Post # 1
I wrote a thread a while back about how DH and I have decided not to have kids because of our health problems. You guys really helped me.
DH has a rare type of muscular dystrophy and I have Bipolar disorder/OCD/Fibromyalgia amongst other things. We work so well as a team and enjoy a happy marriage and I am so grateful that we found each other. Maybe it’s greedy on my part but there are times when I really wish we could start a family together. Unfortunately there are too many risks involved during birth with the meds, after birth with a serious episode and then bringing up a child when one adult needs more and more care and the other gets ill with disrupted sleep/ mood problems. In short it would be a nightmare.
We belong in a strange place where there is little support. On the one hand we don’t have fertility problems but on the other we have found ourselves forced to say no to something we both desperately want.
I go through phases of processing this and at the moment I’m struggling. 99.99% of the people in my life, social media and the wider world discuss parenthood regularly (which is normal of course)
Friends on Facebook share mum stuff constantly and I feel like I can’t comment because it’s not my world. They often talk about how ‘I never knew real love until baby was born’ or ‘Christmas is so much better as a dad’ Obviously I understand why mums and dads would reach out to one another, parenting is hard and I’m not being insensitive about their needs.
But the fact remains that I often feel sad after reading or hearing that stuff. And it’s not in the same way as ‘youve got a porsche and I want one too’ type empty jealousy, it’s more like ‘you’ve created the miracle of life with all its little miracles and I’m the matchstick girl looking through your sitting room window’ or maybe something not quite so dramatic!
Ultimately DH and I have been forced into this and I have to accept it. But as its ‘voluntary’ and based on health stuff I think people tend to assume ‘well that’s how it works’. The fact that I’ve been desperate to be a mum since my teens, that I was the first of all my loved ones to want to be a mum makes it so much worse.
Are there any bees out there like us, who had to make this decision despite no known fertility issues? How did you process a future without kids? I can’t find any supportive info online for this sort of situation.
ETA just wanted to added that we cannot adopt or foster, I’ve looked into it.
This topic was modified 5 years, 7 months ago by .
Post # 2
- Wedding: June 2015 - Backyard
First off, I suggest quitting Facebook. Social media has a way of making us feel bad about our “friends” and people put this glorified image of their life on there. It just aggravates problems. It’s hard not to compare yourself with others when you’re on a site like Facebook. Especially if you have a mental illness. Living in reality and communicating with people like we used to do in the olden days (phone, in-person) is much healthier IMO.
There’s also the fact that raising kids is hard and it’s not necessarily all it’s cracked up to be. Especially when you’re only hearing the positive parts from other people. Kids don’t always turn out right. Imagine all the other wonderful things you can do with your life. So many things will be easier because you won’t have a kid to worry about. Invest more in your friendships, you can be involved in your friends kid’s lives without being responsible for the upbringing part.
I am sorry you are having to deal with this, and I’m sure there are others out there who are in a similar situation.
Post # 3
I’m not in your position but just wanted to say how unselfish and courageous I think your decision is. I know a lot of people who have children because it’s seen as the thing to do, and they don’t stop to consider the kind of environment they’re bringing children into.
We are TTC but I have PCOS and DH works away 2 months out of 3 so it’s proving difficult! I get exactly what you mean about seeing other people with their families on Facebook. I don’t know what to say to help, but maybe one day you could do volunteering with kids, or short term fostering or something?
Post # 4
It’s hard as **** to deal with.
Like you all I wanted was marriage and a baby. But due to age gap, health and the way the world is we also have chosen not to have babies.
It kills me seeing babies and children being neglected, dirty and shouted/swore at. I want to stomp over and take the little one.
I am OK 80% of the time but then things online, TV and in real life make me sad that it’s something I will never experience.
There is no official charity or support group, page, community for this kind of situation. We just have to find each other via things like the bee and talk it out .
If you are having bad days you can inbox me to let it out. XXX hugs xxx
Post # 5
Thank you for sharing that, I really appreciate your response because I haven’t found a support group either. It’s like we’re caught somewhere between childfree and childless. Hugs to you too!
Thank you for your kind words and for sharing your situation. I really hope things get easier for you too
Post # 6
I get what you’re saying about Facebook and I’m heading in that direction ( ie quitting) fairly soon anyway. These feelings come from people around me in real life all the time too though unfortunately. People ask us if we have children all the time.
I’m sure your intentions were meant to be good when you mentioned the mental illness bit (when faced with social media) but it came across a bit bluntly especially with the sentence ‘living in reality’ coming straight afterwards. Maybe the two being side by side was unfortunate but I don’t process Facebook in an unhealthy way. I can understand that it’s a slice of life, a tiny representation of the existence of other people. Maybe you’ve caught me on a bad day but your words didn’t sit well with me.
