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only 1 child cus partner doesn't want another - how do i reconcile myself to that?!

(16 Posts)
helsbelscaitie Mon 10-Nov-08 21:20:37

We've got a fabulous sweet natured dd, 18 mths old. I'm 42, partner 59, 2 grown up sons from previous marriage. He's declared he's not up for doing it all again and my breeding instincts are kicking in hard. He thinks he is of an age when he has earnt the right to be slowing up and feels 2nd baby would just be too much to cope with sad. Ring any bells with anyone? At the moment i am just so upset at the thought i can hardly talk to him. I am 1 of 3 and very clos to my siblings, he is 1 of 4 and not particularly close to his so doesn't feel dd would be missing out. I get soooo much from my relationship with my sisters, i want her to have the same opportunity. it doesn't help that 3 of my nct friends are now pregnant with #2 blush envy Just feels really painful inside at the mo. any thoughts from anyone?

FattipuffsandThinnifers Mon 10-Nov-08 21:31:05

I'm in a similar situation. Have 18 month old DS, and DP very reluctant to have another. Age isn't on my side either, plus we had lots of problems having a successful pregnancy so there's no guarantees of another anyway, even if DP does change his mind. I'm also from a family of 3 siblings and we're close too.

I can't bring myself to be reconciled to just having one, at the moment. I posted on this a while ago, and someone directed me to the one-child family thread - have you looked at that? It did help me a bit.

May sound crass, but in some ways I think an only boy is harder than having an only girl. I know so many women who are onlies (my mum is one) and they're all independent, confident and lovely. Whereas my big fear is that an only boy would be too cossetted (thinking of that Ronnie Corbett sitcom Sorry!). I suppose I only say this as if (hopefully only an 'if' for you) you do just have dd, you may not have the same worries about her. But I know that's not that much comfort to your feelings.

I suppose if I also don't have another I'll just try my best for DS's sake to fill his life with as many other relatives & friends as possible. Does your DD have cousins etc?

Only other thing, as some of my friends have said, is trick DP! Not very admirable, but...

Does your DP know how important this is to you? Can you have a rational pros/cons conversation with him?

FattipuffsandThinnifers Mon 10-Nov-08 21:32:19

blush Ooop just realised this was posted in the one-child family section... d'oh!

gagarin Mon 10-Nov-08 21:34:53

His views are just as important as yours - and being a parent to a new baby at 59 (shock) would be a bridge too far for many familes.

It's horrid when we can't have what we want/need when it comes to number of children but I wouldn't advocate tricking anyone!

myredcardigan Mon 10-Nov-08 21:36:14

Hi, I have more than 1 but saw your post unanswered in active cons.

You have to ask yourself if his decision is absolutely final. If it is, then you need to consider whether you can reconcile yourself to it.

On the one hand, You have a loving husband and a wonderful daughter. You may not have another but you still have a lot to be thankful for. On the other, the longing for a second child can be just as strong as for the first and it can consume you. You need to consider whether your acceptance of his decision will have implications for your relationship long term.

Consider how you will feel in 5yrs if you agree. Can you see yourself as being content, albeit a little sad at not trying? Or do you think you'll be forever longing and wishing? Only you know really.

This may sound blunt so I apologise in advance but given your age it may not happen again. Perhaps you could come to a compromise whereby you give it 1yr of trying and if nothing happens then so be it?

The other option of course is to try and change his mind altogether. But,if you did and he went along with it, would he end up resenting you?

You have lots to consider and it cannot be easy. Keep talking about it though and hopefully you can get there.

helsbelscaitie Tue 11-Nov-08 12:36:38

Oooh, i'm at it again, a little tear. Thanks for you all your responses. Wasn't thinking of tricking him... We have had rationale conversation about it, the tricky thing there is that he is the wordsmith (part of his job) and he can rationalise the objective reasons not too, whereas for me so much of the instinctual thing is a "feeling" - much more subjective, none the less valid and real for me, but trickier to rationalise.

I appreciate i have a lot to be thankful for. but i do fear (i can feel it happening already) that i will resent him for not being open to number 2, in the same way he could resent me for pushing him into it (though i suspect he won't be pushed on this one). Keep the ideas coming!

myredcardigan Tue 11-Nov-08 19:25:12

No, I really wouldn't recommend tricking him. Not at all a goodmove if you want to keep the trust in your marriage.

There are many academic, reasoned arguments as to why any given couple shouldn't have another. In the same way are there are many reasons not to procreate at all. However, becoming a parent and how often you do it really boils down to an emotional decision. Certainly for me it was.

I have to say, hand on heart that if DH had changed his mind after DC1 and resolutely decided no more then I couldn't have continued in my marriage. That sounds harsh and I love him very much but my longing to have a second baby was overwhelming, almost more so than my longing for a first. I just know that resentment would have built up and up to a level that would have torn us apart anyway.

However, that's just me. Many women, especially on this bit of the board have accepted either a partners decision or a health led one and managed to not let it fill their every waking moment. Only you can decide how you feel and how your DH's decision will affect your marriage.

Good luck and keep talking it through.

HeadFairy Tue 11-Nov-08 19:31:41

Do you actively want to persuade your dp to agree to a second child? If so, perhaps you could use the line that siblings can entertain each other eventually, so that initially it might be harder work, but eventually, and when it really counts (ie when your partner approaches his late 60s early 70s) they'll entertain each other, rather than you having to be constantly entertaining your dd.

