Counselling to accept only having one child...(3 Posts)
Part of me feels incredibly selfish feeling like this given that some couples can't have any children, but here goes...
I've always wanted 3 children. I never pictured anything less. However, I met my partner quite late in life (33) and, being realistic, I adjusted my expectations to 2 children.
Our first child is now 15 months old and I've had post natal depression for a year. It has completely changed my life. I think it has changed 'me' permanently. The upshot is that if I do ever fully recover, I don't think I could go through all of this again. The thought of my daughter growing up without a sibling makes me incredibly sad, but I know my mental health cant take it.
So I think I just need to find a way of accepting I can only have 1 and that my daughter won't have a brother or sister.
I keep up with the threads here and that helps a little to see all the benefits of having 1 child. I just feel incomplete. I can't let go of her baby things. I just wish I was stronger.
Has anyone had counselling for this? Did it help?
All the telling you to enjoy the one you have won't stop you feeling sad for what you envisioned your family shape to be.
You are allowed to feel a sense of grief, what ever you feel is valid.
You will feel like there is a hole now because you created a space in yourself for something you hoped for.
The thing about any hole it soon gets very full of stuff,
It's a really sensible idea any time you feel like it to find someone to help you have an audit of feeling and help you process them.
I had counselling to help me with all the negative thoughts I had about having an only child and it really helped me. I think it depends on the therapist/counsellor you see though and I suppose they are trained to deal with most issues a client may have. The coping strategies are similar no matter what the problem is. My counsellor is trained in CBT but to be honest just talking about my problems in a non judgemental environment was helpful. She helped me see I was seeking out and dwelling on negative issues surrounding my DS and comparing his very lovely life just now with that of an over romanticised view of life with a sibling.
There are pros and cons of being an only vs having siblings. It's really not black and white.
I hope you can be happy and enjoy your family. Life is short and none of us know what is round the corner. I finally realised that my big regret when I'm older would probably be moping around and not enjoying my DS and not the regret of trying for more children and this thought helps me enjoy every minute with my lovely boy.
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