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Decided on a life without kids now wondering if that was the right choice

(25 Posts)
Poppins17 Thu 23-Jan-20 21:20:08

Hi all,

I married young at just 24 to my DH who is 13 years older than me.

We ttc straight away without luck and had our first IVF in 2011 which resulted in BFP but miscarriage. We had our second in 2013 which resulted in BFN.

We decided IVF was too heartbreaking (and costly) so looked into adoption. After attending the courses and having regular visits from our social worker we pulled out a meeting before being approved as we were unsure about maintaining contact with any adopted child’s biological family.

We decided to move on with our life just the two of us, we moved house and live in a lovely home in a village. I have a great job part time and we have some lovely holidays. Sometimes we have spoken about how lucky we are to still be in love and together after all the trauma we experienced and relish in what a wonderful life we have.

However, in the last couple of weeks I’ve been completely rattled. I think it’s a combination of turning 36 this year and DH turning 50 and also my parents handed down a rocking chair to me as they prepare to move house. It was the chair my mom bought when she was pregnant with me and I have this sudden guilt of what’s going to happen to it as I have no one to pass it onto.

Has anyone else been in this situation ie moved on then had second thoughts?

I’ve spoken to DH and whilst he’s more than happy with our life now and doesn’t particularly want to have a child now at the age of 50 he said he wants ‘us’ to be happy and will support whatever decision I think it right for our future.

In one mind my yearning for a child has never really gone away, I’ve just managed to surpress it well, but in another way we are so settled now we have a lovely life and I’m worried a child at this stage wouldn’t be right for us.

I have guilt over my parents never becoming grandparents, worry about DH being older and being an old lady with no family to look after me, as well as lots of other things.

Is it just natural at this stage to have these feelings?

Sorry if this post is rambly, I guess I’m looking for answers or some rational thinking of my thoughts.

BillHadersNewWife Thu 23-Jan-20 22:24:59

All of your worries are valid but you do know that we're all at risk of being an old lady with nobody to look after us right? Even Mothers...there's no guarantee our children will care for us or even visit us when we're old.

Children emigrate....they get unwell themselves...mentally or physically...they sometimes just don't want to.

Here's the thing though...at 36 you're still very young. With a partner who is older, your views may be a bit skewed. You talk about "this stage of life" as though you're ready for retirement but you're younger than I was when I had my second and you're younger than I was when DH and I decided to emigrate.

Life is for living OP...don't settle down into cosy old age yet. If you want a baby....go and see if you can do it.

Chocmallows Thu 23-Jan-20 22:31:00

Would it be possible to have some therapy sessions to explore this to see how strongly you really feel it?

For example, have you really been repressing feelings for some time, or now going through changes that are making these feelings arise temporarily?

ChocolateGateaux84 Thu 23-Jan-20 22:49:35

Me and my DP are the same ages as you and yoyr DH. Im probably not the best person to answer because for me the longing never left, and we had numerous set backs over our 7 years of fertility treatment,many times feeling like we were at the end of the road.
My final roll of the dice resulted in my son in October last year.

I think you have to go with your heart on this one. Your DH sounds very supportive, so sounds like this is your call.
I note that you 'only' did 2 rounds of ivf. As brutal as it is, and it is a brutal and soul destroying process, it often takes quite a few goes to get a take home baby. Is it something your prepared to revisit, perhaps trying a new clinic with better success rates?
Wish you peace and happiness whatever u decide going forwards flowers

Peterpettigrew Fri 24-Jan-20 08:19:44

It would definitely be worth exploring this further. Maybe with a counsellor and a clinic. It sounds like you haven’t done ivf in nearly ten years which makes me think there are bound to be new tests/new procedures/new diagnosis. I am 34 soon and only starting out ttc journey via ivf. One failed round down and starting another soon so you are really not too old to do this if it’s what you want.

Maybe explore with a counsellor whether you have the emotional resilience to go through another few rounds and if it doesn’t work you will then put it to bed.

Did they ever find out what was wrong? And do you have enough money to do it privately if you won’t get more funded rounds?

Poppins17 Fri 24-Jan-20 14:46:15

Thanks for all your responses.

It’s really interesting reading your view on what I said @BillHadersNewWifeas I guess sometimes perhaps I do think of us winding down now - not to old age or retirement necessarily - but not as people just starting out as a young family. Thanks that may have just given me the kick up the bum I needed!

@Chocmallows @Peterpettigrew I had a bad experience with counselling after our second IVF failed - the counselling was brutal, she told me to get rid of my wish of having a life like the little house on the priarie - it was awful so I guess it’s put me off seeking advice or help from anyone else.

