, 27 on second attempt, 20 on third attempt, 33 required 4-6 times, 19 required 7-10 times, 12 required more than 10 attempts. Of those first conceptions, 75 were IUI, 43 were IVF with own fresh eggs, 10 with donated egg, 8 were from sex, 5 was home insemination, 4 with own frozen egg, 3 with donated embryo, 1 with gestational carrier.

Age 42-44: 12 conceived first time, 7 on second attempt, 9 on third attempt, 9 took 4-6 attempts, 9 took 7-10 attempts, 6 conceived for first time after more than 10 attempts. Of those first conceptions, 15 were IVF with own fresh eggs, 12 were IUI, 10 with donated egg, 6 with own frozen egg, 3 were from sex, 2 home insemination, 2 with donated embryo, 1 was surrogate.

Over 45: 7 conceived first time, and then 1 each for second attempt, third attempt, 4-6 attempts, 7-10 attempts, and more than 10 attempts. Seven of those conceptions were IVF with donated egg; 1 each was IUI, IVF with own fresh eggs, IVF with own frozen eggs, sex, and donated embryo.


  • “First time conceived after having fibroids removed; tried three times before I found out they were there.”
  • I did 7 IUIs and 4 mini IVFs and finally conceived with donor egg at 39 (1st donor attempt).”
  • “Conceived at 38 after 3 IUIs, miscarried about 7 weeks later; conceived again at 39 after 3 IUIs, gave birth to a healthy baby boy.”
  • “I miscarried and then had a child after my 11th IUI when I was 39.”
  • “1st child–1st IUI, 2nd child–IVF, egg donor.”
  • “9 IUIs over six years, 6 miscarriages.”
  • “I only ever had cervical insemination – thirty cycles!”
  • “I tried about 6 IUIs and then got pregnant on first try with donated eggs.”
  • “Never conceived, tried 8 cycles.”

See part 2 here


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