Friday, January 4, 2013

If you disagree about children, is your relationship doomed?


Is it possible for a relationship to work when one partner wants children and the other doesn’t? This is the question that is still resonating in my head days after I finished reading Kidfree & Lovin’ It (reviewed Jan. 2). The opinion of most of the people author Kaye D. Walters surveyed is that this is a deal-breaker, that compromise is impossible, that the relationship is doomed. They say it is better to break up than to have a child you don’t want—or force a child on someone who doesn’t want to have children. Don’t date, don’t marry, don’t pretend it’s okay; it won’t work.

Walters urges couples to think it through and be sure of what they want. “Don’t just end a perfectly good relationship without first examining your means and motivations on the kid issue.” She offers lists of reasons to procreate and suggests that some of them are pretty shaky and perhaps one might not be a good parent after all. But in the end, like the people she surveyed, she seems to lean toward ending the relationship.

This issue is at the heart of my Childless by Marriage blog and book. It’s an issue that most books about childlessness (see my resource list) pay minimal attention to. But it’s a big one. If my first husband had been willing and ready to have children, I’d be a grandmother now. If my second had been willing to add more children to the three he already had and if he had not had a vasectomy, I’d have grown children and maybe grandchildren now. If I had dumped either one because I wanted to have children and they didn’t, my life would have been completely different.

I am childless because I married these men and stayed with them. The first marriage ended for other reasons, but the second husband was a keeper. We lasted three weeks shy of 26 years. If Fred hadn’t died, we’d still be together. He was the perfect mate for me in every other way. And maybe, if I truthfully answer all of Walters’ soul-searching questions, I would find I was too devoted to my career to add motherhood to the mix. I wanted children, and I wish I’d had them. BUT I loved Fred and knew I would never find a better husband. Should I have left him and hoped to find someone else, maybe someone not as good but who was willing to have babies with me? Am I a fool because I sacrificed motherhood for these men?

That’s the big question that many of the people who comment here are facing: stay with the partner or spouse who doesn’t want kids or try to find someone else? What do you think? Is a relationship doomed if you disagree on this issue? Is it all right to sacrifice something this big for the one you love? There are always compromises in a relationship. People give up their careers, move far away from home, or take care of disabled spouses, but is this too much to ask?

I really want to know what you think.




252 comments:

1 – 200 of 252   Newer›   Newest»
Heidi said...

There is a mother inside every woman. That truth is written into our very bodies -- whether or not we ever bear children.

Not everyone is a "natural mother" in terms of having the patience and stamina to tend to the needs of a child. But spiritual motherhood -- finding ways to nurture both physical and spiritual life -- is at the heart of womanhood. I cannot say how God intends you to use your particular "feminine genius," but it's there.

For Catholics (I'm not sure what faith background you have, this is my tradition), an unwillingness to welcome children into a home is a condition of the sacrament of marriage. If either partner is unwilling to do so, the marriage is not considered a true sacrament because it is "sterile" by intention. (Obviously this has nothing to do with the legality of the union, or the legitimacy of the children.) It is grounds for annulment.

It sounds like your second husband was a good man, and that you loved him very much. I'm sorry for your loss.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Heidi,
Thank you for your comforting words. I am Catholic, too. I actually had my first marriage annulled on the basis of my ex-husband's refusal to have kids. Fred, my second husband, was a good man, and I'm missing him very much today.
I love that term "spiritual motherhood." Thank you.

Anonymous said...

You did what was right for you. Well done. Many people don't have the integrity to do this. I wish you all the best.

Anonymous said...

Sue,

I think you're a very special person for thinking about this issue the way you did. I occasionally drop by your blog because I am the ex-spouse of a person who left me because, at a somewhat younger age, I was still unsure of whether I wanted to have kids and he suddenly changed his mind and became all for it. Other than that, we had been perfect companions for each other -- for example, in 10 years together, we had not had a single fight.

It doesn't seem like many people think of it the way you and I do. My ex, for instance, seemed to freak out more than anything over the fact that he no longer had "the option" of having kids if he stayed with me. He made me feel awful -- some "option" that had never mattered to him before and that wasn't necessarily the bed of roses he imagined it as had now eclipsed me in importance.

The truth is, Fred was a known quantity while any child you may have had is not. And what you knew about Fred is that he was a great, kind, good soul and amazing partner for *you*. So why, then, would it be so unusual for you to choose Fred over kids? I think it may seem that way at least in part because societally we as women are certainly very pressured to have and want kids.

I do want kids now (ironically, now that I'm divorced over this very reason), but I personally think the same way you do. If I find someone else who is perfect for me and he doesn't want them, then have them we will not. Because what it comes down is these close, bonded relationships you have with other human beings. Who is to say that the relationship with your child would be good enough to eschew a relationship with this already existent person? I see people out there who have a lot of difficulties with their kids.

It seems, btw, that you have your up and your down days in dealing with this. So, with apologies for my long comment, for the New Year, I wish you way more of the "up" days, because you are obviously a fabulous lady.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anon and Anon,
Thank you so much for your kind words. It is a tricky thing, isn't it? No relationship is perfect, but whether or not to have kids is probably the biggest decision to make and if you don't agree, there's no easy solution. And people do change their minds. That's natural. I wish you all the best, too.
I do have my ups and downs, but these days, I miss my husband much more than any children I might have had. And when I miss them both. . . I cuss a lot. My only New Year's resolution is to curse less.
Take care.

Anonymous said...

I feel for Anon at 4:40. What a cruel turn of events to have the perfect relationship terminated because you did not want children.

I am working on a difficult 10 year marriage to a man I care about very deeply. His past issues (terrible self esteem, alcoholism, etc.) seemed to keep us from having a family. After meaningful therapy those issues are being replaced by wonderful things. Still, it's a long road. Now that I'm of a certain age I find us working closer to having a family but guess what - time is running out. So I lament often about the situation. Since I do not have a burning desire to have children (like some) I find myself comforted by "God's Plan". If it's meant to happen He will make it so. Some days I don't feel that calmness though which is why I visit.

I find it hard to imagine someone leaving a spouse simply because the other does not want to have children. If you married for love how can one discard that? I suppose the lure of family life is too great for some. Still, I wonder - what if Anon 4:40 had a health reason that made family planning impossible? Do you think he still would have left?

I'm curious to know more about Anon 4:40. Are you happily remarried and working toward a family? Is your ex remarried with children? How old are you at this point? I don't mean to be nosy - just curious on how life unfolds for people. It's often in ways we do not expect.

Anon S

Anonymous said...

This is "Anon 4:40". I honestly don't know how my ex got so into the idea of having kids but I see that it happens to a lot of people. I've wondered about the thing you bring up with the health reason preventing kids, enough to do some reading on it. Almost every opinion I've seen seems to agree that emotionally those are two different things, I guess because one is based on a choice while the other is not. At the point where the two scenarios have the same result though -- aka, no kids -- I also wonder, how can the love between the two people be discounted so much?

To answer your questions, neither of us is remarried, though while he has a serious girlfriend currently, I am completely single (of course...haha). We married young, at 26 after having been together 4 years before that. Our split happened when we were 32, and we are now 35. As for your phrasing of "working toward a family", I'm not going to do actively do that. Kind of like you, I plan on letting God do his thing -- if I do find someone who truly lights my fire in every sense, that is (and for me, *that* is the absolute requirement for getting remarried, not kids!).

As for your situation, you sound like such a strong person and I wish you even more strength to continue to more forward.

doubleme said...

I did not want to end my relationship with my husband even tho he changed his mind about having more children. I do get upset from time to time that he changed his mind but the marriage is good outside of that fact.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

I think it all depends on the relationship you have with your partner. Doubleme, you and I were lucky to find good husbands. That's quite a gift in itself. It would have been nice to have kids, but that wasn't in the plans for us, I guess. Take care.

Anonymous said...

To Anon 4:40
Thanks for sharing. So any hope of reconciling now that you both want children? Or has too much taken place to "go back"?

Thanks for your kind words. I wouldn't say I'm any stronger. You've had to endure a lot as well. Not only that you seem much more optimistic than me. I'm 38 and I feel like I'm waving goodby to the children boat. That I could still leap in the water and catch up (if I swim really, really fast). But mostly trying to come to terms with the idea that I probably won't be a mother.

I'm 38. I think back to all the times when I felt old. After several years I look back and think that I was so young. I'm hoping that I will be one of those late bloomers. Perhaps I'll "give up" and then find myself having children in my early 40's and I'll laugh when I think about this time in my life and how I thought it was all slipping away.

I suppose anything is possible.

On a Catholic note, the irony of my first marriage just occurred to me. That union was annulled on the grounds that my first husband wouldn't raise any children in the catholic faith. This along with other reasons led to the end of the marriage. But that issue served as a vehicle for an easy annulment.

Fast forward several years and who becomes the newest member of my parish? Well, my ex-husband and his new girlfriend of course. He was taking classes to become a full member of the Catholic faith. I watched that Easter as he was baptized with his lovely new fiancee at his side. Soon after he married her in a full Catholic ceremony and after that he had two beautiful children with her, who are of course Catholic. They have since moved to another parish but it still stings that he was willing to convert for her but not me.

I especially remember having a conversation with someone else who was in his class. She didn't know I had been married to this man and she was just sharing her experience. She told me how passionate he was about converting and how he immersed himself in the process. That his was an inspiration. Bah. I found it in my heart to be happy he found faith but it wasn't at all easy to watch his baptism.

Anon S

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Wow, Anon S., that must have been so hard. Thank you for sharing this. My first husband was Catholic but didn't care about it. His refusal to have kids got me my easy annulment. My second was not Catholic and was very clear that he would never convert. But to have your ex be baptized with his new fiancee at his side . . . I admire your strength.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Sue. Actually I was already married at this point so it wasn't as hard as you'd think. Yes, it touched a nerve and I will admit to shedding some tears of frustration and rejection. But our marriage ended for other reasons and enough time had passed and that took some sting out of it.

Still, he was a wonderful person. He also has a beautiful singing voice and later often cantored at mass. Those masses were harder to sit through. There he was, singing (yes, singing!) the words he refused to pray with me. Leading the worship almost. In front of everyone. By then my current marriage was getting rough. It was very painful to listen to this kind man singing songs of comfort and to know he was no longer mine and perhaps I had made a grave mistake.

I married my current husband in part because he is Catholic and we share the same views. I figured we'd avoid those same problems. However, he's only as devout as I expect him be. I'm "in charge" of the religious portion of our life. This also frustrates me as sometime I don't want to go to mass (and don't). Sometimes I do not have Christian feelings. Sometimes I don't want to pray. I wish he cared enough about our faith to encourage me when I need it.

Sigh.

Someday it will all make sense. In the meantime it's wonderful to have this place to vent and share. THANK YOU for that Sue!

Anon S

Luce said...

Hi Everyone,

It was nice to read your posts. In regards to your question Sue on whether a relationship is doomed or not if you disagree on having children, I definitely agree with most of you when you say that life is an endless box of surprises and you don't know what is going to happen. I came across your blog because I find myself at 34 trying to decide what I want to do about children. I find myself quite fortunate to have actually thought about making a decision instead of plotting along and do the next thing which is to have kids. I have been looking for reasons not to have a child and reasons to have a child but unfortunately I haven't found much on the latter one. The ones I have found don't seem to be very good reasons in my opinion. I know that when people already have kids they realize that is the best decision ever but you kind of do have to get there without having thought about it in the first place.

Anyway, my partner and I have been together for 3 years and we are getting married this year. He has a child from a previous marriage and he is an amazing kid. We get along very well and we love the life we have together. My partner decided after his son was born that he had had enough and didn't want to have more children in the future. I on the other hand had never really thought about it too much. Just the occasional time here and there when all my friends were having babies.

And then NOW :). My stepson is going to school in two weeks and I have felt the need for a child of my own but I'm not quite sure if it's to replace the one that has grown, which then wouldn't be a very good reason. At some point in our relationship my partner said he'd do it for me but I also didn't want that. So is our relationship doomed? I don't think so, not once have I thought of leaving him because he won't have a child. We are very happy together and we wouldn't want things to change between us. So I am here reading what people have to say, doing my homework :) But I think my partner and I need to work everything in our lives together and this is one of them. No matter what happens we need to come to a decision together. My commitment is to us, to our relationship and not a baby we don't have. I understand that some people leave their partners where one of them don't want or want children but my guess is that there is something more to it. It's either been shaky for a while and that might be the last thing that brings it all apart. The reason I am saying this is because why would anyone marry someone if they knew that they wanted something completely different to them.

If you really want to have a child and if you have always wanted that I am sure that everyone around you would notice and a man that has made the decision not to wouldn't come anywhere near you. So think about it, if you love your partner why would you leave them? I am sure you both have excellent reasons to support your position but the whole point of a relationship is to compromise and deal with everything on the way together.

I am sorry for those people who have been told a different story and right after getting married the real "thing" comes out. That wasn't a very honest thing to do and therefore I don't believe this person deserved you in the first place.

Life does things in funny ways and I think that we just need to let it be. Not find ourselves at 40 and start rushing to have a baby just because everyone else is doing it. Having children I believe is a choice. So wouldn't it be absolutely wonderful to be able to tell your children afterwards that you gave them a good think and that you were absolutely sure you wanted them and not that they were product of a hormonal urge or an unplanned pregnancy?

Luce

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

There's a lot of wisdom in your comments, Luce. Thank you for sharing them. I think you make a key point when you note that if the marriage falls apart based on this issue, it probably had other problems. I know that was the case for me. I admire you for really thinking about children and not just letting yourself be swayed by what's easiest or what everyone else is doing. I wish you all the best.

Anonymous said...

I just had this conversation/fight with my husband. However, roles are reversed, I am the one questioning whether I want kids and he definitely wants them. I love kids, my friends kids, our neighbors kids, any kid. i am very good with kids and i would be a good mother. However, knowing I would be a good mother is different than wanting them.

I just don't know if I do. My husband and I have been married for 5 years and together for a total of 10 years. I always thought the desire to have kids would come, I fully expected it to.

I'm 30 now and that was the time frame we agreed to when we got married. At 25, I thought 30 would be a great time to have a baby, it was all so logical, married long enough, had our fun, careers in order, home purchased, etc. while everything is where it should be (home, career) I'm still not ready, I don't have that "i need to be a mom" gene. Where it is? I WANT to have it, but I don't. So im asking him for more time, another year to be just us and then i'll bite the bullet and have a baby.

The fight tonight came down to what if I never want kids.

It's a valid question. I want another year, and "i'll bite the bullet." those were my words. Because i don't want to be with anyone but my husband, I love him so much. And i really want to want to have kids for his sake and ours.

I cannot accept losing him, so I'll do it, if that's the ultimatum. But he won't give me the ultimatum, he wants me to want a child for myself, for my happiness. So he wants me to decide what to do. He'll be unhappy in our marriage but he'll stay in our unhappy marriage. And if I have the baby now, when im clearly not ready, what if I'm the unhappy one.

And i know youre thinking poor kid (if we have a kid) but i honestly have faith in myself to love this child, its not their fault im so messed up, so they wont know that they werent wanted, because when theyre here they here with us, and they will be loved by me.

anyways, i also felt the need to rant to clear my head. So I am grateful to find this piece online. I'm sure within the next year I'll be pregnant. And I will love my child.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Thank you for sharing this anonymous. It's almost taboo in our society to say you're less than thrilled about having a baby, but I'm sure you express the feelings of many people. I wish you all the best.

jo said...

Hi

I have been reading this blog for days and it has been a huge source of comfort to me.
Two years ago at age 40 a friend invited me to Melbourne. As I had just been made redundant in the Uk I went and spent seven amazing weeks with someone who I knew by day 4 was the right one for me. He came to the UK shortly after and we started to plan a future. He is divorced with two girls 14 and 15 so being with him meant moving from the UK and leaving everything behind. At the very beginning and many times since I asked if he was open to having more kids and he always said yes. If he had said no I would have ended the relationship. Although I was never desperate to have children and truly understand that at my age it will be very difficult if not impossible,I would not have persued a relationship where not having them was a condition. It took a long time to decide I was willing to make the move but I came back to see him in December and have been in Melbourne since then. The entire trip has been overshadowed by him telling me he doesn't want any more kids. So having just got my head around the leaving my home,friends and family I now have this. I am 42 now so my chances of meeting someone else and having a family are slim. However I just don't feel I can accept this. His kids are his life and I can't see how I can watch them play happy families forever knowing he would not do that with me. I also can't accept that he could love me yet deny me the thing that has brought him the most joy to his life.I just can't reconcile it. I am due to go home in a few weeks and finally dared to try to get an answer to this question. He chose to lose me rather than even entertain the possibility of a family. I just feel as though I have to sacrifice everything and he will compromise on nothing.

I am interested in the comments on here because nobody seems angry. The general consensus is that it was better to stay with them than leave. I'm not sure how you get to a place where you can do that. My anger at being misled so badly
(we spoke about names for the kids)and the lack of choice that has been imposed on me - him or the chance to try for kids -is so furious I don't quite know what to do with it.
It's an awful situation for anyone to be in and am just pleased I know it's not just me.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Jo, you have every right to be furious. It's bait and switch. I don't know if they use that term there, but it refers to when a merchant lures you in with a sale on one great thing, then tries to sell you something else when you get there.It's a scam. It sounds like your guy is firm on his decision. You gave him the ultimatim and he chose not to have children with you. Now it's up to you to figure out whether you still want to be with him and whether his children might be enough. Sometimes they are, and sometimes the stepchildren just add to the pain. I wish I could tell you what to do, but you know what I did. I married the guy, thinking that somehow things would change. They didn't, but I have never met anyone else I would rather have married. I'd like to hear what some of our other readers have to say.
Keep coming back. We know what you're going through, and we care.
Sue

Anonymous said...

I stumbled upon this blog today while searching the Internet in hopes of finding information regarding my situation.

I am 41 years old, never been married and I do not have any children. My choice to delay marriage and child bearing was not intentional it was circumstantial. Finally I have found my Prince Charming, my other half, the man I want to spend the rest of my life with. My boyfriend is 44 years old, has never been married and has 2 daughters. His oldest is 16 years old and his youngest s 8 years old.

He explicitly made it clear when we began dating that he does not want anymore children because finally his youngest is at the age where she does not need him as much and he wants to travel and see the world. He also stated he cannot picture himself 50 years old and running after a child.

His 2 daughters do not have the same mother. The oldest one was a result of a one night stand and he was not told about it until she was 4 years old. The youngest one's mother told him she could not get pregnant. He intended to marry her but as soon as she got pregnant her true colors showed. He is a phenomenal father who makes numerous sacrifices for his children, but the relationships with the mothers are not good at all.

