To worry that my life will be horrible if I have kids.(118 Posts)
I do want children, but I'm pretty worried that I might hate my new life if it happens. I really like relaxing and being able to go out in the evening without paying a babysitter. What if they completely take over my life and I am a good mum and I love them to death but deep down I want my old life back and feel angry at them for taking away freedom?
Littlewhitebag - I can't agree - I was ready and really wanted kids (IVF in the end )but life HAS been horrible at times!
I also love that I will only be 40 with an 18 and 15 year old. I was the first of my friends to have a baby. I'm sure some of my friends do not envy my life whatsoever but equally I don't envy them going out clubbing every weekend.
I had my first DC at 29- I initially got broody as I result of my Niece being born 2 years prior to that. My DP and I had only been together for 2 years but we we adored each other (still do) that was one of the biggest decisions for me- who the father was going to be. I had had a relationship with my boyfriend from university for 6 years but not once did I feel he would ever be the father of my children.
My DP and I had lived a very hedonistic, indulgent life for the 2 years prior to conceiving and it put a stop to all of that- it was a relief. It is probably not the way you're supposed to do it. I had a very good career but I didn't want to go back to it when it came to decision time. My DP has been working and doing a professional qualification during our DCs lifetime, he will be a qualified Architect next year. Again, probably not the conventional route- you probably are better off putting yourself in a more secure position career wise. On the other hand the responsibility of being a father has worked to drive him in his career to be a success because he has very strong convictions when it comes to fatherhood. For myself, motherhood has almost transformed my personality as I was previously quite shy, unassertive and quite introspective. I have found that these traits are not compatible with motherhood.
But it's not just about going clubbing and on the p* is it?? - my life was hugely rich before I had DS (at 42) - I did loads and loads of voluntary work - some with kids and I could just go out at night, go to meetings, not have to worry about babysitters or 'spending quality time' with my DS. THAT is what I miss - I think I've only ever been to a night club once in my life and of course I still do a lot of voluntary work, some with my DS, but it is not the same, you just don't have that sense of going out on the spur of the moment and as your child gets older it is actually more difficult, easy to leave them tucked up in bed with a babysitter when they go to bed at 7pm. Not so easy when you are taxi-ing them around at 9pm between various activities .
I felt like this for 38 years and then for most of the 9 months of my pregnancy...in fact I raised it at our NCT lessons as a worry of mine... then I had DS and can honestly say I don't miss my old life at all. You can't really get it until you're a parent - or I didn't - and I think it's quite common to never feel ready but taking the plunge was a good thing for me!
It will be rank for quite a while. It gets better.
seriously, 27 is not 'ancient'. I had my eldest at almost 27 and my youngest at 38. Older Motherhood was/infinitely easier and I had much more money, which helps.
I'd be cautious about having children any earlier than your mid to late twenties. You absolutely need to live and become an adult before you look after children.
Sorry autumn if that was directed at me. I know 27 isn't ancient, but I certainly felt it when I was in the hospital and others around me were much younger. I felt a lot more tired when it came to night feeds, and when i'm lumping the buggy in and out of the back of the car, when I was carrying the car seat around and all those sorts of things. And i'm reasonably fit. I just personally felt a lot older and am therefore glad I have done it all now that's all
It hadn't even occurred to me at 27 to think about having babies. I wasn't a baby hater and always thought I would have a child 'one day' but I wasn't broody at all.
I met DP when I was 32, he was clear he wanted more kids (had 2 already) and I was pleased I knew where I stood with him, but it still took me another 3 years to be ready to try. We finally had DD when I was 37 and I have never regretted it - I do sometimes think back on my life pre-DD and have a touch of nostalgia, but I don't miss it one little bit. In fact, if I'd have known how much I enjoyed having DD (even with the boring/sleepless/crappy bits) I would have started sooner!
It is an equally valid decision in life not to have children though.
My theory is that if you have a partner you can keep the one thing about your old life that you are most determined to keep - be that travel, socialising, full-on career, perfect grooming, lots of sex, or theatre-going. If you have money you can keep one extra thing, supportive grandparents nearby give you one more thing. Each additional child or the absence of a supportive partner means you may have to strike something off the list, but the basic principle is that you can keep one thing that means most to you, but you have to prioritise it ruthlessly.
You know OP, if I had waited to have children until I was "ready" I would still be waiting.
I never felt particularly maternal and certainly not domestic. Had a fairly high-powered career, long hours, tons of travel, nice paycheque. However, I knew I wanted a "family" in the abstract. I couldn't imagine being 70 and it just being me and DH (although he is lovely) around the Christmas dinner table. So basically I had kids because I wanted grandkids!
Had DD1 when I was 33 and DD2 just shy of 36. Had crippling PND with both of them and it was HELL.
My DDs are the light of my life. They are beautiful, clever, kind, fun, funny, perfect. I did not know I was capable of love like this. I would not change one single thing about being a parent, being their mum, even though yes it is still hard sometimes.
I think everyone's journey to and through parenthood is different, and you need to find the path that feels right for you. 27 sounds a bit young to me, but then again I have a very close friend who had all 4 of her kids by the time she was 26!
