Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.
Need some sage advice.(38 Posts)
DP and I had a contraceptive failure. I was at the end of my cycle and the condom split but because of my age I decided there was little chance I would get pregnant, but I am.
At the time of the 'accident' we discussed taking the MAP, we both thought there was little possibility of conception but when I asked DP what he would do if I did get PG he said he would be supportive. So on Monday I tested + after feeling 'off' for a few days and told him that the test was +. Between then and yesterday he called me (we live 40 miles or so apart and he was working and my kids are off school for half term so we could not see each other) and he asked me if I had stopped drinking and smoking and was eating right etc etc (I rarely drink and am an occasional social smoker) which led me to believe he was concerned about the baby's welfare.
Yesterday he came around and when the kids were in bed he dropped the bombshell that he wants me to have a termination. He has said that we had not been getting on great for a while which is true to an extent; we lived together but it was stressful as I am doing a course and have young children and he works in another city. He said he has lots on his plate; he has a big tax bill to pay and some other minor financial commitments. He said he is not ready for a baby now; he said before that he wanted us to be together and eventually have a child together (he has no children) but not at the moment.
I, meanwhile, am absolutely devastated. The timing is not perfect but the problems he has mentioned are not insurmountable in my book and if we don't have this baby now then when will we? He said maybe next year when I have finished my course and if we are getting a long better. I feel sick at the thought of terminating this pregnancy to then try for another baby in a years time.
I am not anti-abortion but I am the sort of person that if there is a problem I will try to find solutions and so, while I appreciate his perspective, it feels very much to me that his issues are a knee jerk reaction to this unexpected news and that he has told me what he has thought I wanted to hear for the past 3.5 years and that our relatioship has been built on untruths.
I have made an appointment to have counselling with Marie Stopes and a pre-assessment appointment next week but I just feel sick at the thought of agreeing to take tablets to abort a baby I very much want. That being said, I cannot do this on my own. I just can't. I married an alcoholic who was abusive and to all intents and purposes have brought up 3 kids on my own. From a selfish point of view, I want to be happy and find a life partner (I thought I had) and I cannot see how that would be possible if I have this baby. Even thinking that makes me very uncomfortable as it sounds like I want to end a life for my own selfish reasons.
Equally, I do not want to manipulate my DP into supporting me and fathering a child he does not want. I want him to want me, my kids and this baby. I know I will never forgive him if he does not change his mind though. It is just a lose:lose situation.
I am sorry this is so long but I really would appreciate the perspective of others as I can't seem to rationally think about this without sobbing. Another point to make is that I have terminated a pregnancy because of abnormality and I have moments where I struggle with that decision 17 years after the event.
Thank you for reading.
It is a tough situation but not lose:lose. I personally think you should not go through with terminating a child you want. If you wanted to terminate that would be a different matter.
You thought there was little risk of getting pregnant because of your age and yet he wants to have a baby at some point in the future?
I don't think he will every have children with you, if that is what you want. Meanwhile right now you are pregnant and the choice is with you as to what happens, but I think you need to factor him not being around into the decision either way.
Sorry you are in such a tough situation x
You poor thing. Is your DP absolutely sure about this or do you think he's just panicking. Would another talk together help?
To me it sounds as thought there is still a lot to discuss: a lot of implications for your relationship either way. How much of our OP have you told him? I would try and talk, talk, and talk some more with him. Not very MNetty but (((hugs))) to you.
I'm sorry you are in this awful situation. But as Rhonda said - you thought your age was against you - does he know your age, if he does, how does he think that a baby might be an option sometime in the future?
I would only go ahead with this pregnancy if you are 100% sure you can raise the baby on your own, because he has made his feelings clear.
Really sorry you are going through this, and that your partner has changed his mind in such a way that has put you in this situation.
