FAQ About FamilyByDesign

Why Was FamilyByDesign Created?

FamilyByDesign was founded as a unique resource for adults interested in finding a parenting partner.  It was designed to be the destination site for people looking for information about parenting partnerships and a community of like-minded people also seeking to become parents.

What is the structure of the FamilyByDesign website?

There are three “pillars” to FamilyByDesign – LEARN, FIND, and SHARE.

The “Learn” section of FamilyByDesign provides a step-by-step guide to the issues you should take into consideration as you go through the process of finding, connecting with, and conceiving with a parenting partner.  This information resource has been developed by the foremost professional experts in the field of co-parenting.

The “Find” section connects you with your ideal parenting partner.  Our proprietary matching algorithm and detailed personal profiles will help you find and connect with the right prospective partners for you personally.

The “Share” section connects you with our community, where you can interact with people who can help you sort out the questions and issues you’re dealing with on your road to co-parenting.  Our professional and co-parent experts will help you with specific issues in the “Ask the Experts” and “Ask the Co-Parents” sections, and you can get feedback from the broader co-parenting community in our co-parenting forums.

What makes FamilyByDesign unique? Why are you “the Community for Parenting Partnerships”?

FamilyByDesign was designed as THE destination site for prospective parenting partners, intended to cover all of the various elements of the parenting partnership process from beginning to end.  While FamilyByDesign will help you to find your ideal parenting partner, we are much more than just a “matching” website.  Whether you’re just curious to learn more about parenting partnerships such as co-parenting and known sperm donors, or you’ve fully made up your mind that this is the right path for you, FamilyByDesign will help you through all stages of the process.

FamilyByDesign is the first company to bring together international experts on co-parenting and known sperm donors to provide you with original, unique, and cutting-edge information on parenting partnerships – from the first day of your exploration of the concept, through to supporting you after you’ve had a child.

Additionally, we are the first company to create a true “community” for those interested in parenting partnerships, whereby you can communicate not only with professional experts and current co-parents to get your questions about parenting partnerships answered, but you can also share your thoughts, comments, concerns and questions with the broader co-parenting community in our unique forums.

How is FamilyByDesign uniquely qualified as the expert site in parenting partnerships?

FamilyByDesign has brought together the leading authorities on the subject of parenting partnerships to provide both guidance for the website and insight for prospective parenting partners worldwide.

The founder of FamilyByDesign, Darren Spedale, is a subject matter expert on the modern family, and FamilyByDesign has constructed a Board of Advisors whose expertise on parenting partnerships in the fields of law, medicine, psychology, and finance, are second to none.  Find out more information on our professional co-parenting experts here.

And given that the best experts on day-to-day co-parenting issues are people actually in parenting partnerships themselves, FamilyByDesign has engaged several long-term parenting partners – with unique insights into co-parenting – to share their stories on FamilyByDesign with prospective co-parents.  Learn more about our “everyday” co-parent experts here.

What was the inspiration behind FamilyByDesign?

It was Darren’s personal experience that was the inspiration for the company. Having thought that he’d be settled down with a partner, 2.2 kids and a white picket fence by his mid-30s, he found himself at 36 to be a single professional in the big city. (Or as he likes to joke, as the male version of “Liz Lemon” from the earlier seasons of the TV Show “30 Rock”.)  Hearing his biological clock ticking, Darren started to explore opportunities for parenting partnerships with the right partner.   He was set up by friends on “blind dates” with prospective partners (i.e., women who themselves were looking for a parenting partner), yet found this ad-hoc process not to lead to great results – and he knew there had to be a better way to connect the right parenting partners together.

Darren created FamilyByDesign for people like himself – the millions of people finding themselves single well into their 30s or older, and who still would like the opportunity to have and care for a child of their own but who don’t want to “go it alone”. FamilyByDesign provides the option that many of these people have been waiting for.

How does FamilyByDesign connect prospective parenting partners?

The first step towards finding your parenting partner is having the opportunity to identify people whose backgrounds, interests, and goals reflect what you’re looking for in a prospective partner.  We have developed a detailed profile framework that allows you to share important information about yourself and your parenting goals.  Our online profiles explore questions not only about what you’re looking for in a parenting partner, but also how you envision the parenting partnership to develop over time.

How does your compatibility / matching process work?

FamilyByDesign has developed a proprietary “parenting partner matching algorithm” that uses advanced techniques to compare your responses with those of other prospective parenting partners.  Click here to learn more about our matching techniques.

Are FamilyByDesign’s matching services only for single people?

Not at all – this community is designed for all people looking for a parenting partner.  This will include not only single adults, but also gay and lesbian couples, and even heterosexual couples interested in a known donor for their child.

Can someone find a romantic partner on FamilyByDesign?

Yes, if that is what both parenting partners wish.  The purpose of FamilyByDesign is to allow people who are at the point in their lives where they are ready to have a child to find one another and to begin their conversation around parenting. However, many members of FamilyByDesign are interested in the possibility that their parenting partner could also potentially become a romantic partner; others are not.  Our detailed member profiles allow you the opportunity to indicate whether or not you’d be interested in a parenting partner potentially becoming a romantic partner as well.

What if I’m interested in adopting? Can FamilyByDesign help me find a co-parent to adopt a child with?

Yes.  While the majority of members signing up for FamilyByDesign are primarily interested in becoming biological parents with a parenting partner, some members have an interest in adoption with a parenting partner.  The member profile signup page on FamilyByDesign allows you to indicate if you’d be interested in co-parenting an adopted child.

What if I have a child? Can I find a co-parent for my existing children?

It’s possible.  While the majority of members signing up for FamilyByDesign are primarily interested in becoming biological parents with a parenting partner, some members may have an interest in co-parenting with a parenting partner who already has children.  Member profiles on FamilyByDesign allow you to indicate if you’d be interested in this type of co-parenting relationship.

How can I be sure people I contact online are who they say they are?

Like any social networking or dating website, FamilyByDesign encourages you to spend time getting to know your prospective parenting partners before meeting in person or revealing any highly personal information.  In order to promote an open and trusted social network, FamilyByDesign provides the opportunity for you to verify your profile – and you should also request that your prospective parenting partners verify their profiles with us as well.

We would strongly encourage prospective parenting partners to follow best practices as they get to know their potential partner.  For example, your first meeting with a prospective parenting partner should take place in a public location, and you should inform a good friend about your meeting if possible.  For other best parenting partner “dating” practices and safety tips, read our co-parent dating safety tips.

What happens once I’ve found my parenting partner on FamilyByDesign?

Finding the right parenting partner is just the start of the process! We strongly encourage you to spend a great deal of time preparing for your parenting journey before you actually embark on the conception process. Once you’ve found the right partner, we encourage you to take advantage of the informational resources on our site in regards to the legal, financial, medical and psychological issues you should prepare for in advance of having a child. You should NOT actually start the process of conception (or adoption) until you’ve taken a long time to really discuss and work through all the issues with your prospective parenting partner. Most successful parenting partnerships have been preceded by a very long “get to know you” period with the right partner.

I’m new to the concept of parenting partnerships / co-parenting / known donors. How can I better understand the basics?

Start here with our page on co-parenting basics, then spend some time in our “Learn” section getting to understand the issues in more detail.

What if I need additional help or have other questions about FamilyByDesign?

We’re always here to help!  Please send us a message via our “Contact Us” page.  We strive to respond to every inquiry within 24 hours.