To worry that my life will be horrible if I have kids.

(118 Posts)
Buddhagirl Sun 18-Nov-12 19:43:23

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?

Lottapianos Mon 19-Nov-12 13:43:32

'I'm 35 and still not ready to take that risk'

PanickingIdiot, I'm 33 but otherwise in the same place you are. It feels like the most enormous gamble ever - it could be the most wonderful experience imaginable or it could be the biggest mistake you've ever made. Or somewhere in between of course!

There's definitely been something up with my hormones in the last year or so and I'm thinking about parenthood more than ever before. I've always been adamant that parenthood is not for me but something's up. I work with babies and young children and i love it - I completely understand when parents say that children light up your world, they make you laugh, they challenge you in wonderful ways and help you to look at life in a whole new way. I love being around children. My best friend had a baby 4 months ago and she is the sweetest thing ever. I would feel really sad if I didn't have children in my life.

But children of my own? That I am fully responsible for? All the time? I'm really not sure. Like other people said, it's not just about going out clubbing (not my scene!), it's having the freedom and time and money to live the sort of life you want to. Those are precious things. I'm not a gambler - I don't even buy scratch cards. I always carry an umbrella. My impulse purchase days are way in the past grin

I guess all you can do is go with it and see how you feel. The decision does feel a bit overwhelming at times and it's such a personal thing - no-one can tell you what you 'should' do. Even asking other people about their experiences, you're only hearing their story, it could be totally different for you. Good luck OP - it's a tough one smile

stinkinseamonkey Mon 19-Nov-12 13:28:56

"This certainly has not been my experience. We get lie-ins quite regularly as DD will happily snuggle up for a lie-in with us. She's rarely up before 8am through choice."

same, ours will sleep in if not woken for nursery, then you can add another half hour of snuggling in our bed to that

if you are planning to have children with a partner then one person shouldn't always be sacrificing their sleep/hobbies/ambitions/social life while the other continues as they were, unless one works away/7 days etc then you can take turns!

PanickingIdiot Mon 19-Nov-12 13:28:29

As long as you have family to support

Not everyone has. I agree that it makes a big difference, though.

I already struggle to find time for my hobbies and the things I enjoy doing, and I have no children.

I have no doubt it would be possible to juggle everything, but I'd have to live an incredibly disciplined life, with never a stress-free moment, and unfortunately I recharge my batteries when left alone in peace and quiet for extended periods of time. And that would be the first thing to disappear from my schedule.

MrsCantSayAnything Mon 19-Nov-12 13:18:53

I have a friend with no children...she's 40 and doesn't want any. Also she's single. She likes her life as it is....self employed and very, very successful. She has kept and made friends who have children and who don't.

She has regular get togethers at her house and it's fabulous going there where those of us who DO have kids can pretend we're still like her...nice home, lots of money...peace....she likes to borrow a child now and then just for fun....but she always returns them in good order. grin

She's told me that whilst she sometimes thinks "what kind of Mum would I be?" she also feels that at 40 she knows who she is...and how she's' likely to feel at 60....she doesn't think she's going to regret it.

OhDearSpareHeadTwo Mon 19-Nov-12 13:12:30

I've trained her well grin

aufaniae Mon 19-Nov-12 13:09:18

OhDearSpareHeadTwo I am jealous! envy grin

OhDearSpareHeadTwo Mon 19-Nov-12 13:07:02

10am will be the most amazing lie in ever, and even then will only happen once every 6 months, if that. For a while you won't have time to read a book, watch a film or drink a cup of tea while still hot.

This certainly has not been my experience. We get lie-ins quite regularly as DD will happily snuggle up for a lie-in with us. She's rarely up before 8am through choice.

OhDearSpareHeadTwo Mon 19-Nov-12 13:05:22

We have one 2.5yr old daughter.

I am president of my Rotary club and go to several meetings a month, DH is also a member. We have lots of "do's"
I go to sugarcraft meetings once a month and run a cake decorating business as well as working
This week DH has gone to romania for a week doing charity stuff/holiday with some rotary friends
Sunday I went to a sugarcraft exhibition all day and on Thursday I'm having a day out in London
We went to a black tie dinner on Saturday night

As long as you have family to support you all of the above is absolutely, completely possible. Having a child doesn't have to stop your social life - they actually will fit round you pretty well.

MardyArsedMidlander Mon 19-Nov-12 12:55:19

This may sound harsh- but don't have a baby to fill a gap, think more of what you can GIVE your child.
And you won't have a GAP in your 30s and 40s- other things come along, and more and more women are chosing not to have any. Or- shock! horror!- you might even stay friends with people whose lives are not exactly the same as yours.
And as for children in old age- sadly, you can't guarantee your children will be there for you. They may have special needs and you will still be worrying about them.

