We have a lovely DS who is now 19 months and DH and I have agreed to have The Conversation about another child at the beginning of 2013. I already know that he would like another but I think I am leaning towards not.
With DS I had PE, picked up at 30 weeks and he was delivered at 31. I was very ill and he was in neonatal for 6 weeks. He was a tough baby, suffered with reflux and is still pretty hard work (love him dearly, of course). He didn't sleep through till he was 13 months and is still not a great sleeper. I still worry about whether he is developing ok and I feel that the stress of the past year and a half hasn't subsided.
My main fear is that all of this, or worse, could happen again. I will be 39 in Feb and I am so happy with my little family that I don't want to do anything that might shake things up too much.
DH is naturally a very positive person and I know that he will think all my 'what ifs' are not reasons enough not to do it. I'm not sure I can face the idea of being pregnant again, fearing all this.
I know that DH won't expect me to do something that I really don't want but am I being unfair if I put my foot down? How do we both get a fair say when we're going to disagree?
Well, you can both have a "fair say" but untimately it is your body that is going to have to go through another pregnancy and birth, so I think that you have to have the final say, no matter how he feels about it.
But I think it's also important that you genuinely do listen to his feelings, and seriously consider whether short-term worries should override a long-term choice. See if he has any suggestions for ways that he can help to reduce the worries, or the impact on you - if all he can say is "Oh it'll never happen don't worry about it" then you're maybe right to worry. But if he can get his head round "OK if there were problems, we could reduce the effect by me helping out more at night, or changing my working patterns, or doing x, y or z" then perhaps the tricky part won't be quite as tricky.
You could also try to find out whether having PE once makes a big difference to the chances of it happening again - I don't know anything about the reasons or whether it's just a "bad luck" thing or tends to recur.
I'd also suggest not having a scheduled "The Conversation" about this, as it gives you both time to rehearse your arguments and dig in to your positions. Better to talk round issues as and when they come up, a little at a time, and see how much either of you changes your position once you see the other's point of view.
Good luck either way. We stopped at one for different reasons (though having a difficult baby and not wanting to go through the same again was a major part of it) but we were both pretty clear about stopping so it ddn't need any complex discussions for us.
that you, AMIS, you make some good points. We're already starting to lay the ground for The Conversation, him for and me against, so you are right, we should just talk about it now.
The suggestion is that you have around a 20% chance of having PE again but it's vague. My age would certainly count against me, I think. I didn't really have any symptoms, I just went for a routine check at the doctors and five days later I'd had DS, that scares me too. If I knew that the worst possible outcome was that I'd have to do all of this again I could live with that. But what if it kicks in at 23 weeks, or that we end up with a seriously disabled child? Things that could massively impact on my existing family...
All those fears aside, I would have liked another child but I feel there's too much at risk now.