I realise that many people on this board will disagree and say parents of only children (prob not the pc term) don't spend all their time entertaining theirs, but it's a line of argument you could take in this instance. It was the one I used, and it worked, although I mc last month, we are actively trying again. DH suddenly realised having 2 children meant he could relax on holidays a bit more, leaving them to kill entertain each other

RebeccaMulan Tue 11-Nov-08 22:18:55

helsbels - you asked for thoughts, so here's what's come to my mind whilst reading your post. You were over 40 when you had your first child (like me!) so there must have been long stretches in your life when you thought you would never be a mother. I don't know how you felt about that - sad, fine, desperate, hopeful, resigned - but if you wanted a child then you probably feel very grateful (like me!) to have one now. It would be a great shame therefore if you missed out on relishing your DD's babyhood, toddler and pre-school stage by longing for something you might never have - even if DH agrees to try for a second.

Your partner is a good deal older than the average Dad of an 18 month old and I think he's a good egg for agreeing to fatherhood at such a stage in his life. If he's got two grown up kids then he might not buy the argument that two kids will entertain each other - sometimes they do and sometimes they torment the life out of each other!

I think you should respect your DH's wishes and cherish the life you have together rather than pine for a second child that DH doesn't want, you might not be able to conceive and DD might not like!

Good luck smile

BoccaDellaVerita Wed 12-Nov-08 09:54:11

Already lots of ideas and points of view here.

All I would say - blindingly obviously - is that it always seems very hard to resolve when one partner emphatically does want another baby (however many they already have) and the other doesn't. A friend of mine was in a situation very like helsbel's and did come in the end to accept her husband's viewpoint. With another couple, they did go on to have another baby and, frankly, I have always strongly suspected that she achieved that by accidentally on purpose forgetting her contraception. I hope I'm wrong as - although in their case the child is very much loved - it sounds, generally speaking, like a recipe for a whole heap of marital trouble.

I have never been in helsbel's shoes but think that, if I were, I would make one last effort to convince my partner. If he wouldn't budge, I would then try to focus very hard on what I did have.

Some other threads here have discussed acceptance and reconciliation. It's never easy and I wish you all the best.

witchandchips Wed 12-Nov-08 10:04:01

Leaving aside your dps feelings, there is a strong possibility that you will not be able to have any more children given both your ages. Given this my advice would be to accept your dp's feeelings but talk together about the best way you could incorportate other children more regularly and frequently in your family life so that your dd got some of the benefit of siblings

Scampish Fri 12-Dec-08 10:12:08

I am in exactly the same situation, and it was interesting to read your thoughts.

The one thing that worries me is having another when he's nearly 60 is quite a big ask (I know, I've asked) My DP worry is basically dying and leaving behind me and 2 small children, not only would I be on my own but the babies would be without a Dad, which is a big thing for him, and how would it leave me financially.

I know its a horrible horrible thing to think about but sometimes we have to be practical, and I try and think of that when the broodiness is around

helsbelscaitie Sat 10-Jan-09 12:33:03

I do appreciate all your thoughts - many wise words and some new perspectives i'd not considered. I am trying to accept it but it's not easy and it is effecting our relationship, and it's also effecting my relationship with other pregnant friends - 6 currently!!! I want to be joyeous and excited for them but there is also a sadness about my own situation. I've given myself this year to sort things through in my head for me, and for us and the impact it's having. I had already used Headfairy's argument that two would entertain and look out for each other, relying less on DP as a playmate. He didn't agree but then at NY when we had 4 cousins staying he says the same back to me "it's great cus the little ones will entertain themselves"! And he doesn't recognise the contradiction!

bubblagirl Sat 10-Jan-09 12:54:31

im in same situation just have one ds 3.6 dp always said he wanted 2 and then when i broached subject when ds was around 1 he said he didnt want more

i have found this really hard to deal with but have resigned myself to the fact that if i want more i will have to leave dp is it really that important to me to break up my family

i really want ds to have a sibling but he doesnt appear to mind being an only child dp was one so has the im ok attitude i had siblings and enjoyed having them but i know no different

im enjoying giving my ds all the attention i enjoy being able to go out again when possible and have stopped feeling so down about it and obsessing about it as it was ruining us and i felt so resentful

i now enjoy what i have and i think of sleepless nights and not having the freedom i have gained it makes me think twice anyway as we genuinly have a great relationship well normal one i guess ds is very loved he gets alot of attention i get some freedom back and ive decided to plan what i want to do instead of what i cant have i cant force him wont force him as i know it will break us and i would be alone with 2 children and unhappy

im happy with how things are and will focus on this and the days i do feel down i know i have choices if i really wanted more children and it would mean leaving dp which i wont do

i hope you can resolve this but dont obsess on it be happy with what you both had and would you want dp forcing you to have baby if you didnt want more its a tough one as women are naturally well some anyway maternal but we have to focus on other things sometimes if its not agreed apon by partner

i tend to focus on ds having lots of playmates and keeping him busy and im so relieved when i get home and settled one that i dont have more to settle lol he wont be lonely

BoccaDellaVerita Sat 10-Jan-09 14:12:44

Coming to terms with having one child despite wanting more is something we often chat about in the tea room. Some of us there have one child by choice, others by force of circumstances.

Please call in at any time. We don't always discuss difficult emotional issues - we mostly witter on (well, erm, some of us do blush), scoff cake and drink vast quantities of champagne.

deste Fri 16-Jan-09 23:03:00

I am nearly the same age as your husband and although I feel half my age I think it would be difficult to have a baby full time. I dont think he is being selfish, he has probably thought about it seriously. When the child is 20 he will be 70. I was an older mum and although my DD didn't care she had friends in the same situation who were embarrassed because their parents were older.

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