Early Menopause · Infertility · Selfcare · Solo mum



So January is over and you may or may not of added self care to your new year resolutions or goals for 2019. Last year I set 18 in 18 (goals) inspired by the athletic apparel company Lululemon which I successfully completed the majority on my list. This year is going to potentially be a big one for me, You know motherhood and that! (Cross everything please!) So I’ve put a lot of thought into my 19 in 19 goals. At the forefront of each of my goals is self care. Obviously the hashtag self care is thrown about all year round and I often think oh bore off but I now realise how important it is at this crucial time and all the time for that matter.

During any fertilty treatment, anxiety is at an all time high and stressful situations can be heightened with all the hormones flying about. So looking after your state of mind should be up there as a priority.

I’m a firm believer in positive thinking and feel you receive what you put out into the universe. Now maybe I’m naive as this is my first attempt at fertility treatment but a little positivity can’t hurt right? It just makes me feel better and makes me feel like I’d be more able to cope with negative situations. I also know that me believing I’m pregnant and buying a ton of baby paraphernalia is not going to give me a small human however I can use positive affirmations such as “When I am a mother” and preparing myself for solo motherhood so I can welcome it with open arms rather than constantly thinking it won’t happen so as not to be disappointed.

Perfect example, at the beginning of the year I was wobbling and having a shitty day. I was stuck indoors, not wanting to leave the sofa and just generally feeling a bit angry with my situation. Now I didn’t want to get my hopes up too much so as not to jinx it but I began reading a book I got for my birthday called Three Makes Baby by Jana M. Rupnow. The book is about how to parent a donor conceived child and the obstacles n society you could face and although I’m not there yet it felt good to be looking ahead rather than dwelling on what’s already in the past. After a few pages I felt good and ready again.

So on my 19 in 19 I have promised myself to continue reading that book and also purchase some more soon. The Donor Conception Network have some great children’s books for donor concieved children called Our Story which are tailored to your situation ie solo mum and sperm donor or Mum and Dad with egg donor child, you get the idea.

Not everything needs to cost money, cause believe me this is all cost enough already! Music and dancing makes me so happy. I used to sing and dance when I was younger so I’ve always loved it, I can literally put a certain song on and be instantally up dancing and smiling to myself in my own little world. I decided to start the ULTIMATE playlist on my Apple Music. You could do the same on Spotify. It’s full of songs from all genres, old and new and I love it! I’m still adding to it now as I remember songs I’d forgotten even existed, think I’m up to 31 songs so 1 hour 56 minutes of pure joy! 127F1622-18AC-42A8-9517-DC4D7ED38DEB

Other things I have been investing is acupuncture. Its pricey but worth trying. I had a half price deal which was £30 to see if I responded well to it before committing to regular appointments with an acupuncturist who speciallises in fertility. Yes it is an added expense to the already 1000’s you’ve parted with but I have been putting some money aside each month to pay for things like this and for travel to my clinic so I see it as an investment in myself and part of the process. I’ve been feeling a lot calmer and relaxed around my transfer date and of course the dreaded 2 week wait!

Another one for the list was on last years list too so I have continued this into 2019. Each time I go to the supermarket on my way to work I pick up something for the food bank to donate. An extra 80p on a bag of pasta is really nothing. This really puts things into perspective again when I’m feeling down and I like to give something back to those that have to use these food banks to feed their families.

Another free tip for self care is to get out in nature, go for a walk with a friend or family or even out on your own. Every time I visit home I book in a walk with the family and even better when my little nephew comes too!

Since being diagnosed with POF almost 2 years ago Ive barely exercised like a used to so walking is my thing now

I’m currently sat in my favourite little cafe (where most of these posts are written?) and I’ve promised myself I will take a walk through the park before heading home just to clear my head, I’ll listen to a podcast or of course the ULTIMATE playlist! Must try not to burst into song though or pretend I’m in a music video 😀

What are your self care tips? Let me know either here or over on my instagram @earlymenopauseandme

Lots of love and positive energy to you all,

CC x

Early Menopause · Infertility · Menopause · Solo mum

Money Money Money


9,600 Great British pounds is what my treatment has cost me here in a UK clinic. It all suddenly feels very real now and a little petrifying at the same time.

The cost does not include my initial consultation, medication, pre screening or the cost of travel to visit the clinic (once for consultation and then again on transfer day)

I am opting for double donation, so egg and sperm donor. I will save my reasons for using a sperm donor for another day as that is a whole different post in itself!

I will break it all down for you now as easy and best I can, which in turn could quite possibly make me a little bit sick in my mouth when I see how much it all costs! Its quite often a hard pill to swallow as essentially the clinics are a business and people WILL pay. There are a lot of extras that get added on or are optional so this post should serve you well when having to make these decisions.