2 days ago after a talk to my best friend over the weekend I realized that having a child with someone I love, respect and care for has been all I've ever wanted and its not a dream I'm willing to abandon unless I run into fertility issues. Even now with the 2 children he has I resent the fact he has a connection of sharing children with these 2 women yet is not willing to share the experience with me.

I am heartbroken, but I know it's for the best.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous, I'm so sorry. It sounds like your choice is pretty clear. Stay with him and accept not having children or find someone else. That's harsh, but it's the reality. Personally I don't have any problem with a man running after a child when he's 50. I just watched a man considerably older than that cuddling a baby at the post office and it was the sweetest thing ever. But you can't make other people do what you want, at least not without ruining the relationship. I hope you both can find peace with this.

Anonymous said...

The first thing in determining whether or not having children is a deal breaker is how adamantly each person feels about that decision. Some people are open, some are more adamant. I do believe that any relationship where one partner adamantly wants children and another partner adamantly does not will ultimately fail, but not because these are irreconcilable visions. Ultimately, there is no logical reason to want or not want children. Our desires are barometers of deeper things going on within ourselves. Even if a couple disagrees on that particular question and decides to ignore it, something else will come up to end the relationship, and there will be a common thread between what ended the relationship and the difference of opinion on having children.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous,
Thank you. This is a very wise and true comment. If you disagree about something so important, there are bound to be other problems because you don't see the world the same way.

Amanda @ there are 2 sides said...

This is what I am going through now. Together 7 years, married for 1. He had two kids from his first marriage, I have zero from my first marriage. I have always always always wanted one of my own. I feel 'broken' or less whole thinking that he now doesn't want to have one with me anymore. He said he is just done

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Amanda, this is such a familiar story. I'm sorry it's happening to you. From his point of view, I suppose he's just being honest about he feels. He has his two kids and that's enough for him, but it's not enough for you. Keep working on him. Maybe there's time to change his mind.

amanda @ There Are 2 Sides said...

He is 100% sure he is done. Now he feels he is 'not enough' for me. Funny because I feel I am 'not good enough' to have kids with. Leave or stay is the question. I have no answer. I am losing sleep, not eating over this. I truly don't know what to do. This is so hard.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Amanda, I'm so sorry. I can't answer your leave or stay question, of course. Nobody can do that but you, and it is hard. It's impossible. My suggestion is to try some time apart, and see how you feel. Then maybe you'll have an answer. I wish you the best.

Anonymous said...

Sue,

Thank you for writing this. I'm currently under the situation where my husband wants kids but I don't.

We've been together for 13 years. Since we started our relationship so young, we never talked about the question of having kids. But recently I think as more and more of his friends are having kids, he starts to want them very badly. The pressure on me was so great that I went into a deep depression and was hospitalized for three weeks last year. Now I'm in remission with my depression, the question remains unresolved.

At the height of my depression, I felt suicidal if he'd leave me but now I'm re-questioning the validity of this feeling. The thing is he's mentioned over and over that he does not see a maternal nature in me. When I see kids, I always just wanted to avoid them instead of trying to interact with them. I brought the possibility of having an adoption but he adamantly denies that because he doesn't believe I will be a good mother. Yet he pressures me to become pregnant because he wants to procreate and that I will be more likely to be a good mother if it's my own.

Nothing makes sense to me.

I'm seriously considering that ending the marriage will be better for both of us. But it's so hard to throw away what we've built together for 13 years. We've been through so much and now financially we are well off and it's really the time to enjoy life.

Why must life be a constant struggle?

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Dear Anonymous Jan. 13,
Why must life be a constant struggle? A think a lot of us ask that question. Only God knows the answer, but if you look closely, there are good parts in between the bad ones. I'm so sorry you and your husband have come to this painful place. It doesn't quite make sense. He doesn't think you'd be a good mother, but he wants you to have children? Huh? And what do you want? Much more talking needed here. You might want to try counseling to work this out. I wish you all the best.

Anonymous said...

I am a mother of a 14 year old who is the light of my life, I am divorced from her father and although it wasn't a good marriage I have never regretted having her with my ex. I yearned for a child and the yearning was so strong that I went ahead and had her with a man who was totally wrong for me,I felt at 28 time was running out (I was young & with hindsight it wasn't, I was a baby!) he didn't really want kids and only agreed when I was about to walk out as my need to be a mother outweighed my need to be married to him. I should have walked. He refused to have any more kids and I adored being a mum, that was my punishment for staying. It all put a huge strain on an already shaky marriage and we divorced 10 years later, however my life would be incomplete without my daughter, she smiles and my heart melts. I understand the anguish that not having a child can cause to an individual and a relationship.

Fast forward to now and I am 42 and happily engaged to my soul mate, he happens to be 28 yrs old & childless (ring any bells?) he said from the beginning he didn't want children this is why we became serious. 12 months after getting engaged he now tells me he really wants kids, I look into his eyes and I recognise the same longing that I once had at that very same age. I adore children and can't wait for grandchildren but I cannot imagine being a mum again in my mid 40's. Time has truly run out this time, every day I wish I could turn back time and meet this man when I was younger and we would have lots of children together & live happily ever after. I cannot bear to deny him something that has completed my life, I love my fiance so much but I can't have a child to please him and I can't expect him to stay with me and be childless, every day I question my love for him as if I loved him surely I would give him at least one child? Its destroying our once perfect relationship, one friend pointed out that I managed to have a child with my ex who wasn't a nice person so why am I punishing my wonderful fiance? I feel selfish and insecure. After having one failed marriage I would not put my daughter or myself through the trauma of another. Kahlil Gibran said "If you love somebody, let them go, for if they return, they were always yours. If they don't, they never were.” if you love someone you have to be prepared to let them go and be the best that they can be - even if this is without you. My fiance will make an amazing Dad someday and he'll be a loving, attentive wonderful husband, it just won't be with me. Just thinking about him having kids and growing old with someone else breaks my heart but not as much as if he stayed with me and every time he looked at me he resented me for ruining his life.

I didn't want all that to come across as depressing or feeling sorry for myself, it was meant to be hopeful and insightful, maybe I still have some way to go with it all though!

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous Jan. 28,
Thank you for sharing this. I'm so sorry it has come to such a difficult place now. The truth is you would probably have a hard time getting pregnant at 42, so it might not be your decision to make. But it shows an awful lot of love and strength to be willing to let your soul mate go so he can be a father with someone else.
You have a given us a lot to think about here. I wish you all the best.

Anonymous said...

I'm in the same position as many... I am soon to be 30 years old. My boyfriend is 43. We have been together for over 5 years. I can honestly say that I have never loved someone as much as I love this man.
We have been living together for the past 2 years. We get along perfectly, laugh all the time, and genuinely enjoy each other's company. He is divorced with a teenage son who is absolutely wonderful. I've never been married, nor have any children.
This past summer, he told me that he didn't want to have children anymore. He originally did....but says he has been feeling very old recently and can't imagine having a baby. The life I've been envisioning with him has been shattered. I'm devastated. Heartbroken. Questioning life's cruel curve balls. A mess.
I can't picture not being with him. I can't picture not having children. . .

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anon Jan. 28, I'm so sorry. This reminds me so much of my own story. There is still hope he will change his mind. Keep talking. I wish you all the best.

KM said...

I need a little help as well. My fiance and I have been engaged for several years now, he is fixing to graduate with his Masters in college, and there is a possibility that we will be moving. We have touched on the subject of kids in the past and recently, and we always end up arguing. He told me that I am worth the risk, meaning if I don't have kids later, than I am worth sticking around with right now. However, if I don't have kids later, then we will need to go our separate ways. I already struggle with a bad childhood of no security and stability and want desparately to feel like I am in a secure place. I love my fiance to death, but I have become very depressed with this thought, pretty much this seed of doubt. Growing up I never wanted kids, I am now 27 yrs old and still don't. This might change in the future?....possibly? I don't know, but it is almost like I have been given this time limit and within the next five years, if I don't want kids, I am pretty much out of the picture. Please help. This really hurts. We have already bought a house together, worked out our finances and everything...and yet now I feel so incredibly broken like I am not enough or won't be enough for him.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

KM, Right now I want to throttle your fiance for saying that. How can he hold motherhood over your head like that? What if you were unable to have children? Would that give him the right to divorce you? If he means it, he needs to go his separate way now, not hold that threat over your head for God knows how many years. Have a baby or else? I know you're in terrible pain right now, but you need to get this settled before this relationship goes any farther. I hate that this has happened to you, and I pray you'll work it out.

KM said...

He did mention that if I physically wasn't able to have kids, he would go with a surrogate mother...he pretty much wants to have kids one way or another. He is a wonderful man, but I want nothing more to know that I am more than enough for one person that I love to stay with me forever, even there is a possibility I won't have kids later. This hurts something fierce to feel this now when we have been through so much. We were going to get married in 2012 but he more so than I called it off due to the possibility that I might not have kids in the future. I somewhat feel that I am near a breaking point, and possibly that this living in doubt is not what I want in my life. I just fear that I will make a big mistake by breaking it off with him.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

KM,
It sounds like either you have kids with him, or you lose him, not a great choice when you don't really want to have children. I hope you have somebody to talk with about this, friend, family, pastor, counselor, somebody who can help you sort it out. The fact that you called it off before seems like a red flag. Nobody can live in doubt for long and stay healthy. I wish you a peaceful resolution.

Andie said...

I stumbled across this blog today and have taken some comfort from all your experiences. I'm 45, my boyfriend is 46. He has two children, 16 & 18; I have none. When we met more than 8 months ago, he said he was "not necessarily opposed" to having another child. I knew that it was a long shot anyway at my age, but I did want the chance to try at some point. Then, two months ago, I discovered I was pregnant (I had thought it was menopause due to changes in my period). As was to be expected at my age, it ended in miscarriage after 8 weeks, but I was THRILLED that I could even get pregnant at 45. He was supportive throughout, which I took as a good sign, and he loves kids and babies, and I was overjoyed that I had in my life this wonderful, caring man. I know my chances are slim for a natural pregnancy to term (the only way I want to do it - God willing) but I looked forward to giving it another try soon. Today he informed me that he's decided he doesn't want another child. He now feels it will "change everything" and not for the better. When I said that I might then need to end the relationship, he made me feel guilty that I must not love him if I only want to be with him if he wants a child. I think it's a conflict of values - a family life is my utmost goal, and also I think he already has fulfilled his dream of children, so he has what he wants, yet he isn't willing to share the dream with me, to enable me to have the same happiness as he has. I see many here have spoken for keeping the man and giving up the idea of a child, but I can't help but feel cheated. Is he being selfish? Am I? I don't see a solution, and am heartbroken.
Thank you for any insight/comments...

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Andie, yikes. Your story sounded so good until he did no-kids flip. I think you're not finished talking about this, and I pray he'll understand that it could be such a wonderful,miraculous thing if you could have a baby.

Anonymous said...

Wow! I am writing an essay on what are the benefits of having or not having a child with my husband. Since this is my second marriage and I already have two from the first at the young age of 25, you could say I am very weary of this idea. Mainly because I am successfully in a carreer that I enjoy and a child could possibly take that away from me.

Now when my husband and I were dating he had confessed that his dream was probably the most stupid thing he could say. I urged him to tell me otherwise. His dream was to have a family and a baby of his own. Now I thought that was not a silly thing to dream of. After all that was what he dreamed. When I confessed later that I really did not want another child, I felt the urge to pick up and take flight. I told him I knew that this was a make it or break it in relationships and I was worried if we kept going I would only lead him on. I could not be the one to take the joy of family away from him in his young age of 21. He surprised me with his reply. He told me, "If a baby is all that keeps us from being together, then I don't need one." I saddened my heart to hear him sacrifice his dream just to be with me.

Although it may seems like my answer was a hard no and that I don't want any more children. I have willing considered giving him his dream. Since, I know how great he is to my children, that are not his blood. I have no fear that he would not take care of us through what ever rollercoaster we are thrown.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anon, Thanks for sharing this. It proves that it's not just men who go into a marriage already having children and not wanting more. This is a difficult situation, and I hope you can figure it out. It comes down to which one of you is going to sacrifice your dream. Tough decision.

Alli said...

Thank you anonymous 28 Jan. Your post was hopeful and insightful!

I am 3 weeks down the road of separating from my partner (37) of 4 1/2 years. When we first got together, we both wanted to get married and have 4 children. After a year we went overseas travelling and He starting saying he didn't want children. I thought it was because we were travelling and with loads of people in their early 20's. But we got back, he was still saying that he didn't want children. I thought he just wasn't ready and we kept getting more fur children.

Well after I don't know how many conversations, he admits that he doesn't want to be like this dad. It was a look of surprise when it came out of his mouth. He didn't and still doesn't have a wonderful relationship with his dad.

I just wish he could see himself through my eyes and what a brilliant father he would make. He is wonderful with his niece and nephews. And has so much to offer a child..

I just want my life back! And the one we planned....the only problem is my plan had children in it and his didn't!

The only thing that I am certain of is I was born to be a mother. I have been maternal since I was very young. I am 32 and scared that I won't met another love and have a child.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Alli,
I'm sorry it has come to this for you, especially when you both agreed at first that you wanted the same things. And now he has changed his mind. It sounds like if he could accept that he can be different from his father, he might still be convinced to have kids. But now you are separated, and I'm sure you're both hurting. I hope you can find peace and the life you always wanted.

Betsyb said...

Hi, i am 42 , my husband is 41. We've been married for just over 5 years. I have 2 grown up children aged 22 & 18 from a previous awful relationship.
My husband and I had an incredible marriage. We never argued, always respected each other and loved each other very very deeply. 2 months ago he left me!!

He does not want to be 60 and never have become a father. I understand how he feels but he refuses to acknowledge how I feel.

I was a teenage mum and have spent my entire adult life looking after kids and he wants me to go right back to the beginning and start again. He can't see what my problem is. He just says I don't love him enough. If I did I would make the sacrifice for him. He says that I have "rejected" him.

Now I am completely devastated, I can't eat, sleep and can hardly get up in the morning, which is a problem because I run my own business with other people relying on me too.
I really thought this man would "never leave me", "couldn't live without me" and we would grow old together. I even came off birth control and was prepared to take the chance for him but nothing has happened. I've just been dumped anyway.

I need to know if I will ever see an end to this pain?

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Oh BetsyB, I am so sorry this happened to you. I can totally see both sides and there's pain no matter how you look at it. It seems like your husband waited too long to realize he had to be a dad. At 42, your odds of pregnancy aren't great. It's going to hurt bad for a long time, I think, but it will get easier with time. Meanwhile, I would encourage you to get into counseling to help you deal with the grief and figure out how to go on. Let the other people in your life know how you're feeling and let them help you. You're in my prayers.

Anonymous said...

I am in a similar situation as Anonymous, Jan 28. My boyfriend and I have been together for 6 years and just recently discussed getting engaged within the year. I am 30 and he is 39 and has been married once before. I have never known that I definately wanted to have kids but just recently I have been feeling a stronger urge to seriously consider it. My boyfriend just told me that he 100% will not have kids and I need to seriously consider if that is okay with me because he is not "changing his mind". He is the love of my life and I would never consider not being with him but to hear him so vehemently say no to kids made me a little depressed. I am hoping that maybe one day he will consider it or my recently budding baby fever will subside. Thank you so much for your open blog!

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous March 26, At least you know now and not after you've been married for a few years. Now you have to decide whether you can really live with his decision. I wish you all the best.

Selina said...

All these comments have connected with me tremendously. I am about to marry the love of my life in one month. He has two kids from his first marriage (8 & 12). The oldest was a mistake, but he married his first wife to do the "right thing" and the second child of his was a product of his ex using him as a sperm bank. I understand he has issues there, especially with wanting them altogether. However, he mentioned a year ago that he wasn't sold on the idea of kids but that he would do it to make me happy.

I have never wanted children until I met him, so naturally when I first met him, he knew I was not wanting kids. After living with his kids and seeing all the things I want to be a part of, but for myself as a mother, the desire to have a child is real and strong. We are such a strong couple that I know we could accomplish anything.

After seeing a counselor for 4+ months on this issue, we have gone back and forth on it still, many with some knock-down drag out fights. He sees it as too much work and I see him just wanting to enjoy his life, be lazy, and not have to raise children anymore. While I was willing to accept his answer of "yes," it was hard to accept his "not wanting" it still. He told me before to give him to be excited about it like I am and to want it. But my feeling about it was, "if you don't want it now, will you ever?" But it is hard to not get exited when I see couples with their young kids and see things that my fiance and I would be doing. All my friends and family have kids or are having kids and I seem to be the only one left. I get excited about some dreams, names, or even ideas, and he does not acknowledge them or comment on them usually (as we do not share the same wanting), which makes me feel like his "yes" is really a no and always has been/will be. After all, how can someone say they'll do something, but not be in it fully?

I would hate to have him be in this just half and half. What if he ends up hating the baby? What if he ends up regretting that he sacrificed for me and therefore resent me? I want a full and meaningful yes so I can enjoy all the things that come along with planning a family and the dreams that accompany it. I feel like I missed out on so much being a stepmom and second wife -- it's not fair to constantly get the short end of the stick when I put in so much time with his own kids. Losing this completely will break me. This morning he said officially that "I'm done. No, I don't want kids, but if anything changes, I'll let you know." He was tired of the arguments about the subject and admitted that I could see through him and his false "yes's".

I can feel the grief creeping up already and I feel nauseous with emotional pain. I feel like he doesn't understand what I am going through. Should I call off the wedding? Or just accept this and move on? I feel like I've lost something that I've never had and the pain is overwhelming.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Oh, Selina, how I hate what's happening to you, what seems to be happening to so many women. Same story over and over. You're not married to him yet. You're already in counseling. And you disagree strongly about this so-important issue. Have you talked about this with your family? You should. If I had gotten my parents' opinions before my first marriage, I could have avoided a lot of heartache. My gut feeling is to say call it off or at least delay the wedding a while. In the end, it's up to you.
You're in my prayers.
I'd love to hear some other opinions from other readers.

Selina said...

Hi Sue, Thank you for your response. This is my second marriage as well. And my mother of course has been upset at the idea of me not having kids of my own. She hints at me to call it off sometimes but I assure her that I can endure this crusade. He is so amazing, loving and perfect for me in so many ways, I am scared to throw it all away for something that has yet to be. God forbid I am unable to have kids and have thrown away a great man in the meantime.

