(Closed) Changed my mind about kids

posted 4 years ago in No Kids
Post # 2
Member
549 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2017

I feel if he was so supportive and responsive to the fact that you didn’t want children for medical reasons he will also support that you don’t want them for emotional/other reasons. Obviously it’s a subject fraught with emotion, so I definitely understand this making you nervous. I wish I had some good advice to offer, but I’ve always been cfbc, and so is my SO. I wish you luck. 

Post # 3
Member
6943 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: April 2016

Are you open at all to the idea of adopting a child? Maybe one slightly older so all of that baby stuff is out of the way? 

Post # 4
Member
369 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2017

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Navygirl14 :  wow thisis heavy. This must be so tough for you. It sounds like you know exactly what you want (and don’t want) and you should not have to sacrifice your goals and mental health for the sake of making your husband happy. That said, it also sounds like your husband knows exactly what he wants and you can tell yourself all you want that he doesn’t know what he’s in for but the fact of the matter is that no parent realizes how challenging everything is until they become parents but they make it through just fine because it’s what they wanted. I really hope everything works out after you talk to your husband but from the looks of things it’s a tremendous sacrifice from both your ends. 

Good Luck

Post # 5
Member
971 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

I think it’s scary to wonder what his response will be because you know now that you’ve led him on (unintentionally for sure), but you also are being very fair that he has a right to have kids with someone if he wants.  

But, I’m with a PP  — he wanted to be with you when he thought you could not have them, and he will still want to be with you even if you just don’t want them.  What might make him hesitate is if he feels you were dishonest or not fair in telling him how you really felt.  So I think I would suggest making a very clear point that you had been open to it but now you’re realizing you simply don’t want them (and that it was never about hoping he’d change his mind or not being upfront on your end).

& remember, as much as you don’t want them, it sounds like he does (he was overjoyed).  I know you want him to be happy too, so while this will be a tough conversation, be sure to have your reasons as carefully laid out as you listed them here, be really clear that you understand his views and how he will be disappointed, and be very clear that you’ve come to this conclusion very carefully and thoughtfully only recently and that you are very sorry for changing your mind knowing it will disappoint him.  

Then hear him out, too.  And give him time to process it.  He will be disappointed.  But I don’t think he would leave you about this.  Believe that he loves you more than he loves the idea of having kids.  

Post # 6
Member
5155 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: January 2010

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honeybadgered :  I agree with this. 

I think you need to sit down and talk with him. Tell him that the fact you CAN TTC has not changed your initial feelings, as expressed during your engagement, about doubting wanting more children, and that you now feel quite certain you don’t. You are not obligated to “give” him children, just because you technically have the ability to conceive and bear them. You also should not have children just because you fear losing him…because doing that likely will mean losing him anyway. 

So, my story is a bit different as I am completely childfree (no existing kids) but I want to share as I can understand why it is scary to bring up knowing it COULD be a dealbreaker.

When I met my husband I was a total fencesitter about children. I was also a total procrastinator about them and had made many choices in my life to that point to delay having them. I had lots of experience with children, but I was totally ambivalent about actually having my own, and sort of made choices that delayed having to MAKE a choice, if that makes sense. I was 29 when we met, and I remember our early discussions where I told him I was not totally closed off to the possibility of maybe one day wanting them, but I was in absolutely no hurry, and if it never happened I was not at all worried about it. I told him having kids was just not a priority and not something I could say I needed to do. I know it sounds non-committal, but it was still very much sorting out MY feelings on it, in the face of people telling me for years that one day I would absolutely want them. My husband was more of the he would like to have at least one “for the experience”, but was not like “I must have kids and without a firm commitment I cannot continue this relationship”  We got married despite that uncertainty. Not something I tend to recommend to others, but in our case I think we both had been clear that kids either would or would not happen, and that was okay with us both.

It was AFTER we were married I came to the final discovery I absolutely did NOT want kids. I did not want to be a parent. I did not want to raise children. I just wanted no part of it. There was no specific trigger, except perhaps a great marriage and a wonderful husband that had me realize…I felt complete as a family with him (and we later added our cat who is part of our little family). I also had career goals, and other life goals, as personal experiences that affected my feelings. When we married my husband had been the one to suggest we not even think of it for two years, then five years (and I was relieved), but as I got older and saw more and more of my peers in all stages of parenting, and thought about what I wanted for my life, my marriage, my career, and so on, I realized how much kids were not a part of what I wanted in my life. I had zero interest in parenting. I also admittedly found my tolerance for children dropping as time went on. I just don’t particularly like them and while I am sure I would love my own, I would probably be irritated by them at times…as well as by their friends and so on. People WITH kids have to spend time by default around other kids too!

I was always honest about my feelingsand knew it was important to be about this too. But I was terrified to tell my husband once it felt so “final”! I knew there was a risk that he could consider it a dealbreaker, despite his earlier ambivalence. But I did bite the bullet and tell him, because honesty is important to us. At the time, he comforted me and told me not to stress, it was not something he was worried about it. He told me he would rather be with me any day than without me, or with some hypothetical kids and someone else. And it really just was a…non-issue. Over the years, we just both accepted and lived and built our lives as childfree ones, and over time he sort of revealed more and more how he too was sort of childfree and why being a parent was not a must for him (being around his nephews at times helped!). When I told him one day I was thinking about getting sterilized, he had a bit of “wow, this is it, we really are saying never” but he was completely supportive and on board. Again, he affirmed (as he does everyday) he is married to me because he wants to be with ME. In other words, he did not marry me for my reproductive abilities. He is now in his 40s and has never expressed any regret about not having kids, about marrying me, or suggested wanting to leave to have kids with someone else. I think if I had been someone who really wanted kids, he would have been on board, but he, and like a lot of men I have met over the years, was someone who thought more he would have kids because every woman they had met wanted them; it was just not that important to them to actually do…or he probably would have taken steps in his own life to make that happen long before I came along.