I think going to see someone at Marie stopes is a really good plan. Also give yourself some time, he only told you this change of heart yesterday, so it's still a big shock. Take the pressure off yourself by saying you'll not think of finalising a decision until this time next week. Then reassess how you feel then. Once the shock has worn off it may be that you will work out a way of going it alone, or it could be that you resign yourself to a termination, but you need to take some pressure off yourself in order to come to those decisions.
I'm guessing if you terminate the pregnancy this relationship won't survive. Like you say, trying for a different baby in a year isn't what you want and knowing how he's treated you over this means your trust in him must be minimal. So I think you have two options: One - terminate the pregnancy and move on from this relationship. Or Two - go ahead with the pregnancy assuming he won't be involved, and look at any involvement as a bonus. If you chose the second option concentrate your energies into visualising a life with the new baby and your existing children and imagining the joys that will bring, rather than thinking about persuading him to stay with you and be a father etc. that way you will feel in control of the situation.
Really hope you find the strength to make the right decision for you and your family. I have a feeling from reading your OP that you are probably wanting to make the decision to keep the baby, if this is the case you need to start working through how this will work and how you can be happy in this decision.
Can you remember how he actually phrased it op?
Did he say 'I want you to have a termination' ?
How did he put it and how far into the conversation?
Whatever happens next I think it's 'adios DP'. If you have the termination you won't want to be with him any more, and if you keep the baby it doesn't sound like he'll want to be there for you. Do what you think is right for you therefore. Not an easy choice but best of luck.
RhondaJean and RegTheMonkey, yes, I am 40 (he knows my age and is 40 too). My youngest is 6 and I have put myself through quite a gruelling course to be able to provide for the children. I had thought if we were going to have children we would have started TTC by now given both our ages and the fact my kids are growing up but when the subject has come up he has said he does want kids but not now (then) ...
Doinmummy, I have emailed him my thoughts on the matter as I am not making much sense between sobs on the telephone and having to break from the conversation if my kids appear and we are going to talk tomorrow morning. I do not expect him to change his opinion though. He does not view this pregnancy in a positive light and has said that it has made him question his commitment to me and how if we have this baby 'it's game over for him' (in terms of his life as he knows it). He said if we were to have a baby he wants it to be when he is ready and it is planned and he 'doesn't want to have a child or be put in this position because a bit of latex broke'.
KVK, If I terminate the pregnancy the relationship won't survive but if I keep it it won't either. I suppose whether the relationship survives is irrelevent. I want something that is not going to happen (for him to have a change of heart) so I am not in the position of having to choose. I really cannot have this baby on my own. My kids are brilliant but they haven't had the best start and it is hard parenting them on my own without having a baby in the mix. I just don't know how I will go through with it.
Thank you SGB and Handywoman.
Didn't want to read and run, it seems like you have had some great advice already.
I do agree that you said about your age - if he isn't ready now then I don't think it's likely he will ever be.
We all know there is never really the 'right' time to have a baby, never enough money etc but we all make it work.
You do what you think is best for you and your family.
Unlikelyamazonian, We had conversations in the week. I had to tell work because I am exposed to radiation and I told him that. He asked about whether I was eating right and not smoking etc... Then he came over last night, we didn't talk about it while the kids were up, I made him dinner etc and then when the kids went to bed he wanted a cuddle so we led down on the sofa together, he nodded off, I said I was going to bed and he said 'This makes me uncomfortable, I am not sure about this', I said 'What do you want me to do?' and he said 'Have a termination'.
CES, Yes, I agree... I just cannot reconcile extinguishing a life that I would want in different circumstances at the moment.
Sorry just read your latest comments from him. He sounds like he is being a prick with the whole 'questions the relationship' thing and just reaks of pressuring you into an abortion you aren't sure you want.
Make sure your opinion is heard. Yes the condom split but were all adults and everyone knows there is a risk of that happening. If he was so insistent he would have made sure you took the map.
Thank you Bubalou. I agree. Given my age, if he wanted children with me then he would accept that this has happened sooner than expected but would be more positive about it. I think telling me we can try again next year is the sweetener to a bitter pill as he has not got the ability to be honest about his intentions.
