FI hate other people's children, but says he wants his own….?

posted 3 years ago in Parenting
  • poll: Should I expect him to show that he actually can handle kids?
    Yes... you don't want to be stuck doing this alone. : (24 votes)
    38 %
    No... you're being too controlling : (28 votes)
    44 %
    Maybe... but you're going about it all wrong. : (12 votes)
    19 %
  • Post # 3
    845 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: June 2013

    @Strawberryfarmer: I don’t believe you have to care about other people’s kids in order to be ready to be a parent. I work with kids too (as a speech-language pathologist), I volunteer with kids at a homeless shelter twice a week after I get home my full-time job. I adore all children and have my entire life. Having a child (bio or foster/adopted) is something I must accomplish in my life and would be a deal breaker if my husband needed to be child-free.  

    Based on what you’ve said, I don’t see how your husband would be a terrible father. If he’s open to changing his career and scale back on hobbies temporarily to be more family-friendly, I’d see that as a really positive step. I don’t think it’s problem that he’s not interested in spending time with children. You clearly have a special bond with the kids you nannied for, but it’s because you have always been interested in them, spent time as their caregiver and are actively working to maintain that bond. It’s really ok that he doesn’t want to hang out with them.

    I see the most important qualities to have in order to be a parent are 1) a desire to do it,  2) taking steps in life to make your family your focus, and 3) a proven capacity to love others and be selfless in relationships. Like me, I am sure in your job you have encountered many truly terrible parents, as in criminally neglectful or abusive ones. Unless you are concerned that your husband is in that category, I think you should be more positive about his change in attitude and ease up on pressuring him to be around kids. Maybe re-focus your conversations about parenting to talking about how you’d parent as a team and discussing the qualities you value you in one another that you’d like to pass along to your future child.

    I do think you husband is right, that many men don’t like other people’s kids. If you think about out, we rarely socialize our little boys to become fathers and to see the value in nuturing others. My husband is especially uncomfortable around other people’s infants/toddlers. He is (admitedly) irrationally worried about injuring them and he just doesn’t find it easy to interact with children who don’t speak yet. He refused to hold his own niece/nephew when they were infants and did not express a whole lot of interest in being around them. That said, the kids are older now and he has nuturing/fun interactions with them, but not as much as I do. I also know that he will make a great dad because he’s taken great care of me, prioritizes our time together as a little family over anything, and has loved our pets unconditionally.  

    One time, we came across a lost little girl in a mall, who was in tears because she got separated from her family. I ushered her into a store right away, but he held back saying, “I don’t want anyone to get any weird ideas about a crying little girl near a man who is a stranger to her.” This struck me as crazy at first, but I was ultimately understanding because the fear of child predators in our society is pretty intense. So I think I side with your husband on this! 


    Post # 4
    1178 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: February 2014

    Eh, my sister’s husband had his attitude.  They have a three year old.  He switched to nights two years ago to escape.  She’s essentially a single working mother.  Even on the weekends, it’s her and her son while her husband plays golf.

    If you can’t handle other kids (it’s not about loving or caring about them), then your kids aren’t magically going to change you into a patient and kind soul.  

    Post # 5
    5398 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: August 2014

    @stuckinwonderland:  This. 

    Personally, no way would I take that gamble. Yeah, it could work out and he’ll be a great father; but what if it doesn’t? Are you going to be OK being the one making all the sacrifices while he continues as normal? If the answer is no, my advice would be ‘don’t do it’. 

    Post # 6
    6671 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: October 2010

    I don’t know- it may depend.  I really don’t like other people’s kids- but I adore my own.  It is a significant lifestyle change though.  And I agree with you about him traveling so much- you don’t want him to only be a weekend parent.

    Post # 7
    7997 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: December 2013

    Hmm I feel for you. Like on one hand, I don’t really like other peoples’ kids either, but I am pretty sure I’d like to have a kid of my own. On the other hand, I would worry too that your FI might not want to change his lifestyle once the kid comes. It really is a big change.

    Maybe approach it a bit differently. See if he would be willing to move somewhere more kid-friendly. If he pushes back, then I would definitely make it clear to him that it’s something that needs to happen before you have a child. I don’t think doing a big move while you’re pregnant is exactly fun.

    I don’t know. I am not sure anyone is 100% prepared for parenthood. If you’re both quite young, I am not surprised he changed his mind on kids. He grew up maybe. Of course he has adult hobbies… people without kids do, but they are willing to adjust accordingly. He says he is.. maybe you need to take his word for it? Then again, you know him best. I used to say I didn’t want kids, but changed my mind.