Standard double donation includes; egg donor, so medication for donor, egg retrieval and their fee (think its around £750 in the UK) Their pre-screening would of been done before all this to make sure they are 100% fit to donate.

Sperm donor, some clinics add this on after but some will add this on with the treatment cost at the end. Just make sure you account for it as kind of a vital ingredient ey!? LOL

You then have additional extras should you wish to add on. I have opted for Timelapse Embryoscope which is an extra £695. The clinic I visited in Spain had this included in their package so I had done some research on it. Without boring you to tears, its basically a fancy incubator and microscope that means that don’t have to interfere with the embryos during the 5 days before your transfer. Quite often not all embryos make it to day 5 blastocyst stage so I want to give my embabies the best chance of survival so I have enough if it does not work first time and of course for siblings. Yes I want more than one! LOL

Embryo Freezing, this means they will freeze any left over embryos as I mentioned above. Some clinics will include a years freezing then an additional cost for each year thereafter. That was an extra £350.

ICSI or Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection again not to bore you but they prettty much chop off the sperms tail so the little blighters have nowhere to swim off to and have no choice but to get inside that egg! My clinic does this as standard but I suggest you find out what all the extras that the clinic provides and what methods they practice so you then now what’s a standard or if its optional. For example at my consultation in Spain the Dr explained treatment using P.G.S Pre Genetic Screening on all embryos to pick the healthiest one. In the US this procedure will even pick the sex too but that’s not allowed in UK and Europe. It all ounces amazing and I was  like “I need that!” But once I’d asked around on some of the Facebook groups I’m on its not really necessary  unless using my own eggs, also it was an extra 3k! PGS does not strengthen the chances of a live birth but it will ensure a healthy birth as they check all chromosomes are present. Anyway, the point is that these clinics are a business and will up sell where possible so just be mindful of that and research before committing to a clinic.

My reasoning for going with a clinic in the UK is the cost is basically the same as abroad and here my future child will have access to more information on their donors once they turn 18 years of age. Abroad donors are completely anonymous HOWEVER since I started this post Ive heard that there is a clinic in Portugal that does use known donors now the law has changed.

Now my child may not care to know anymore than what I know about the donors but I will certainly be open and honest with them from the start.

Here in the UK there is an organisation called the Donor Conception Network who produce these gorgeous children’s books for different family set ups such as solo mum by choice, 2 dads, you get the jist.

I have a confession, I started this post a month ago and then christmas and a stressful time at work happened so I am only wrapping this up now. Lots has happened like donors being picked, scans etc and I am fast approaching my actual treatment! To say I am shitting it is an understatement. I am documenting as I go but may be a while until I post as I’ve come to realise as much a I want to share my journey to help others (and myself somewhat) I am not comfortable in telling all as I experience it. I have an instagram page @earlymenopauseandme where I try to post snippets of what’s going on but when I am trying to process my feelings and manage my anxiety in the moment, I am better doing that on my own rather than sharing with people right away, even with my friends and family. I just have to figure it out on my own until I.m ready to bare all, no what I mean? But I will of course continuing getting this all down in the hope that it helps others and that maybe one day my child can read too and understand where it all started and how they came to be.

I hope you all had a wonderful new year and christmas and wish you everything you hope for in 2019.



Early Menopause · Infertility · Mental health

The best medicine?


I’ve been having some proper wobbles lately. Since returning from my holiday I wanted to come off my medication. I was only on 10mg of citalipran so not a huge dose and I was feeling good. I felt like I had a plan somewhat and was ready to make a decision on the Clinic I will use for double donation however I don’t think anyone can really understand the stress and anxiety that can give a a person unless you have actually been through it. Even those closest to you will never get it. Obviously all your loved ones around you are going to be positive and tell you everything is going to work out in the end but that gamble that you are taking is huge. It’s not just the cost of treatment, its the travel, the tests that all add up. It’s overwhelming. My mum has been amazing and will visit the next clinic with me like she did in Spain. I know my mum will be honest with me and I know if she doesn’t like the place then it’s a no. It’s crazy I know but whenever my mum has said no to something while I was growing up I just knew that was my answer right there, what can I say, my mum really does know best!

Anyway, she and I really did like the clinic in Spain and I cannot fault their service and level of care not only  my consultation but before and after too. If I had any questions at all, night or day, a lady Esther was there to answer them, they also did not put any pressure on me to choose their clinic.