But I am 32 and feel the clock ticking away. So I also fear becoming older and missing out on not being a mom because he may not change his mind. I wonder if I can find peace with this decision of staying and maybe not having kids or not. We are seeing our marriage counselor today, so hopefully she can provide some extra insight. Thank you for your kind words.

Elle said...

Sue -- thanks for holding this space! Been reading here a few weeks and I really appreciate your kind and compassionate voice.

I'm about to turn 31. My partner, too. He is 100%, looking-up-vasectomy-clinics serious about being childfree. I've known that, and would never try to change his mind about it.

I was on the fence for a long time. But not so much any more.

The discussions we've had around this have pretty much laid out how different our values and goals are. He's more of the 'why make life harder than it has to be?' mindset. He only sees the sacrifice. He doesn't get how my love for my kitty trumps the vet bills and messes to clean up. He doesn't get why I'd come home from my 9-5 to work on a creative project instead of kicking back with something mindless. He sees himself at 50 doing the same geeky bachelor things he does today and is content. I want more. So maybe we'd be doomed down the road, anyway.

My own family life was pretty great, and still is, so I feel like I know what I'd be missing out on. More so than he does. And it doesn't help when he sees me struggling with this question and belittles my desires, or acts like I'm some kind of cartoon cliche for even thinking about it.

So even if he did miraculously change his mind on the baby question, he probably isn't the one I'd want to parent with. And that has been hard, hard, hard.

So much else of what we have is this super-connected, easy, fun, supportive, wonderful thing. The thought of giving up all the good we have here and now, for this possibility that's on my heart every day, is really scary.

Knowing I'd probably regret staying doesn't make leaving feel any less impossible.

But I can't imagine giving up a big dream like this (especially when he's sacrificing nothing in return) and not feeling resentful, or that I was cowardly, or not being true to myself. Especially when I do have some time still.

If I want to meet the right person and I want to have a kid (to say nothing of kids, plural), well, I feel like I should probably be getting on that train now. But I'm still here on the platform, crying about having to say goodbye.

Cheryl said...

I always thought I would become a mother. I met my husband at 22, married him at 25 (he was 35). Tried having a baby when I was 26, then he wanted to travel. We did travel a lot, I was the one who discussed babies, he never did. Years later I think back and recall that he never mentioned starting a family. I always did. On Christmas Day I used to insist we went for a walk in the mornings just so I could hear the children's happiness in the neighbourhood as we walked and I would smile and think how wonderful that would be if it were me.
I recall once we had a huge disagreement, he told me he did not want children I cried and thought we would have a child someday. Eventually I decided to see a doctor about having a baby, he said there was a process that he could see that I would be pregnant in 6 months.... The joy I felt at hearing that news! My husband had to have a fertility test first... I was 39, sadly it took me a further 4 years of begging my husband to have a fertility test which he did and unfortunately the result was that he had a very low sperm count. IVF was an option, a long shot but sadly never eventuated. My husband showed no interest and it was never discussed. And that is my story (the short version).
Looking back now I wish I had of made some kind of decision to stand up as a younger me and realise that I needed to make drastic changes before my time to become a mother ran out. if your partner does not share your desire to become a mother or a father, please don't think you won't worry or regret never having a child because if you are like me, it leaves such an empty space and sadness.
And Sue like you sometimes talk about when you see other people with their families and babies, grandparents sharing photos of their grandchildren, you wish it were you but it isn't and I do feel upset and angry and i shouldn't it isn't their fault. I wish I'd had a crystal ball.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Elle and Cheryl, I hurt for both of you. You offer two sides of the same picture, one while there's still time and the other when it's too late. Thank you so much for sharing your stories. I know lots of people are rooting for you both.

Monique said...

Elle, I am in the same boat as you, about to turn 31 in 2 weeks. My husband didn't want kids but before we married I told him I wouldn't be able to marry him knowing I wouldn't have a baby. He decided we pay off our debt then have one. 3 weeks ago it's time to start trying, 1 week ago he tells me he can't do it, he really doesn't want one. What you say in your post feels like my exact same situation. Good relationship until this (been together about 5 years, had some difficulties in the beginning but have really grown well together). I too fear about the resentment if I stay and sacrifice so much, feeling he is sacrificing nothing. It makes me question how he feels about me since he is going back on his promise to me, is it worth it? But then again is it worth losing this man I love and made a life with for the possibility of a baby. I also don't know what to do now, all my plans were working towards having and then based on a baby in the picture. I feel lost and confused.

Anonymous said...

I am in a terrible siuation.

I am 33 nearly and my husband is 45. We've been together 6 years, married for 2 1/2. We have been actively trying for two years. I have fertility problems and have recently found out I have a 10% chance of natural pregnancy. W have the IVF paper work ready to go.

He has now told me he doesnt want children.

What do I do? I am left with a choice...my husband or leave him a try with someone else. How could he string me a long like this? I feel cheated.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

I'm sorry, Anonymous. This is a terrible situation. Maybe your husband just doesn't want to go through all the hassles and expense of IVF and is trying to spare you the pain and possible disappointment? Keep talking. Maybe there's a solution. I hope so.

Elle said...

Hi Monique -- just happened to check back in here and saw your comment. It's some comfort just knowing other people get it! Though of course I'm sorry you're in a place to understand this particular brand of sad/anxious/crazy. You were so, so, so close and then had the bomb dropped on you -- wow. That's awful.

In my case it feels like there have been all these little chinks in the bridge between us, some big and some small, and the baby question is the big final boulder that's bringing the whole thing down. I can write it all out, weigh up my pros and cons, but nothing makes the decision any easier.

Wish we could all sit down and have coffee and chat this out face-to-face! Not too many people in my real life right now who get what it's like, so hooray for blogs. Maybe I'll finally get the nerve to fire up my own.

Good thoughts going out to all.

Melanie said...

No man is worth sacrificing motherhood for. One day they will be gone, but your children and grandchildren are your legacy

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Amen! Thank you for saying it loud and clear, Melanie.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this post and the thoughtful, non-judgmental discussion in the comments section here. I am almost 32, and in a relationship with a 28 year old man who, when we first became involved a year ago, was so in love that he gushed about having children with me. He had never wanted children before, and I had always been on the fence, having been through a divorce already with many other personal debts and responsibilities. Now that we have settled and the dust has cleared, he informed me that he has changed his mind. He doesn't think he's ever going to want kids, but he is more sure than ever he wants to get married.
Naturally, this has been a hard week for me. This man is loving, supportive, nurturing and helping me move into a new phase of my life, even supporting a career change. But, the image I had of what our life could be together is no longer what it was. It's jarring.
He was very concerned and sad to break this news to me. He knew it would potentially be hurtful and disappointing, and he understands it's a big change. He also understands it could mean losing me if I've determined having a family is an important priority. We've even cried about it a few times together.
All I can think is that I'd rather have a life and whatever adventures it brings with this man, than to trade him in for someone else just to have a kid.
We have both discussed how being childless could allow us more room to be of service in other ways: mentoring, community service, assisting our other family members, and so on.
We also both went without a lot of things when we were young. The idea of having as much time and freedom together as we wish is very appealing.
Having a child was never at the top of my list. I always said I wouldn't have children unless I could accomplish certain things first. Still, there is a part of me that wants to remain open to the idea later on. If he were to be even half as loving to a child as he is to me, that child would be luckier than most.
At least he is giving me time to think about what I need and want most, but I know I have a partner for life if I'm willing to take this journey with him.
I'm in a strange place. This is not a decision I'd ever thought I'd have to make.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous, Thank you for sharing your story. It looks like you have a great love that will carry you through this. But don't ignore the feelings you have about not having kids. It's not an easy thing. I wish you all the best.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for bringing up this subject... I found a link on google while searching for advice and answers to my own dilemna.
My wife and I have been together as a couple for 13 years, married for 4. After we married we decided to pursue the next step, having children.After a few months of no success we found out she is unable to have children due to premature ovarian failure.
Fast forward a few years to now... I have come to the realization that I am unable to get the one thing i want the most (fatherhood)from the woman I love the most. Other than being able to bear children, our marriage is great. But something is tearing at me about knowing I will never be able to have a child as long as we continue our relationship..
So my dilemma is which one do I regret more when I'm old and on my death bed, leaving the woman I love for fatherhood or never having children because I chose to stay with my love.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anon, Forgive me for bringing up the obvious response that probably everybody tell you, but have you considered adoption. It's not easy or inexpensive, but it would be an option. I'm so sorry you have to go through this, and I thank you for sharing the male viewpoint. It's important to remember there are always two sides to this.

Anonymous said...

Two weeks ago, my husband of 5 years told me that he wants a divorce because he wants a biological child. I'm devastated and feel completely blindsided.

6 months before we got married I was diagnosed with MS. I gave him many outs and told him that I would completely understand if he had second thoughts about marrying me. He said he didn't have a doubt in his mind.

Three years ago I had chemo and a bone marrow transplant and my MS went into complete remission. Unfortunately, my body went into early menopause and I am not able to have a biological child now. We talked about this before I started chemo and we agreed on adopting a child.

Now my husband changed his mind and only wants a biological child. He feels he would regret it later in life if he didn't have one. He is 37 and I am 40 now.
I am not mad at him for changing his mind, I just feel so sad and heartbroken. This is the end of my dream also, I know I will not have a child and my marriage is over.
I ask God to help me through this and help me understand why and give me the strength to continue every day. I hope one day I will understand and be able to move on. I love my husband so much but I think I need to realize that his feelings have changed. It's so hard to let go of your love and your dreams.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Oh, Anonymous, what a terrible situation. You have two unbearable losses at once. I hope, in time, your husband will be able to accept your situation and decide to stick with you. To leave a person in your situation just seems cruel and selfish. I know he wants a child, but you can't always have what you want. You are in my prayers.

Meia said...

Reading more personal stories, make me realise that perhaps I am not alone with struggling...

Me and my boyfriend have been living together for five years, I am 29 and he is 35 years old. I love him passionately and have always done. I don't know if he loves me back, he has refused to ever answer on this. The problem is that he wants kids, while I don't.

I don't want kids so much that I have avoided sex (meaning i-course) entirely, even though we still are intimate. I never liked to interact with small children because I don't stand smells, I cannot imagine changing a diaper, I have difficulties with all things that small kids do. I don't think they are cute, and like to have them as far away as possible. And besides of my career (that is living a dream), I have interests that fully occupy me and to which I'd like to dedicate my life. I would only see a kid as something that destroys everything that is important to me in my life, lots of responsibility that is incompatible with the lifestyle I'd like to have. And emotionally draining to an extent I wouldn't handle -- even ordinary friendships are tough for me. Simply put -- I am not a mother, and may never be permitted to be, for the sake of the child and for me.

Me and my boyfriend share some of the interests, and it creates such a strong bond between us. We are very connected on so many levels.

He has said that he absolutely never will change his mind (and must have kids), and he says that that if I never want kids, I will force him into the worst day of his life (=leaving me). I definitely don't want kids, but because I so much cannot be without him, I don't know how to tell him openly and have only said "I don't want it, and the person I am right now cannot imagine having it, but it doesn't mean that I will be the same person in 5-10 years.". At the same time, I do think that (no matter how unlikely it feels to me that I will be the one), either of us could change our mind, because we don't know how what events can change our personalities. I tried to tell him, that I also hope for him to change his mind and the he can't absolutely know that he will keep the same idea in 5 years, but he says "absolutely never -- you have to change your mind if we shall stay together".

I feel under extreme pressure. His motivations for getting kids are "Do you want to be old and alone?" and "This is the point of life, all is about evolution." Knowing him, I think he would never be able to be a good father and husband at the same time, so I don't think this would improve our relationship. He thinks, that since all is about evolution, it is unnatural for a woman not have kids and thus I must change my mind. He doesn't insist on it now, but he wants it while still being young.

Is there any way how we can still be together without that he will force me into the nightmare of my life? I wouldn't love neither the kid nor him if he ever would push me into this. I am constantly thinking about tubal ligation, but I don't like irreversible solutions.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Meia, I think this is definitely a case of irreconcilable differences. It's not going to work. This sound harsh, but you need to break up and move on. I'm sorry it has come to this and wish you both the best.

Meia said...

Sue, I just cannot imagine a life without him. If he choses to go, I will wish him the best and hope that all his dreams will come true and that he will meet the right woman along the way. He is a great guy and would deserve that. I hope with time I would get over him, but it will be a difficult and lonely road, and I wonder if I will ever feel complete again when it happens.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Oh Meia, I wish there could be a happy ending. Someone is not going to get what they want. You just have to figure out which one of you will give in. I wish you all the best.

Anonymous said...

I've had a wonderful relationship with a man who left me a year ago because he felt he couldn't have the family we wanted with me.

We are both 40 years and we have been trying having children since we were 36. We agreed to stop for 2 years because I enrolled in a masters while working. Went through IVF last year but did not work. Then I quit my job and we moved to another country were he had found his dreamed job, that involved heavy travel. I felt I couldn't get pregnant before I found a job myself in this new place and I also told him I did not want to be a single mother to his children - he would not agree to eventually give up his new job for another one that meant less travel- He felt I was betraying him.

Long story short, I am now back to square 1, divorced, back in my home country, looking for a job and devastated because the man I love has decided he wants to be with someone who wants to have children as badly as he does. And of course, at 40 he feels time is running out.

I still love him and wish him well. He had made his choice and I can't do anything about it. Still, it hurts.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

I'm sure it does hurt, Anon, and I'm sorry it came to this. But it sounds like the problem is more than just having children. I hope you can find your way into a new life on your own. We're here for you.

AnonFX said...

Thankyou all for sharing your stories. It does help to know I'm not alone.

I'm a 39 guy, and have been with my partner of 35 for over 8 years. She stated early in the relationship that she didn't want kids, and this has been the case since she was a young girl. This has been a constant struggle for me. Having to choose between the relationship, and the potential for a family, is honestly the hardest thing I've had to endure. I'd never had to question this deeply, as I'd always assumed that family would come from a loving relationship.

I've given it years of understanding, talk, encouragement and personal soul searching. Two years ago I came to the conclusion I did want family, and that we should consider going our separate ways. Immediately she announced she'd changed her mind and wanted to have kids with me. I was wary, and waited a year to see if her position was consistent - it was, and so we made plans. We bought a house large enough to raise a family. She got a job with amazing maternity leave, and we had a rough timeline in mind.

I've supported her through years where she mistreated me, as we worked through childhood issues of hers. This was extremely taxing but ultimately worthwhile. Last year I needed a 4-6 weeks to reboot myself a bit, and reclaim my own soul, as I'd become too passive to life. I was open, honest, and communicated directly and through counselling exactly what was going on in my soul, and we both came out of this as fuller stronger people.

Months went by and we were working together as a team in ways we'd always dreamed were possible. We both realised that there were now no more barriers to having kids. It was time to start.

She announced she'd changed her mind, and that she would rather be alone, than with me and a child. I've tried to figure out exactly what's going on here, but she's been absolutely rock hard consistent with her message. I suspect she's freaking out, is scared out of her mind, but no matter how I try to approach this, she refuses to look deeply within herself as to why she doesn't want kids.

I've had a hellish couple of months doing further soul searching, and I honestly think I'd like a family. I'd even be OK if we both tried to have a family, and it just didn't work. At least then I'd know we were a team, and had wanted the same things for the rest of our lives. We'd tried, it failed, and we recover.

I don't HAVE to have kids to be happy, but I don't want to live my life being dicated by fears - either my own or my partners. Now that we're facing selling the house and splitting assets, she throws doubt around that maybe she is making a terrible mistake. There is so much inconsistency of message, I just don't know how I can trust my partner anymore. Making things worse I just can't see honest work on her part in resolving this within herself. There is a lot of denial, anger, topic diversion, blame and dismissal being thrown around by her. I wish I could get a real grasp on what is really going on within her, but I'm also exhausted by years of emotional caretaking, and I'm feeling the weight of years bearing down on me. If I stick around on the hope she changes her mind, and she doesn't - and I don't feel she's honestly doing everything within herself to work it out too - I'm sure I'll have major regrets.

It breaks my heart that I'm now looking at being 40 and single, looking for another life partner, and hopefully start a family. Love to hear your thoughts.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Dear AnonFX, sometimes I think free will is more of a burden than a gift. How can anyone know what to do in this situation? I hope someone else will read this and offer answers. If you weren't running out of time to make babies, I'd say take a break from the whole discussion and relax for a while, but the biological clock is ticking pretty loudly for your partner. If you do separate, it does not have to be forever. Perhaps some time apart will help you both to either move on or figure out a way to be together. I wish you all the best.

Anonymous said...

It was so good to find this discussion on the internet searching for answers. My bf of 7yrs is talking about leaving me because he doesn't want kids and doesn't want the guilt of taking that option away from me. I am just 32 so he said I have time to find someone else. Thing is everything else in our relationship is great so I am not sure I want to leave him just to find someone to have kids with. I am still 50/50 on wanting kids which makes it so tough. Although he is removing me from making a decision about my own life and regrets which is also tough. I know no-one else can answer my uncertainties but it is so nice knowing others have gone through similar.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

What a tough situation, Anonymous. I think it says a lot for your boyfriend that he is willing to walk away so you can have children. As to what you should do, I don't know. Maybe you should just accept this and move on or maybe you should hang on to him and decide not to have kids. I hope you can work it out. And yes, you're not alone.

Anonymous said...

It is very hard to know what to tell a younger woman about having kids. I just had my first at age 45, I'm now 46 with an infant. I am happy, but the only fly in the ointment is my MIL, who has made it clear that it was WRONG of me to have a child because I'm "too old". Like I asked her opinion. Anyway, had I chosen to have a child younger just to have the child, it would not be the daughter I now have, so that is reason #1 why I can never regret it. I did want the relationship first and maybe even (like you) instead of children. Like I said, I cannot regret it. I still don't think it's the right thing for a woman to either force a relationship just to conceive children, or conceive children "on her own". Other women can choose what they want but it would not have been right for me.

Bec said...

Wow, I really needed to read this today, and reading through the comments has been good too.

I am the opposite. I don't want kids and I have been debating this year whether or not to end the marriage.

I told the hubby when we were dating (before we were even engaged), I did not want my own kids. I was always told I'd make a good mother, and I love kids to death. But I felt strongly that if I am to have kids, it was to be through adoption, not through my own childbearing.

He said he would be ok with adoption rather than having his own kids. That it'd probably be hard for his family, but he'd be ok with it. Well, a couple years after getting married, he started talking about kids more and more. He didn't want them right away, he wanted to wait a few years until he was in a better job, but he wanted kids. As for adoption, he was still open to the idea, but he wanted to have at least 2 kids of our own and then maybe adopt 1 child.