    Maybe this will help.. this is how I know my SO would make a good parent:

    -He is always willing to drop anything and help out

    -He does more than his fair share of chores (including the gross ones)

    -He babies our cat

    -He is very career oriented but he always makes time for me

    -He is very patient and easy-going

    -He is good with his nephews even though he only is able to see them once a year

    -He is very “we” oriented, like it was never “his” money.. he is very willing to sacrifice and is not selfish in the least

    If your FI doesn’t fit at least a few of these then I’d say your concerns might be justified. Do keep in mind though that young guys ARE often selfish, and that’s ok. Many people decide to have kids a bit later on so they can get that selfish phase over with.

    Post # 8
    2059 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: September 2014

    @Strawberryfarmer:  IDK, OP….I am a teacher, and I taught elementary school for a couple of years, then middle school, now high school….and personally, I don’t enjoy hanging out with young kids! If someone asked me if I wanted to hang out with a 13 year old…I’d say no too. I want my own kids one day, but I whole heartedly admit that I generally don’t like being around other people’s kids, especially younger ones….TBH, I usually find them really annoying. However, I do adore my high schoolers and find them hysterical to be around. I do worry sometimes that I won’t have patience for my own kids when they’re younger…but I have a feeling when they’re mine, I won’t feel the same as I do about other people’s children. To play devil’s advocate..I’d be really annoyed if FI kept pushing kids on me, and it would probably make me want to be around them less. I do totally agree that you have to be on the same page about wanting them, but I’d never expect FI to want to hang out with someone else’s kids…there are only a handful of them that we really like hahaha

    Post # 9
    845 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: June 2013

    certainly families work in many ways, but it’s essential that decisions are reached together. if two parents choose to have demanding careers outside of the home and rely on paid childcare providers, that’s fine. if one parent chooses to work and the other chooses to stay home, again, that’s fine. it’s only a problem when a spouse is left without a choice and is unwillingly shouldering burdens, which might be the case described by @stuckinwonderland. like i said, you don’t have to like being around other people’s kids, but you have to make your family a priority to be a good parent. it could be that not liking other kids and not proritizing your own family work hand-in-hand in some people. but i think people who don’t make good parents have other negative qualities than just not liking other people’s kids. 

    Post # 10
    7997 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: December 2013

    Double post

    Post # 11
    352 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: September 2013 - Old Stone House in Brookyn

    Does he hate kids or is he just not comfortable around them? From your post it sounds like he is not used to being around kids, but not irresponsible. My fiance is an only child with no younger relatives, so he really doesn’t know much about kids and is kind of awkward around them. I’m not worried about him as a parent, though, because he is helpful, kind and responsible.

    Do you have any pets? I know it’s not a perfect comparison, but it’ll give you an idea of how good he is at caring for others, keeping his temper, etc.

    Post # 12
    596 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: September 2013

    It’s a tough one. I can understand not wanting to be around other kids besides your own, but I think he takes it a little too far. If he can’t enjoy going rock climbing with this little boy, then why would he want to do things with his own kids. I would think that if he really wanted kids, he’ll spend time with the 13 yr old to look forward to spending time with his own kids. I don’t think he realizes all the the responsibilities he’s going to have raising a child, good and bad. And that he won’t be able to go out with his friends whenever he wants.  I would be so frustrated if I was in your position. Him wanting his own kids, you’ll think he’ll be more open about learning how to be a parent or at least how to be around other kids. 

    Post # 13
    7281 posts
    Busy Beekeeper
    • Wedding: October 2011 - Bed & Breakfast

    I’d be less concerned about whether or not he is willing to hang out with other people’s children and more concerned with him making concrete lifestyle changes now that would make room for your own children (e.g. getting a new job with less travel, being a 50-50 partner in current household duties, taking on a nurturing role with pets, forgoing leisure activities that cost $ to save for the costs of a LO, etc.).

    Mr. LK never considered himself to be much of a kids person and confesses that he feels very awkward and nervous around other people’s children. And yet he is an amazing Dad to Teen LK, and I know that he would be an amazing Dad to any more kids that we may have. He is patient, level-headed, thoughtful, reliable, always willing to meet our family’s needs, always looking for ways to show his love… basically all of the things that make him an awesome husband are the things that make him an awesome Dad.

    Post # 15
    845 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: June 2013

    @Strawberryfarmer:  So where do you think his change of heart came from? Is it because he knows having a child is something that you want? Or is feeling pressure from family/society/some other outside force because it’s what he’s “supposed” to do?

    With your update giving more details about his personality, I can really understand your reasoning behind asking him to spend more time with children. It makes a lot of sense.

    This is really tough! You don’t have to answer, but are you okay with not having children if it turns out he can’t be the co-parent you want? 

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