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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?

Bogeyface Netherlands Sun 18-Nov-12 19:44:40

If you are not at the point where none of that bothers you, then I dont think are quite there yet.

How old are you? Do you have a couple of years to live the life of Riley, so that you will feel that you have done your living?

Bogeyface Netherlands Sun 18-Nov-12 19:45:11

That is to say, done your childless living! Life doesnt stop after children, it just changes.

Sorry, I did word that badly didnt I?! grin

I feel exactly the same way Buddhagirl. How old are you?

mrskeithrichards Sun 18-Nov-12 19:47:33

It doesn't have to stop it just changes!

FromEsme Sun 18-Nov-12 19:48:01

I worry about the same thing OP. I'm almost 30 and I still don't really want kids. But then sometimes I think, well, what if I regret that, because I really really love kids.

I also have mh problems and very worried about passing that on or not being able to cope.

Dunno. It's a tricky one.

Well, in short, they do take over your life and they do restrict your freedom but they do enrich your life and make you laugh every day after about 6months as before then they are dull dull dull

A supportive and capable DP is worth their weight in gold, and you can alternate nights out if needed.

Its not a decision you can renege on, but it is also one of those things where no matter how much you prepare, it will still change your life in ways you couldnt even imagine.

Hassled Sun 18-Nov-12 19:48:10

You'll have little bouts of thinking "bloody hell, I wish I could just go out and get legless and not have to be responsible all the time, but you'll always know that you'd much rather have the responsibility than not. There's never, ever been a moment in my 25 years of parenting when I've wished for a child-free life. I've wished for a quieter life, mind you.

Sausagedog27 Sun 18-Nov-12 19:48:37

I'm the same- scares the hell out of me. Been to a children's party today and it was madness- it was worrying me but now I just think that it's not for me yet- not to say I won't in the future but right now it's not right. It's taken the pressure right off and I actually enjoyed spending time with kids today more than usual. I think there is a lot of pressure around it but just o what is right for you. Maybe reevaluate in a years time and take the pressure off now?

crazypaving Sun 18-Nov-12 19:49:54

I'm not sure you ever really feel ready for children, do you? I mean, a relaxing care-free life always seems appealing! It's not until you meet your child and are utterly blown away by how incredible they are (which may not happen immediately) that things change.

Even then, you're likely to miss elements of your life BC. But then, what would the rest of your life look like without children?

FromEsme Sun 18-Nov-12 19:52:29

crazypaving what would the rest of my life look like? Doing a phd, travelling a lot, living in a nice house, doing all the hobbies I want...I certainly don't see it as some sad, lonely existence.

Tangointhenight Sun 18-Nov-12 19:52:42

I felt like this after i had DD, admittedly i had Postnatal Depression but i really felt alot of regrets over losing my old life.

13 months later theres no regret, I love her mire than anything and i cant wait for all the years to come, it was a shell shockbut I came to accept it and now i wouldnt want my life any other way, actually starting to think I would like to give her a sibling!!

No one can prepare you for how hard it is but you adapt, honestly they are totally worth it plus if you have a supportive family your social life doesnt completely die.

Buddhagirl Sun 18-Nov-12 19:53:57

I'm 27,so got a few years yet. Glad I'm not alone!

Makes sense that life changes and your right guys they enrich your life in other ways, sleeping and freedom to go out is not exactly the be all and end all.

noblegiraffe Sun 18-Nov-12 19:54:01

Remember even if you don't have kids your life will change because your peer group will have kids. Going out boozing is all very well, but who with? Decide what you want to do before having kids and make sure you do it now.

For me, picturing old age without children was a bit grim too.

But then, what would the rest of your life look like without children?

It wouldn't have dribble or crayon on it wink

Buddhagirl Sun 18-Nov-12 19:55:24

My life would be empty ish without kids... You guys rock!

hermioneweasley Sun 18-Nov-12 19:56:22

Buddhagirl, I would give It a couple of years because your life does really change. After a while you adapt, but you can pack some more stuff in before you get on the nappy train!

ILoveSparklers Sun 18-Nov-12 19:56:25

I don't think you are really ready to do it yet. They have more of an impact than just reducing your relaxation time and requiring baby sitting. They change your life completely, especially at first. Whether its a good change or a bad change, only you can decide... Might require more thought.