It has been hard. If we accidentally got pregnant, I of course would take care of the child and love the child as a mother should. But, I know if I had my own child, in the back of my mind I would keep thinking about all the kids with out loving parents. Plus, there is no guarantee if we have kids, that he'd even be willing to adopt anymore.

We have other issues in our marriage, but the child one WILL be a much bigger issue in the next year or two because he has been talking more and more about it.

I feel lost and don't know what to do. I feel terrible staying in a marriage where I know we will never see eye-to-eye on the topic. We are almost 30, and if he really wants kids that bad, I feel like maybe I should divorce so that he can find another girl and start a family while he is still young.

Any advice?

Anonymous said...

Bec, you're both willing to be parents, but where you disagree is that you prefer not to bear children and he wants you to do so?
The fact that you may share common ground on both wanting to be parents is no small thing.
I would try to further the adoption conversation.

The hardest part about being a human is that we are changeable. Our desires change.

Amidst change, there should be strong foundations in our relationships: Strong love, shared beliefs, strong attraction.

My man and I have a very strong foundation. We communicate well, we are consistent, very present for each other in all aspects of life, and very affectionate. We admire each other so much.

The problem is that we met when I was 39 and he 41. We are now 42 and 44, and he's currently launching a new business, making no money and on uncertain ground. Despite that I am very financially stable (making $150K annually), he cannot take the leap for kids because he simply feels he could not devote the emotional attention to the situation in addition to launching the new business. He's not fundamentally against kids, he just feels that there is too much personal chaos in his heart right now to add another layer.

This is so hard for me to accept, especially given that I am running out of time, and he is the man I want to be with.
I keep coming back to the foundation.
Is the foundation strong enough to withstand this?
Are the fundamental pieces in place to carry us as a couple in to our future, without kids in a way that will keep us both happy in the long run?

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Thanks for sharing your situations, Bec and Anon. In both cases, it looks like you could still have the lives you want. There's room for negotiation. But Anon, you need to make it clear to your husband that you don't have time to wait, even if it is not a convenient time to have children.
I wish you both all the best.

testar said...

When I was 39 I met the man I live with now. He's five years older and we are now 46 and 51. He has two boys, 19 and 21. He does not want more children and has been very clear with this from the start.

If I would try to talk him into trying, he would leave me to give me the chance to meet someone else, someone to try to have a child with.

So this difficult choice is mine. Accept this situation or move on in hopes of being lucky enougt to find love again, and acctualy succeed in having a child.

If I had decided at once, maybe I would still have had chances of luck. But now I'm 46...

I wasn't single until I was 39 by choice. It was dreadful, lonely, frightening, humiliating, caused depression and broken self-esteem and all of that still affects me.
How then could I say no to love when it finally came into my life?

So. No child for me. I cry and feel miserable about it often, but I'm not turning away the love I long longed for and finally got.

Before I met this man I never seriously considered trying to have a child on my own, even if I dreamed of it. My self confidence was too low and my economy too bad.

Here I am, trying to accept, to not let grief and regrets ruin what good I do have, and to not let bad self-confidence stop me from doing what I want so as not to get more to regret in the future.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Dear Testar, You're what we call childless by circumstance. The time was never right, and now you need to find a way to live with it. I hope you can find some peace. Sometimes counseling helps. Over time, you'll find that life has a lot of good things to offer, even without kids. I wish you all the best.

Lily said...

What an amazing and inspiring article, and comments.

I feel for everyone and I share the pain. I am 31 and my husband is 48.I have always wanted children, he never did. Extremely early on in our relationship, I made my wish clear. He said that although he doesn't want children; if I am to become a mother then he wants to be the father. What a beautiful thing to say. Fours years and half on, married, he is still blowing hot and cold on the issue.

He made me overthink my desire to the point where I was no longer sure of what I wanted. I made a big step by coming to peace with the following decision: whether we have a child or not, I will accept whatever mother nature decides, but I want to try for a little while. We have an amazing relationship which only clouds are the baby issue and his house which needs major TLC.

The first time I had a very strong baby fever, I was 17. I could have had a baby with anyone but I do not just want the baby, I want the whole thing: the family.

Sometimes, I am scared that he uses delaying tactics, hoping I will give in and give up or something.

Though, he said that I am the only one to have brought him so close to considering the idea. He is aware of the risks if he says no.

But, like many f us, I started to ask questions that others don;t understand: Will this child be worth it? What if our relationship ends because of it? What if something happens to my husband and I end up raising our child on my own? ... I do not want to be with anyone else. The feeling is mutual.

I am not religious but I do believe in some kind of spirituality. I am scared that there might be something "wrong" with the child. This child who did not ask to be born.

I am angry. It is like everything is against us: time and money mostly.

I am terrified that he doesn't stay true to his words.

I also think that he is jealous of this child. He finds difficult to share me even when we go to France to visit my family; I have to remind him that they only see us 3 times a year, you know...

No one can decide for me, us. But thank you for being so understanding and filling the shades of grey because on any other websites, it is all black and white.

Thank you

Lily said...

What an amazing and inspiring article, and comments.

I feel for everyone and I share the pain. I am 31 and my husband is 48.I have always wanted children, he never did. Extremely early on in our relationship, I made my wish clear. He said that although he doesn't want children; if I am to become a mother then he wants to be the father. What a beautiful thing to say. Fours years and half on, married, he is still blowing hot and cold on the issue.

He made me overthink my desire to the point where I was no longer sure of what I wanted. I made a big step by coming to peace with the following decision: whether we have a child or not, I will accept whatever mother nature decides, but I want to try for a little while. We have an amazing relationship which only clouds are the baby issue and his house which needs major TLC.

The first time I had a very strong baby fever, I was 17. I could have had a baby with anyone but I do not just want the baby, I want the whole thing: the family.

Sometimes, I am scared that he uses delaying tactics, hoping I will give in and give up or something.

Though, he said that I am the only one to have brought him so close to considering the idea. He is aware of the risks if he says no.

But, like many f us, I started to ask questions that others don;t understand: Will this child be worth it? What if our relationship ends because of it? What if something happens to my husband and I end up raising our child on my own? ... I do not want to be with anyone else. The feeling is mutual.

I am not religious but I do believe in some kind of spirituality. I am scared that there might be something "wrong" with the child. This child who did not ask to be born.

I am angry. It is like everything is against us: time and money mostly.

I am terrified that he doesn't stay true to his words.

I also think that he is jealous of this child. He finds difficult to share me even when we go to France to visit my family; I have to remind him that they only see us 3 times a year, you know...

No one can decide for me, us. But thank you for being so understanding and filling the shades of grey because on any other websites, it is all black and white.

Thank you

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Lily,
There are definitely lots of shades of gray. Somehow you need to force your husband into a black and white answer. Would he leave you if you had a baby? If not, go for it. If he truly loves you, he'll support you in this. I hope you can find a resolution soon.

Anonymous said...

I turn 40 this year. Eleven years ago I had a partial hysterectomy for medical reasons. Having kids was never something I wanted , maybe because I'm selfish, maybe because I was so much older than my brothers and they were very difficult. Both have been in jail. I'm not sure how that happens when we have the same parents.

So I am ok with not having kids. My only fear is that I will be lonely in my old age.

I met someone when I was about 31, and we really hit it off. I told him right away that I can't have kids. He always thought he would, so was surprised, but we continued dating. Eight months in, I found my first sign that all was not good. He had been flirting with someone else.

This man is not naturally a cheat or a flirt, but he had the idea that we wouldn't last because of the kid issue. I must have agreed because I didn't stop dating other people right away either. We had a big blowup when I found out about the flirting. Ultimately I stayed with him, mostly because I was determined to not give up easily, which is what I had done in past relationships when confronted with big problems.

It's 7 years later and we are still together. We've discovered a few other difficulties between our personalities, but mostly we are good. The big problem is still kids. While he says he loves me and we are together forever, he has never said that it's ok I can't have kids, that he will cope with it, or that we will cope with it together. So I feel like the door is always open for someone else to move into his heart. I'm getting older and his coworkers change constantly, so a lot of things are conspiring to make me feel very insecure.

Some of my friends say he would leave it was so important, but I wonder. I often wonder if he stays not only because he loves me, but also because it's easier than dating. He's a good man, but he can be lazy about some things, and he doesn't like being alone, although he's not one to settle for just anyone.

Also he has some doubts about kids, just because he realizes it is a huge responsibility. He is very competitive, so I think that's part of it. He never knew his father, so I think he has something to prove, namely that he would do a better job.

We don't talk about it much. I may push for relationship counseling to work it out. I'm also thinking of leaving. I don't want this feeling for my entire life- always wondering when he will decide he can't do without kids, wondering if he would leave if the perfect opportunity fell in his lap. It's definitely not good for my mental well-being or sense of self. But the thought breaks my heart.

So there are no easy and absolute answers. When adults tell you that life is hard, they mean it.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous,
What a tough situation. I think the counseling might be a good idea. You can't live forever with this hanging over your head. He needs to commit to you without kids forever or make a change. I hope you can work it out.

Anonymous said...

First of all thanks for this great blog.
It really helps knowing that there are other people in the same situation.
I'm a 31 years old guy, who always wanted kids in my marriage. From very young age I always wanted to have kids and have been planning my life with kids as part of the picture.
From really early in the relationship with my wife I have taken all the necessary steps by ticking all the right boxes to make sure that she's on the same page with me on this. However after 6 years of marriage going through all the ups and downs, and now that we are financially settled for some reason she changed her mind on having a baby. This really shocked me as she was agreeing to the idea just a few months ago. Her reasoning is that she wants to enjoy life and having a baby will take her life away from her.
We have been arguing about this several times now and her thought is that better of for us to go our seperate ways because there's seems to be no common ground on this. At the end we decided to wait until the end of the year to see how we are travelling.
Ever since the first fight from time to time I tried to forget that we have this problem but it keeps coming back and it really making me act like a different person around her. I know its because deep down im blaming her for it, even though I know she's allowed to make her own choice on this.
Despite our different view on this I really want to save our marriage, moreover because I have come to experience the divorce of parents and I really know what they went through.
Understand that if I keep maintaining this relationship as is and if we have kids, we might be ended up the same thing and our kids have to go witness the same thing. Which I think its worse than separating her now.
Either option to stay with no kids or to divorce, for some reason I still think that I'm failing in life as these are the things that I'm trying to avoid from my early childhood. I know that we might have different kind of obstacles in life, but this feels like one of those you can get through.
Anyway thanks again for this blog, hopefully there's someone out there that can provide suggestion and I hope my post is as useful for others as well.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous June 20, I'm so sorry this is happening to you. I'm glad you shared this with us. It's good to get a comment from a guy. It's not only men who suddenly decide they don't want kids. I sure hope you can work this out so that you do have kids and don't get a divorce.

Grace said...

I am 41, married for 2 years to my husband who has 2 older children and a vasectomy from his first marriage. Before we got married, he knew I wanted children, he just said he didn't want them outside of marriage and we'd talk about it after the wedding. Since then the list of stalling, back-tracking stone-walling and excuses has gone on and on. 6 months after the wedding, with frustration and anger, I had what another commentator described as a breakdown. It was horrendous and I behaved terribly towards him. He then said I was psychologically unbalanced, needed counselling and it would be a disaster if we were to have children. It was a complete kick in the teeth.

I have talked about ending the marriage many times, and he has said if having children is so important, I should leave him. He also says he has never said no to having children, the time just hasn't been right. I am exhausted by the twisting and turning.

There is too much damage in our relationship to have children now. I massively resent his older children and avoid any contact with them, which makes him and them resent me. (his children are both at university and don't know what the problem is) I know how awful that is of me but seeing him being a great dad with them is unbearable. The grief and loss are sometimes paralysing.

Due to circumstances, we have spent a couple of months apart and there is clearly no way out of this stale-mate. I have known in my heart for a while that the marriage cannot work but he says if people are willing to let go of their issues and move on, things can be worked out. I feel as though he has taken more from the marriage than can ever be replaced and I cannot forgive him for that.

In so many ways, he was my perfect man and we have shared some amazing times and dreams. letting it all go is agony. I have read these posts and cried my heart out this evening. Having children is too late for me, I don't want to do it on my own and have no interest in meeting someone else. I know time will heal but I am nearly 42, twice divorced and feel such a massive failure.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Dear Grace, I am so sorry. What a hard thing to go through. It sounds like the marriage is over, and you're going to need to find a way to go on. I hope and pray you can do that. You are not a failure.

Anonymous said...

These comments have made me feel completely un-crazy that I may end my marriage over my husband not wanting anymore kids. The difference is we do have a 2 year old together that was not planned. He didn't act thrilled in the beginning but we both cannot imagine our lives without our son. He just recently said he was happy with no more children and our son was enough. I feel a punch to the gut. I also have a 12 year old stepson who has a mother who is absent for weeks or months at a time.
I feel like I have done so much and gave up a lot to be with my husband so we could build the life I thought we would, and that included at least 2 more children. I feel like he doesn't seem me good enough to have another child of my own. Our marriage is far from perfect since there are often stresses from my stepsons mom and the usual everyday life things.
I have made it perfectly clear I wanted kidS of my own and he was on board 100%, or at least that's what he had said. I now have my doubts that he didn't really want more children and was looking for a wife and another caretaker for his child, but not necessarily a mother for future children.
I know that I will resent him and my stepson if we don't have another child(ren) and I feel it may have been a bait and switch as our son was not planned. I don't know if I can ever see him saying "yes, let's start trying". It's always "yes, but not right now. Once finances are a little better" or "when our son is a little more independent".
I know I should be happy that I do have a child at all, but I can't shake it especially because it will upset me that my husband has one child with a person who leaves her child months at a time, and one with me, who provides for my own child and my stepson and would give her right arm for her child. That all makes me seem like a martyr but I feel as if I give and give hoping to get things I want and need in return and a major one is not going to happe

Anonymous said...

Please be open with him. He will have a difficult road if he knows you knew you were so strongly against having kids. As much as you don't want children with him, he wants children with you. Please be honest so you both don't have to make an even more difficult decision years from now. If he knows how you really felt and you weren't honest, he will resent you.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

To both July 5 Anonymouses, I agree that the only answer is to be honest with each other and talk about things until you can reach a resolution. If you need a counselor or someone else to help you do this, then find someone. It's the unspoken wounds that will fester and kill the relationship. Mom of the two-year-old, is it possible that your husband really does just want to wait for a better time rather than completely avoiding having another child? Can you work out a deal, such as you'll have just one more child and will start trying in a year? Would life without him really be better?
Keep talking, my friends.

Chantal said...

My husband and I have been together 21 years we where forty last year we always did things a bit slower than other couples didn't move in until we'd been together 7 years and got married after 11 in between I'd had 2 terminations as didn't feel ready to have children at the time although my husband said it was my decision to make and then 2 years ago I fell pregnant and we where both happy we did the test on valentines day and talked about our plans two days later I lost the pregnancy I felt devastated I wanted to try again and get pregnant but my husband kept pushing me away every time I tried to get intimate that was 2 years ago my heart has been breaking all around me our friends and family are all getting pregnant and having families I would love us to be like that I know my husband would make a fabulous dad final straw came when we were supposed to have a romantic break in Italy but we hardly talked let alone be intimate I was breaking inside I couldn't ignore these feelings any more this weekend I have given him a ultimatum stay with me and we have a family or if he won't change his mind and still doesn't want them it's going to be heartbreaking but we're going to have to go our separate ways I've moved out while he thinks long and hard I love him enormously but my feelings of wanting to be a mother are just to strong xxxx

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Chantal, What a tough situation with no happy solution for everybody. But you've been together so long. Are you sure you want to split up and start over?
I wish you all the best.

Anonymous said...

Hi,

I have been married 2 years and me and my husband have a very good relationship. We both love each other dearly, and aside from this issue share a vision of our future potential together.

Before we got married, we talked about having kids, and where we'd bring them up. We talked about when, given my age, I'd like to start trying (about now or in the next couple of years). I married him believing that trying for children (Whether we could have them or not) was going to be a part of our lives.

I am 32 he is 27. I have always been mindful that the age-gap could be an issue, and I shared this with him He always said it wasn't.

He has now changed his mind. He doesn't want children. He doesn't want to change his life to accommodate children, and cannot see that he will change his mind-whilst I am during child bearing age. He thinks he may have kids one day, but in 5, 10 or 15 years time when and if he's ready. But just doesn't want them now or in the foreseeable. He says when he said he was ok with having them, he hadn't really thought about the practicality if what he would have to sacrifice.

I feel like he want his cake and to eat it. Like he wants all of me, all the fun of our relationship, without any responsibility of fulfilling what he committed to. Kids are firmly in the "too hard" basket, and I feel he's reneging on our relationship. Although he has said he doesn't want us to split up, he wants us to stay together and have a life together happily with no kids.

What do I do?

Eleanor

Anonymous said...

I met my husband at 40. I'd been married before; it didn't take. I wanted children (or at this point, at least one child). And I knew because of my age that it would likely take intervention. I'd been considering doing it alone before I met this man -- whom I fell hard in love with pretty quickly. He has kids from a previous marriage and when he asked and I told him that I did want kids, his response was "Of course -- I could never deprive you of that joy." For the years we dated, we talked of it...he'd refer to names, talk of a 'mini me' running around, etc. And then 3 years in, he changed his mind. Dead set and said, essentially, that it wasn't his fault or responsibility that I didn't have kids before I met him. At 43...I'm left with no kids or leaving this man I loved with the HOPES of finding someone else to fall in love with who wanted to have kids and try to have them at THAT age?? (I wouldn't marry just to have kids.) Just seemed so overwhelmingly impossible. I married him, weighing the "balance" of pro vs. con.

We've been married seven years and I just can't get past it. I have a hard time being intimate with someone I feel 1) betrayed me on something so fundamental and 2) doesn't love me enough to want to have a family with me. I know the latter is a selfish (immature?) assessment, but that's how it feels to me. I just can't give him my heart.

I want to get past it. We get along fine on a daily basis, he's a good man, I know he loves me. I try to hide the sadness (it breaks every now and then), the sense of disconnect... It tears at me from a number of standpoints. I think he thinks grandkids will make it okay (his oldest will likely start a family soon) -- they'll be "my" grandchildren, he figures. But it's just not the same. And I can't look at him how I know I should.