I’m also aware that parenting isn’t easy but to be honest that doesn’t make me feel any better.
Post # 7
I’m not in your position, but just wanted to say that I am sorry. I know it is not nearly the same thing, but perhaps you can volunteer through a local agency to be a mentor, or join something like Big sisters. I work with children on a regular basis who could use a good, caring adult in their lives.
Best to you both!
Post # 8
your welcome. It’s still hard now after 8yrs of the realization. I think it will always hurt. There is the kids schooling,cwedding and grandchildren that we will never have. Plus in real life its to painful to get to close toca friends child.
I think Christmas cqnd Easter time are hard for me as they are heavily child focused.
Post # 9
I also have a rare type of Muscular Dystrophy, doesn’t even have a specific name it’s more of a description it seems. I am 25 and fertile, and my fiance is healthy, but I don’t see myself getting pregnant due to health issues. I worry so much about my lungs or heart not being able to keep up during the last months of pregnancy when things get though. I mean, if I can barely lift 5 pounds, I don’t see how I would be able to carry 20 extra pounds for months without having health complications related to my muscles giving out. I also have a very sensitive stomach, I get nausea easily and have struggled with weight in the past when I would go through phases of having a weak immune system and getting nausea to the point where it was really hard to keep food down, so it makes me worry that what if that happens during pregnancy, I don’t want to starve the baby by not being able to keep the nutrients down.
We have talked about adoption and are both on board with it. We really want to also go the ivf route with a surrogate, but it is so expensive and our income is not enough. There is financial assitance for couples that want to go that path, but so far all the programs I have found are only offered to those who are infertile. It sucks that just because we technically CAN have a baby, does not mean we should, but we are treated differently like if it’s our choice.
Post # 10
Thank you, I know exactly what you mean. I help with children at church and I’ll spend hours playing with friends kids so the grown ups can relax but inside it does hurt. It’s been 5 years since I realised things weren’t looking good. I hope we both find peace. I’m hoping one day I’ll look at DH and our lives and think ‘we had to do it for us’ and feel okay with that.
You can always message me too x x x
Post # 11
We’ve been TTC on and off though for 2.5 years. I’m very much in two minds, I can see the pros and cons for having and not having. I find Pinterest and FB can hurt at times. There’s nothing that I can probably say to take your hurt away, hopefully there’ll be something that will ease the pain.
Post # 12
Phrases like ‘I never knew real love until baby was born’ or ‘Christmas is so much better as a dad’ are, frankly, complete bullshit.
There are tons of different forms of love that happen on various levels of intensity and one doesn’t take away from the validity of the other. To say “I never knew real love until I became a mommy/daddy” is a parents’ type of overcompensating. It’s narcissistic and rude to others. Basically using this phrase says, “Hey, mom and dad and sibling(s), I was never truly loved by you and I never truly loved you because I wasn’t a parent until now”. It also says, “I never really loved my husband/wife until we had kids”. So ridiculous.
And implying that Christmas isn’t special unless you’re a parent is just dumb. I have very special moments at church, with family, with friends … and none of those moments involve my offspring, because I don’t want or have any.
True, being a parent can be a wonderful thing for many people and it involves both giving and receiving lots of love, but it is not the only way to truly experience it. Likewise, having children can make Christmas a magical time for many, but it is not the only source of joy and wonderment for most people this time of year.
Just ignore people like the ones who make comments like that (which, I realize, is most definitely easier said than done). If they say such things in person either don’t reply and make it clear that’s what you’re doing or outright say something like, “Well, I actually find lots of fulfillment from the love my husband and I share, even without kids” or “Actually, I find Christmas to be very enjoyable because I’m surrounded by my friends, family, etc”. Or, as someone above mentioned, if it happens online either hide their comments/posts, unfollow or unfriend them, or quit social media altogether. Do what’s best for you and don’t let others distract from the many blessings you do have, despite not having children. 🙂
Post # 13
I can only imagine your emotions regarding this life pursuit being out of reach. *Cyber hug.*
One thing I wanted to encourage you about, however, is to consider yourself knowledgeable enough about life to feel free to chat with your friends when they discuss parenting and life challenges. Don’t feel that you must remain silent. You have a unique perspective that they don’t share. Your original approach to a lifehack in the home or in the car or wherever could very well be the “lightbulb above the head” that they needed. Don’t sell yourself short as a friend simply because you’re not a mom. Just my $0.02.
Post # 14
I am so grateful for your post and I am so sorry to hear of what you’re going through. Your last sentences about ‘like its our choice’ resonated so strongly with me. I don’t feel so alone right now. I really hope this thread allows others to share and feel a sense of support and community in dealing with all this.
Post # 15
I never thought of it that way at all, that’s given me a whole new way of fitting in and not feeling such an outsider. Thank you!!!