Now I was led to believe it would be cheaper for double donation treatment abroad however it wasn’t as cheap as I thought so I wanted to investigate clinics here as I feel logistically it makes sense but more that I would be protected by UK laws and of course here in the UK it is known donors. Therefore when the child reaches 18 years old they have the right to find out who their donors were. This is something I’ve battled with and their are pros and cons I believe however I know of donor conceived children who have reached their teens and couldn’t give a shit! Lol I think it just all boils down to wether your child is naturally curious or not. I mean that can be a whole other blog there which fingers crossed, one day we’ll come to.

Anyway, I digress. With all this going on in my little head and with work and general day to day stresses it can be hard to stay level headed. I would beat myself up when having a mini meltdown and felt like I was being weak or broken but then remembered not everything I’m feeeling is down to me as a person and my personality but that of the hormone imbalance my body is undergoing during early menopause. Its funny its like I forgot! Ive been so focussed on my infertility and how I’m going to fix the problem and regaining some control.

There is a lot of talk on mental health these days and people are beginning to open up. The thing that has striked me is wether anything in particular has triggered your depression/anxiety we all have such similar feelings and thoughts and although you feel so alone, we are all actually battling with the same.

I very brave acquaintance of mine recently spoke out on social media about what he was going through. The video was the most honest and coragious thing I’d seen. To literally talk us through his thoughts and feelings while he was actually experiencing them and documenting for all to see was so moving and is what urged me to write this post.

So much of what he said in that short video resonated with me and I know it would of with many others too.

The feeling of guilt for feeling so down when others would look on at your life and say you had it all and other people have far less yet you cannot get out of the funk you’re in. Also suicidal thoughts. I have never felt that I could go through with actually ending my life or how I would do it but I have considered what it would do to the people around me if I wasn’t here. Not so much now but certainly right back when I was diagnosed and the realisation of not being a mum and having a family. I thought my life was over.

Obviously after extensive research, support and of course money (don’t get me started) I know there are options for me to become a mum but on particularly bad days I am filled with anger and sadness that it just isn’t going to happen how I thought or wanted it to.

I have tears in my eyes typing this so I’m going to stop now! What I’m really trying to say is why do we feel so lonely yet all experiencing the same battles one way or another? It breaks my heart. There are a lot of campaigns over social media now and people are speaking out but is this a new thing? and back in the day we were just built of stronger stuff or has it always been there and we just have the platforms available now to speak out?

I do blame the internet for  lot if I’m honest, celebrity and being able to create a fake life online I think has made us put too much pressure on ourselves to have succeeded certain things by a certain time and having possessions as a measure of success etc when actually you can have the best job, beautiful family and travel the world yet still be so miserable and unfulfilled. This leads me back to my friends video and the feelings of utter guilt.

I think a lot more needs to be done in schools as the world evolves at the rapid pace it is. Social care, self care, mindfulness classes and even counselling should be in the curriculum, basically a prevention in the first place or I fear these issues will continue to rise.

I know I am having to now at almost 35, train myself to control my thoughts that trigger my anxiety. It took me a while to even realise I was experiencing anxiety as always just thought a panic attack was hyperventilating and rocking back and forth! When actually fact it comes in many forms, some silent. 0B60ADDE-5057-4095-8C16-992E88A6590F

I don’t even know what the purpose of this post was as I normally feel like I’m giving people something eg knowledge, answers but today I don’t know what the answer is. Maybe you can help me? LOL How do you distress? How do you cope when feeling anxious or depressed?  How do you control your overthinking?

One thing before I go. Go and check on that someone today, that friend you keep meaning to call/text but think oh it can wait. Don’t put it off. You just don’t know these days what people are going through. We can all put on a good front but all know a random text or act of kindness can change your day and instantly uplift you.

LOVE, the best medicine!

All the best,



Early Menopause · Infertility · Solo mum · Women’s Health

I’m an Auntie!

So a little over a month since my last post but I’ve wanted to wait until now to tell you what I’ve been up to.

Firstly though I have come to realise the focus of this blog is not so much on my diagnosis of premature ovarian failure but more on the infertility it has caused.

Im not sure what I feel about my POF, I have no symptoms anymore since taking HRT (I’m on Elleste Duet which is the first brand I’ve tried and thankfully have no complaints) I guess it must be a lot more complex if you have a history of cancer in the family or you prefer a more natural route. As I am so young it was important for me to take HRT to reduce the risk of heart problems and osteoporosis. Plus my mum (diagnosed at 42) took HRT with no issues so I wasn’t fazed to try. I think if I was B1C12C84-11FC-434C-9288-E55450A91F49passed my child bearing years I would look at natural remedies but I’ve not even bloody started! So it’s important I get my eastrogen levels right now for when I go down the donor route which I will come onto next. For now I just go easy on coffee and alcohol, I have found that if I overindulge on either I tend to overheat! LOL

Ok onto the juicy bits. Since visiting the Fertilty Network expo back in November last year I have been a member of the Donor Conception Network. A yearly subscription is only around £40 which gives access to regular newsletters and information around donor conception, not just for people like myself who can’t conceive for health reasons but for gay couples and many women who have decided to become a solo mum for whatever reason.

