...to be worried about my wife's desire for a third child?(122 Posts)
My wife of 20 years (we're 38) wants a third, we currently have 2 DDs, 2.5 and 5, and I'm the SAHD who raises 'em while my wife earns the corn.
I am not a natural at this game but the kids are great and they're doing well at school and seem to be a happy pair. I am crap at doing most of the sort of support work like laundry and cleaning but I do all the cooking and shopping and all the rest of it so I think it's pretty balanced. I also do some work from home for my sort of business on the internet if you like, and that's currently really taking off and paying the sort of money you could reasonably call "a salary" rather than "peanuts". I really want to leave behind the abject horror of looking after young kids. I hated the first years so much, I know that's wrong but I enjoy the kids WAY more now. I have spoken to a lot of my mates and many of them feel the same way - babies are really hard work, but once they get to be little people they're just fantastic fun.
And now, into the mix, my wife has thrown a desire for a third child.
I recently took down all the child proofing stuff like stair gates etc, we ebayed or freecycled a bunch of other baby stuff, binned things like old sterilisers, bottles etc and gave all our baby clothes to our friends who've had babies of their own. We upgraded our car seats, I've started going through the NHS process for a vasectomy, even, so we were committed to the idea that this was it - no more children, 2 was plenty.
Then, out of nowhere, my wife announces that she's going off her birth control and that's that. She's been on the deepo injection for years and now, out of the blue, she's off it. I knew why, of course. She hoped she'd get pregnant and then of course I'd say "fine, looks like we're having a third". I'm not going to suddenly demand an abortion or anything horrific like that, and if we DID have a third, of course I'd adore the baby as much as my 2 DDs already.
She sort of turned into one of those 18 year old boys I'm sure all the women on here have had to fend off (or not) when they were younger who said things like "don't worry you can't get pregnant the first time" and so on. She started to say things like "it's ok I haven't had my period yet" and so I, being an idiot, had sex with her and she then phones me a few days later to say "I did a test and I'm not pregnant" and sounded kind of disappointed.
Hang on a sec - I thought you said we couldn't GET pregnant?! I felt like an idiot for even buying that one for a second, so now that's it - no sex until after the vasectomy, I told her. All she could say was "we'll see" because she knows I'm a weak fool when it comes to sex.
So far, no doctor's appointment has been forthcoming because, you know, it's the NHS and there's lines of blokes desperate to get their balls hacked off. I could call and tell them I want to crack on because I am dying for a shag but I doubt they'd care, the MONSTERS. So I'm just going to remain diligent and have so far (about a month now) avoided any kind of activity that might lead to anything. I'm basically keeping her at arms length. A firm handshake before she leaves for work, no more slapping her on her bum, etc. Civil, businesslike. She's getting the message that I'm not interested while she's fertile for kids.
Anyway - now I am worried about the lengths she'll go to. I've read that statistic about the number of men raising kids who aren't theirs, and she's a very attractive girl so I'm seriously worried that she's going to find some fella just like in that Heart song "All I Wanna Do is Make Love to You" about the woman who just wants to have sex with a guy to get knocked up because her husband won't or can't do it! And it's one of her favourite songs too! When I said some years ago that it's about a women cheating on two men she said "you don't understand" and I fancy that she thinks it's fair game.
She's often out after work for these "leaving drinks" for people I've never heard mentioned before, and has to go away for business sometimes too. What if she finds some bloke who looks a bit like me and gets him into the sack. What am I going to do, demand a paternity test the moment the baby is born? Go on the Maury Povich show?
I feel like this is the ultimate role reversal and, in some way, I deserve this as some penance for what my people (men) have wrought upon women these many generations past.
So what should I do? I love my wife and I fancy the pants off her so the idea of losing her because she wants a baby so badly she either stops loving me, or screws someone else and forces me to leave her (I wouldn't be able to live with it, despite everything, mainly because my Dad was a serial divorcer and left us high and dry long ago) is keeping me up at night.
She's quite a driven person and can be extremely cold and calculating at times (like a beautiful lizard) for example when she lost her virginity, she just decided she wanted to, found a guy she knew and fancied, marched up to him in the pub and said "can you come round tomorrow and pop my cherry", this was despite him having a girlfriend that she knew, and that was that. Job done. She's like a robot when she wants something.
So AIBU? What the hell should I do?
Why are lizards calculating?
<Misses point entirely>
I don't really get what the role reversal has to do with it. You sound as if you don't like your wife at all, though.
Can you not just sit down and talk to her? I mean, you are not 18. You know as well as she does how the human body works. Playing this game of 'yes, I'll have sex because you say you can't get pregnant then I'll act surprised and cross' is just as much a game as her saying she can't get pregnant this time.
It's not a decision she can unilaterally make. She should know she's being unreasonable about that. But sitting down and talking about how you feel seems a much more sane way forward than dancing around each other like this.
OP your writing style is fab.. I'm praying you're legit
I think you should sit down with her and be firm about your reasoning why you don't want another child - or perhaps would you think about having one if she became the stay at home mum?