FromEsme Sun 18-Nov-12 19:57:11

It's not about going out for me. I don't really care about that. But I do worry that my friends will all start having kids and I'll have no-one to just chill with.

But that's hardly a reason to have children. "Because all my friends are doing it" or "because I'll be lonely".

stinkinseamonkey Sun 18-Nov-12 19:57:11

IMO even if you don't have kids, the going out every weekend can get a bit stale as you get older anyway

I was a couple of years older than you OP when I had my first, and by then we were bored of the 20something lifestyle anyway, even before the first baby.. also a good % of our friends had settled or moved by then too so it was getting more and more limited

ILoveSparklers Sun 18-Nov-12 19:57:38

Your peers having kids and worrying about your life being empty without them are not good reasons to have kids IMO.

MrsCantSayAnything Sun 18-Nov-12 19:59:44

I was nowhere near ready at 27. At 30....I was a steaming, snorting, howling pile of frustrated Motherhood. DESPERATE to get pregnant. Hth! grin

Smartiescoffer Sun 18-Nov-12 19:59:51

Let me first say I wouldn't be without my dcs for a single second, but I was not prepared for the fact that I will never ever truly relax again. The constant low grade worry, are they healthy, happy, developing properly, what will they do if something happens to me, what will I do if something happens to them!! The fact I'd love to go on a holiday on my own to read books on a beach, but the reality that I'd last about 20 minutes before I needed see them. It's a two sided thing, the utter joy they bring along with the utter panic that they might not be ok.

Ragwort Sun 18-Nov-12 19:59:58

I think you are really sensible to weigh up the pros and cons of having chidlren, so many people seem to rush into having children because they see it as 'the thing to do' or because 'their body clock is ready' - and then (too late) realise it isn't what they thought it would be, or they have a totally unsupportive partner. Yes, I know there are lots of single parents doing a fabulous job but for me, having a totally supportive and reliable DH was essential. I didn't have a child until I was 42, by choice - in fact DH was much keener than I. The total 'relentlessness' of being a parent can be incredibly waring. Good luck whatever you decide. smile.

FromEsme Sun 18-Nov-12 20:00:44

Smarties yes, the constant worry would be a real issue for me. I'm a worrier anyway and the thought of not knowing where they are would be awful for me.

27? Start wondering about this in 8-10 years time. I didn't want monogamy until I was 29, nevermind kids.

fufulina Sun 18-Nov-12 20:02:07

If I knew then what I know now, I'm not sure I'd do it. My career is shafted, my relationship is struggling, and although gorgeous, clearly, the dds take every last single bit of everything out of me.

Think very very carefully, because very few people admit to not enjoying it, or wishing they had taken a different path.

porridgewithalmondmilk Sun 18-Nov-12 20:02:11

Peers having children is obviously not a good reason to have them.

However, is it really such a bad idea to have a child because without one, life feels empty? Genuine question, not challenge smile

katiecubs Sun 18-Nov-12 20:02:45

Yep it's a trade off so you shouldn't do it until you are ready.

I still get moments when I wish I could just pootle off to the pub or kick back on the sofa with a magazine but overall it's so so worth it. I love DS in way that I never knew was possible!

LaCiccolina Sun 18-Nov-12 20:04:04

How old are you? I had zip idea what a child entailed. I would never have believed it either.

I have moments when I think similar but mostly I don't. Life's just different now and frankly incomparable in a better way. It's right to be scared but then most change is scary.

I won't bother to say what it's like as that's my story and yours will be your own. It's like starting anything new, you learn quick and slog on really! You would be ok because you just would be. You would find ways to cope and enjoy life, we aren't doing anything that remarkable (well we are but I won't over egg a pudd!). It's has been done for years!!!

Everlong Sun 18-Nov-12 20:04:07

Don't bloody have them then.

FromEsme Sun 18-Nov-12 20:04:37

Excellent advice, Everlong .

hmm

LaCiccolina Sun 18-Nov-12 20:05:06

27 is a good age if u r ready. Only u can decide that.

stinkinseamonkey Sun 18-Nov-12 20:05:18

my friends who are the same age as us and haven't had kids who I used to go out with lots prior to kids have also stopped going out all the time in favour of early nights and a good book too!