So the wannabe solo mums, I’ve met now with a few at the various meet ups that the DCN put you in touch with based on your location and circumstances. I have attended a group in my area and a lunch with solo mums- Thinkers and tryers, and I’m telling you now, these are my girls! Like seriously all power to the amazing women who are attempting or thinking of going it alone. Don’t get me wrong all the women I’ve met and of course myself have not had it easy, its a huge dicision choosing the donor route and you are faced with so much to think about, is it the right choice? when is it the right time? and of course the financial burden paying for treatment and it not working. I for one do feel some resentment for not qualifying for any funding on the NHS but I’m over  the angry stage and kind of just think, it is what it is and I’m not one to go down without a fight so determination has won and this is how its going to be.

It’s been great meeting other women from the DCN and has really helped to be able to talk to people who have the same worries and fears as me. Whatever our circumstances we all have the same questions and feelings we face every day in common such as; the cost of the procedures, drugs etc, what clinic to choose, what donor to choose, what do I tell people? what do I tell my child? Will I be enough support to my child as a solo parent? Am I being irresponsible?

I could really go on forever! I speak to a lot of women who just haven’t met the right partner and are in the thinking stages and I ask them “ what would you say/feel if the option of conceiving naturally was taken away completely?” And right there is your answer!

I strongly recommend joining groups such as DCN and although daunting you will meet so many other women and gather so much valuable infomation. From there I’ve been added to 2 private Facebook groups, 1 for solo mums where I then discovered the Double Donation group. It really makes you realise how common infertility and donor conception and what a taboo subject it can be. ONLY do this when you are ready to though, don’t force it but I know the more I speak to other women and research every aspect I feel anything is possible!

In the last 6 months I’ve lost count of how many people have told me how strong I am. It means so much and now I’m actually beggining to believe it! But I am not the only one you know, its amazing when you want something so bad you will do whatever it takes.

Last year I was angry and would often have awful down days when I thought why me? And why do things have to be this way but Ive come to realise my generation put so much pressure on ourselves about how we think our lives will be in relationships, careers and the milestones we should be hitting at a certain age but unfortunately that’s not always how its going to be. You’ve just got to open your mind to it. Bottom line is, I want to be a mum, I always have, I always knew I would so here’s bloody hoping!

This Monday I’m off to a clinic in Spain with my mum to have my first consultation!

I don’t really want to think about it too much as I’m anxious about how I will feel after. In my mind I want to come out of there it’s a clear plan on what I’m going to do and when. Also cringing at how much its going to cost!

For double donation, going abroad is my cheapest option but there are different laws to consider when choosing donors. They are totally anonomous to me and my child (Another bloody thing to think about when bringing up a child on your own!)

Hopefully Ill come back laden with information and will post a lot sooner.

One last thing though, I am now an Auntie for the first time! (I real one as well!)

So this post is dedicated to my new nephew Rudy Arthur ❤ Just look at those fingers! LOL


Love CC





Early Menopause · Fertility · Infertility

I made it out the other side!


Well, I’m finally back. It’s really been that long since I last posted and I’ve been through so much, like every emotion going.

I’ll be honest, after Grandad passed I was all over the show. Generally feeling so down I didn’t think I’d ever feel like me again. I forgotten what happy felt like and when I did have a flash of that feeling it then made me so sad.

For a longtime my infertility consumed me. I’d think about it every minute of every day. It wasn’t going away. I knew I couldn’t go on like that and after I completely lost it at work and could not stop crying (I hid in the toilets and behind my sunglasses so my staff didn’t see me!) I realised I probably needed some help to get on track again so went to the doctors and was prescribed anti depressants, just a very small dose. I had always worried about taking tablets and didn’t want to end up relying on them but after everything that had happened in those 3 months I was in a hole I couldn’t get out of. Let’s not forget that depression and anxiety are a side efffect of the menopause. Yes, Ive heard of doctors prescribing tablets too soon to menopausal women but I knew this was different for me, I just couldn’t cope with the grief. The loss of my fertility and Grandad all at once I’d forgotten how to be happy again.

