Post # 1
I just wanted to talk to you about a few things and get some feedback about other bees’ situations like mine. So here goes (sorry if it is long/confusing-that’s how I feel!):
My husband and I just got married a month ago. I have been having a blast and feel so lucky that I am his wife. But already the anxiety about some day having kids is kicking in. This is ridiculous because he doesn’t want to have kids until he is 30 and I never wanted kids independent of wanting to give him what he wants and having a family with him. (The old “I don’t want kids ever” sort of deal when we weren’t together and before I would do anything for him.)
Some days I feel soooo ready to start having a baby and making a family. However, this is totally impractical/impossible. I have a career that does not allow me to have children for the next 3 years without ending it and totally screwing up my career/financial track. So that is out.
But where the most anxiety is coming from is the fact that this is something he wants SO BAD, and therefore I want to give it to him, both for myself and for him. But I’m terrified if we wait too long we won’t be able to have kids for fertility reasons, or that I will end up gettting so entrenched in my career and loving it and our freedom so much that I will resent having to give it up for our baby. (I want to be a Stay-At-Home Mom because that is important to me in childrearing.) I feel all this pressure to produce (no pun intended) or that I will let him down in his life’s dream of being a father. Also, I am scared that I won’t be a good mom. I sometimes feel that I am mainly a selfish person (with the exception of doing things for my DH) and that I am so goal oriented/career driven that I will be a terrible mom. 🙁
With those fears in mind, I want to compromise and start trying at around 27 or 28. That way we have better chances and I won’t be so high in my career’s promotion ladder that walking away might be easier. But I don’t want to pressure him.
Did anyone feel like this? The fact that your DH/SO wants a family but you want it more because it will make them happy than something you considered wanting for yourself/purely selfishly?
Is this confusion/anxiety normal for people (especially women) that have to wait to start TTC?
Post # 3
It is tough. To have children, we have to give up SO MUCH. That is how I feel. My career is just getting started. To take time off is just difficult- and it is not just “time off”- it is time off for something very stressful= once the baby comes. Men just have it easier in some ways, IMO. And, it is not really fair.
It sounds like you agreed to wait. So wait. Try not to stress yourself too much now. (Easier said than done, right!) I think what is most important is that you are being honest. There is nothing wrong with examining your feelings, that is a good thing. Be honest with yourself and your SO (which it sounds like you are doing).
It is a huge stressful decision. I felt this way a few years ago but I talked to Darling Husband and he let me know his own feelings (he is okay either way and there is no pressure). I recommend talking to your Darling Husband and be honest. If you really are feeling pressured, maybe that talk is in order (even if it is just pressure you are putting on yourself to make him happy).
Post # 4
I think it’s normal to have anxiety over a HUGE life change, but just give it some time. If you asked me last year when I was planning on having kids I would’ve answered “not anytime soon.” I couldn’t imagine having a baby at that time and the thought really scared me. Fast forward one year and I have baby fever BAD! I can’t wait to start a family and be a mom. Time passes, priorities change, and life happens. Enjoy this time with your husband now, and who knows, maybe in a year you’ll surprise yourself.
Post # 5
I guess I should have mentioned that I’m 23 right now and Darling Husband is 22. So we are talking soooo long to wait.
Post # 6
If you’re not ready definitely don’t do it. In the long run he’ll be glad to raise his kids with a woman who was ready and happy to have kids, not someone who resents having to “produce”. This is going to sound silly but do you have any pets? My husband has wanted kids since we were about a year into our relationship but he knew we were no where near it. We got a puppy because we wanted one and he treated the puppy like a baby and stopped talking about wanting babies. It’s silly but it changed everything! It also reminds you of how unready you really are, considering puppies are a lot of work and not nearly as much work as a child.
Post # 7
@Moja Milosc: We have a dog. The main thing is not whether I’m ready or not, it is that I fear that once we are “ready” in his mind (around 30 for him, 31 for me) we may have missed our shot with fertility or that I’ll be so in love and entrenched in my career that I won’t want to leave. Which might lead to resentment. So I guess my anxiety is coming from the fact that I would rather it be sooner rather than later so that we have better chances and it will be easier to leave my career…
Post # 8
1) You are way too young to be worrying about fertility issues. Unless previously diagnosed, a woman’s fertility does not begin to decline until over 30 and especially over 35. Do not speed up your timeline at all because you are scared of infertility.
2) Do you want to be a Stay-At-Home Mom because you don’t like the idea of putting your children in daycare? If so, can your husband stay home while you work? You sound like a very goal-oriented woman, and this could be a great compromise, especially because he values fatherhood so much
3) You sound SOO much like my husband. His biggest fear about having children is that he will be so intwined with his career that he will not be able to be an integral part of their lives. I have to keep reminding him that parenthood is a partnership, and where one might lack, the other can make up. I’ll take the nighttime feedings if he’ll take the 5 am – 8 am shift. If he can’t make it home for dinner every night, maybe he can coach the kids soccer league on the weekends. Great parenting is based on compromise between partners.
Post # 9
Cliffnotes version: Talk to your husband!
I’ll say to you what a friend said to me regarding a career choice (my career of choice precludes kids, and I want to be a Stay-At-Home Mom.) “If it makes you choose, it’s not your dream job.” Explain the fertility concerns to your husband, and that you are WAY more on board with the having babies thing.
My timeline was “wait until we’ve been married a year.” (Despite raging baby fever.) His was “when we have a house.” He realized that it’ll be years before his job settles down enough to buy a house, and said he was ready. Thus, at our 6 month mark, we stopped birth control. (He also wanted to wait until he was 30, at first, and now he’s got terrible baby fever at 25.)
Also, many women’s fertility begins to decline after 25. I come from a long line of early menopause , and any pregnancies past 34 have ended in miscarriage or birth defects that eventually caused death – look at your own family history with this decision (my husband thought I could easily have kids until I was 40 – no can do, honey.) At 23, I wasn’t concerned. Now, at 26, I’m feeling kind of old (I want 2, and this is my first cycle of TTC.)
I’d talk this over with your husband. Maybe you can take the three years needed to cement your career, then go be a mom, and come back to the career later if you like. Unfortunately, you can’t go back to being 20-something once you get to the top of your career.
Post # 10
Wow! Slow down! You have loads of time.
First things first. It sounds like you like your career and it is really important to you. That is FINE. I’m not sure why you think you must give up your career to be a Stay-At-Home Mom. Being a Stay-At-Home Mom is FINE (I might do it myself), but it isn’t for everyone. It sounds like you are putting a lot of pressure on yourself to be the perfect wife/mother/career. Perfection is highly overrated. Having children and staying home with them because your husband wants kids and you think that is the only way to raise them when you are on the fence about kids and value your career sounds like a surefire recipe for bitterness and resentment. Before you do anything, be sure to think about what you really want for yourself (it’s okay to be selfish and honest — you aren’t acting you are only thinking). In My Humble Opinion being career and goal-driven is still compatible with being an excellent, loving mother and role model for your own children.
Second, do not hold yourself back career-wise because you might want to leave in five+ years. If you do have kids and do decide (or financially need) to continue working, you’ll want to have the best, most rewarding job you can possibly have.