In 2019, I wrote two different articles. One was about online dating, which I openly shared, and another, when I was considering having a baby through solo IVF. The latter, I didn't post - it was too raw and at the time - and so was I.
Having reflected on both articles, I felt it was now only fair to provide an update to the cliff hanger which I left wide open. (You may have only read my raw personal article today, so you may have just opened part two. And that's okay.)
So, fast forward two years, and here I am typing this - not only whilst my 6 month old little boy is sleeping - but also on the verge of launching my very own dating app.
It may be helpful for you to understand why I have chosen to develop a dating app - I mean there are just so many out there! You may also be thinking that, with a new son, I possibly have better things to do with my time. But no - this is a huge passion project for me, and I hope in this article I will be able to explain why. I also hope that the people who this article might resonate with sign up and join us on the REDDI journey.
So, let me take you back to December 2019. I was thinking of having a baby on my own. Dating had become boring, and I was sick of meeting people who were never on the same page as me. The older I got, the hard it seemed, and I was having to hide my true desires when it comes to dating - almost like I should feel ashamed for wanting a family. It felt like I was expecting too much. I didn't date for the reminder of the year - but kept dipping my toes; chatting to the odd person and exchanging niceties. But the conversation was always the same: 'I don't want anything serious'.
It took me another 7-8 months to finally make my decision (and after all, some general blood tests I'd had done came back saying that biologically I wasn't in a rush - then there was COVID). I've always been know as the person who, when she gets an idea, doesn't hang around to get it done. This was no different. I went on holiday with my mum in the July, and had stumbled across a blood test that I hadn't yet taken. AMH - a test which would check my ovarian reserve. Sadly, that told a different story. Mother nature was unhappy and was telling me, it was now or maybe, never. So, I took the bull by the horns and by September I had completed my first embryo banking cycle. Two months later, I went back for a fresh transfer cycle and the result. Well, I am delighted to report that he is upstairs!
What did I learn from this experience? Well, firstly is that there is a HUGE underground movement of women who are taking the journey of solo IVF. Secondly, what about men? Well, the options are even less. I have come to realise that family doesn't carry the same importance in society as it once did - often, the practicalities of a family are more romanticised.
Many people called me brave during my journey, and I never understood why. I definitely didn't feel it. However, it is only with hindsight that I have begun to realise that what they really meant to say was that 'other people aren't as brave' - and many people will miss out and having children of their own. I do understand why people choose not to take my path, it is hard, often unrelenting.
Which moves me onto REDDI. I have been toying with this idea for some time - but I guess that imposter syndrome was weighing heavy on my shoulders. However, now - I look at my son - and I think of all of those people who potentially missed out on getting to stare into their own baby's eyes - so I buckle down. When I hear yet another story from my friends of a failed relationship, and the sadness that comes from starting again (and again) this revs up my engine all the more.
I understand more than most about how precious time is, and how much simpler life would be if the people we date had also made the decision too: that they were also ready for the next phase of their life. Because whilst we almost never admit it - that's what most people want.
With that in mind, REDDI aims to introduce like-minded people to each other - both of whom are ready for that next stage in their life. No more getting into relationships you can't get out of because you love them (even though you know they are not on the same page as you), no more getting into relationships with people who want kids (but not anytime soon), and no more having to hide what you want.
The time surely, has to be now.
If you would like to sign up to be one of our Founding Members please visit www.iamreddi.com.