It sounds like a nightmare, I'm so sorry for you this has happened. I'm sorry to say I agree that it sounds like your DP is not the one, and will not give you what you need either way. You have children already who need you, and if you really can't do it alone and be there for them too, I think they should be your priority. ((( )))
Bubalou, he did say 'You've got to take the MAP' and I said i didn't think it would be a problem and asked him what he would do if I was PG and he said, basically, he would man up (not in those words). He has since said he feels trapped etc...
Bigfingers, that is what I think too but it is just a horrible, horrible, horrible thing to do when it is not what you want. It is also complicated by the fact that I do not want to go to the hospital where they do terminations as I had my first termination there and it was a horrendous experience but also because I work there with the surgeons and anaesthetists. Feel so ashamed of the whole sorry tale.
HVH I know. I honestly don't think if I could do it myself, so I feel wrong saying it anyway: it is my worst nightmare. I do not want any more children (I cannot cope well with the three I have!!) but if I discovered I had got pg, I could not cope emotionally with a termination. The only way I could rationalise it and forgive myself would be to consider that I had done better by my other children. If you do not think you would ever be able to forgive yourself, don't do it and find another way.
So sorry heartvhead.
This is a big decision to make and I think despite all the advice you will get - you probably already know deep down which is the right decision.
However, some men just take time. Speak to him, really speak to him. If he's a typical man and refuses to then just let him know that you will not be making any decisions until it has been discussed properly!
How old are you and how old is he? sorry if you have answered this already.
Bigfingers, part of me thinks I could do it on my own as I have done before but then I just break down thinking of the compromises and sacrifices I and the children have made to do my course for them not to materialise. I am training to do a job that requires a high level of commitment and unsociable hours, the children have been in childcare from 6am to 8pm some days but they jolly me along because they know the reasons why. I just would not be able to do the hours or apply myself to the job properly if I had a baby and no support as if I screw up it could be the difference between life and death.
Bubulou, I am not sure of the point really in talking to him. I was hurt and said some unkind things (which were actually true) and he is now saying 'You are mad for wanting this baby with me, it is not rational. I am a practical man and terminating is the sensible thing to do'. Personally, I think he is afraid of us experiencing a similar loss to our first baby and has shut down emotionally. He would say 'No, absolutely not' if I suggested this though...
Unlikely, I am 40 very soon and he was 40 in the summer.
What a horrible situation. I've had a TOP, years ago, and it's not nice.
When you had the conversation about the split condom - the one where he said he would support you - how did you feel at the time? Did a little bit of you feel pleased, maybe secretly hope you would get pregnant? When you felt a bit 'off' and took the test, what did you want the result to be?
If you are both 40 you are right, if you wanted children you would be trying to have them, not postponing it.
Give yourself at least a week to think and for things to fall into place a bit.
You wouldn't have to have a TOP at the hospital where you work. You could easily go discreetly to a private clinic. If you've had to tell them at work that you are pg, they don't have to know if the pregnancy ended voluntarily or by accident.
This might be your last chance. Are you prepared to never have another child?
No 'might' I don't think, hoglet. That's the other thing to consider... if you have a TOP you have to accept that you won't have more children.
What course are you doing, OP?
Shapechanger, I honestly did not think I would get PG by a one shot wonder at the wrong time of the month, When he said he would be supportive I just felt reassurred that if a baby did result that we would keep it because he said he wanted to be with me and that we would have a baby one day.
With the PG test, I assumed it would be negative and was shocked! My period was due, I thought if I did a test it would be - and I would then come on. I felt 'off' but my DS had been off sick with D & V so I thought most likely that. As the week went on I thought of the practical problems, thought I had a supportive partner and had thought of solutions. My overriding thought was that this baby was a blessing and I felt positive about the pregnancy and having a new little person in the family.
