TTC #2 - how to get DH to decide?(7 Posts)
Am currently trying to get DH to decide whether we should ttc #2. For me, it's a no-brainer - I'm on a fixed-term contract, DS is almost 2 and I don't want to leave it much longer before trying as am already on the older side and don't want a big gap and I've been feeling broody for a while. Plus there's a chance I may have to start on new medication that means I wouldn't be able to conceive for a good 2-3 years at least and by then it would be too late, for me, at least.
I love my job and hope there's a chance I could be made permanent. As far as I can tell, if we started ttcing soon ish, I would qualify for their mat pay (slightly better than statutory) and finish as my contract ends. There would then be a year to make arrangements to make my position permanent and hopefully I could go back to a similar setup.
I know there's never a perfect time to have a baby, but this seems like the universe is dropping some fairly big hints.
The problem is DH. He is terrible at making any decisions and likes to take his time. I've been thinking about this for a while, been working out logistics and even warned him I wanted to start thinking about it months ago.
We said we would talk about it once I started my current job and now we are there, he just keeps wittering on about how we need to decide if we want to have another and if so, when. Last night, he professed that I'd clearly been thinking about this for months and he needed time to catch up! I thought I had been talking about it in general terms, but apparently he didn't realise that meant I wanted to have another.
I don't know what to do - if I push him to make a decision, he clams up and refuses to talk about it. I did get upset with him and said that it felt like he'd decided he didn't want another and didn't want to upset me by actually saying that. He says that's not it, he just hasn't decided yet. I also pointed out that by being unable to make a decision, he is effectively making a decision not to. He says he knows that and he will make a decision, but he needs to think about it.
This is driving me crazy and I don't know how best to proceed. He is a lovely dad to DS and while I would be devastated if we didn't have another, I don't want to force him to have a baby he doesn't want.
Any advice, please? Or any tips on coming to terms with the fact I won't have another baby?
It's a really difficult situation to be in and you have my sympathies.
When DH and I had our DS (he's just turned three) we always said we'd only have one for a few reasons but when DS reached 15 months old I started to crave another but DH was adamant we were sticking with one. We used to talk about it a lot and because it was me who had moved the goal posts I felt I had no choice but to accept his decision. It really upset me though and every month, sometimes every few weeks, I would be bringing up the subject again, desperate to change his mind.
Not long before DS turned two (so about 9 months after I first spoke to DH about having another baby) something really upsetting happened at work (involving a child's death) and I went home and cried my eyes out to DH and really explained to him how much having another child meant to me. He said that his reasons for not wanting one weren't as strong as my reasons for wanting one and because he could now really see how much it meant to me he agreed to TTC. It took about 10 cycles to get a BFP but I'm now 26 weeks pregnant with Baby #2 and we are both over the moon.
I think you need to ask exactly what it is that's preventing him from committing to a second child. He is obviously well within his rights to be reluctant and unsure, nobody should have a child they don't want but he needs to be honest with you if he genuinely doesn't want another and then you need to decide upon your next steps.
If my DH had been 100% adamant that another child wasn't on the cards I wouldn't have left him and I wouldn't have resented him for it because it was me, not him, that had changed our plans by asking for another, but if we had been in your situation, both in agreement for more than one child and then him seeming to change his mind, I think I would struggle to get past that if having more than one child was something really important to me.
Had you previously discussed how many children you wanted?
We said we would see how we got on with one before committing. I wasn't sure how my medical condition would cope with pregnancy (absolutely fine, as it turned out). I definitely don't want more than two though.
The nearest I can get out of him is he likes how our life is at the moment and he isn't sure adding another child would make it better and he can't imagine loving another child as much as he loves DS and that he's worried having another child would change how he feels about DS and that he wouldn't be able to give as much attention to DS if we had another. If that meant he didn't want to, I would work on accepting his decision. But even then, he's still saying he doesn't know - it's infuriating
I also have two medical conditions that complicated my pregnancy but thankfully I was fine (had to have various drugs and monitoring) but ultimately me and DS were ok but my DH also used that as one of his reasons why we shouldn't have another.
He also said we had a comfortable life and he loved that we could DS such one-to-one and that if we only had one child we'd be better off financially which meant our child would never want for anything.
One of my problems was that DH and I were coming at it from very different angles in that I have a sister who is my best friend, I love the bones of her and our childhood together was amazing, whereas DH has a brother who he can't stand and they have nothing to do with each other. We had very different views on the values of siblings.
I actually think a lot of men would happily have one simply because it's just easier.
I always struggled when I took DS to toddler groups and I saw how much he loved playing with other children and I got so much pleasure out of him seeing him so happy and interacting with others that it only strengthened my desire to want to give him a sibling - whereas DH never went to play groups so he didn't get to see that side of it.
The thought of DS always being alone and not having a sibling to play with really upset me and when I spoke about this to DH his answer was, "He doesn't need anybody else, he's got me." Just what every lad wants.....a dad to hang around with......
When DH eventually decided to agree to TTC#2 he put a time frame on it and said that if we hadn't conceived by the time he was 35 then we would stop trying as that was his 'cut off' point as he said any older than that was "too old to be starting again". His deadline meant we had 12 months of TTC ahead of us and thankfully I got my BFP after 10 months.
What are your ages and family set-ups? Could there be any other reasons for not wanting another based on his own life experiences?
I've got the same dynamic with my DH. I'm a real long-term planner, and I like to think about the future and over a longer time period and envisage how different decisions would play out. Sounds like you might be this way too. DH is more ostrich style, he won't think about an issue at all until I club about the head with it, by which time I'm already really invested. This mismatch has caused us some serious heartache in our marriage.
It's a form of control really, I think that's why it drives me mad. I've got no good advice. My tactic is to just keep bringing it up. There's always a crunch point that forces the issue and unfortunately we then have a very heated discussion which inevitably leads to upset - I guess for you that's 9 months before your contracts ends!
We're both 36 - I have a sister who is 2 years younger and he has a sister who is 7 years older. Parents all still alive, his live closer, but are quite old and aren't massively interested beyond the odd visit. Mine are further away but try and help when they can, despite my mum still working.
GreyClouds you are absolutely right it is a form of control. My DH is extremely conflict-averse and this is the way he can manage situations the way he wants without conflict. Apart from when I call him on it and then he shuts down and won't talk about it
Exactly the same situation for my DH and I Tooold. Wow, I didn't think about the avoiding conflict aspect of it, but it's so true.
Did you and your DH ever have counselling? I think we're in a situation where it would benefit us (DH has chronic progressive health condition, which we're finding it hard to talk about). I wonder if being called out by someone else in relationship counselling would work?
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