I kind of got a bit lost halfway through all of that but I think I get the gist of it.
You don't want a 3rd child and she suddenly does. Perhaps it's just the fact you're going for a vasectomy that's brought it on?
Either way, don't have sex with her without a condom and don't be 'forced' into having a 3rd child if you don't want one.
You don't just demand that your husband agrees to a baby! Sounds like you have good reasons to stick with two. She doesn't sound very nice. I wouldn't have sex till she discusses why she thinks it's ok to be dishonest and try to steamroller you into this.
@LRDtheFeministDragon - I'm making light of it. I love my wife. I think it's ok to make jokes about someone!
@InSpace - she is nice, but she loved being pregnant and breastfeeding and having our first two so she's also motivated to get a third. Also, dare I say it, I am the one who actually ends up doing the day to day grind, so she has six months maternity leave with the baby (I know it's hard work but she wants to do that a third time!) but I have five years with the baby until she or he starts school.
@ everyone saying "use a condom" - I'd rather go without sex than use a condom. This is not about sex anyway, this is about my other concerns for my relationship and it's future.
Firstly, who's Maury Povich?
Secondly, is your DW aware of how much you really really don't want a third baby? Have you discussed the impact having a third child could have on your relationship and your family?
Thirdly, this old vasectomy malarkey. How does she feel about it? How will this affect your marriage?
I don't think you are BU as I definitely would reel in horror at a woman being forced to have a child against her will. It seems to me you may be at a crossroads, an impasse even, in your marriage. If she realises how badly you view having another baby and still gets pregnant then your marriage is not her priority, a baby is.
If she got pregnant to another guy, even if he was incredibly handsome like you, OP, I would LTB quicker than a greyhound out of the trap.
use a condom and dispose of condom yourself (am remembering Liz Jones the sperm thief)
I doubt this is for real. If it is, don't have sex, or use a condom. Sit down with her and spell out that you will not agree to another child in any circumstances, and that you would not be able or prepared to home dad another child (there are other options, after all, if that is your main issue). These days it's impossible to pass off a child as your husband's if he has any suspicions, after all. Get a dog - may help if she is feeling broody.
I never say this but, OP are you a journalist? Your writing style is very polished!
Again, you are both earning good pay, from what you say, so the 3rd child could go to 8 to 6 nursery 5 days a week, from the day after your wife finishes her maternity leave.
No I'm not a journalist but I like writing and do some writing from time to time for money (not much) but thanks for the kind words!
This is "for real", I'm not sure what it is that seems phoney about a women wanting another baby and a man not wanting one.
I was with you until you started wondering if she would go and shag someone else to get pregnant! You are either a troll or a jealous controlling loser .. "Leaving drinks" ooooh
Talk to your wife properly,if you are for real.
If you don't trust her can't understand why you are married
You are crap at laundry and cleaning? That's funny, as all women come out if the womb being great at those things and gagging to do them
Rather than playing out some kind of Benny Hill game you need to talk through the desire for a third properly. You could, for example, agree to try again if this time you go back to work and use childcare - part-time, full-time, whatever.
It's a shame you've hated these years, but I think you need to separate your desire to not be a sahd with the decision about having or not having a third.
I think you should call a moratorium on unprotected piv sex until you make the decision - together - either way.
Dinosaur makes a good point
OP do you think your aversion to a 3rd child is primarily due to your (very reasonable) lack of desire to be a SAHP for the next 4-5 years? If that's the main driver for your current state of mind it might break the impasse to consider other ways to organise your family working/childcare structure if you did have a 3rd child.
I think you need to separate your desire to not be a sahd with the decision about having or not having a third.
Xposted with Wiggle. Yes, this^^
OP they don't trust men on here, they'll call you a troll, I do hope you get some helpful advice though. You need to have a heart to heart with your wife, perhaps if she wants a third DC you should swop roles (her being the SAHP and you bringing home the bacon?)
1. Use a condom / stop having sex. You are 38 - saying you are a "weak fool when it comes to sex" is ridiculous.
2. Talk to your wife. Explain you don't want another baby and why. Talk about why she does want another baby. Did she feel she missed out by going back to work both times? Could she become the SAHP and you work full time?
3. Delay the vasectomy until you are both sure you don't want more kids.
Come on! You are adults here! Don't talk to random women on mumsnet - talk to your wife!
FWIW we are in a reasonably similar position as you about a year ago (see my user name) and are reasonably committed to stopping at 2. We both have the occassional "wobble" - ds is 10 months now and really active and I have a friend with a teeny tiny one. We talk a lot about this - the big question is "do we actually want to raise three children from birth to 18+ or do I just want a teeny tiny adorable newborn to cuddle in bed with".
For me at least - it's just feeling a bit sad thatmI'll never get those newborn cuddles again. (Ds rolls over, crawls over my head and attempts to throw himself off the bed head first - it's just not the same!)
I really don't have much advice apart from the fact that you need to sit down and have the talk. But I really enjoyed reading your post PerfectFather. Firm handshake .
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