We have a big trip to Oz planned the end of the year for DH’s birthday which has been planned for a long time so we know we still want to do that.. it means there’s time to save as we are private patients, i would maybe consider going abroad and using donor embryo this time around, maybe.

It’s so hard to know what path to go down, my trouble is that I don’t want to regret not doing it, but I don’t want to regret doing it either.... confused

Thanks again everyone for taking the time to reply.

Peterpettigrew Fri 24-Jan-20 14:57:31

@poppins17 that counsellor should be fired. What an outrageous thing to say to someone who has two failed rounds. We are entitled to wish and hope for whatever kind of life we want.

If you don’t want to talk to a counsellor maybe your plan could be to go do tests again in somewhere with a good reputation - maybe Lister or Zita West for a more all encompassing experience and ask them what your chances are. They might not be as bad as you think - you are only two years and a bit years older than me - we have bad male factor issues and the consultant still said he was cautiously optimistic.

At least then you could make an informed decision on whether to try again or not. Apparently Spain is very good and Prague also but going abroad brings its own stresses you would have to weigh up.

I wouldn’t rule out own eggs after two failed rounds. We are going for our second soon and if it fails we are very far from giving up and plan to do another two rounds at least this year if this one doesn’t work.

Good luck with whatever you decide.

Poppins17 Fri 24-Jan-20 15:06:31

Thanks @peterpettigrew - yes the counselling took it out of me, I was shell shocked and it took me a while to get over it, as well as how we were treated by the clinic.

The reason for thinking about donor embryo is to avoid the injections and that part of the treatment, I know no one wants to inject themselves, but for me it was quite a traumatic part of the process and looking back now I can see why our second attempt failed as my mood was low and I felt quite negative about everything... thanks for your tips and advice - I really appreciate it!

Peterpettigrew Fri 24-Jan-20 15:25:49

Ah ok I can understand that. I also found the injections very tough and the build up to doing them psychologically even worse - this time I’m going to get my DH to do them and see if that improves things but it is definitely a tough thing to do.

If you want to think things through a bit I recommend the book mind- body - baby.

Hope you come to the right decision for you! And feel free to pop back on for updates! I’m lurking here way too much!! smile

ChocolateGateaux84 Fri 24-Jan-20 15:47:27

God that's sounds awful
The problem is counselling isn't a regulated profession and there all sorts of cowboys out there.
How has wanting a child and going through the heartbreak of infertility got anything to do with little house on the prairie!?

Poppins i had success abroad in Czech using double donation. I was 'only' 34 when i decided to ditch my own eggs. They were getting me sweet no where. I'm not menopausal but just seem to have idiopathic poor egg quality.
I found going abroad very stress free compared to cycling here in uk. smile

eurochick Fri 24-Jan-20 22:00:31

You are still young enough to have options. No doors are closed to you.

I had success on my 4th cycle. It was a hard road - financially, physically,emotionally. But I had to try.

I met a group of "hard cases" on MN. The majority of us have children now - we've stayed in touch. A couple decided enough was enough and took a different path.

Not all ivf clinics are equal. The process is often trial and error to see what is right for the individual. Which is tough when you are paying thousands each round. Having children obviously isn't the only route to happiness but if you want to try again you still have time.

Chocmallows Fri 24-Jan-20 22:30:23

OP if you want to try and your DH is keen it won't hurt to investigate the options now even if you decide not to pursue it. The therapist really was crap let you down, but you need to explore this and let the decision to try or not try be a thoroughly considered one.

BillHadersNewWife Sat 25-Jan-20 01:43:44

perhaps I do think of us winding down now

You're definitely too young to think of winding down. I'm now 47 and considering going into emergency foster care...it would be a completely new road for me. I heard of a stand up comedian who began at 70! She's 86 now and about to tour Asia.

Your life is yours...you can make your own path.

EL8888 Sat 25-Jan-20 05:29:46

It is tricky when things are taken out of your hands and you have little input into them. I am guessing that these big moments in life e.g. your husband turning 50 makes you think about things and what could have been. Is it something that you think you and your partner would like to try again. A lot of people say abroad is the way to go, an acquaintance of mine swears by Serum in Athens -they got her her little boy, when none of the London clinics achieved anything for her. Good on you for arranging some big things to look forward to, l have a big birthday this year and am planning a big holiday to celebrate it

@ChocolateGateaux84 l think the amount of times is an individual time. Personally l am done after our remaining embryos in the freezer are used up, 1 cycle was more than enough for me. The thought of doing it again just depresses me even further to be honest. I can't face potentially wasting £10-30k on nothing plus the numerous side effects and weight gain etc etc

Malyshek Sat 25-Jan-20 13:41:36

I suspect you're thinking of this because you're 36 and it's still possible to do something, but it may not be in a few years. In fact if you want to do IVF you really need to do it within the next couple of years for the best chances of success.