Trying to find...peace.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Dear Anonymous July 8, I'm sorry for your pain. But I'm going to be the hard ass here and tell you that at 43 you need to accept that it's not going to happen and that you're lucky to have this man and his kids to love. His change of tune is awful; hard to believe he did that, but really your best chance to have kids came before you met your husband. And now it is what it is. Don't hide your pain from your husband. Talk about it openly, but try not to dump a big load of blame on him. I'm sorry it turned out this way, but it did.
Other readers, what do you think?

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Eleanor, My response to you may look like it contradicts what I just wrote to Anonymous, but here goes. If you cannot be happy without children and your husband is dead set against them, you probably ought to find someone else. There's still time, but not as much as your husband thinks. You married him thinking he was open to children, and you don't have to accept his decision. Plus, men at 27 are babies! I hope you can figure this out.

Anonymous said...

July 8th anonymous again. Yes, I know the ship has sailed. That wasn't my point or question (I'm 50 now). (And yes, I'm well aware that the time was before I met him but life doesn't always turn out the way we want it to -- I wasn't willing to marry just to have kids and I hadn't otherwise met the right man. Which is why I'd considered going it alone — and would've continued down that path if he'd said early on that he didn't want kids.)

My point is now I struggle to love the man who was, after all, able to "deprive me of that joy." He left a huge hole in my heart and my trust.

I'm successful professionally, I've done a lot of interesting things in my life, live in an exciting city I love. And I always thought of having a child with someone as the ultimate act of intimacy and love. And the person who professed to want to be that person with me then changed his mind. It is a pretty big rejection.

I have talked openly about it enough. I am heartbroken every day about two holes in my life — and I'm trying to figure out how to reconcile both of them so the pain stops. I wish I could say so that I can feel what I should feel for my husband. But I think that ship has sailed too.

Anonymous said...

"I'm lucky to have this man and his kids?" Are we living in 1914?

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

:-) nope. If you have a good man keep him. They are hard to find. If not, feel free to dump him.

Anonymous said...

I am 38 years old and my fiancé of 13 years just told me he changed his mind and doesn't want to have another child., and has known now for a little while just didn't have the heart to tell me. He knows I deeply want a child, I am missing that connection in my life. I want to be a mom. I tried to reassure him that I am okay because I don't want to lose him but it is killing me inside. He says he doesn't think at his age 43, he could keep up a few years down the road. I don't know what to do! I see the bond he has with his son, now 17, and think do I really want to miss that, or do I really want to give up what we have!!! I am scared!

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Oh Anonymous July 9, Why does this keep happening? If you read the previous comments, you'll see you're not alone. May I please come and strangle your fiance?
Okay, I'm calming down. If you're not okay, don't lie about it. It won't help and it may blow up in your face later. Be totally honest.I pray you can find a way to work it out.
I'm writing about this subject in today's blog post (July 9, 2014.Check it out.

Rose said...

When I thought my body could not produce any more tears I googled searched "break up perfectly happy relationship but one wants kids the other doesn't" this blog came up. 2 hours ago I have just ended my 12 year relationship with the man I love, the man I want to be with for the rest of my life, this man; my best friend, is no longer in my life because I want a family, HIS family, and he is unsure if he ever wants to have kids. A 6 hour conversation with him face to face where the end result is "I love you, you love me, I want no-one but you, I want to spend the rest of my life with you, your my best friend, my biggest supporter.....but children; me yes please, him hmmm not too sure. This topic has been in the background for awhile now was starting to affect the relationship both feeling we were at the crossroads; do we go straight ahead together or go our separate ways. A million emotions are going thru me at this moment -sadness, regret, loneliness, aching, love, anger whilst checking my phone every 5 minutes to see if he has txt me. I've lost my partner, my lover, my best friend and I don't want anyone but him. Yea I want children, but HIS children.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Oh Rose, I hurt for you. What a painful situation. It sounds like you're not sure breaking up is the right thing to do. At this point, I'm sure the hardest thing in the world to do is hang on and wait to see whether this drastic move brings the relationship back to life or forces you to start over, but you'll need to give it some time. I'm so, so sorry.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I can relate to this although I'm not angry. I got engaged 6 months ago to my on-off partner of 3 years. We had been all off and he said he wanted to get married and have kids. He had not said this before so I felt something had clicked for him and us. He was so up for it he even got me to add pregnancy cover to my health care immediately. I have just turned 42 and we got married a few months ago. Our finances have been tight and we also weren't getting on great but I thought kids would be in the mix when we got things sorted. We have just had a chat and my husband has changed his mind about having kids. He says he doesn't want them anymore and it is not and will not be open for discussion. I am devastated. I would not have got engaged had he realised this truth as I always have wanted kids and would not have entered into a relationship with someone who wasn't open to trying. This is very real and raw for me as it was only a few hours ago. I feel it's my calling to be a mother.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anon July 15, I'm so sorry this happened. I find it amazing how many guys change their minds after the wedding. Have another chat and let him know how hurt you are. I pray you can work this out.

Anonymous said...

I'm a 38 yr old woman, never been married with no children. I met my fiancé 4 1/2 years ago, and we recently got engaged this past Christmas. He is 44 yrs old , divorced with a 14 yr old daughter that I get along with amazingly. A few years ago, he mentioned that he wasn't sure if he'd ever get married again, and that he doesn't want anymore children. This made me very upset, and I contemplated ending our relationship. I thought long and hard, and being that I love him so much, and I can't imagine my life without him in it, I decided that being married wasn't something that I HAD to have to define my love for him. As for the not wanting children, I wasn't sure how I could handle that. I never truly thought about having kids, because I was never in a place in my life to need to make that choice. I was a bartender for years, put myself through school at a later age, and at the age of 35 I got my Art Education degree, and I'm now an Art Teacher. I guess I see my life more stable, and children could be a part of it.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anon July 16, Thank you for sharing your story with us. I'm happy you found someone who sounds great and that you get along with his daughter so well. As always, it comes down to whether you are willing to do without having your own children to be with him. He could change his mind, but I wouldn't count on it. I wish you many years of happiness.

Anonymous said...

Hello,
I have always wanted children, and fell madly in love with someone who does want any children whatsoever, he has always been honest about it. And I have accepted it, but lately I have had major baby fever. I am sure it is because all of my friends are having babies. It is nice to hear positivity on this situation. My friends all tell me I need to find someone else but honestly I couldnt even imagine having children with anyone else! He has always felt terrible that we have such different wants on this, but I made the choice from the beginning to stay! I wouldnt change it for anything! I am 26 and he is 42.

Anonymous said...

Hi ladies

I am also in the same situation as most. I am 24 (and before some says this) i know i am young and have time.

I am with a man who is 28 who already has a daughter who is 8 years old, we get on but i dont agree who how they parent her!

we have been together over two years and live together at the start of our relationship i made clear in the future i would like children to which i found out he had "no room " in his life for another child that his daughter was enough for him, so at that stage i loved this man but wasnt fully involved we didnt live together and it was quite early on.

I broke things off and 3 weeks later he was back begging me and promising me the world and children. So i gave him another chance.

Now two years down the line after a conversation of me having a belly ache i was accused of being pregnant which i said i wasn't but found it crazy that he seemed so frightened of the thought of me being pregnant.

So i asked him again do you want children with me and he said he dont know if he can ever see himself having anymore children. as you would expect i was heartbroken, lots more feelings had now been invested into this relationship and dreams.

I recently found out he was engaged had a mortgage with his previous partner (who he has the child with)

its not that i am jealous of this i am envious as to what she had and i don't ... i want a ring, i want the children i want the stable house situation and he just seems as if he cannot bring himself to give me this even though he says he has never felt like he does for me about anyone else.

I will stick by my decision i know i want a family in the future but i want it with him!

I have given him some time to think and its coming to the cut of date of his decision, i think i know he will not change his mind i am just hoping.

stay strong everyone, we all deserve happiness xx

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anon,
There's nothing I can say that you don't already know. I'm sorry you're in this situation. But I really think somebody else could give you the life you want and you're hurting yourself by sticking with this guy. I hope you can work it out.

Anonymous said...

Hello,I don't know if this post is strictly for women but I'm a 37 year old male with 45 year old gf. We've been friends since I was 27 but began dating at 30. I've never been married and I have no kids, she has been married and has 2 kids which both are now married. She has 2 grandkids, a 2 year old and a newborn. I didn't began to think about kids until her first grandson was born but she was 42 at the time. Now at 45 it would be a high risk. Friends and co workers around us are having kids left and right and I can't deny that it is eating me inside. She said that it's writen all over my face when we see a baby and or her grandkids. She wants me to be happy and is willing to sacrifice by losing me, I just don't know if I'm willing to lose her for the chance of having a child. Any thoughts greatly appreciated.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous, it is not just for women. Guys run into the same problems. I feel for you. At 45, your wife is not likely to conceive. Can you really picture life without her? Would you trade her for a baby? I know. It's a horrible question. But you have to decide which you want more. There is no easy solution. I'm sorry, Anon.

Anonymous said...

Hi, My wife is leaving me because I don't want a second child and it's killing me . I feel I am being punished for that decision . She says she always wanted two but she never talked to me about it ,so now I face becoming a part time dad and I don't know what to do .

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous Aug. 3,
That's awful. My gut reaction is to say suck it up and have another child. But I worry that this disagreement has poisoned your relationship so that it will never be the same. Are there other issues? If it's just the baby thing, consider which would be worse, having another child or ending up alone? I'm sorry this is happening to you. I pray you can find a way to work it out.

Anonymous said...

Hello everyone, I am going through a terrible situation with my girlfriend. We have been together for 7 years now. We are both immigrants (she is from Russia and I am from Brazil) who live in Los Angeles. I am 32 and she is 35. Her mother passed away in 2010 due to a brain tumor. Since then she has become addicted to the idea of having a child. At the moment I do not feel that crazy desire to be a father. I moved to the U.S. kind of late in life at 25 and I am just now transferring to a four-year university to get a degree in business. I have a degree in Physical Education from Brazil, but the hassle to get it validated here was so time consuming that I decided to do something else. I am also not happy with my career because my work is unstable and the pay is very low. On the other hand, she moved here when she was 13 and had her whole education in the U.S. She is very successful in her career and she is stable financially. Four years ago I asked her to help me to pay for school so I could finish faster but she said she was not interested to spend her money like that. It made me concerned because if she wants a family with me, how is going to be when the kid arrives? I have no financial means to provide for a kid. Not even half of the bills for a child. It really scares me that I may find myself in a situation where I won't be able to support my son/daughter. I am feeling terrible because I cannot make her happy. I can see that she resents me because she picks up fights all the time for silly reasons. The other night she said that is better for us to go apart. I just cried for the whole day and I am feeling lonely and worthless. It kills me that I am not enough for her and that I cannot make her happy. She said that she wants me to be a stay in dad, but I am very independent and I believe that I must have a career. It would be better for both of us if I have one. I fear that once the baby arrives she will just break up with me and leave in a difficult situation. I would not be able to abandon a child. I moved here on my own and I have no family in the states. Our relationship was one of the main reasons that made me stay in the country. I also understand that she is coming close to 40 and that it might become harder to become pregnant, but she does not want to wait any longer. Am I being a jerk or too selfish? It is just killing me that the whole focus of my adult life is coming to an end. I just want her to be happy and she deserves all the best. It just hurts that I am not good enough. I believe that the best should be to leave her alone and not interfere on her life. I want her dreams to come true. I wish I could have a normal job so I could help and give her what she wants. I struggled financially since I got here. It took me 7 years to get a green card and now (after 9 years) things are getting better. I just don;t want to struggle right now and I want to get my college degree before a kid. What should I do?

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Oh, Mr. Anonymous Aug. 4,life is complicated and I wish I had all the answers. You are right that your wife does not have much time left to have children. This deadline might turn out to be more important than your college degree, which you can get later. Only you can decide what to do. I pray that you are both able to figure it out.

Readers, can you offer any advice?

Anonymous said...

This discussion is so comforting to me and making me realize I'm not alone. Thank you for the non judgmental posts and comments!

I am 33 years old and have been with my partner for almost 6 years. He's 32 and has a 7 year old from a previous marriage. We have his son every other week and I help raise him as if he were my own.

My partner comes from a extremely traumatic childhood and a very difficult first marriage. We have such a strong relationship and have worked through so much to get where we are today. He struggles with depression. I am patient and we work through it. He is worth it. We have a house together and I love my little family.

I have never wanted kids of my own. He knew this when we met. For many years, we were on the same page. About a year and a half ago, he changed his mind and decided he wanted more children, he wanted a whole family unit, something he never had. He brought up that he was interested in kids and I immediately shut him down, not even open to a discussion about. He was really hurt by that, it reminded him a lot of his childhood, and he hasn't really ever forgiven me for it. In spite of that, a few months later he proposed to me and we have had some truly beautiful times in the past year a half. He has told me many times he couldn't imagine his life without me. During his dark times tho, he lashes out at me and is cruel, uses the fact that I don't want children as a crutch, and holds it over me.

We decided to take a year off from the conversation and just be with each other and consider each other's point of view. This has been going well, and it was a welcome break. A couple weeks ago, we revisited the subject and I told him that I still wasn't interested. I'm good to his son, good to him and I just feel complete. At the end of the day, I'm tired, fulfilled and can't imagine nor have any interest another child to care for. He understands this, has decided to stay with me (in spite of this?), though he says he needs time to heal, doesn't feel like being affectionate to me at all, and still lashes out occasionally. He believes I don't compromise about anything I don't want. I do struggle with compromise, but I'm aware of this, and try to work on it. My life has changed so dramatically since I met him and I don't think he fully realizes this. I do sacrifice so much of what I want to give him and his son a good life. It's all worth it though.

Anonymous said...

I didn't have enough space to finish my comment. Sorry for the rambles!! It's just been really hard lately. I am lonely. I am tired. And I am scared of losing him. It's been really hard because he's very angry and hurt with me right now. He's hurt that I immediately shut down the conversation he tried to have a year and a half ago. It reminded him so much of how he was treated as a child and he resents me for it. But in spite of this, he wants to stay with me and make it work. He says he still loves me and I do believe him. That someday he may change his mind and I understand I don't have control of that. I don't know if I'm being unfair by wanted to be with him, by wanted to grow old with him, but not giving him a whole family unit/any more kids. We have both sought counseling in the past, occasionally together (though he feels as if this is a waste of time. He's a very private, introverted person and works on himself better by himself or one on one. I'm not this way, but I respect that.)I still occasionally see a counselor and he has plans to go back.

I (and our counselor) believe that much of this has to do with the trauma of his childhood. I am by no means perfect and struggle with control issues. I believe we have a great family and I am a great pseudo stepmom to his child. It's just been really hard lately. I know my post is long and rambling but I don't have many other outlets of like minded people who are willing to listen. In short, he wants more kids and I don't. He wants to stay with me in spite of this but is very angry, hurt and resentful right now, though much of that is PTSD from his childhood. He has told me he no longer wants to marry someone who doesn't want kids, but will stay with me. I'm fine with this (for now.) We have still had great times among the painful arguments. I don't know if he'll just end up resenting me. I have worked hard for our relationship, as has he. We're just at a really difficult stage, and I don't know if we'll ever fully bounce back from this.

On a lighter note, my dog is my very best friend, and every night, especially during the difficult ones, I'm endlessly thankful for her :-)

Terrified said...

Hello, I definitely needed this today. My husband and I have been together for 10 years, and married for 2. It was a rough road in the beginning as he was uncertain he ever wanted to get married. I had moved across the country only to find this out. We broke up a couple of times over this and both times, he came back, and I took him back, but of course, always talking about the elephant in the room. Obviously, he changed his mind about marriage, and we had spoken on many occasions about having children, and he had changed his mind, though he was still slightly on the fence, he was willing to try. This is something I was totally upfront about since the beginning. We have numerous nieces and nephews and we always talk about how we would parent. We have been trying to conceive for nearly two years. When it was just over a year, I set up appointments for fertility testing and we found out that he has some issues and long story short, I was given medication to try in the first step before IUI, or IVF. I am currently in the middle of my second medicated cycle, and my husband has just dropped a bomb on me saying that he is really unsure of having kids and that he doesn't want to try. Granted he is going through some personal issues...his parents relationship is falling apart and we live across the country from them. He never had a very good relationship with his father either. He was working away and quit his job to work closer to home, and within a week of starting that new job injured himself and has since been in a downward spiral for 7 weeks now. I was under the impression that he was quitting because he wanted to and he didn't like it there anymore. He has just told me that he quit his job because he felt he needed to in order to make me happy and be able to start a family. We have made an appointment with a counsellor, but I am terrified. I feel as though I have just waited and waited for him and given up things in my life to wait for him. Having children is a desire I can't even explain to him. When I asked him why he would marry me knowing full well I wanted children, his answer was that he thought he would be enough. As much as it hurts to tell him, I will feel a sense of emptiness without having our child. He is not open to sperm donor or IVF. I'm not sure how I would feel if we had tried everything and it didn't work, as opposed to just not trying at all. I am literally sick thinking about a life without him, but also terrified of feeling incomplete for the rest of my life. I honestly don't think I would be able to be around family or friends if I did decide to stay with him if he chooses not to try. I would want to move away to try and become something else. He was shocked at me saying I didn't want a life without our children in it. He basically takes it as he's not good enough. I'm just plain scared of what the outcome is going to be. This has just turned my world upside down and I'm so sick about it.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous Aug. 5,wow. It took me two cookies to get through your comments. Another difficult situation. As always, someone is going to have to sacrifice something. Either you give in and have a child or he gives up and doesn't have any more kids. I'm you're still talking about it and working on it, at least off and on. Counseling is good. I would not recommend getting married until you resolve this.
What do other readers think about this?

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Oh Terrified, I can feel your fear coming right through my computer. I don't blame you for being scared. I think it's good that you're trying counseling. You're going to need help sorting things out. Your husband sounds like my first husband, who wasn't good at committing to the marriage and family thing either. You don't say how old you both are, but almost two years without conceiving is definitely a sign that something is wrong. Maybe it is a bad time for your husband right now. Maybe it's too much pressure. Or maybe he'll never be ready. I wish I had a good answer for you. Go to counseling. Pray about it. Try to remember even when your husband is driving you nuts that you do love him and he loves you. I pray that you can find a way to ease the fear and move ahead.

Katherine said...

When I met my husband (at 26), I wasn't sure whether I wanted children, and he wasn't sure either. He knew he wanted a lot of nieces and nephews, but said he didn't think he wanted his own. I felt the same way. If I'm being completely honest, I felt like I was 70% sure I didn't want a child, but figured that if I changed my mind he'd jump on board (apparently he thought the same thing --- that if he changed his mind, I'd be all for it). Fast forward 5 years, and he desperately wants a child, and I'm closer to 80% not wanting one. I think he's afraid of being left behind (all his friends are having kids), and he says his life will have no purpose.

