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Thread: Deciding on Having Kids

  1. #1
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    Deciding on Having Kids

    Hi All. I would really love to talk get some advice from someone, preferably a woman, who used to think they didn't want kids but ended up changing their minds and having them or even having them when it wasn't planned. I'm 27, and up until recently I was pretty certain that I never wanted children, but recently I've started to wonder if I might be open to the idea. It still scares me to death though for a multitude of reasons. The pain and trauma of childbirth is one factor that puts me off, and I've just never had what I guess you'd call that "natural maternal instinct" that people seem to think women are supposed to have.

    I'd just love to know if there's someone out there who felt this way and ended up having kids and how you feel about it now. Thanks!

  2. #2
    Platinum Member Snny's Avatar
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    If you are on the fence about having kids...
    please donít have them.

    No joke. Kids take 110% commitment and the right partner who is willing to be a team player. They change your lifestyle, your hobbies, and even adult friendships. They say you find your really friends after college... wrong. You find your TRUE friends once you have kids.

    I waited until I was in my 30ís, with financial stability, and a partner I could trust. I did not want kids even after I got married because I was not settled. I wanted a few more years of being irresponsible such as traveling or engaging in expensive hobbies. Best decision ever. I got a one year old now I completely love.

    Iím happy with one child. Saves me money on childcare and we can do more vacations/traveling/stuff together. Iím still paying off my student loans and cannot envision taking on more than 2 childrenís. I also had severe pregnancy complications. After witnessing nasty sibling rivalry in my family growing up, I do not want to put my daughter through.

    The pain and trauma of childbirth is one factor that puts me off
    Childbirth is a VERY short moment that you live through in comparison of being pregnant AND dealing with recovery from having a human. Yes it sucks. Yes, you may not get the birth plan you want. I was completely terrified of it the whole way through...

    But nobody told me how bad the recovery period is. That part is the worst part. Raising a new baby AND take care of yourself was mega stressful for me. If people offer to help you and expect nothing in return - do the laundry, watch the baby so you can shower/nap in peace, help clean your home, or bring you food - you take it.

    Seriously, you are still young to have kids. Take all the time you have while you still have it.

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    Iíve known since I was seven I didnít want kids. I never Ďbabiedí my dolls. They all got thrown in the back of the closet when I was little. With that being said I also donít have the Ďmaternal instinct.í

    If I were or was able to have kids it would be unfair to the child because I know I couldnít care for a baby or child.

    Be honest with yourself!

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    I found my true friends way before I had my son at 42 but I didn't and still don't focus on "mom friends" - if I connect with someone who is also a mom -great! But I don't seek out those friendships based on parental status.

    I can't help with the change mind part but I can tell you that you can adopt or foster of course. I had a very good pregnancy and childbirth despite an emergency c-section. I had a scary health complication connected to the pregnancy -well they thought so anyway - 12 days later -a stroke (but i fully recovered and didn't need therapy). I agree with being 110% into it plus a partner who is committed to you and to having a child 110%. I do know of women who changed their minds and were thrilled they did and women who never had kids and are happy that way!

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  6. #5
    Platinum Member Cherylyn's Avatar
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    I'm a mother of two sons so I more than qualify to answer your post, sammy1592!

    Back in the day, I never wanted kids. I was far too focused on establishing my career and my husband and I truly thrived on our DINK (Dual Income No Kids) lifestyle to the hilt. Life was so grand that we survived from his income alone while I saved my paychecks every month for years. We amassed quite the nest egg (savings) for years. Eventually, after we settled into our suburban life with the white picket fence, we decided to start a family. We had our house and have since moved up several times. We were just like the birds, built our nest and then had our babies; not backwards unlike humans!

    I was a little scared. However, it was different for me due to my circumstances. My husband hailed from an idyllic "mom 'n pop 'n apple pie" upbringing unlike my struggling widowed mother who raised 3 children. This was after her teeth were punched out 'courtesy' of my late father. I knew I was ready because I married the right man, he's always been for good to me and a stable provider. Financial security was not a problem.

    My FIL (father-in-law) set the bar very high regarding his exemplary example as a husband and father. He treats his wife like a queen. They say the greatest thing a father can do for his child (or children) is to love their mother. He goes above and beyond. Since my husband grew up observing his honorable father, naturally, he knows of nothing else. By observation, fathers teach their sons how to respect women. I knew in my bones, my husband would make an outstanding father and he is. He's good to me and our sons. Like father, like son and his integrity had been passed down from generation to generation.

    I had some nausea during my first trimester with both pregnancies but not that bad overall. Onions, garlic, tomatoes and orange juice repulsed me. Then during my second and third trimesters, I ate with abandon and loved every minute of eating whatever I craved! No weird cravings such as pickles and sardines over here, however, I ate heartily!

    My labor for son #1 was long but when he was born it was THEE happiest day of my life. Labor for son #2 wasn't long and again, no day was sweeter than the day my babies were born! My whole new world of happiness surpassed all else.

    I was 'Jersey Maid' and nursed both sons for almost a year, made homemade baby food, knitted sweaters for them, sewed baby quilts, kept them so clean they never knew what dirt was and really into "mom mode." Looking back, those were the best years of my life. I thrived on being very organized, too. No matter how harried and busy I was from those sleepless nights, I'd give anything to go back.

