to love being just a couple with my DP so much that I don't want us to have children?

(87 Posts)
Jescha Thu 18-Apr-13 16:05:43

I'm 34 and should probably be getting on with it (in my PIL's opinion...)

Jescha Thu 18-Apr-13 16:26:44

I would just go with it if I got pregnant accidentally squitten, and would most likely love it. It's not that I don't like children per se, more that I love just being a couple more. But my PIL think it's very short-sighted not to have them because we like life as it is now, because when we are old we will want family around us. I can't argue with that really - but we could have a DC and it move to Australia so you can't guarantee them being around when you're old, can you.

SingingSands Thu 18-Apr-13 16:27:50

It's none of your PIL' s business, tell them that!

I know plenty of couples who have happily never had kids, through choice. I feel sad that they are sometimes forced to defend their choice. It's their choice, they shouldn't have to justify it.

Jescha Thu 18-Apr-13 16:28:05

NoWay I wouldn't have come to AIBU if shitstirrers bothered me grin

WizardofOs Thu 18-Apr-13 16:29:01

I think it is totally valid to not want children. All power to you!

I would only say that it is importatnt to think about whether you as an individual woman don't desire motherhood, leaving your partner and your coupledom out of it. Because you could split-up in the future. Hopefully not...but you never know!

Lottapianos Thu 18-Apr-13 16:29:26

Perfectly reasonable question. Ignore all the 'why are you even on a parenting forum if you don't have children' people who give you the hmm face. I'm childfree and so are loads of posters on here.

It's absolutely none of anyone else's business apart from you and DP. Some parents (like your PILs) seem to think that their own children exist for no reason other than to make them happy and that you should just 'do as you're told' even though you're both grown adults. It's rubbish. Whatever decision you make, please be crystal clear that you are making the decision for you two alone and for no-one else's benefit.

It's a huge decision though so well done you for giving it the time and thought it deserves. I work with young children and parents and often wish that more people actually thought long and hard about whether they wanted to be a parent instead of stumbling into it.

angelos02 Thu 18-Apr-13 16:30:52

YANBU. I am the same. The absolute last thing you should do is have children for your in-laws or parents.

Lottapianos Thu 18-Apr-13 16:31:46

'But my PIL think it's very short-sighted not to have them because we like life as it is now, because when we are old we will want family around us'

Oh dear lord, is that old chestnut still doing the rounds?! Your children, if you did have them, would be their own separate autonomous people and it would be up to them how much time they spend 'around' you. I barely see my parents at all (for very long and complex reasons).

I would say it's extremely short-sighted of your PILs to not be able to imagine that a couple could be happy without children, even into their elderly years!

Jescha Thu 18-Apr-13 16:32:02

That's exactly it Lotta - no one else in our lives has ever given a shit or even bothered to ask us about having a family. But the pressure from PILs has gradually increased the longer we've been married. The thing is, they have nothing else in their lives to look forward to except grandchildren. That sounds really bitchy I know, but it's how they act anyway.

ladythatlunches Thu 18-Apr-13 16:32:24

I don't blame you after the day I have had I would say avoid kids all together. smile

On a serious note, I think you know if you want children or not? If you are both happy and feel fulfilled then enjoy.

It will probably always be .. but what ifs and if you don't maybe always wounder. But unfortunately it's not something that if you give a try and don't like you can change your mind.

I say go with your gut. . What do you really want for the rest of your lives.

YouDontWinFriendsWithSalad Thu 18-Apr-13 16:32:44

At 34 I think you're old enough to know what you want, sod the PILs.

As for having your children around when you're old, what a silly thing to say. Imagine having children for that reason and then them moving to Australia, as you say.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Thu 18-Apr-13 16:33:27

YANBU

But - be sure that your partner feels the same and doesn't leave you in 8-10 years time because he wants to be a father and needs a 'younger model' to do so.

Lottapianos Thu 18-Apr-13 16:33:52

'The thing is, they have nothing else in their lives to look forward to except grandchildren. '

That's entirely their problem. I know that's harsh but it's the truth. It's not down to you or your DP to make them happy, they can only do that for themselves.

Lots of sympathy for you though - my family are travel agents for Guilt Trips too smile It sucks but it's really not your responsibility

MumOfTheMoos Thu 18-Apr-13 16:34:31

I think you can't rationalise the desire or decision to have children. You feel it in your gut - if your gut says no, then go with no but if your gut says yes, maybe, perhaps, I think so then I would go for having some. And if your answer is definitely no, the YANBU to not have children!

However, I left trying for children until I was 38 (I took my time finding the right guy) and only got pregnant aged 40 through IVF. Having had a lucky, lucky escape from infertility and not getting any choice about whether I have my own children, I would always listen to the tiniest feeling that you might want them, and go for it, while you still have the choice.

hillyhilly Thu 18-Apr-13 16:37:13

I'm the same as secretswirrels, we had a wonderful life before our kids but we have a wonderfulife now too.
I lost my mum at 34 and had always told myself that I should decide for once and for all at 35, and went on to have two fantastic Dc who are now 8&5. Life is different to how it would have been without them but I have honestly never thought that's the we shouldn't have had them.