So you don't have to do IVF or anything, but I think it'd be wise for you to explore your feelings and make sure you're comfortable with whatever decision you end up making.

Think about it. Picture yourself at 50, at 60, at 70. How would you feel about having kids ? Not having them ? If you had IVF and it didn't work, would you feel bad about sending that money and putting yourself through this, or would you feel better knowing you did all you could and it just didn't work out ?
If you had IVF and it did work, how would you feel about having a child ? Would you be overjoyed ? Scared ? Resentful that you lost a lot of freedom ?
Let's say you just found out you were pregnant. Would you feel happy or would you be having second thoughts ?

Think about it, give yourself some time to let it simmer. Measure the potential heartache of failure versus the regret of not trying.

MissingMySleep Sat 25-Jan-20 13:47:15

You've got a lot to think about, but fwiw I had my children at your age. Friends had them later. They are the most annoying, most amazing, most wonderful, most expensive things in my life. As long as you're sure they'll be loved thats all that really matters (imo, I know others will not agree)

Dyrne Sat 25-Jan-20 13:53:38

Another one marvelling about how you’re 36 and acting like you’re completely over the hill! 36 is definitely not too old to start a family - your husband may struggle as an older father but it really depends on how fit and healthy he is now - better an active 50 year old chasing his child around than an unengaged 30 year old slobbing on the sofa ignoring his child in favour of the football.

I second the suggestions to at least look into things, see how procedures have changed, and definitely find yourself a decent counsellor!

Poppins17 Sat 25-Jan-20 21:48:17

Thanks for all the responses... my mind is on overdrive at the moment thinking about what the right thing to do is.

I think those who have mentioned my age and DH’s milestone birthday are right and possible triggers - I don’t want another 5 years to pass and for it to be too late to re-assess our situation and then for it to be too late. I also want to be fair on DH, whilst he’s understanding now and willing to try IVF, I’m conscious that he doesn’t want to be starting out as a family in say 5 years time when he’s 55.

I think the next few months there will be a lot of soul searching and talking and weighing up what’s right for us both.

I appreciate everyone’s comments, thank you.

Chocmallows Sat 25-Jan-20 22:52:36

You are already doing the right thing by discussing options.

While doing this have you considered adoption? It is different, isn't for everybody, a completely different starting point, but is parenting. (I haven't done it, but know a family with an adopted child and it was a process but they are happy).

EarlGreyT Sun 26-Jan-20 07:27:00

I know no one wants to inject themselves, but for me it was quite a traumatic part of the process and looking back now I can see why our second attempt failed as my mood was low and I felt quite negative about everything.
Please don’t blame yourself for the second round failing. Your mood being low and feeling negative will have had no bearing at all on the outcome of the situation. Assuming you actually were giving yourself the injections as directed, your negativity will have made no difference whatsoever to the result of the cycle.

Poppins17 Sun 26-Jan-20 08:25:00

Thanks @earlgreyt - I do sometimes blame myself for the second time failing... I did everything I needed to - meditation, Accupuncture, eating right food, drinking loads of water but my heart wasn’t in it I was fed up with the injections and what it was doing to my body so I do carry guilt around that.

Yes @Chocmallows adoption could still be a route for us. We got quite far into the process the last time but our social worker changed and didn’t particularly put our mind at rest about contact with birth parents. Coupled with finding out my mom had cancer, redundancy and a house move we didn’t pursue it further. It’s definitely something to think about.

Chocmallows Sun 26-Jan-20 10:02:57

Sounds like it's worth investigating all options now as so much was going on before and you had inconsistent or poor advice. Good luck with your decisions and their outcomes!flowers

ChocolateGateaux84 Sun 26-Jan-20 10:36:18

What a shame about your social worker.

99% of the time Contact with birth parents consists of 1 yearly letter, which often goes unanswered, so is really very minimal.
Unless your in Northern Ireland? I believe the rules are a bit different there with a bit more direct contact with BPs. Like a yearly face to face meeting.

That being said once you adopt the child is legally yours, and i don't think even letterbox contact can be enforced on you.

Poppins17 Sun 26-Jan-20 13:13:31

We’re in England... I think looking at adoption would be an option, but we have a big trip planned for DH birthday in December to Oz which is pretty much taking up all of our disposable income the next few months so if we enquired now I don’t think that would be looked at favourably.. it give us some time to have chance to really think about our options though

BillHadersNewWife Sun 26-Jan-20 21:42:27

99% of the time Contact with birth parents consists of 1 yearly letter, which often goes unanswered, so is really very minimal.

This.

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