DH has one friend who is still doing it but he's hanging around with 20 year olds (because they're the only ones that want to go out that much) and its beginning to get a bit cringy now. He's a really lovely bloke but it's not a good look!

DontmindifIdo Sun 18-Nov-12 20:06:29

It's not for no reason that most of mine and DH's friends had their first DCs at 30 or 31 - 27 you'll be having the first wave of babies arrive in your group of friends - by 32 you'll find that even if you are without DCs you'll end up still having to plan nights out round babysitting, just someone else's wink

I'd say you're not ready yet, reassess how you feel in 5 years time. In the meantime, focus on your career and savings, then if you do decide you want DCs between now and then, you'll be in a better position. Trust me, having the money to pay for a regular babysitter, cleaner etc without worrying about it will make being a new mum so much more pleasant.

MorrisZapp Sun 18-Nov-12 20:06:38

Having a kid is so, so hard. I put it off until my late 30s, then went for it before it was too late.

I miss my old life every day, to be honest. That'll change as DS gets bigger and more independent, but that means wishing his early years away, which you Aren't Supposed to Do.

It changes everything. Absolutely everything. You are allowed just to not do it if you don't fancy it.

QuiteQuiet Sun 18-Nov-12 20:07:07

I have to run as my children are throwing things at each other, they do take over your life, I love mine though, most of the time. grin It's a whole new different life!!!

Buddhagirl Sun 18-Nov-12 20:08:42

I know I'm not ready yet and need a few more years, but I'm married, don't enjoy going out on the lash anymore...kind of just starting to feel like a "proper grownup", guess where all this is coming from.

Wait 8-10years!! I'd be too scared I would not be able to fall pregnant.

My life does not feel empty now, but if i was 35-40 and no kids, my life would have a big gap in it.

I just want to make the right decision really.

Only one of my friends has a baby. Sometimes I'm jealous, other times I'm SO glad I'm not her.

QuiteQuiet Sun 18-Nov-12 20:09:12

I had my first at 27, if I could do it all again I would have waited until 30, not married the same man but have the same children confused

BertieBotts Germany Sun 18-Nov-12 20:09:24

I didn't think that would bother me (what you describe in your OP) but it does, a lot sad

YY the right partner is absolutely essential. Nothing else is more important - even if that right partner is no partner at all - the wrong partner just makes it all ridiculously hard, and you can do ot alone if you have to, but it's easier to have someone supportive there.

Also remember that if you have a supportive partner you don't lose nearly as much freedom, as if you have an unsupportive one (or none at all). When DP is here (he works away at the moment) I am free to go out in the evening, provided he has not planned to go out first (Which is rare, TBH) and I don't have to pay a babysitter or worry about what time to be back. I can pop to the shop in the evening, or in the day, without taking DS. I can have a lie in if I need to, provided he's here grin I can take on new things like a course or hobby or doing overtime at work and if I'm feeling crappy he picks up the slack. It goes without saying that I do the same for him too, although it's more noticeable for me because I'm usually the one on my own with DS.

Everlong Sun 18-Nov-12 20:11:02

Ok let's all pander to the OP then.

' what if the completely take over my life ' there's no if about it. They do and will.

' but deep down I want my old life back and feel angry at them for taking away my freedom ' what are we supposed to say to that?

FrillyMilly Sun 18-Nov-12 20:13:00

The lack of freedom doesn't last forever (although then you have number 2!). I'm 26 and my eldest is 4. No you don't get to go out all the time but you can still do it as long as you have willing babysitters. I was never a going out to the pub person though anyway. I'd rather sit in with a glass bottle of wine and watch TV.

motherinferior Sun 18-Nov-12 20:13:08

Agree with Morris.

Morris, it does get easier, though. But yes, I miss my old life. I would like not to have the constant worry and hassle and expense and boredom of children. I love the Inferiorettes but parenting is enormously stressful quite a lot of the time.

JustFabulous Sun 18-Nov-12 20:13:14

YANBU to worry. Having kids really does turn your life upside down.

I used to be a nanny and was so sure I would be fine, good at parenting and the kind of 50's mum I imagined my kids needed.

I am not.

Take your time but tbh most people are great and just know when they are ready.

motherinferior Sun 18-Nov-12 20:13:44

I do want my old life back. Less often than I used to.