We're married and I know he'd never leave me, but I feel like we're down to two choices. Either he resents me forever for not having a child, or I have a child, and resent them both. Either way, it's a no win scenario. I can't figure out which option is worse.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Hi Katherine. Both options stink, of course. Something has to give. I pray you find a way to both be happy without resentment.

KP said...

Katherine....

So I too am in a similar situation as most above. I have been with my husband for 5 yrs and married for 2. He is 36 and I am 30. He notes he feels old, body is changing and he doesn't have the desire. My husband continues to flounder about wanting kids. I am 30 and still am not 100% sure where I stand. There is no switch going off in my head one way or another.

He believes I will one day, as I am a family forward person. Which he may not be wrong. I see kids in the future, but are they mine or am I an Auntie.

Yet, I believe we have a type of love that no other has. We are best friends.

Today, I feel I choose him over kids. Why find another person that my love would be less to just have a kid. Why does society suggest that we need kids.

Lose what we have today. Yet, he is afraid that if I change my mind I would resent him. I don't want that either....but how do I know what the future will hold.

Is there any way that I can better navigate through this. Questions to ask myself. Questions to communicate with him.

Looking for navigation help in this troubling time.

Oh how I love him so much and don't want to be apart from him.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Katherine,
I think you have answered your own questions with your last line. You love him and don't want to be apart from him. You are only 30. You may get the urge to have babies. He may stop feeling so old and change his mind. But if you have that strong love, hang on to that. It sounds like you'll be able to work it out, no matter what happens in the future.

What do other people think?

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for posting this article and keeping this thread open for so long. Today marks one week since I had to admit to my partner of 4.5 years that it's best we breakup. The primary reason: at 29, he wants to be a father (and would make an OUTSTANDING, award-winning dad), while at 35, I think I would be an awful, unstable mother who would worry about everything (health, money, stability) and create an unsafe situation for a child. We've had other differences (he recently moved to another state for work, and our communication styles don't blend), but nothing else weighed on my conscience like the children issue. While I feel some relief at no longer being an obstacle to his ideal future, I feel like such an idiot--he is NOT the kind of man you let get away. I am so scared I'll end up alone and forever regret losing the most caring, brilliant, honest, loving man I'll likely ever have. My only solace is that I'd have regretted having an unwanted child even more. Has anyone here ever made this sacrifice (letting her incredible partner go so he can have children) and come out ahead in the end? I'd appreciate any encouragement possible. Stay strong, everyone. Life is so hard, and love is so important.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous Aug. 10, Thank you for sharing this. It must be a scary place to be right now. I wonder what my life would have been like if either of my husbands had let me go so I could have children with someone else. What if I never found that someone else? I have not been on your side of the situation, but it sounds like you love this man very much, and it's going to take time to accept the new situation.

So readers, has anyone experienced this? Do you have any words of wisdom for Anonymous? Please share.

TiffanyAnn Dudley said...

First, I would like to say thank you. I wish I had found your site 16months ago, though. 'Sigh...' My story in a nutshell is, I have always known I wanted to be a mom. I never really had any other dream or goal, although I have been pretty successful...a pro runner for 5yrs post college, and now a nurse. Yet, I still struggle with the decision my husband made about 15months ago when he told me he didn't want children after I brought up I wanted us to start a family soon. I had the ' having children conversation' before marrying and at that time he wanted them. It was more of how many..I hoped for 2-3, God willing. He, leaned toward 1. So, it was a shock for me and I went through the 5 stages of grief over the next 12 months, with denial lasting the longest. Finally, after getting past denial, I started battling depression. I felt as though I was enveloped in a dark, thick cloud..unable to get out. My mom talked me into starting medicine in January. I recently decided to taper off it. I didn't mean to share so much, but I do appreciate the opportunity to do so with others who understand. I'm still with my husband. Uncertain of what to do. Only because of the unconditional love Christ has shown me am I able to love my husband unconditionally. I still struggle. Living in the south where everyone around me is having children and most my age, having Thad their second child, I get left out. I don't know if my husband understands what that must be like, to not be called to hang out because my lifestyle (no family/children) is different from all other women my age around me. I'm 31.. And, no I can't just get pregnant like so many people tell me I can do, because my husband isn't intimate with me...it's been 18months and counting...and nor would I want to bring a child into a marriage where one spouse does not want one.
Anyways, thank you, again. Though, I still do not know what is the right the necessarily to do in my situation, I do find comfort in knowing I am not alone.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Dear TiffanyAnn, I'm so sorry you're going through this. I know it's terribly hard. I wish your husband could see that and do his duty as a husband. But you can't change other people, only yourself. That's a hard lesson I learned in years of counseling. It is not fair that he make this decision for both of you. If you can find a way to keep the conversation going without it turning into nagging, do it. Meanwhile, keep reaching out for help. You are not alone,and you are not the only one.

Anonymous said...

Not a day goes by that I don't cry about this... I don't know what to do... I love my husband dearly... But I am not satisfied with being just a step mom to his kids... It's not fair to me....

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anon, I know it's not fair. Sometimes life is just hard. It will get easier, I promise. And maybe there's still a chance. I hope. You are not alone.

Anonymous said...

I have found this blog whilst searching for help for anything after a particularly bad argument with my boyfriend. I am 38 and he is 46. He has 2 children from a previous marriage which ended very badly. We have been together 4 years and I have broached the subject of marriage and children before about 2 years ago. He never said no straight out and always gave the impression he would have another child. I have never been the type of women who always wanted children but after finding him I started to feel different about 2 yrs ago. I have never felt this kind of love for anyone and I want to further that and express it more by making us into a solid family. My bf has had a lot of insecurity, trust and emotional problems in the past. This is evident now. When I first brought this up seriously he completely lost it and thought that it was resolved by just shouting and saying no. I however continued to deal with the realisation that this man I love more than anything had shattered my dreams. So I brought it up again, I had to as it was making me different with him and his children. I didn't want that as they are wonderful. It comes down to that he knows he can't support another child as his and my job circumstances are changing very soon. So I do understand this even though it's very hard. It's his reaction I'm struggling with and as his first marriage was a disaster he's unwilling to commit again. I just don't know what I am getting out of this. Yes I love this man more than anything but I need something. I need to be committed to him and for him to me. We live separately due to our jobs but the more time I spend with him the more I don't want to be without him. It is all so very complicated but I don't want to end up resenting him, which I'm not sure whether I'm starting to already, for not having a child. I don't feel like we can talk about anything without him flying off the handle. All I want to do is be able to talk to him about anything and everything.
Reading the comments and advice on your blog has helped me think things over in my head and knowing I'm not the only person going through this aswell. Obviously I'm also 38 and the chances of getting pregnant could take years if ever happen but I see women, my friends older than me doing this and I just think what have I done wrong.
Am I destined to be on my own forever.....?

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous Aug. 19, I wish I had the answer for you, but you can decide whether your love for this man is worth sacrificing marriage and children, especially at an age when you're running out of time to get pregnant. If you can't talk to him about these things, that's a bad sign. Are there other people in our life that you can talk to about this? I wish this situation never came up, but unfortunately, you are not alone in this. I pray you can find peace.

Anonymous said...

There are people I can talk to but they don't see what he's like or know what he's been through. I know he's had a very traumatic childhood and there's a lot of resentment and anger there. With the way his marriage went which has just been resolved now but not really with any great outcome he's even more angry. All I seem to do is make things worse as he presumes I'm in a mood. I've tried explaining I'm trying to deal with a lot in my head but he just gets angry. I don't want to give up on him but it's hard work when I'm trying to understand him and deal with my life too. I'm a simple girl, I want to please my man and for us to be best mates aswell as lovers. Is this wrong? Am I living in a fantasy world?

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anon, you're not living in a fantasy world, but clearly he is not in a place to talk about making any commitments to you because he's still dealing with the results of his past commitments. If you want to keep him, you'll need to become the one person who is not yelling at him. Can you wait until he's ready, if he's ever ready? Maybe you should just hang in there for a while.

What do other people think? I welcome your advice for Anonymous.

Anonymous said...

I feel like I've waited and gone through so much with him. Do I want to give it all up to find someone else though? I don't think I would ever get over him and constantly compare to him. I am still dealing with not having a child. I guess in some silly way I think it will still happen. I have my weepy moments and then flip to certain I want him.
Yes you are right, I hadn't thought that he wasn't ready to commit cos he's still dealing with his past. I just don't know how to get through to him, deal with him or be there for him when he can be so nasty.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Maybe a little time apart would help you both calm down about things and be able to figure it out.

Anonymous said...

I found this blog looking for answers to a similar scenario im being faced with right now, I have been with my partner for nearly 17 years I am 36 and she is 31 we have been engaged for a good few years with plans to marry soon, kids have been discussed in passing but not really any more than when you were a kid and said I want children... the problem is as you get older your life changes and you outlook and circumstances change the way you feel. The problem is all of a sudden this week she has within a few days of her sister having a child given me an ultimatum and left the house we own and live in together of the the last 10 years. She has basically said that she will leave if I don't want children and she wants and answer now or its all off. Im really finding it hard to give a decision straight away and if it was straight away it would be no and the reasons for this are, we have zero support network, she doesn't know her dad, her mum is volatile and they dont get on, no grandparents or uncles etc and on my side I have my mum and Dad but they are always arguing and not really a reliable resource for help, therefore we will be stuck with no us time at all. Another reason is we are both successful she is a director of a company and I own my own company which I am working hard to setup and we do all this to feed our love for travelling and fun weekends away walking and enjoying meals out etc. She does have the tendency to be relaxed in her approach to do any work around the house and needs a push to do anything or even get up for work where she abuses her director position and gores in late most mornings, simple tasks in the house take so long to complete while I do 80-90% of all the work and this worries me as when a child comes Im in no illusion that it wont be much harder then now and more tiring and time /energy consuming and she doesn't seem to acknowledge all this bare facts which will all add up to a serious life shock and change.

I just don't see how someone can literally throw 17 years down the pan, we have done everything together, all my adult life has revolved around her and going great places and sharing moment with her.... im so scared im just worried she wants kids for the wrong reasons and the biological clock is pushes the urge along with all her friends having kids and pushing there views on her when in fact everyone is different and each couples sceneries is different. Some people have nothing in their lives and lots of support therefore a child is a welcome addition with not much to lose along with being able to have a break utilising the support. I am therefore stuck between a rock and a hard place, she wont discuss it she basically says "if you loved me you would give me children".... I just feel im being emotionally blackmailed by someone I thought was going to be with for the rest of my life with and its either lose 17 years of you or gamble on the what if and resent her if she forces me to exchange our life when shes actually not sure she will enjoy it herself. Im not sure what to do, she doesn't seem to be allowing for any discussion or compromise. What do you think ?

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Dear Mr. Anonymous, I think I wish I had more wisdom so I'd know what to tell you. What a painful situation. Basically your partner has suddenly panicked about having children. You really need a calm discussion about this, but it sounds like she can't do that right now. So I guess you're going to have to figure out what you want. Forget all that business about your jobs and your families for a minute. Do you want to be a father? If you do,say yes. You can work out the rest later. You're in my prayers.

Jenny Yuen said...

I am struggling with this big time. I'm turning 33 soon, my partner is 62. We talked about getting married and technically are engaged, but because of this disagreement over a kid, we have put the wedding on hiatus.
He is divorced and then widowed. He has an 18-yer-old son who heads off to university today.
His son and I get along, but we aren't terribly close, but we like each other. Lately, though because my partner initially was open to the idea of becoming a father again and is flip flopping more to "No" side of things.
He feels he's just sending his kid off and doesn't want to start again, wants to enjoy retirement.
He tells me I "can't have it all" in life, but how different is this for him -- he would "have it all," a childfree marriage with me, someone to love and take care of him, which I am totally ok with. I would end up alone and childless.
At least if I had a kid with him, even at old age, it would allow me to have a reminder of him when he's gone.
This has caused some resentment in me towards him and his son (even though I know this is no fault of his own).
His son's going-away party was difficult because it kind of feels like his old life is being pushed on to me and yet, there's a possibility of me not having my own children.
My partner is my soulmate. I cannot imagine life without him, he gets me in ways I cannot imagine and he is the reason I want to have children...with him.
And then there is the biological clock ticking away...
He has told me a few times, if I want a child, we're done. Go find someone my own age.
The worst thing about finding such a special connection with him is I know I likely won't find it with someone else again.
And I really don't want to look again. I've found what I've been looking for.
But this issue is huge. It's causing me to lose sleep, appetite, causing fights and intimacy gaps in an otherwise amazing relationship.
We have also discussed alternatives such as co-parenting (me and a gay friend having a child together, sharing the parenting duties) or surrogacy with a younger partner for me. My partner is afraid having a child would wreck our marriage and come in between us. And because we don't have the luxury of time to recover as people of the same age do...it would be really tough.
But I worry those options will also divide us because my partner is not involved directly.
It's like a lose-lose situation, no matter which way you look at it.

Any advice would be great. We are in therapy together trying to hammer this out.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Hi Jenny. What a pickle. It sounds like your partner has given you your choices and if you plan to stay with him, you have to decide what you want to do. You're both at such different places in your lives. I wish I knew the answer. If he's open to you having a child with someone else, that might be a good idea, but it would be awkward and hard on the marriage. I'm glad you're in therapy. If he's the guy, then I'm afraid you have to accept all of him. You're in my prayers.

Anyone else have answers for Jenny?

Anonymous said...

I am currently deciding if I want to break up with my boyfriend. He has 3 kids from a previous relationship. He left that relationship seeing pregnancy as a negative that changed his partner. She has since made it very difficult for him to have a relationship that does not include her. He misses his kids and having a family life with them . He sees them often but their is whole in his heart since he cannot see them every day. We get along great. Its the healthiest relationship either of us have ever been in. But I want kids. I am 31, he is 35 and I worry that I will miss my opportunity to have kids if we continue in a relationship. We have hard conversations about how long term our relationship could be if we do not agree about kids. Tears have been shed by both of us. Neither one of us wants to end but it seems unwise to keep progressing in a direction that has a wall. We live together already. He said he might want to adopt in the future when he feel more stable. I dont understand why he thinks adopting is any different. I am more conflicted about this than I can bear. I do not know what to do.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anon, I agree that adopting would have many of the same challenges as having your own children. I wish I knew the answer. At least you're able to talk about it. That's a good sign.

June said...

Sue, youre article is quite factual but now that you are alone, do you have any regrets? I'm in the boat where I was married 10 years to a man who wanted to wait for "the perfect time". Then it was brought to my attention that I have fertility issues. Now I'm with an amazing man who refuses to even talk about it. Which was fine because I am realistic about my current circumstance but in all honesty, I may want some in a few years when I graduate. But I am also almost 33. I cant imagine leaving this amazing man just to find some potential jerk who may not even be able to get the job done. I've been with a "bad" guy. I've done that hard time and I dont want to let my good guy go. He is concerned however that I will resent him in time. SO, tell me, now that everything is said and done for you, do you regret it with either husband? I'm pulling my hair out. Thanks, CC

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Hi June, good question. I wish I had had children.it makes me sad not to have children and grandchildren instead of going through life alone. When I think about what I could have had, it's almost unbearable. Was husband number one worth giving up kids for? No. I didn't know going in. By the time I found out, the marriage was already dead for lots of reasons. Was husband number two worth it? Probably. We had a wonderful marriage. But I regret that I didn't try harder.

lost said...

so, like many others here, i found this site desperately searching for answers. the stress of this issue has been overwhelming, and it is impacting my marriage and relationship in the worst way. i am appreciating all of the support that is expressed here, and I am realizing that vocalizing the issue is the first step. so here goes.

i realized i was gay when I was 17. i grew up at a time when marriage wasn't on the horizon for gay couples, let alone kids. i never really imagining my life having kids, and it was never really an issue in my past relationship. i had much younger siblings who I loved dearly but just never had that motherly instinct to have my own. i went to law school, started a good career, and longed to find that person I would spend my life with. At 29 i met the woman i eventually married, 5 years later, after the laws changed and allowed us to. our relationship has had tough challenges from day 1 primarily due to family tensions, and while I knew she liked the idea of kids it was never expressed as something she needed to have. we worked thru our other issues and matured as a couple through the years, we now own a house, dogs, nice cars, have good jobs and essentially, we've made it, and I was happy. in my early 30s i started feeling the pressure of the clock ticking and we discussed the possibility of kids. i wasnt in love with the idea but felt the pressure of time. so we went to see a fertility specialist to get information. it felt so foreign and didnt make me any more comfortable or welcoming to the idea. our straight friends were having kids so it was worth a try to see how it felt. but since that time i've gained peace with the fact that i just never truly wanted kids and that my life was great without them.

in the last 6 months my wife realized she absolutely wants kids and it has been an almost daily source of tension for us. i think her forcing the issue has made me dig my heels in and I have felt more resolute against it than I ever have. Yes, i'm sure some of it is fear of change, but I just dont want one and you really should want one before having one! Most upsetting is I can't help but feel that I'm not enough anymore. She wants a baby no matter what. Even if that means it tears us apart. It feels devastating and I dont have anyone to talk to about it. we tried couples counseling a few times but that made things worse. it made us both more resolute and got us nowhere. he said we had to each decide whether to divorce over it. i'm so upset over this and I cant help but feel resentful she would rather have a child than have me. is there truly no good ending for us?
-with tears...

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Dear Lost,
I'm so sorry things have worked out this way. It's hard to predict how a person is going to feel about having children years later. If you haven't told your wife everything you have written here, you need to do that. And then yes, you both need to decide which would be harder to live with, to split up or for one of you to give in on the issue of children. I hope and pray you find a solution.

Anonymous said...

Sue,

Thank you for creating this blog. I stumbled upon this blog on accident and am thankful because it's given me some great things to think out.

My situation is this: I'm 32 and my bf is 33. We've been dating for a year. When we met, he seemed like he shared my goal to have kids one day. Three months ago, he said he's not sure. That his feelings for me made him think it's possible, nut he's never wanted them before. We continued, he assured me he thought it was an age/timing thing. Then this week, he said he's been lying to himself out of desire to keep me. But he never wants them, bc of his past (tough childhood).

Of course. I was angry. Things would be different if we met from the get go. I've always thought I'd have kids, and I do like kids. But the past year has been the happiest of my life. I feel he's the right person and I would not find someone better for me.