    I'm nostalgic and often watch home movies (videos) of when my sons were little. I miss it.

    We were busy with two little boys, a Golden Retriever who went everywhere with us and it was great.

    I'm only saying what I'm writing here because my conditions were optimal. I married the right man, we've been happily married, he treats me with respect which spills over to our children and we're financially secure. Granted, if conditions were not optimal across the board, I wouldn't have children. My husband and I knew we could provide for our household and live a good, content, very stable life.

    Being a mother is an honorable status. This is what my mother said. It's a special sorority. Not that I deliberately seek other mothers but I'm not the same woman as when I was childless. I'm more family oriented now. A woman changes overnight once they become a mother.

    When my sons were younger, I truly enjoyed my park days with them and I met great mom friends years ago. This time of year, we were invited to cookie party exchanges. We outgrew some of us but I've since retained a few friends from then. I was so organized, packed homemade picnic lunches the night before, had the car packed and I enjoyed it immensely.

    I didn't enjoy cooking when I was childless. Nowadays, I enjoy cooking and it makes me happy to see my family enjoy my meals. I've been baking Christmas cookies for neighbors nowadays. I love doing the "mom thing." My sons enjoy my apple pies. (I bake with reduced amounts of sugar so it's not overly sweet and my food doesn't taste too salty either.)

    Motherhood is not for everyone but to me, it was worth it. I wouldn't change a thing. I feel incredibly blessed to say this. I know I'm very fortunate in countless ways.

    Another thing, my husband is very hands on. He always picks up the slack. I never feel burdened. He always helps with child rearing from day one, errands, chores, tasks, you name it and I could always lean on him and depend on him. He's extremely reliable. He makes my life a joy because my life is not hard. He didn't give me a hard life. He helps me immensely in all ways.

    If I married some deadbeat, lazy, good for nothing guy where he would make me work like a dog, no, I would not have had children. No way. We're a team. I count my numerous blessings.

    Think of your marriage, finances, maturity level and various conditions. What type of man did you marry? Is he a fine example? List your pros and cons. I think you have to be basically happy in order to start a family and do it right. Any other way, is more difficult than it has to be.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member Andrina's Avatar
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    Just wondering what you think the pros of having a child would be, if you could list some of them. Do you have any nieces or nephews, or children of friends you know well? If so, do you enjoy hanging out with them, or not? I'm trying to get a better picture of your mindset, to see if I have any valid advice, although I'm very maternal so might not be able to help.

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    Platinum Member Rose Mosse's Avatar
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    If you're worried about a lack of warm, cuddly and soft feelings, I think you're looking at a cliche and not all women fall within that. That's a stereotype all around and also constructed with the help of our other halves. It's also heavily influenced by culture and social expectations from both genders. Not all mothers will raise their children the same way. It doesn't mean you love any less or any less fiercely.

    When your baby is born, you'll know what to do and it'll come as second nature. Whether or not it's the cliche type of "maternal" or simply being protective and pragmatic about a little being that's yours, it's up to you. You can learn to approach it any which way you like and you'll have a lifetime to get used to it and turn it around and mull over it.

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    Platinum Member melancholy123's Avatar
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    I have two grown kids. A phrase I heard a long time ago is - labour is the most pain and the least remembered. That is true. Sure it hurts but the baby is the reward!

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    its totally normal to not want kids and in your late 20s or 30s change your tune.

    I started thinking about having kids/being open to it when i was 29/30 and when i met a the right guy, it seemed totally a natural thing to want.
    I will say miscarriages made me way more attuned to wanting to be a mom. My 20 year old self could NOT see ever having kids.

    There are some people who have the mindset that having a baby is their mission in life and will go to any length, there are people that strongly don't want kids and there are people that are open to see what life brings -- if they fall in love and meet the right person, children seem natural, but if that doesn't happen, they can be okay, too.

    So i guess i am saying is that you don't totally have to make a definitive "i am going to do it" now.

  11. #10
    Platinum Member itsallgrand's Avatar
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    One of my closest friends did not want children, but she had an unplanned pregnancy and decided to have the baby. She did not ever feel like she had ' maternal instincts ' either. She had complications, bad PPD, and even suicidal thoughts. She had trouble bonding with her baby. She has told me, and that child is school age now, that the feeling of maternal " instinct " never did happen for her. She loves her children ( she went on to have more ) but she is not happy with her life. She does everything for those kids, but no, it does not bring her the joy so many reassured her would happen. She finds the daily aspects of parenting unrewarding and just keeps waiting for the days her kids are more independent.

    I'm just trying to say that not every parent who changed their mind or followed through on an unplanned pregnancy is happy. Some even regret it.

    You really have to search yourself. Don't worry too much about what others may tell you about their experiences, because everyone is so different.

    I would caution against the messages that you'll magically know what to do, that parenthood will change how you feel about certain things, and the like. It might and it might not. It's more about knowing if you are really wanting and ready for the commitment of a lifetime of care for another person - no matter what may happen.

    Either way you choose, and you are the only one who gets to decide, you have to live with it.

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