Buddhagirl Sun 18-Nov-12 20:13:48

Don't pander too me! Give it to me straight...I'm aware I'm confused about this and def don't have all the answers....main reason why i would not consider getting pregnant now!

littlewhitebag Sun 18-Nov-12 20:14:11

You still have freedom when you have kids albeit not quite in the way you do now. I managed to do a degree and a PD diploma with kids, not to mention having a very active social life. My kids are ages 20 and 14 now and it has got so boring that i got a puppy to focus my attention on. Kids enrich your life - they don't spoil it.

Chubfuddler Sun 18-Nov-12 20:15:46

27 isn't all that young to be contemplating a first child. I started trying at 25 and DS wasn't born until I was 28. It can take a while.

I don't think you'll ever tea h a moment when you've had all your fun and are happy to spend all your time doing baking/craft/toddler shit. I'm still me but I'm a mother of two as well. If your identity is important to you (and it should be) keep working and make sure your partner pulls his weight. That will see you through a lot.

MulledWineOnTheBusLady Sun 18-Nov-12 20:15:57

I wouldn't be so fussed about losing the social life, but I'm a worrier too. Not made my mind up yet, am 33. <sound of ovaries shrivelling> You're not alone OP.

greeneyed Sun 18-Nov-12 20:16:14

YANBU - your life WILL be horrible - some of the time anyway - Your life will no longer be your own whilst they are little. I love mine and no regrets but depending on your child and their needs, your financial situation, partner and extended support it will be hard, bloody hard or mostly hard smile My career is also shafted, I piss myself when I cough, I'm poor and I buy all my clothes from the supermarket these days. This is all however academic for me personally as it was not a choice I would have shriveled and died (inside anyway) if I hadn't had any - I reached an age and time in my life where it was imperative for me to be a mum - I wasn't asking the type of questions you are now - maybe wait a bit.

YANBU - In fact you are being very sensible to weigh up the pros and cons very carefully prior to having children. There was a thread a month or two back about people regretting having children. It was quite sad, in fact I sobbed my way through it, and posted on it. Admittedly I suffered PND and still have mild depression, but in a nutshell I wish I hadn't rushed into having children. I married at 21 and had DS1 just before my 25th birthday. I really miss my carefree, childfree days and whilst I love and adore my children, they changed my life in every possible way and changed the person I am (not entirely for the better I have to admit) so I wish I had postponed having children until around now - perhaps if I'd lived my life a bit more beforehand I'd feel fewer regrets (regarding career/ travelling/ general fun etc) now. I have one group of friends who had children young and another group who are just starting to have theirs now. I wish I fitted into the latter group as I do think I missed out. I gravitated more towards the ones who had kids as they could sympathise. However, I'm hoping that when my boys are old enough to be left at home alone I will still be energetic enough to go out and enjoy myself! smile

motherinferior Sun 18-Nov-12 20:16:41

I had my first at 37.

DontmindifIdo Sun 18-Nov-12 20:19:08

OP - you're only 27!! You've only had the first of your friends have a baby, give it 3 years, you'll all have your 30ths, then start buying big houses rather than cool flats and more friends will have DCs, and you'll start to either know it's for you, or know it's not.

You'll start having to meet your friends for lunch rather than after work drinks because they've got to be back for nursery pick up. You'll find yourself in conversations about prep schools and catchments without planning on it.

Honestly, it's too soon to call it - life is going to change in the next 3-4 years anyway whatever you do!

stinkinseamonkey Sun 18-Nov-12 20:19:08

Just wait OP, 2 or 4 or 6 years can make a huge difference and you'll still be fairly young

a friend of mine had had hers before she was "over" being young and free, and she always thought the grass was greener and she'd be living the high life if she hadn't had kids.. I used to think "ffs look at the rest of us, we're your age and we're not backpacking round india any more or out every night either and we haven't had kids yet, what makes you think you still would at this age? it gets old! crashing in hostels or on people's couches gets old!" , but I don't think she will ever get over the issue of her freedom being taken away a bit earlier than she was ready for... even when her kids were old enough for her to have MORE freedom than her friends because her kids were nearly teens and ours were babies we were stuck in with, she still felt hard done by.

