‘I accidentally fell pregnant with my best friend’s baby'
IT'S fair to say we're in 2018 and the family unit isn't always your regular, run-of-the-mill nuclear family ... which is great since life would be pretty boring if every home consisted of two parents and 1.8 kids or whatever the national average is these days.
Mum and author of Little Big Love, Katy Regan has written a piece for Love What Matters about how she fell pregnant with her son, and why she wouldn't change a thing.
"I was 29 years old and had been in my dream job at a popular magazine for three months," Katy wrote about the morning she found out she was pregnant.
She had been having sex with her best friend who she nicknamed 'Egg' on and off for three years.
"I didn't fancy him and certainly never saw him as a potential boyfriend. He made it clear that the feeling was mutual," Katy wrote.
Since her period was late, Katy had already done a pregnancy test, which was negative. On this morning in particular, she had stopped to use the bathroom on her way to an appointment and decided to do the second pregnancy test since her period still hadn't arrived.
"My period was late, but I wasn't worried," she said.
She says she was "perfectly calm" as she did the test, convinced she wasn't pregnant.
"But just as I hit my foot on the bin pedal to throw the test away because the result looked pretty much the same, I did a double take," Katy said.
At 29 years old Katy had fallen pregnant to her best friend, who would always remain a friend, and nothing more.
She later met Egg for lunch to show him the test, and discovered he was "delighted about the situation".
"Egg, who comes from a long line of bohemians and is seven years older than me, was calm and even delighted about the situation, my world had been turned upside down," Katy said.
Although Katy says she was never had any doubts about having the baby, she had always imagined her life would follow the conventional pattern: "meet the love of my life, get married, have kids."
While the two weren't a romantic item, Egg and Katy supported each other through the pregnancy and into parenthood.
"As the birth drew nearer, however, I experienced something wonderful and entirely unexpected: Egg and I grew closer," Katy said.
"Our friendship deepened, and I grew excited about taking it to the ultimate level: sharing a child."
Egg was by Katy's side when she gave birth to their son, and the non-coupled couple maintained a 50/50 co-parenting arrangement.
"I always describe the way we've brought him up to be 'together-apart'," she said.
"When he was four, we moved together-apart out of London to a smaller town where the schools were better and there was countryside around. We've been on countless holidays together and always spend Christmas together, too."
"Our son never has to worry"
Katy says she feels liberated and people comment on how well they get along (sometimes better than their married counterparts).
"Our son never has to worry about us divorcing, since we were never together in the first place. And, without the 'we really should have sex' thing hanging over our heads like it seems to for so many of my married friends, I feel totally liberated to just enjoy the friendship we have," she said.
Egg and Katy's son is now 13 years old. She recalled a time when they moved in with Egg, purely for financial reasons.
"Everyone said when I moved out that my son must be devastated, but on the contrary, he couldn't wait for us to live in separate houses again," she said.
Many would wonder why, but she said her son boasted he gets "more attention" and he doesn't hear his parents bickering about parenting when they live separately.
"When my friends talk about the point-scoring that goes on in their homes ('I bathed him, so you can read him a bedtime story'), I feel so (smugly!) pleased that I don't have any of that," Katy said.
"It's not all smooth sailing, of course. No parenting is. But sometimes I feel so lucky that my son has all the benefits of the other parent's love and support without the risk that, one day, it will all go sour."
This originally appeared on Kidspot and has been republished with permission.