So for the next few months after that I focused on doing things that I liked and that made me happy before. I spent time with family, going out dancing with them and having a drink and singing at the top of my voice! I began saying yes to things, nights out and even a trip to Amsterdam and Bruges. I just thought fuck it, you only live once and although I felt guilty for spending the money when I should be putting my money in the baby fund, life really is too short.

Since October last year Ive felt much better and wasn’t crying every time I had to talk about my infertility and menopause. I was feeling strong but knew I needed a plan. I had poked about the internet and stumbled across the London Woman’s Clinic and attended one of their single women seminars. It was completely free and specialists spoke about fertility MOT’s, egg freezing and IVF, not really of any use to me. I had been doing a lot of research on donor conception and the process but there’s so many terms, it was all a bit overwhelming. I just sat there screaming in my head, “ just tell me what I need and how much is it going to cost me!?” I felt pretty shitty after and the sadness and frustration came back and consumed me for a few days once again. It did however lead me to start using my twitter account more to follow the London Women’s Clinic, donor conception network and The Fetility Network which in turn led me to discover their show a couple of weekends later.

I attended the Fertility Network show at the Olympia. I hadn’t actually planned on going (I was anticipating a hangover from the night before to be fair) but I woke up feeling surprisingly ok and rather empowered so off I set across London on my own.

My plan was to get as much information on donor conception abroad. Being diagnosed with premature ovarian failure or early menopause means I get no help from NHS here in the UK as I need donor eggs. Going abroad is really my only option as its significantly cheaper.

I went round every stand getting information on double donation. I was there on my own and was ready to go into parenthood alone too, I want it that bad.

When the option is taken away from you it changes everything and makes you realise what you want.

I still get some anxiety thinking about how ill afford the process, even bringing up a child but slowly I’m beginning to not dwell on that. I have a huge support system and  its likely Ill move back to my home town when it happens as my family is there, 2 strapping brothers that will make the best uncles and my oldest friends, many of which have their own kids. So I know I’ll be ok. I’m going to have to be as this is what I have to do if I want to have children.

Theres lots I can go into about donor conception as I recieved some counselling through the fertility dept at my local NHS hospital I began to get my head around the concept but I will save that for another post. Promise I wont leave it so long next time. I’m back baby!

Anyone going through the same as me, I swear you’ll get through this. Stay focused on your goals and when you are ready, delve deeper into your options.

Look after you,do what you love and don’t do what you don’t! Does that make sense!? You’ll get there.

Lots of love,


PS The Wonder Woman picture is just to remind myself who the fuck I am and how far I’ve come! Plus my Mum got me a Wonder Woman mug for my birthday so it must be true!




Early Menopause · Infertility · Solo mum

About me

I’m a young woman, 33 and recently found out I’m going through early menopause or Premature ovarian failure. Both phrases I detest. Menopause you associate with 50+ women, premature ovarian failure, exactly what I felt like when the gynaecologist gave me her diagnosis, a failure.

I hadn’t googled my symptoms prior, I’m not silly! But once I was sent away with a few leaflets on early menopause I began seeking support from other women going through it. I found some forums online but I still felt so alone and quite often still do.

Much of what I had found was from women who already had children or were diagnosed at an even younger age so had come to terms with it sooner.

Now I’m not saying my circumstances are any worse than any of those women but I was struggling to understand what the hell I was going to do now? Why me? Will I ever feel myself again?

What I did see was that everything I was feeling was pretty standard. Complete devastation, sadness, anger any other horrible, gut wrenching feeling you can possibly experience. The 2 days after my diagnosis I only stopped crying when I was asleep!

Now I don’t have children, but I was always going to have a family, it was in my life plan. Yes I’m a planner and also since my news back on 20th March 2017 I’ve come to realise I like to be in control! Now what I am going through I have no control over and initially I was freaking out about my future, I just couldn’t picture it without children.

Since my diagnosis I have been scribbling in a notebook thoughts and feelings as I knew at some point I wanted to start a blog to help other young women going through the same as me. I also knew I couldn’t cry forever so writing became my therapy and almost a log of my emotional state. I knew I could look back at it and see how strong I am!

I don’t claim to be the best writer so please forgive me, I definitely write how I speak! (I get that from my Nan, who also went through early menopause at 38) and I’m not here to try and inspire an army of menopausal females (that would be scaryily powerful though right?!) I just hope to ease the pain and loneliness for other young women out there that may be experiencing the same and looking for support and advise.

I can of course only speak on my journey and I’m definitely not a medical professional so I will be sharing what works for me and my journey through this bullshit hand I’ve been dealt. (Yes there maybe some cursing along the way, sorry Nan)

Lots of love,

CC aka Young “Hot” Single (get it!?)