She wasn't ready, it's better to get to the stage where you are a bit bored of "freedom" anyway before having kids otherwise you never believe that the novelty really does wear off

Buddhagirl Sun 18-Nov-12 20:21:18

stinkinseamonkey: Excellent advice, wait until your properly bored of "freedom". Love it.

Wow I am going to post on mumsnet more often!

ISingSoprano Sun 18-Nov-12 20:22:31

' what if the completely take over my life ' there's no if about it. They do and will. but more often than not it's in a good way.

' but deep down I want my old life back and feel angry at them for taking away my freedom ' yep - everyone feels like that at sometime. It's normal. Most of the time you will relish the moments when they wrap their arms around you because you are the centre of their universe.

Everlong Sun 18-Nov-12 20:23:22

Ok op I'm sorry for being a bit of a caah.

I would say that whenever you have them it's beyond life changing and you wouldn't have it any other way. You don't want to be apart from them and you will fall madly in love with them. But once they're here, that's it, it's no going back. So get all your relaxing, going out on the spur of the moment, doing what you like, done now.

Buddhagirl Sun 18-Nov-12 20:24:47

"but deep down I want my old life back and feel angry at them for taking away my freedom ' yep - everyone feels like that at sometime. It's normal. Most of the time you will relish the moments when they wrap their arms around you because you are the centre of their universe. "

You touched the old heart there soppy

....I want them now!! ;)

DontmindifIdo Sun 18-Nov-12 20:25:01

Other thing is, late 20s/early 30s is when a lot of careers go crazy - this is when the people you knew from Uni who were bright and a good laugh suddenly start working all the hours god sends and not going out much either. It's also good if you are career minded to not miss out on these few years - get yourself in a strong position so if you do decide in 4 or so years to have a family that it'll be easier for you to go back to work on terms that suits you.

Buddhagirl Sun 18-Nov-12 20:25:58

Everlong: No need to say sorry, I think your totally right.

DontmindifIdo Sun 18-Nov-12 20:27:01

ISing - DS (2) told me the other day that "you're my best friend mummy" it totally made up for the fact that earlier in the day he told me he didn't need the loo just 1 minute before pooing in his pants while we were out shopping...

Buddhagirl Sun 18-Nov-12 20:28:14

Another good point: career, I'm a newly qualified cognitive behavioural therapist...but would like to be earning more money and move up the ladder a bit more.

DontmindifIdo Sun 18-Nov-12 20:28:27

oh yes, and OP - have lots of sex on Sunday Mornings. Sunday morning shags stop being an option when you have DCs. Only thing I really miss of my old life!

stinkinseamonkey Sun 18-Nov-12 20:29:10

yes it's odd isn't it dontmindifIdo, the biggest feckless pissheads from uni, who could always be relied on for a spur of the moment night out, are suddenly pulling 16 hour days and investing in flats etc and boring the arse off you about their job grin

crazypaving Sun 18-Nov-12 20:29:39

FromEsme I wasn't asking the OP what her life would look like without children as some kind of way of hinting that it would definitely be sad and lonely. For some people, life without children would be great. It's a question to ask yourself before diving in, IMO. If it would be fine, great - don't have children. If it would seem a bit empty, that's telling you something maybe.

MrsMelon Sun 18-Nov-12 20:30:13

After a work hard, play hard, travel the world 20's I had my first baby at 31 and I rarely miss the old life and happy being a SAHM.

It definitely helps to feel like you have already lived before you have kids! Between the ages of 30 and 35 pretty much everyone I've ever known had a baby or two, it just goes bang once you hit 30.

stinkinseamonkey Sun 18-Nov-12 20:30:35

yeah have morning sex!, that's one thing that never got dull and I miss it! :-(
Had some good morning sex about 18 months ago when my mum had the DC for a night and we went and stayed in a b&b - its still good!

Chubfuddler Sun 18-Nov-12 20:30:51

It doesn't have to be career or children. I did my LPC while pregnant, qualified as a solicitor when DS was three. Have had another baby since. I've had my children and am now able to give my career full throttle and I'm still under 35. There's something to be said for having children at under 30.

littlewhitebag Sun 18-Nov-12 20:32:27

If you think life with kids will be horrible then don't have them. Life with kids is NOT horrible when you are ready for them and want them.