I didn't feel ready at all at 27.
I felt ready but a bit apprehensive at 31.
By the time I had waited for my now husband to be ready and started trying I was 34 and definitely ready.
Unfortunately, I'm almost 37 and way past ready and it still hasn't happened. The last two years have been the toughest of my life.
I'd agree with those who say wait until you really really really want children. And think deeply on WHY you want them - not just because all your friends have them and you're feeling left out.
I love my children and wouldn't give them up for anything, but I've realised that a) I'm not a very good parent and b) I'd rather just live on my own with a few cats! So if I could go back in time I'd stay single and child-free.
Sadly, because nothing can prepare you for parenthood, you never really know how you'll feel about it. And if you decide it's not for you, it's too late to do anything about it!!
I had the same concerns as you when pg with my first. In some respects it's worst than you imagine - even more difficult to work on your career / do anything spontaneous. But having children is worth in ways that you don't appreciate either. 27 is a nice age consider starting a family but I do think as you get closer to 30 more friends will be doing it and you'll know more clearly whether you're ready to join them in parenthood. I would say don't rush into it if you're not sure but bear in mind, especially if you want more than one child, you need to leave plenty of time for contingency planning.
Having children is not all sweetness and light. The weight of responsibility is almost crushing and seems endless (although that does ease a little as they grow older). Life is unutterably different - in every single way (relationships, work, friends, money, freedom, prioritising yourself and your needs). But my children are still the best things I've ever done and I adore them.
Other people's children - hmm, not so sure .
To be completely honest, life is horrible for the first couple of years, especially if like me you enjoy your freedom. I have a one year old and a three year old so am in the thick of it at the moment but I'm starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. It's a few years of sleep deprivation and food smeared everywhere and then they become these cool little people who talk to you and love you back and it's amazing.
The overwhelming love you feel for your family takes over your life and makes it all worth it. I was quite shallow and selfish before having children and they have been the making of me and cemented my relationship with my husband in a way not even marriage did.
Also, I was one of the first among my friends to have a baby but now everyone else is following suit and we are all boing together - there is barely a social scene to miss out on now!
you arrange baby sitting swaps with friends so that you can go out.
I love my life with kids. They are amazing!
leave it op for awile you dont sound ready and there is nothing wrong with that
even in a few years you decide you dont want them thats fine to
i think women are under a certain amount of pressure to have children,i think its fine if you dont
society towards women and choices regarding this subject is horrible
i suspect many women if they had their time again would not have children but it's a taboo subject so you never really get a clear picture
There's no right time to do it. Sure, as a 39 year old I had lost interest in wild nights out many years earlier.
But freedom comes in many forms. I miss the freedom just to be on my own. To lie in bed all day if I feel like it. To go to the gym three times a week. To go on nice little weekends away.
Freedom just to put myself first. I'll never have that again.
It changes, of course. Your own life comes back slowly. But with kids, you enter at the hardest level, and for me, it was like being hit by a train.
Dilys, I love your theory. Makes sense to me.
piprabbit is right. The crushing responsibility of having to raise people is slightly suffocating. You never relax. Not really. Even at the most relaxed you can ever be, in sure and certain knowledge that the children are fine, you're doing a good job and you can devote time to you, there's always a small compartment of your brain dedicated to the responsibility you've taken on. That's the hardest bit ime. The crayon washes off and they grow out of almost every behaviour you struggle with but the magnitude of having dc never leaves you.
BUT it's intoxicating. I haven't the words to describe it to you. The worry, no matter how suffocating, is never bigger or brighter or more astonishing than the way in which you so completely love every fibre of these small people.
I still don't like children btw. I find them worrying, dull and uncomfortable to be around. My own children are my family though and I sometimes can't catch my breath when I think of them.
I'm still me in every essential way too. I laugh and write and read and crave the same things. I am altered irrevocably in shades most people can't see but the stuff which makes me me has never gone away.
To be brutally honest yes they will take over your life and if you're anything like most people you will have moments of yearning for your old life and thinking "what happened to me?". But that doesn't mean it isn't worth it, if you see what I mean. At 27 there's no way I would have had kids -- to be frank I was still undecided at 38. I think to an extent feeling "ready" helps, but you can't really ever be totally "ready" as you have no way of knowing what a huge change it will have on you.
But motherhood is full of paradoxes. Yes, your life is ridiculously curtailed compared to what it was before -- unless you're very affluent or have a lot of free help with childcare you will hardly ever be able to afford decent nights out or holidays, for example, or nice clothes. And yes you will miss this and sometimes bristle at the lack of freedom and tedium. But your life will still be richer in immeasurable ways. Some people regret having kids in the short term, but very very few will genuinely regret it forever. Its hard for me to imagine now not having had a kid (I'm 40)
Also -- and I'm not at this stage yet -- it will get easier when they go to school and the freedom comes back to an extent.
But personally I wouldn't sweat it yet at 27. Yes there are people who have fertility issues in their 30s and if you're worried you should get it checked out. But I think there's also a lot of unnecessary hysteria about this. In reality if you're healthy and don't have any issues you still have a minimum of four or five years before you need to make a decision about it.
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