It actually helped that he has quite a few friends, male, female, parents and non-parents, who have been forthright about their own experiences with having kids, or not having kids. We both have met enough parent friends who have said “good, don’t do it!” when we told them we were not having kids so there has never been really that pressure on him and he does not feel like he is unusual in not having kids. One of his best friends, who is getting married next year, has always been adamantly childfree and as long as I have known my husband he has totally accepted that as completely normal.

Post # 7
Member
369 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2017

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deedee2016 :  I think there is a big difference in choosing to stay with someone who can’t have children vs stayimg with someone who WON’T have children. Totally difeent dynamic. Like I wouldn’t want to turn my back on my husband for something over which he had no control but if he has the ability and just not the will- whole different ballgame. Possible deal-breaker

Post # 8
Member
6943 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: April 2016

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angelaw2g :  I agree. My husband and I talked about kids long before we got engaged. I’m a bit older and for some reason have this intense fear that I won’t be able to conceive. I asked him if he would be okay with our life if I was unable to have kids. He said of course, but that he’d like to try all options available first. As in, if I couldn’t conceive we’d look into all the medical options and then adoption. I agreed wholeheartedly. So essentially, yes we’d both be okay if for one reason or another we never had children. But we both would not be okay if we simply didn’t want them at all. 

Post # 9
Member
671 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2016

It seems from your post that a lot of your objection comes from the idea of having another pregnancy and caring for a baby. Is this correct? If so, and if I did not miss read, I think before you speak with him you need to be clear with yourself about whether or not you are open to adoption of an older child. I say this because I think if you come at him with the information that you do not want another pregnancy or to care for an infant, adoption is going to be a natural argument / suggestion for him to take. And if that is also not an option for you, you want to be able to make that clear from the begining so there is no false hope for him in “compromising” through adoption.

I have never had to have this conversation myself but I would guess the most important thing would be to be clear, direct and leave no room for interpretation. As well as to expect that  while you have already made the mental jump to child-free, he has not. So expect it to take some time for him to process/ go through this.

Post # 10
Member
1560 posts
Bumble bee

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angelaw2g :  I totally agree. I think it’s not fair to assume he will not mind and still want to stay just because he was okay with her not being able to conceive. Not being able to conceive and not wanting to conceive are two totally seperate things.

I know that it wasn’t your intention to deceive him OP, but trying to look at it from his point of view, when you met you said you were open to having kids, then you found out you couldn’t have them and he said he would accept this and wanted to stay with you, now you can have them and are saying you actually just don’t want them. He quite clearly really wants kids, so this may be a deal-breaker for him. I would think really hard on this before telling him you 100% do not want another child as there’s a risk he may decide to leave, which is understandable imo. Also, take into account that he may choose to stay but hope he can change your mind or will grow increasingly resentful. I’m sorry you’re in such an awful situation and I hope you can both work it out. 

Post # 11
Member
971 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

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angelaw2g :  I understand what you’re saying.  But I sincerely hope that is not the case for OP.   If it had been an intentional misleading and “hoping he’d change his mind someday” then there would be dealbreaker issues to me.  But people change their minds on things.  I wouldn’t divorce my husband simply because he changed his mind on wanting kids.  While I’d be disappointed and I’d want us to really talk through it, I didn’t marry him only for the purpose of having kids, and I wouldn’t want them without him being on the same page.  I cannot help but hope that the marriage vows mean more to OP’s husband than that, too.  

But that’s also why I said she needed to hear him out, too.  Having kids or not actually really shouldn’t be a one-sided decision and is definitely a big deal.  But it sounds like this guy didn’t immediately push adoption or any other options when he first heard that it was likely kids weren’t in the cards for them.  So I stand by the idea that she needs to go into this discussion with some trust in him — not just assuming he’s going to leave her.  

Post # 12
Member
1104 posts
Bumble bee

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Navygirl14 :  this is tough. you have to tell him what you just told us. he might get angry because you did tell him that you were open to having children, and i know this is a dealbreaker for many people, but you can’t have a kid just to satisfy your partner’s desires.

i don’t want kids either and i cannot imagine feeling the way i do and then just doing it anyway. you will suffer, your relationship will suffer, and the child will suffer. this is why it’s soooo important to be up front about the way you really feel. it sounds like you told him what he wanted to hear, maybe thinking you could pull it off, but now the time has come to deliver and your real feelings are surfacing. there’s no way around it, you’ve just gotta rip the bandaid off and tell him. 

Post # 13
Member
3900 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: January 2017

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Navygirl14 :  You can adopt an older kid so the baby stage is not something you will have to deal with. Would that be something you and him would consider? Also you guys really need to talk about this and I higjly suggest couples therapy!

Post # 14
Member
2849 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2016

I have to say if my husband changed his mind about having kids after we were married I’d be blindsided and pissed. And probably want a divorce to be honest. But we made an agreement on this before we got married.

Honestly, OP I feel really bad for your husband.

Post # 15
Member
369 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2017

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deedee2016 :  In all honesty, i hope so too. i hope they can come to a solution in which both would truleybe happy as opposed to “taking one for the team” I believe that the OP really felt in her heart that she was willing to have a baby but that she changed her mind. I also believe that the husband decided that not being able to conceive was not reason enough to give up his marriage. But seeing how this is no longer the case, it may change things completely for him. I would never want OP to go forward thinking that her marriage is going to end but she must consider the possibility. It’s just a really difficult situation all around. But I really hope they can work something out because it seems they really love each other. 

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