ClartyCarol Thu 18-Apr-13 16:37:16

Are you sure part of your ambivalence isn't due to a desire to not 'bow down' to your PIL's wishes? It's getting your back up that they go on about so subconciously you think Sod it! I'm not having any just cos they've said I should? iyswim.

Sounds like you have a bit of a strained relationship with them?

LaQueen Thu 18-Apr-13 16:37:30

It's not U at all, to not have DCs.

We were together for over 10 years before having DCs (but met young, at university), and really enjoyed just being a couple.

But, I can honestly say that I love DH more, since having the DDs with him, and I admire and respect him more, for what a fantastic Daddy he is to them.

On most levels it has brought us closer, given us a deeper bond, made us more selfless and more accomodating.

But, then...we've always also made the effort to still spend time, just the two of us, and we have always had weekends away, and a few adult holidays since the DDs were tiny.

So, you really can have the best of both worlds smile

Jescha Thu 18-Apr-13 16:38:12

shock Alibaba I have to say that thought has crossed my mind! It wouldn't make me have a child for that reason alone though, obv.

This was kind of a pointless AIBU. I know I'm not BU. I'm really awful at putting my point across with my sexist knob of a FIL (oh yeah and it's always my fault, nothing to do with DP whether we have children or not). So I guess I want to collect well-put MN arguments to use against him.

Jescha Thu 18-Apr-13 16:40:54

ClartyCarol that's really perceptive of you. I admit I can't fricking stand them and I do have a very unhealthy, tiny twinge of pleasure when I think of how annoyed it makes them that we don't have DCs.

KittensoftPuppydog Thu 18-Apr-13 16:41:01

I'm in my early 50s, have been married for 25 years and have no kids. I never ever wanted them. I really like them though and love my nieces. I knew that the responsibility would not be right for me.
Was it the right decision? I honestly don't know. I am very close to my dh and I think I would have killed him if we'd been parents. I've enjoyed my freedom to take off and do some pretty odd things, I've had a good career, and I know that I would have been too lazy to try to have it all.
I do wonder what it would have been like, but not that much, to be honest. The worst thing for me personally is that when your friends have kids, you really don't have much in common anymore and quite a few friendships have gone west. Most importantly, though, i don't think it is very good for the kids if the mother is not overjoyed about having them.
Good luck.

Dahlen Thu 18-Apr-13 16:41:09

Of course YANBU.

I was totally unprepared for how having DC changes your life. The incredible loss of freedom and autonomy over your own life; the sheer scale of responsibility you now bear and the dull monotony of routine that takes over in the domestic sphere. Now my DC are older a lot of that has ceased to apply and I don't for one minute regret having my DC (nor have I ever done so), but they have changed my life irrevocably and a relationship with a partner is never quite the same again (not necessarily in a bad way though).

It's one thing embracing all that when you really want a child. But to do so when feeling ambivalent or unwilling is asking for trouble.

The world would be a much happier place if more people had DC because they wanted to rather than conforming because it's 'normal'.

Jescha Thu 18-Apr-13 16:41:33

But obviously if I really wanted them that wouldn't be enough in itself to stop me! I'm not crazy.

Jescha Thu 18-Apr-13 16:41:51

Sorry, my last post was to Clarty.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Thu 18-Apr-13 16:43:54

Is your DP an only child, is that part of the problem?

No, I wasn't meaning to suggest for a minute that you should have a baby to hang on to your husband grin
Simply that, if it is only within the context of your current relationship that you are happy without children then you need to give that some thought. If you have no yearning to be a mother, DH aside for the moment, then it is a choice that you are making for yourself - which has to be the right way IMO.

I don't think you should discuss it with your FIL. It isn't any of his business, and if he is that much of a knob then he isn't going to listen to anything you say anyway.

ShatterResistant Thu 18-Apr-13 16:46:18

I think it's great you're considering what impact it would have on you as a couple. I wasn't ambivalent- knew I wanted children - and it wasn't until I was pregnant that I started worrying about what it would mean for Us. We were stupidly in love, had loads of disposable income, a great social life and went on little mini breaks and trips to the theatre like it was going out of fashion. Our baby is only 2 months old, so ask me again in 15 years, but so far I needn't have worried. Having the baby has brought us together in ways I didn't think possible. I felt an overwhelming surge of love for my husband after she was born. So rather than taking something away, it's definitely added a whole new dimension to our relationship. Good luck with whatever you decide.

Rhiana1979 Thu 18-Apr-13 16:47:49

DH and I were together 13 years before deciding to have children. We now have a 16 month old DD who is the light of our life. It's a big change and hard for 2 people who have been a couple for so long.

There are times I miss being able to just be us but I wouldn't change it for the world.

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