Buddhagirl Sun 18-Nov-12 20:35:55

No i don't think life will be horrible if i have them, im just well aware that i have no real idea what it will be like, so don't want to assume it will be all sweetness and light.

I was a nanny for 4 children ages between 1-8 for a good few years...I would NEVER have 4, but wow it was HARD work.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Sun 18-Nov-12 20:36:02

People I know who have struggled are the ones who kept putting it off and had kids late.
They were so settled in their lives and their relationships that it was an utter shock.

I had DS1 at 31, I had just got married and recently moved house. One more change among changes was easier to absorb than him landing like a bombshell into 10 years of peace and calm! grin
But to begin with you do think 'WTF have we done? Will I ever eat a meal in peace again or be able to read a book?'.

It gets easier as they get older though, and there is nothing on this earth that I would rather have than my lovely boys. They are my joy and I adore them.

bedmonster Sun 18-Nov-12 20:38:21

Only one of my friends has a baby. Sometimes I'm jealous, other times I'm SO glad I'm not her

This is the same but in reverse for me. 2 of my close group of friends don't have babies and when we're out on a night out I do feel so jealous that they will be able to sleep off their hangovers the next day and then go out for a fry up when they see fit. I get woken up at 6.30 (on a good day wink) and hit the ground running.

However I do know that I am so glad to be me the majority of the time.

The grass is always greener on the other side. Only you know whether or not you even want babies. For me, I was 27 when I had my 3rd DC and that felt absolutely ancient. 27 isn't very young really. Mine have completely taken over my life, but that's what they do. It's really up to you to decide whether or not you're prepared to give up some of your freedom.

I love the fact that in by the time i'm 40, my eldest DD will be 21 and youngest DS 13, and I should hopefully begin to regain some of mine rather than just starting with nappies smile (Unless my daughter has decided to make me a granny by then confused)

Alibabaandthe40nappies Sun 18-Nov-12 20:38:45

But don't leave it 8-10 years, that is old if you then have problems conceiving.

choceyes Sun 18-Nov-12 20:40:00

I love my kids to bits but I do yearn for my childfree days. Being a mother is the most stressful, hard, frustrating, sometimes boringjob I've ever done. My dcs are 4 and 2 though so still needs intensive parenting.Also having the grandparents near really help if they are good with them. Ours are far away so we don't have that option.

Chubfuddler Sun 18-Nov-12 20:41:19

I agree with bed monster. When I am 40 my children will be 12 and 8 and I will still be relatively young.

greeneyed Sun 18-Nov-12 20:51:15

Littlewhitebag - I can't agree - I was ready and really wanted kids (IVF in the end )but life HAS been horrible at times!

FrillyMilly Sun 18-Nov-12 20:51:52

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.

Goldenbear Sun 18-Nov-12 20:59:58

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.

Ragwort Sun 18-Nov-12 21:00:13

But it's not just about going clubbing and on the p* is it?? hmm - my life was hugely rich before I had DS (at 42) - I did loads and loads of voluntary work - some with kids grin 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 grin 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 smile.

Mosschopz Sun 18-Nov-12 21:04:43

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!

JustFabulous Sun 18-Nov-12 21:16:23

Mosschopz - are you the same as Mosschops?

OldMumsy Sun 18-Nov-12 21:34:58

It will be rank for quite a while. It gets better.

autumnlights12 Sun 18-Nov-12 21:36:11

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.

autumnlights12 Sun 18-Nov-12 21:38:06

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.

bedmonster Sun 18-Nov-12 21:42:30

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 smile

Beamur Sun 18-Nov-12 21:46:49

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.

greeneyed Sun 18-Nov-12 21:56:11

What oldmumsy says exactly smile

DilysPrice Sun 18-Nov-12 21:59:57

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.

However.

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!

EuroShagmore Sun 18-Nov-12 22:19:11

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!! grin

GhoulWithADragonTattoo Sun 18-Nov-12 22:27:39

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.

piprabbit Sun 18-Nov-12 22:34:50

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 grin.

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!

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!

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

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.

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

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

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.

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.

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.

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.

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?

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

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

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.

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

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

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

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.)

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.

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.

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.

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

OhDearSpareHeadTwo I am jealous! envy grin

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

I've trained her well grin

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.

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.

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!

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

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