I am contemplating giving up on kids and continuing with him. We are on a one week break to think about this. He feels terrible for having put me in the situation, and believes that if we continue, I will change my mind and he will only hurt me more. He wants me to make sure I can be ok with this forever. The problem is I can guarantee that's ok now but not if I will ever feel different.

So my question to people who gave up on kids for sake of the man they met, did you have a fulfilling marriage? Is it possible to be happy and change your vision of the future? Or did some you regret, resent, or change your mind later?

Any advice or comments will be greatly appreciated.

Love,
Cat

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Hi Cat. I did have a wonderful marriage despite not having kids together. I did and do have regrets, not about marrying Fred--he was a gift from God--but about not trying harder to have kids.
You're right that you can't know how you'll feel in the future. Nobody can. I wish you all the best.

Anonymous said...

Hi Sue,
I can't believe you've kept this open for so long, but I'm glad you have.
My own situation is this: I'm 31, and my partner is 49. He has 2 children from his previous relationship, 17 & 18.
When we started dating, I knew he was unlikely to want more children, he's had a vasectomy a long time ago, and I thought I was okay with that. I've never had a strong drive to have kids. But we discussed it at length early in the relationship, and he said he'd never say never to the idea of having another child.
I've just come back from a month away without him, and he's dropped a bombshell on me, he never wants have more children. He says he's too old, and he's not willing to sacrifice his hobbies and interests like he had to before. I'm in shock, I've spent the last few days in tears. But what gets me is I can't figure out whether it's the way he's laid down this ultimatum that has made me decide I want a child, or if it's a genuine desire. I really don't know how to figure this out.
I love him so much, and once I was willing to sacrifice children to be with him. I think I'm mostly just mad because he opened the door to the possibility, and now he's slammed it without so much as a conversation. Before him I'd never been in a relationship with someone who's children I would love to carry.

Anon H

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anon H, you've got to have that conversation. Tell him how hurt you are by how he dropped this bomb and how you're not sure now. Ultimately you may find your way back to how you felt before, but you'll have to work your way through it. I'm sorry this happened.

Anonymous said...

Reading through this thread has helped me feel like I'm not alone in this struggle. I'm a 46 year old man who's thinking about becoming a father for the first time. My wife of 20 years has always known she does not want children. Eleven years ago I had similar thoughts and explored the options but chose to stay with her instead. Perhaps this is a mid-life thing where I'm looking back over the first half of my life and wondering if I'm missing out? I've always known I would be a good father. I'm patient, kind, and generous. People have always told me I'm like an old wise soul. I rarely give advice, instead choosing to be a good listener and help people make their own decisions.

Lately, I'm worried that I'm going to regret not having raised a child. I have no romantic ideas about it. I've seen friends and family struggle so I know it's not all fun and games. But I'm still drawn to the possibilities in the richness of the experience, and with passing on my values and way of life to another person. I feel drawn to the idea of choosing to raise a child with someone who shares my values not because it's "the next thing to do" like I see so many people doing, but because I want the experience. To learn. To love. To know.

Bringing this up again after being together for 20 years has caused a tremendous amount of pain. I absolutely know this will end our life together and it hurts so much. We are seeking some counseling both individually and together and we'll see where I'm at with this in six months. No need to make rash decisions, you know? But for me at least, I know if I decide to do this, my relationship with a wonderful woman, is certainly doomed.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anon, I hope this isn't the end of your relationship. It's so hard when couples disagree on this issue. You're in my prayers.

Anonymous said...

Hello, I'm 23 and my partner is 27, we are engaged to be married next year and have been in our relationship for nearly 7years (he was my first boyfriend).
I just two days ago he dropped the bombshell that he doesn't want children now and isn't sure if he ever will.. I have recently found out that i have some issues with fertility and may find it difficult to conceive. So he knows my clock is ticking to start trying.
He is the love of my life and i cannot stand the thought of loosing him, our relationship if perfect.. Everyone loves him, he is great with our young nephews and would make a great dad.
The problem is he want me to be happy, and he thinks the only way i can be is if i have children. But I'm not confident i can be happy without him. He hasn't said he doesn't EVER want them, just he doesn't know if he will. I have never felt pain like it. I feel as though my whole world has ended.
We have cancelled the wedding until we know we want the same thing which was very hard for me to do.
I feel guilty because i think to myself if he loved me, truly loved me, would he not give me the one thing that would make my happiness complete. I know i cant force him into it and he is not ready but how can i end something because he MIGHT never be ready. And how do i risk staying if he never will be..
We are looking at relationship counselling but I'm not sure what good it will do.. I feel drained. I don't think i can live without him but i don't want to live the rest of our lives with resentment.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Oh, Anonymous Nov. 10, I'm sorry this is happening to you. Do the counseling; I think it will help. Is it possible your fiance said this because he didn't want you to worry about your fertility issues? You are both still young, but if he is the man you are meant to be with, hang in there and try to work it out. You're in my prayers.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your reassuring words, I am trying so hard. It is extremely testing but no matter how much I think I still cant believe leaving him will ever result in my happiness. It has been playing on his mind for a while, he was scared of loosing me and hurting me. I'm not angry or annoyed, just very very sad.
Thanks again for your kind words x

Anonymous said...

Thank you for creating this space for people to share their experiences. Like others, I appreciate knowing I'm not alone, but it doesn't make the decision any easier. I guess my husband and I have some other issues, but my wanting a child and him not, is the biggest elephant in the room. We just spoke with a counselor about it together and all it did was make it clear that I am the one who has to make the decision to stay or go. It's all on me and I am completely devastated over it. I try imagining a life with him and no child and it leaves me feeling cold and very sad. Yet imagining life without my husband leaves me feeling the same way. I am stuck. I'm 38 and can't imagine starting all over again, but I can't imagine the desire for this child to go away. Additionally, this is the life in which I want to raise a child in the first place, not some other life with some unknown person. I hate the thought of resenting my husband for the rest of our days if I decide to stay. I am so conflicted.

How did others come to the decision? What did you weigh out to help you decide to stay or go? I'm so lost.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

No, Anon 9:02 Nov. 10, you are not alone. See previous comments. There is no easy answer for this. There just isn't. You have to do without the man or without the children. It sucks. At 38, you also have to worry about not having much time left to conceive. I chose the man, but you may choose differently. My heart goes out to you.
What do others have to say?

Kimberly Warren said...

I needed this today! I have been so back and forth on my decision to stay or leave!

My fiancé of almost 2 years has two amazing kids, 6 and 9. When we met he wanted another child. Now after being engaged for 1 year and 8 months he told me during a counseling session 2 weeks ago that he has decided that he is firm on the decision that he no longer wants another child. He doesn't want another child so dependent on him now that his 2 are so self sufficient, and in his previous marriage he was the care taker of the children (bottle feeding them in the middle of the night, and caring for them when he got home from work when his stay at home wife would say "they're your problem" when he got home). We have both been on the fence about this, but I at least wanted it on the table. When he told me his decision during our appointment, I cried so hard! I feel like I'm grieving and so back and forth!

It is such a difficult decision to make. I love his children dearly and they are so accepting of me, snuggling, kisses and I love yous! But I want my own child! But that's the hard part, my clock is ticking... I am 35, in 4 months I'll be 36. He just turned 33 and to top it off has had a vasectomy which is of course reaching the last chance of 80% working if he is reversed by April 2015. So any which way this were to happen, science would have to be involved. I love the fact we don't have to worry about birth control... but having a child is still something I have always wanted when I'm ready. I'm even concerned that maybe I can't have children since in previous relationships of not always being careful I never got pregnant (which isn't a horrible thing looking back as those relationships didn't last).

Our relationship has had many ups and downs the past year for sure. He had a horrible divorce and is still not ready for marriage, although he proposed after 5 months and has told me he had wanted a baby with me. My heart hurts so badly because I love him and the kids, but I feel like these are plenty of issues on their own and then adding that he doesn't want anymore children is the last heavy issue to add to all of the stress in our relationship. I feel like it may be time to walk away, as hard as it may be. I don't feel this is something we can compromise on and our relationship isn't very strong to begin with. I guess I was hoping with trying to work things out we would eventually move back in together and get married, but of course I'm scared to death to move back in with him... we have different parenting styles as it is, I may be too strict and he is so relaxed. I think kids need structure and bed times and age appropriate chores. So even at that I think we wouldn't be compatible with raising kids.

Anyway I have really enjoyed reading the other comments and know I am not alone!

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Dear Kimberly,
Yes, you do have issues. I'm sorry it has become such a muddle. Somehow you have to get down to whether you love this man enough to spend your life with him and whether his kids would be enough. It worked for me, but each of us has to decide on our own. I wish you all the best.

Kimberly Warren said...

Thank you for your reply! I do love him, but we're not rock solid. If we were, I think I could handle not having my own child since I love his so much. That's the hardest part... walking away from the kids! I'm scared that I'll not find someone I love as much as him, or won't love or cherish me as much as he has loved and cherished me. But all of the issues, and then adding this on top isn't equaling success. I feel in my heart it's over, now I just need to listen to my soul and stop ignoring the red flags! Hopefully we can stay in touch and be friends! Time will tell. Thank you again! I am so comforted knowing I'm not alone!

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

You are definitely not alone, Kimberly. I wish you all the best.

Anonymous said...

I'm having some issues very similar to lots of you and need some advice! My fiancé and I are getting married in six weeks. He's dropped the bombshell he doesn't want children. We've been together for nearly six years and have spoken about children before. He says he's not sure he'll ever change his mind but as he's never mentioned it before could he just have cold feet about the wedding? We've now cancelled the wedding and I've moved out to give him some space but he's still not changed his mind! What do people suggest that I do? Stay with him and talk through the issues or accept children aren't for him and move on? I'm 33 and he's 32 and has a terrible relationship with his dad.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Yikes, Anon, what a lousy situation. He might just have cold feet. Or maybe he really doesn't want children. It's hard to know. I think since you have already called off the wedding and moved out to give him some space, you need to give him that space for a while. But then get back to talking. It seems too soon to just accept it and move on. I wish you all the best.

Anonymous said...

Hey

Line many comments here I'm in the same situation. I've been with my boyfriend for nearly 7 years and we just bought our house together. When we first started going out we were just enjoying the feeling of falling in love and were both sure we had found our soul mate in each other. A few years later he told me he didn't want children and I accepted that as I wasn't sure but I knew I wanted him. Then my siblings and friends started settling down and starting families and it looked like really hard work but also fun. I sorted mt career out, finished college and got a good job. I thought tht buying the house was the next step in cementing our relationship and making us happy. But i had a false alarm when my period was late and instead of bring totally panicked I fet ready ad excited. It really made me think and now I don't know what to do. We have talked and cried a lot, he is still a no never, I want the option at least. It's tearing us apart and we are thinking of breaking up over this but I just can't think what life would be like without him. I don't know what to do.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous, I wish there was an easy answer, but there isn't. How did you boyfriend react when you thought you were pregnant? That would tell you a lot. I hope you can sort it out and find some peace.

Anonymous said...

I'm in a difficult position myself recently. My husband of 12 years (we've been together 18) who is almost 45 yrs old has now decided he wants kids. I'm 42 years old...HELLO too late! He talked about it 2 years ago and he wasn't sure if it was a kid, or something else he was missing in his life. Now he's admant and basically gave me the option - A kid, Adoption or Foster children. I'm 42 by the way. The thing is we talked about never having kids 10 years ago so that is why i am pissed. I thought that shipped has sailed. I don't really want kids now. I love my life without kids. We have dogs that pose enough challenges. Now that i am 42 i am scared to have a kid at my age (i have 24 years of back /neck issues) and really don't want to go through birth at my age and risk of birth defects. And then he mentions that adoption is too expensive even though he seemed to present it as an option. SO what option do I have? WE are best friends, he's the love of my life and he admitted i'm the same for him.....do i just tell him to go. But i just can't believe after being together for so long, he'd chose a baby over me. Especially if by this point i can't have them or it would be difficult anyways.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous,
What kind of stupid pills are men taking these days? Oh, sorry. I'll try to be more diplomatic. It would probably be quite difficult to conceive and bear a child in your early 40s. Not impossible, but not easy and probably more expensive than adopting. But maybe he's just going through a phase. You had an agreement, and now he wants to change it, but it's too late. Somehow he needs to accept that. Keep talking. Be loving but firm. I wish you luck.

Anonymous said...

Hello all, this is insightful, reading posts from both sides. I'm 34 male and asked my 31 year old girlfriend who I've been with for 11 years about us having a family earlier this year around April. She said she doesn't want to and probably won't in future. She said she's only started finding her feet in what she wants to do, art, and wants to travel a bit also. All our friends are agreeing to have families in the not so distant future. I come from a loving family and just always thought someday we would have our own little family. I let the issue lie for a few months but it has been tearing my head apart and it came up again. She could sense it in me. We are both very low and sad and depressed about the fact that our relationship might be over. I do love her deeply, but fear I will turn jealous and angry with her as our friends start raising families

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Oh Anonymous Dec. 14, I feel for you. Did she say she didn't want children at all or just not now? That's the most important question. If she doesn't ever want to, and you know you do, the relationship might be doomed. Keep talking. Don't let the fact that your friends are doing it now influence you. It has to be right for you both. I wish you all the best. I know it hurts.

Anonymous said...

My husband and I are both 32 years old. We have been married since we were 26. We always agreed that we would have kids some day. Neither of us wanted to have any before we were 30 but wanted to financially steady first and to have a home.

The last year or so has been very painful for me because I started to really want to have that first kid at least. My husband has not. It does not help that many friends are currently pregnant or already had a child. It really hurts every time a new pregnancy is announced and both the expectant mother AND father are in on it and seem so happy.

We agree to start trying this year - 2015. I will be 33 at the end of the year. I asked my husband if we could talk and decide on when I can go off birth control. He says he does not even want to discuss it. I am happy to give him a little more time but I want to know a month when I can stop taking the pill, so that I have that look forward to at least and know that he is not stringing me along, but he refuses to even talk about it.

In the mean time, we have sex very infrequently as is. I feel like I am that baby crazed woman I used to mock and he is just avoiding me and finding me annoying. He refuses to even say why is not ready - we are financially steady, we bought a house 2 years ago that would accomodate a couple of kids and that is the only reason I moved to the suburbs or I would be happy to stay in the city.

Why is it so easy for others to just get on with it and have kid? The longer he procrastinates the more I resent him. The worse part of it is his refusal to even discuss it, so I have no clue about whether he has given up, or just wants a little more time, or wants something to change before we have kids. I feel strung along, sad and frustrated.

I decided that I will tell him, whether he decides to respond or not, that since we agree to start trying this year he either has to tell me when or I am going off birth control half way through the year. At the same time, if I have to divorce him and leave, I am preparing myself for that.



Miranda Brewer said...

I'm 30 he's 38. He has seven yes 7 kids from previous relationships. Ages 10-22... We've been together just under ten years. We finally got married in 2014, I had been so excited to finally have the wedding and then his mother died the week of the wedding unexpectedly. They used our reception hall the day after the wedding for the funeral. :-( the week after the wedding I collapsed and a CT scan showed a tumor, a rare fibroid in my uterus causing chaos in my body and also not allowing an egg to ever attach. It's going to be removed next month. Up until this year I loved kids but my bio clock wasn't ticking or anything. Now it's ticking. Up until now he said he wasn't getting a vasectomy because it wouldn't be fair to expect me to help raise all his kids and then tell me I cant have one. Except that's exactly what's happening. He doesn't want more kids he's worn out. He will have another but not because he wants to. It's a totally different story to raise other people's kids. His youngest is ten and Weve had full custody since he was two. It's still not the same. I want my own child. I won't leave over this matter but I'm heartbroken it's seems like everything I've ever looked forward to is being destroyed. I can't feasible get pregnant and feel good about it if it's just going to chase him off because he's tired of kids. I doubt he'd leave but I don't want to do it alone either..

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Wow, Amanda, what a tough situation. I'm sorry this is happening to you. So after you get the tumor removed you could get pregnant? I'm sure your husband is worn out, but he needs to stick to what he said before. Otherwise it is not fair to you. Raising stepchildren can be very rewarding, but it is definitely not the same. I wish you the best.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Geez, I just called you Amanda. It's Miranda. I'm sorry. It's still early here in Oregon.

Miranda Brewer said...

Lol happens all the time, my bff in high school was Amanda they just called us both manda I'm not sure if anyone knew which of us was which lol... Yes I'll have a window of anywhere from 6 months to a year to conceive without miscarriage or having a deformity/ unhealthy fetus. Both ways it high risk. I don't think he would flat out tell me no. But just know it's not really something he WANTs is tough to deal with. We've been through so much over the years, we won't give up but it's just a rock and a hard place.

Anonymous said...

Long time reader of these comments. I feel for the other people on here because I've been dealing with the same thing for a long time.

I started with my girlfriend when we were very young (mid teens) and we've been together twelve years now. Even back then she was clear that she wasn't sold on the idea of kids, but she wasn't sure she would never want it either. She wanted to be with me regardless of whether we'd have kids or not and she wanted me to be the same way. I try to think back to what I thought when she first told me that; I think what I did was lie to myself and think that she would change her mind and want kids eventually. I didn't think about it much because we were young and in love.

We stayed together through college and I think I kept thinking the same thing whenever this issue would come up, which wasn't often. Throughout this time we were far from a perfect couple. I can be careless and forgetful, and she will usually give me the silent treatment for long periods when this happens. She doesn't really compromise with me and can be hard. Yet she is also an incredibly special person who is so smart, shares so much in common with me, so clever and fun to be with most of the time.

Fast forward to a year and a half after college graduation, and I've finally accepted that I'm not going to be okay without kids. At that time (and still) I had little experience with childcare, but I knew I liked spending time with kids and I loved imagining a life with family. I admit that I idealized things, but I did make pro and con lists and talk to a therapist and I dwelled on the negative things about parenthood, but none of it seemed to matter. My desire to have kids seemed unmovable, and I stupidly did not seek out more information about the practicality of what I envisioned.

I told her all this, but she wouldn't guarantee a child and in the end I gave in and buried my desire. I told myself that I might be able to give up this desire and be happy with her if I examined it more, even though deep down I thought this probably was not true.

I played for time for a few more years, focusing on my career and the good things about our relationship, but this problem never resolved in my heart. It made it impossible for me to truly give my all in the relationship and to truly feel the good things about our life. It has been three years since the first time I told her about my wishes, and now recently I've repeated them and tried to leave again. In the heat of the moment again I gave in again, after a day long fight where she begged me to stay.

