One to One Coaching

I offer free 30 minute telephone/Skype consultations for people wanting to find out more about coaching on the 'baby decision'. Email me at and assistant Laura will respond and arrange an appointment with you. Visit for more information about my coaching services.

Monday, 31 December 2007

Tone of the book

I've been thinking alot about the tone of the book. I've been reading through some of my favorite self-help books and all have a friendly, open tone. They aren't dry, they aren't quoting other texts, they are open and the authors reveal themselves.

This confirms something the woman from the literary agency that I've been talking to - that self-help books can't be dry and academic.

I actually find it easier to write academic work - you have a thesis and you find other writers/research that backs up your thesis. Pretty straightforward!

But actually, this kind of writing needs to be more engaging. And this is harder I think!

Sunday, 30 December 2007

Why I'm writing this book

December 2002 I’m in the basement of Waterstones, Gower Street flipping through the self-help books. I’m feeling in the grip of indecision and am turning to what has always been my default option when I need help with a decision - books. And more specifically, self-help books – which I love.

There are rows and rows of shelf space teeming with books on conception/fertility, pregnancy and parenting.

But nothing about how you make the decision to go ahead and have children. Nothing about the biggest and most life changing decision you could ever make.

I know I’m not along – friends my age and abit older also agnoised. When was the right time? Would having kids ever be a good idea? Would we regret it if we didn’t have them? The newspapers just ranted about how selfish we were – how we better hurry up and have kids before our eggs went stale.

Male partners were seldom any help – they were even more ambivalent than we were and sometimes were the cause of our problems when they would refuse to contance the idea of a child.

After a year of angsting with my partner, I did decide to have a child and had a lovely little boy Sam.

When I trained to be a life coach, the momenteousness of the decision I had to make stayed with me. I decided to specialise in coaching women who were trying to decide whether to have children or not and who wanted some help in making the biggest decision of their life.

Some people thought this was a strange area to specialise in. ‘Why would you even think about coaching women in that area – surely the decision to have a child or not is something you just do – you don’t have to have coaching about it?’ sniffed a (male) friend of mine. Yet, soon, I had women finding out about my coaching and contacting me from all over.

A client of mine in the States contacted me after googling ‘I don’t know whether I want to have children or not’. She was so relieved to find my site and to find that there was someone she could talk to.

Another client in Australia, in her early 40’s found me again through the internet – glad that her stress and anxiety was shared by others, that she wasn’t the only one in the world to have the problem in making the decision.

Women who come to me are at all parts of what I call the ‘continium of the baby decision’. Some are more on the end of the child-free side while others lean more toward wanting to have a baby. Yet all share many of the same issues – feelings of being pressured by both their biology and by family/friends, of not wanting to make the ‘wrong’ choice, of cultural/society expectations and of being consumed by the decision.
There is a great deal of hysteria about the decision women make. Usually, the papers are screaming about selfish career women who are too busy with their careers to get on with the business of having babies before it is too late.

Yet, no woman I have ever met takes this decision lightly and most of us are all too aware of our diminishing fertility as we get older. It’s a fact that fertitlity for women drops sharply after 40 and there are few women unaware of the reality of our biology. Hysterical articles are not helpful.

In this book, I want to give you a resource to work through your decision, to help you take whatever path you want to with confidence, knowing that you will be able to live your life in alignment with your values – whether you have children or not. For me, that’s the most important thing – that you are living a life fully. Whether you have children or not is almost immaterial – yes, it’s the most important decision you are going to take. But this might some contradictory, this might sound completely barmy – but actually, I don’t really think it matters so much which road you take. I’m not a believer in ‘oh, if you don’t have kids, you’ll lead a sad and lonely life.’ And neither to I believe, ‘Children will ruin your life, you’ll never have fun again’.

What I believe is this - that regardless of whether you have children or not, you can lead a happy and fulfilled life either life you choose. They’ll be different lives – parell lives but one won’t be better or mean you are living your values or will be more fulfilled.

But in order for you to get to a place where you are happy with your path, where you have confidence in the live you creating for yourself, you’ve got to work through this decision – and work out what is behind the dilemma.

That’s the aim of this book – to get you from a place where you fear making the ‘wrong’ choice to a place where you know your are creating the future you want today.