I can't afford to pay for a private TOP, I am a student with very little income at the moment. I won't say what course I am doing but I work in the operating department.
Sleepy, Yes, I know, that is the most devastating part. I have wanted another baby for a long time, DP said we would have one at some point, I am now PG and he does not want me to keep it. He says he is unsure of his commitment to me on top of that. I let him into my children's lives, he said all the right things and now when the shit hits the fan it is evident he can talk the talk but he cant walk the walk.
I think you will hugely regret it if you don't continue with this pregnancy. Perhaps you can come to terms with it with counselling but its staring out of your posts how much you want this child.
I also think your relationship is over either way. If you have the baby, he's made his stand clear. If you don't, you will always feel pushed and never forgive him.
I'm sorry if I've read this wrong but did you lost a baby in an earlier pregnancy with him, do you think he's scared of it happening again, if so perhaps I am too harsh and he may come round.
How many people in RL can help you with the baby?
Have you looked into what benefits or financial support might be available to you as a student with a baby?
Your baby's father will have to contribute maintenance towards his child which will help.
Presumably your baby is due in July, so that would give you two months off over the summer. Are you allowed to defer your course for one year from the september?
Some people who have had much-longed for babies in their older years have had no choice but do the best for their baby under the direst of circumstances.
You could have fallen pregnant and this wanted baby with your parnter who 'wanted' one...then decided when the baby was two months old that he did not.
You would not have had the choice of termination at that point but would still have managed somehow, and loved your baby to pieces.
RhondaJean, yes, I terminated a pregnancy at 23 weeks because of a fetal abnormality that was incompatible with life. I have 3 other children and know that these things are rare but he only has that experience to go by. The impression I get is that he has dodged a bullet and can have his cake and eat it i.e. live on his own like a bachelor and dip in and out of family life with me if and when he feels like it (that is one of the hurtful things I have said).
Unlikely, I am meant to qualify at the end of July but baby would be due the middle of July but is likely to be born at end of June/early July as all my others have been early (however I am up on hours so could work around this). The problem is once I am qualified, I will be expected to work shifts/long days and having a baby without support would be unmanageable as I would have to work 7.00 - 7.30 or 8.30 - 9.00 3 days a week minimum; if I had a DP who would do the childcare runs before and after school then that would work.
I know exactly what you are saying, I have thought those things myself, but the difference is coping with a situation you find yourself in or choosing that situation in the first place. For example, my XH was a lovely bloke, I married him, we had 3 kids and a business together and gradually he became an alcoholic. I supported him until I could flog a dead horse no longer as one of us had to put the needs of the children before the booze but, that said, I would not have chosen to marry an alcoholic in the first place.
With my DP, I think it would be different if I did not have the kids and a whole suitcase family of baggage. If I was younger than him, had no kids or, indeed, if I had not pursued a career and had less responsibility and more free time, then I think he would feel differently. I have to face the fact that it is probably not the baby that he doesn't want but that he doesn't want me and the children
I spoke to the Counsellor today. She has suggested that I need to get DP to think of this condom failure as a pregnancy that is a baby as she thinks he is in denial of the situation. She also thinks, if what he says is true, that he does want a child in a year or so and his reaction is a knee jerk response to the shock, that he will come around....
That's interesting OP. It is bound to be a shock for him.
I think many men aren't good at grasping the reality of a pregnancy, it's not their body and it can feel very unreal for a long time. That said, I think the counsellor has really stuck her neck out saying this. She is second guessing his feelings and she doesn't know him.
I really hope he comes round, but you have to think about what you will do if her instinct is wrong. Do you have a TOP and give up on enlarging your family, and, inevitably, end your relationship? Do you go it alone, with the difficulties this will present in terms of completing your studies and building your career?
You still have to think like this, unfortunately. Don't pin your hopes on the words of a stranger, however 'experienced'.