Since then I have been unable to sleep much. I have a difficult career that I am neglecting over this agony. Trying to accept that I won't have kids and feeling that desire well up from deep within me has hurt me, and now I don't really even feel much or know what to think. I think what I'm going to do is trust the three years of soul searching I did, and not the past week of hell. I just hope that if I am even able to find someone that I won't always regret this decision and yearn for my old life. I also worry that I can't take much more of this pain and that I will lose everything either way.

I also feel crushing guilt because I agreed to stay so many times no matter what she decided on children.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Oh Anonymous, shoot. I hate that this has happened to you. It's perfectly normal and natural for you to want children. And some people just don't want to have them. Why do they keep getting together? I'm not clear on whether you have decided to leave your girlfriend and look for someone else or stay and try to deal with it. I think you have to be very clear with her that the child thing is a deal-breaker and if she wants you, she's going to have to have children, that she can't guilt you out of it.
Somebody has to give in. I hope and pray you can work it out.

keila karam said...

I grew up changing diapers. My childhood consisted of crying babies and responsibilities. At that time I knew I had to help. For my parents they worked two jobs. Also I got paid for the neighbor to watch her kid. As soon as I was able to start working at a store. I didn't stop working until I got married at age 20. FInally starting college at 21 and getting a job felt good. I'm in the best shape of my life. Today I'm 25 School is been tough for me, because I worked extremely hard to maintain a perfect gpa and to learn as much as possible. As my childhood consisted of watching children and not studying. The day I turn 25 I studying. I decided after i finish college I want to enjoy earning real money and traveling and living life. I don't want to leave stress to go into more stress. I love children and I would love to see my grow up and teach them what was never taught to me. But honestly right now I dont want kids. I never felt this way before. The day i turn 25 I just didnt want kids. I know I will eventully have two. But not now. My husband got teary once bc I said this. So I wont mention it anymore. Honeslty bc I love him eventully I will have his children. maybe by 30... but not now.

Anonymous said...

I have been married to my best friend for 8 years and we have been together for 14 years. We are both 35 and are struggling with the decision to start a family late in our marriage.

When we were first married, we agreed to put off starting a family while we focused on careers and travel. We never said that we did not want to have children - we both just knew that we were not ready and were perfectly happy traveling, and fortunate enough to do so.

A big obstacle in our marriage that has affected our decision to start a family is that he is active duty military and we have spent several of our 8 years of marriage apart. Each separation has been very difficult for us - it’s really like being married to a stranger after you have been separated for over a year. The thought of having a child while he was deployed terrified us…for me it was the fear of raising a child alone. For him it was the fear of being an absentee father with no end of deployments in sight.

Fortunately he has been under the same roof with me for the last two years, and the probability of another lengthy separation is unlikely. Unfortunately his attitude about starting a family has shifted. I very much want to have a child and he does not. He has told me that he is content with his lifestyle and has said that he can be happy without children. No regrets. Very recently after arguing/debating having a family he has conceded that his is “50/50” - but I know that this is just an effort to push back the inevitable question of whether or or not we can stay married and be happy with the decision to not have a family.

I will be 36 in a few months and I know not having a child will be a huge regret. I can’t picture a life for myself without children. I can’t imagine leaving my best friend after everything that we have been through. I can’t imagine staying married and being resentful.

… I take comfort in this blog and seeing that we are not the only married couple to face such tough decisions.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Oh Anonymous, how frustrating. I think you need to keep talking until he understands that he needs to stick by what he said when you got married and have children or two. You will not be happy otherwise. Don't give up. I wish you luck.

Mel Bell said...

Is anyone out there in a similar situation to me? I'm 42 years old, never been married and never had children. All I've ever really wanted was to get married to the right guy and have a family. About 6 months ago I met a lovely man whom I'm still seeing and he's without a doubt the nicest guy I've ever dated. We don't live together as he has never talked about it but I'd prefer to be married before cohabitation. I guess it's still early days yet. I'm due to have surgery in a few months to remove a large uterine fibroid which is causing me issues. Due to this operation I could become infertile. My boyfriend who is 43 has a daughter who is 8 years old. I get on well with his daughter. I've told my boyfriend that the surgery I'm going to have is likely to make me infertile but he plays his cards close to his chest and didn't respond when I told him this. There is a chance I could still have a pregnancy if I don't go through with the surgery but I havn't talked to my boyfriend about this as I feel it would put pressure on him and he's never said he has ruled out anymore children.
The other day we were talking and I told him I felt as if I'd missed out on having a family. He asked me if I wasn't enough for him and told me there are worse off people in the world. Has anyone got any wise advice about his situation?

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Mel Bell, my only advice is to be totally open with your man about your surgery and about whether or not you want to try to get pregnant. Not talking will only cause trouble later. I wish you the best with your guy and your surgery.

Anonymous said...

It's really heartwarming knowing that there are so many people that understand my struggle. My heart goes out to all of you.

I know many people will think that I'm too young to worry about this. I'm 26, and my boyfriend is 31. We've always been on the same page about our future, marriage, kids, a big house with a white picket fence, I thought our future was sorted. He suffers from bipolar, which has it's struggles, but I've learnt how to notice the signs he's sinking into a depression and we cope with it as a team. He's my support system, my world, my best friend and my world would be a dark place without him.

So recently, he's been suffering from a particularly bad low, and he's decided that he's not sure that he wants kids, and he's not sure he'll ever wants kids. On top of this, he thinks we should go our separate ways as he couldn't live with himself knowing that he can't give me the future I want. I'm so confused and lost. Now I'm torn between staying with him and accepting a possible future without children, or leaving and possibly never finding a love like this again. I've told him that I think he's not thinking clearly at the moment due to the depression, but he's adamant he is of sound mind to make a decision like this.

I wish this decision was easier.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anon, I think it's the disease talking and you should not make any life decisions based on what he has been saying. Just support him as much as you can, knowing that he'll come around. I'm so sorry you have to deal with this.

Anonymous said...


As someone in a similar situation, I came onto the Internet to look for some advice on the subject. I am only 21 years old, my partner is 25, and we have only been together for two years. I have never really wanted kids before, as I have dreams of travelling or being committed to my career when I get older. I am currently in the process of applying to graduate schools, and we have already agreed that we would either maintain a long distance relationship or he would move with me to wherever I end up going. However, we recently got into the discussion of kids. He adamantly wants kids, and has explictly said that it is one of the most important things to him. I told him this was something I understood, and that while I currently don't want kids, I think there is a good chance I'd change my mind in the future as many of my previous desires have already changed in the past. However, he said he wasn't sure if he would be willing to wait that long to have children, as he still wants to be young (mid to late 40s) when all of his kids would be moved out so he could still enjoy his adult life. I personally would prefer to wait until my early 30s to have children, but was willing to compromise with him and say that I would seriously consider having children a year or two after I would graduate from school (putting me at about 27 yrs old). This would give me the time to get a good footing in my profession and really get a good foundation in my life before committing to children. I also mentioned possibly adopting children as I have a fear about the health complications and changes a woman goes through with a pregnancy. He seemed more willing to the idea of adopting children, but still insisted he would want children of his own. I really do want to stay with him and try to make things work, I just feel like I'm the only one willing to compromise and make sacrifices to make the relationship work. I feel like I am being reasonable, but can't be sure as it's hard for me to look at the situation from his point of view. The worst thing about it is that while I said there was a good chance I'd want kids in the future, he's not sure if he's willing to wait for me to make that final decision. I feel that if he wasn't so adamant about having kids in the next few years, this would be much easier. I know that if I were to cave and have children while I was in graduate school, I would be overwhelmed by the responsibilities I would have which would put strain on our relationship and make him feel guilty. Either way, I feel that the road ahead will be difficult and potentially heartbreaking, but I'm hoping it will turn out for the best. Even writing out the whole situation has helped clear my mind about it all. I know my situation isn't nearly as extreme/desperate as others, but it doesn't make me feel much better about it.
As for the fear of childbirth/impact on my health, am I being irrational? I've been told by many mothers that it was easier than they imagined and well worth it in the end. It's just hard for me to wrap my head around it being as health conscious as I am (which is one of the reasons why I think adoption would be a good alternative for us).

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

To Anonymous 3/25/15, I don't know the answer to your dilemma.Both sides sound reasonable, but something has to give. I guess you need to figure out if you are both committed to the relationship enough to compromise. I hope you can figure it out.

Anonymous said...

I am a divorced father of 2 children, 11 & 13 (Boy & Girl) and my girlfriend is 29, and the mother of a 6 year old. We've been together 2 years and have a very good relationship overall. The issue of children has come up many times in the past but we kind of talk about it but never make an issue out of it. I am 48 and pretty much done on the idea of rearing more kids. My gf is 29 and keeps feeling that she wants another child. We've crossed this road before but always table it for another time. However, now it has been a source of stress for us for almost one month. We both knew prior to the relationship commencing that we had different views but our hearts kept pulling us together. We are deeply in love with each but have seem to hit a roadblock. And yes, I am aware of the age difference and we both knew at one point that this would come up - and linger. Sometimes she feels that she doesn't want one more but most of the time she feels the urge that women feel. She has a very busy life and with all the obstacles in her life having another child would create complete havoc in her life - and mine because of her situations. We have gone to therapy in the past and the therapists seems to think that she should just stick with one and be happy with everything she has with me. She has said that I bring about everything she has ever needed or wanted to the relationship - except that I really don't want anymore kids. I am not sure what to do now. I have told her that if she truly wants a baby than I am not the man for but she says she can't bear the thought of us not together. I have told her that I don't want her to resent me in years to come if we stay together and I don't give her a child. Unfortunately we can't compromise in this situation. Neither of us are right or wrong. Any input would be appreciated.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Dear Anonymous April 2, Thank you for sharing this. It's always a difficult situation when couples disagree about children. I can see that you are trying to resolve it. I feel like the three kids you have between you are probably enough, but I understand her need to have another one with you. My husband was also 48 when we got married. I didn't understand then but I do now why he didn't want to raise another child. You're right that you can't compromise. Someone has to give in. I hope your love will lead you to an answer.

Anonymous said...

I'm glad I'm not the only one in this...... I am about to turn 30 in 3 months. I've been with a wonderful man for 5 years and he is about to turn 35. Our relationship was all cakes and roses the first year, but after that we had lots of problems. And the ONLY main problem we have is the issue over kids: I want one and he doesn't. But I just want one.....not 2 or 3. But here's the thing: we're both don't nearly have the money to get married nor have a kid right now..... But I am sad that he already made up his mind. He says he doesn't see himself being an older father running after a kid. He wants to travel and buy expensive things. He doesn't want the responsibility. There's nothing wrong with not wanting a kid, I guess. It's a personal choice...... But why after 5 years does he tell me this? Sometimes I feel like the idiot for hanging on in this relationship cuz we BOTH expressed at one point that this relationship is already doomed. But I hate leaving after investing 5 years. I love him..... I don't want to search for anyone else. I too feel like by the time I make enough money and meet someone else, I'll be too old for a baby. I've even considered being with him childless because I love him too much, yet I know I'll be dying inside knowing I won't have my kid. And it just kills me inside everytime I see my relatives getting married or getting pregnant, and some of their husbands gave into having a kid..... Why can't my man do the same??? I love him and respect him, and I do NOT want him to have a kid if he truly doesn't want one..... I cried myself to sleep almost every other night over this. I'm not even sure I deserve a kid myself because I crumble easily at first sight of stress. And a kid needs a mom who is strong. See what I mean? I want a kid but maybe I don't deserve one.....and I'm crying for nothing. Maybe I should just enjoy my boyfriend and not worry about kids. I understand kids require a lot of time and energy and I already said I'm willing to get up at 4 in the morning when the kid is screaming, I want to pay for what my kid needs like school supplies or braces, I want a kid whose softball games I can go to, etc..... I just want kids for the same reason everyone else wants kids.... And a lot of people say "Forcus on yourself"..... Yes I know that. I'm a 30 year old who is still trying to grow as a person everyday. I'm going to school and volunteering at a hospital..... I just want to find happiness...... I love him and I don't want to leave him. And the next issue I'm worried about is getting married. I know marriage is not something to take lightly. Judging by the kid issues we're having now, I'm afraid to get married. I don't want to have a horrible marriage if we disagree on kids. At least with marriage, he doesn't have a problem getting married. That, I'm thankful for. I know I have a shot at getting married with him, if I can just resolve this kid issue. I don't know what to do...... =(

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Dear Anon April 10, My gut feeling is that you need to break up and find someone else. That's harsh, but if you already can't talk about something so important, how are you going to deal with other issues that come up. 30 is not too old to find someone else, someone who wants children as much as you do.
I hope you can find a solution.

Anonymous said...

I am struggling with this same situation. I have been with my partner for 8 years and we have talked about having a family. He just told me yesterday that he actually doesn't want children at all. I am so confused,angry,upset and lost. He is the love OF MY LIFE and I couldn't see myself with anyone else. But I have always seen myself having children with him. I am now at a crossroads unsure of what to do. I feel like my only options are to stay with him and not have children or find another man who isn't as good as him and have children. I can't seem to chose which one is more important. I love him so much but I don't want to make him unhappy in the future by resenting him for not giving me children.

Anonymous said...

I thought I was the only one in this awful predicament, until I came across this blog.

I have been with my boyfriend for 15 months. I am 33 and he is 38. He is divorced and has two children aged 14 and 10.

Before meeting him, I had built myself back up following the ending of a serious relationship where I lost a great deal. Therefore I was reluctant and cautious in trusting when trusting a future partner.

The last 15 months with him have been amazing. I am so in love with this chap, he is my partner and also my best friend. Although I have never been sure on the babies front, it is not something that I want to rule out therefore from the start of our relationship I asked him the question 'would you consider having children in the future?' to which he replied 'I am open to the idea, I love kids!' I was thinking this is amazing. A great guy and if I experience a strong urge to be a mother, he seems open to it.

During the course of our relationship, he has 'freaked out' about the child issue on two occasions. Both times he raised it and both times he came to the idea that he would do this for me if I wanted to in the future.

Two weeks ago, again without any prompting from me, he suddenly tells me that he doesn't want children now (neither do I which is cool) and that he is certain he will never want them again. I am now being forced it feels to make a decision that I am not ready to do on the baby front. He has pretty much said that if 4 years down the line, I decide I want children that will be my responsibility as he has been clear (?!) about not wanting them!

I feel so upset, angry and frustrated and have no strong sense of what to do. I am left doubting everything about our relationship as I can't understand how someone who claims to love and care for me would put me in such a horrible predicament?

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous 4/13, I feel your frustration. He keeps changing his mind. I think you need to be clear about what you want because he could go either way. Take some time to let things settle down. Maybe even take some time away from him to figure this out because ultimately it is going to be your decision. Not fair? You bet. But that's the way it is.

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous 4/12, you're not alone, that's for sure. And you're right about your choices. Maybe he'll magically change his mind, but that doesn't happen very often. So you'll need to figure out which is more important to you, staying with the love of your life or having children. I'm sorry sorry this has happened to you.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

I'm happy to see this post and know I am not alone!

I'm 34 and my husband is 40. We've been together 8 years, married for 5 of those.

When I was younger I had wanted kids, but due to bad relationships and curveballs I decided I didn't want them. 8 years ago I met my now husband. We began dating and talked about kids, at that time neither of us wanted children. Two years later I was having complications from birth control, so we talked about getting him a vasectomy, and he got one. I asked him then what happens if one of us changes our mind about kids, his response "we'll cross that bridge if we get there". Well 2 years ago I got there! I changed my mind, I want kids. We have gone round and round and he is still a no, never on kids! That's not what he wants. He thinks he's too old, he's starting to think about retirement, wants to travel more, started looking into the health risks he could pass onto the child at his age, he enjoys his hobbies, doesn't want to go thru the reversal or IUI/iVF process, thinks that if we have a child he wouldn't be a priority to me and his list goes on, etc.

I feel horrible, changing my mind on him! He feels like I mislead him from the beginning! But at the time I didn't want kids. There have been some family matters in that last few years to, that have made me long for a child. The last 2 years have been a struggle for us. Intimacy has been tough for me, it's hard for me to give my all to someone who is not on the same page with me on kids. I have good days and bad days, I try not to be consumed with my wanting. Seeing him with our niece and nephews is hard too, he would be a great father! I also have noticed things in the last 2 years about him that I had never seen before, rose colored glasses, blinded by love. So I have tried not to let that affect my judgement. sigh

He's at the point that if I want kids we need to separate but it's not what he wants. I don't want to either but this is not something a person can compromise on. He told me I need to decide, as this is tearing him up inside, ummm me too! I feel depressed all the time. It also doesn't help that my friends are all starting families too, and it's all I see at work. I feel envious at points. I get frustrated and angry at him and myself for being in this position! I try not to take it out on him but sometimes it gets the best of me.

He is a one of a kind man! We are great together in all other aspects of our marriage. I was completely happy up until 2 years ago, when I brought up wanting kids. I wanted to start a new path/journey with the man I love!

This past week we decided we weren't going to be intimate with each other, no hugs, kisses, sex etc. due to that we decided to sleep in separate rooms instead of having him go to a hotel. It's super awkward in our home. I thought it may be easier then having him go to a hotel, as we are able to still talk. Maybe this is hurting us more than I though, opinions please?? How do we go back to normal? Is it possible?

I hate that I have to choose between him and kids! How do you decide what you want more? What are the chances of getting a great man again and wants kids? I don't want to resent him or resent myself later on. I also find myself asking do I really want kids or is it me being envious of friends, wanting what I don't have?? Will I be happy without kids?

I'm also curious about others who have stayed with their spouse and what you result or outcome was.

S

Sue Fagalde Lick said...

Anonymous April 24,
If you read through the blog, you'll see the same thing happening to so many people. It does come down to that impossible choice, stay with him or leave and hope to find someone you can have children with. Nobody can make that choice for you. It sounds like you had a good marriage and still love each other very much. Have you tried counseling? Right now, you're both hurting. I hope you can find a was past it and find a way to work it out.

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed reading all of the comments on this post. I am currently struggling with the same thing. I am in a relationship with someone 8 years you get than I and she is undecided if she wants a child. She goes back and forth but thinks she does.... The problem is that I do not. We have been together almost a year . I am 41 she is 33. I love children but have never had the desire for one of my own. We love each other very much but she feels like she may be wasting her time in this relationship if she does decide she wants a child. I don't want to lose her but I understand that there is a strong possibility that it might happen. I really am trying not to be too upset about it and have faith that everything will work out the way it is meant to... Whatever the end result may be.

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