PanickingIdiot Mon 19-Nov-12 12:12:34

I'm 35 and still not ready to take that risk.

Sometimes people (well-meaningly, no doubt) ask me when (never 'if') I want them, and it always feels like they're trying to take my life away from me. I'm forever baffled as to how something as life-changing as parenthood could just be "suggested" to somebody else as carelessly as the idea of babies gets shoved in my face by people who barely even know me. (Rant over, sorry.)

aufaniae Mon 19-Nov-12 11:36:39

And you won't lose your social life completely, but it will change.

aufaniae Mon 19-Nov-12 11:35:54

Give it to you straight? OK.

You will lose your social life. 10am will be the most amazing lie in ever, and even then will only happen once every 6 months, if that. For a while you won't have time to read a book, watch a film or drink a cup of tea while still hot. You will never be able to go out and drink with complete abandon again (well not while they're little anyway).

But your children will be the most amazing people you've ever met and it will all be worth it, I promise smile

Tryharder Mon 19-Nov-12 11:32:52

I had my kids in my 30s. I spent my 20s boozing, shagging, travelling, eating out and generally doing what I wanted so was happy to give that all up - been there, done that, got t shirt etc. The thought of going clubbing now at the age of 41 brings me out in a cold sweat.

But I have plenty of friends in their 40s happily married, good jobs etc who don't have children and have no desire to have them.

Lemonylemon Mon 19-Nov-12 11:24:02

"but deep down I want my old life back and feel angry at them for taking away my freedom"

They don't take away your freedom. You are the person in control here. It would be your decision.

I had my DS when I had just turned 34. He was an accident. I didn't like children until I fell pregnant and then somehow morphed into this earth mother person that I didn't recognise from before. I didn't find the early days very easy really, as I didn't have a clue... but hey, he's still with me and is now 15, so I don't think I got everything wrong.

I had my DD when I was 44.5. I'm on my own, but don't feel any resentment at the freedom that I don't have - I'm WAY too exhausted for that grin

ISee I don't like children either. Horrid little buggers. My child is bloody fab though.

x2boys Mon 19-Nov-12 11:10:44

i didnt meet my husband untill i was 31 by which time i had ,had enough nights out to last me a life time and probably to many girly holidays then i should have gone on. My 20,s were full of fun and i was only responsible for me by late 20,s however i was beginning to think i was destined to be alone forever and related very well to bridget jones. Fast forward 10 yrs i couldnt be happier i have two wonderful boys who are the light of my life a husband i love dearlymaybe its just a matter of timing?

It took me ages to get over the loss of my old life, I mourned it for ages. I was a real party girl before my son, heavy drinking and chain smoking. I worked 60 hours a week and having a baby sent me into shock.

My son was very much wanted, but I did not take to motherhood very easily. It was a real struggle. I doubt I would have ever been ready if I had spent a long time thinking about it.

Best thing I ever bloody did.

DontmindifIdo Mon 19-Nov-12 10:53:01

I think given what you've said about the stage of your career, you might want to leave it until 30 - yes, some people on here are glad they 'got it out of the way' early, but 27 isn't doing it 'early' to give a long time afterwards, and it's not 'late' either - with another 3 years under your belt career wise, then think what you want.

It's easy to panic when your contempories are deciding this is the right time for them, rather like when suddenly there's a pile of weddings mid-20s, it doesn't mean your relationship is ready for that commitment just because theirs is, and it doesn't mean you are ready for motherhood because your friend is ready now. It doesn't mean you'll never be ready, just not now, and that's fine.

Too many people assume on here that there's a hard and fast "right" time for everyone, that's just not true. Just because some people wanted DCs early and it suited their relationship and career aims to get it 'out of the way' then focus on other things, doesn't mean it's wrong that others decided that they'd rather wait until their 30s and get a decade of career progression, late nights and 'fun' out of the way first.

quesadilla Mon 19-Nov-12 10:33:20

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.

ISeeThreadPeople Mon 19-Nov-12 10:29:14

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.

MorrisZapp Mon 19-Nov-12 10:18:53

Dilys, I love your theory. Makes sense to me.

MorrisZapp Mon 19-Nov-12 10:11:35

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.

thekidsrule Sun 18-Nov-12 22:41:57

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

Rudolphstolemycarrots Sun 18-Nov-12 22:40:15

you arrange baby sitting swaps with friends so that you can go out.

I love my life with kids. They are amazing!

TheReturnOfBridezilla Sun 18-Nov-12 22:40:10

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!

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