Of course I absolutely hope she is right, because all other options are very difficult for you. In your position I think I would have the baby and try to have faith that all would be well in the end, with or without your partner. But you are not young and, hate to mention it, you also have to consider how you would proceed and feel if the baby has DS, for example, or any other challenging condition whose incidence increases with maternal age. You have had a horrible experience of something like this before.
And I'm really not being negative about DS children or pregnancies, so please no one be offended that I mentioned this. A close friend has a DS son and he is lovely, but I can also see that it is a strain on her sometimes dealing with his needs and those of her other children. He is at the severer end of the scale with learning difficulties, had cardiac issues and has needed a lot of input. She worries about his future, and she has the support of a loving partner.
Don't want to raise issues that make things worse, you probably know all this already. I really hope all this works out for you.
She doesn't sound very professional
The way I see it, is that things have not been great between you for a while. It would appear he has been saying whatever he thinks he needs to for an easy life. He currently has the best of both worlds (bachelor when he feels like it, family life when he feels like it).
I couldn't get past some of the things he has said and for me, irrespective of the pregnancy, this would be the end of the road for the relationship. I'd end it now, before I even made the decision about the termination - separate the two things out.
You have to make the decision about what to do with this pregnancy for youself - not for him. Ignore what he says/what he wants/what the counsellor thinks he will do & everything else. Either YOU go through a termination or YOU bring up this baby. Those are your only choices right now
You said you felt terrible guilt about your previous termination (and that was for a foetal abnormality incompatible with life, which IMO you shouldn't feel at all guilty about) do you think YOU could handle another termination and one that doesn't even have that 'reason'?
On the other hand, YOU would be the one struggling with 4 children on your own.
I'm sorry you are going through this
She was a counsellor from a pregnancy advisory service but I do appreciate her opinion is only based on what i've told her.
I also agree and think I have to make an indepeneant decision and, maypoledancer, it's OK; I am a befriender for ARC so am aware of the issues but thank you
Can you really support and raise four children on your own? Because that is the reality. When realistically would you be able to work those shift patterns? And how would you survive till then? This guy is not going to stick around is he?
It is such a difficult situation for you op.
Op - I feel so sorry for you in this situation, especially since dp's initial reaction gave you hope.
I'm sorry but I think, even if your dp changed his mind, there would be trouble ahead. It doesn't sound as if the relationship is secure enough to cope with an addition, if he moved out because he found living with 3 children too stressful. It'd be a lot for someone who's never had children before to take on.
I think, if you end the pregnancy, you will always feel sad about it. But, I could also see a time in your future, when you've qualified and are working at your new job, when you might also think 'How on earth could I have done this with a baby? It was the right thing to do.' And that would be a consolation.
Focus on your existing children and your plans for making life better for them. Take satisfaction in reaping the rewards of all your hard work in improving your career prospects.
It doesn't have to be entirely lose-lose, even if it feels like that at the moment.
Whoselifeisitanyway, it is not so much whether I can, as I probably could because of the sort of person I am and the fact I have done it with 3, but i'm not sure if I want to. I can't even begin to think about his actions and what he will do, I just have to come to a decision of my own making.
Thymeout, I am swaying between what you have said and then just feeling like I cannot make that choice. After speaking to the Counsellor today I felt like we could have the baby and everything would be oK and haven't cried today but the fact of the matter is that is probably a pipe dream...
HVH, I really think that you should put your own life and that of your children first. Even if you do go ahead you could end up feeling very resentful and so could your DC, and that is a very bitter feeling to endure for possibly years. Save yourself the long-term sacrifice and struggles which won't be good for any of you.
Also you won't have to see surgeons or anything. I think you are very early on? You can have a medical abortion (2 sets of tablets) up to 5 weeks.
Yes I am very early in the pregnancy, the pressure of making a decision is overbearing but I can't let this go on and on and only decide at the 11th hour as i'll drive myself mad.
It would just be brilliant to have a crystal ball and be able to look into the future...
Join the discussion
Please login first.