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How long to wait for children..(45 Posts)
Me (26f) and bf (27m) have been together for nearly 10 years. We live together, there's been no cheating and honestly we have grown up together.
Ever since my mum passed I have longed for a family of my own, with the person that I love. My Bf does want to have children but wants to wait longer as he wants to earn more money etc so he can provide better. Which is great that he has a good head on his shoulders but I question when is going to be enough money? That was over two years ago and during that time I have bought it up again but I know its pressuring him. I have been so incredibly patient and but it is eating me up inside. Its been 10 years, I want a family with the person I love and I want him to want it too.
How do I approach this subject again? Am I being unreasonable? How long did everyone else wait to have kids?
I got with my dh when we were 21 and I had my first child at 33. I wasn't desperate for a family though, so I was happy to wait.
My advice would be to broach the subject again with the aim of making a plan. You discussed it before and he said he wanted to wait a bit which is if fine, except it's too vague for him just to keep saying that given how much you want to start a family. He needs to factor in your feelings too and actually agree a time frame so that you have something to work with (look forward to).
I get that it's been 10 years but you're both still relatively young. I dont think some ppl appreciate just how expensive children are and what a big adjustment they are. Do you own your own place? That was important for me before having them, I wanted the stability that came with owning. Are you financially comfortable that you can live off one income whilst on ML or if you're going to be a SAHM? Is your partners job covid safe?
I think he has a valid reason, maybe leave it another year, see if you can both make saving for a DC a joint priority.
I think the younger you get together , the slower these things generally happen. Nothing wrong with wanting to be in the best possible situation before you procreate. Are you planning to marry? Is there any reason to suspect this is a commitment issue or a kids issue rather than just an issue of timings and finances?
I don’t think it is a question of time together, maybe more about your ages and you are both still young. I would be wondering about marriage at this point though, rather than children. Is that something you have talked about? It isn’t just a piece of paper.
I first met my husband end of April 2014, we became a couple 9th may 2014. We decided to start trying for a baby in July 2014, we moved in together in October 2014, I got pregnant in November 2014, we found out I was pregnant 19th December 2014. We got engaged 13th January 2015, and got married 9th April 2015. Baby was due 30th August 2015, was actually born on 5th September 2015.
So we had been together exactly 11 months the day we got married. I know it's very quick, being married and expecting a baby within less than a year of being together, but it worked for us. We had discussed marriage and both agreed it was what we wanted, but we weren't officially engaged. But we knew it was important to us to be married before the baby was born, so we made sure we were. It was perfect.
I'd just turned 21 when we met, he was 29. I was a student and he worked full time but we still made it work, and couldn't be happier.
Me and my DH have been together for 10 years (married for 2) and expecting our first DC in 2 weeks (we are 29 - DH 30 in a couple of weeks). We waited because during our 20s we have been building our careers, buying houses, going on holidays, getting married etc. DH would have wanted a DC much sooner but I did not feel comfortable until I was earning x amount of money so that I had peace of mind we had more financial security for me to go on maternity leave etc. In hind sight I'm so glad I made that decision because it's been a tough year as DH has been furloughed since March and will be on the job support scheme until April. What I'm trying to say is... don't worry about the length of time you've been together before having a DC - trying for one at the time you both feel comfortable is what's important.
Our situation was very similar to yours. We were together from age 18 so basically grew up together, had an amazing life, good jobs, nice holidays etc.
I guess the difference was that I didn't long for a family the way you do. But to answer your question, I was 33 when I fell pregnant and 34 when I had our daughter last year. We had been together nearly 16 years when she was born. I was very very lucky to fall pregnant right away.
We talked about it a lot, trying to figure out the "best time" to start a family (or whether we wanted one at all!) and we both wanted to be financially set before doing so, like your bf.
I think the key thing for you guys is to communicate. His requirement to be financially comfortable is a sensible and valid one, but I can see how the vagueness of that would be unsettling for you. Why not chat to him again and establish how much £ you'd need to have saved before thinking about a kid (I.e we need £X to cover a year of Mat leave) and think about all the factors that might be causing him stress such as paying for childcare if you still work, or being the sole/main earner if you choose not to work or go part time etc.
Once you talk through these things you might find he's mentally in a better place to start making decisions around when - causing you to feel a bit more relaxed because there's a plan.
But I do echo other posters, you're still young! I was 34 and was around the average age in my NCT group. And yes, I'm posting this at 4am with a toddler on top of me because the clocks changing f*cked me over! You've got that to look forward to one day!
How long did we wait?
I didn’t move in until we married and we discussed and agreed on a time line before marriage for when to start tcc.
However, you are not me. If I were you, I would talk to your partner again. Have you explained how much you want ttc right now? There is a difference between pressuring someone and letting someone know your feelings/ wants.
How long do you think you can wait or are you willing to wait? Another year or five or maybe even ten. Tell him your needs and how long you are willing to wait? Be prepared to not get an answer straight away as it is best to let him think.
* There is a difference between pressuring someone and letting someone know your feelings/ wants.*
Yes but the OP’s partner knows how she feels, he just isn’t ready for the grenade type impact a child will bring.
There really isn’t a compromise about having a child, you are either ready or your not.
First things first, are you wanting to get married with all the legal protections it provides before having a child?
What is your earning capacity now and how will it be impacted by having a baby? What is the maternity leave/package policy from your work place. How will you deal with your reduced earnings for the duration of the maternity leave and will you return to work full time or part time? Will you be a SAHM which is precarious at the best of times, more risky financially if unmarried.
Have you looked at the cost of childcare in your area so you are fully aware of how much this will impact your joint money?
Have you talked through who will take time off when the child is ill and how flexible are yours and your Dp's jobs and how child friendly are they?
Have you looked into and done a rough calculation as to how much all the baby equipment will cost plus the continual spending on nappies and clothing etc? As romantic and lovely babies are they come with a huge amount of financial commitment. And yes, Dh and I researched all this and had savings to cover it all before having our first baby.
Met Dh when I was 22 he was 21, married at 25, baby at 29, second baby at 32. I was lucky mine were singletons. I have 2 sets of friends who had twins!
Just so you know a nursery place where I live is about £50 per day.
What are your thoughts on marriage?
@OnTheBenchOfDoom That’s pretty cheap...
@PurpleFlower1983 I am in Yorkshire, I was giving it as real example from where I live. I know that a lot depends on location ie a city centre one would cost more and also Londoners pay a lot more. But I sometimes wonder how many people get swept away by the idea of a baby and then not factor in childcare costs, or work out finances before hand.
Thank you so much for your replies.
Our age is something that I do factor in, which is why I have tried not to pressure this. Im also understanding that his fear is being the sole earner ..and living on a budget.
One of the things we both wanted was to own our own place beforehand. We have a great deposit however in london gets us a shed. So that is something to rethink.
Regarding marriage, we do not want to get married rn.
We earn a good amount of money but more savings would indeed help. He is in IT and his job is covid safe! I work in childcare, so know how much things cost in that area including, nappies, childcare and maternity etc.
I don't have all the answers right now. But I am aware of the costs and stress of what a child may bring.
There's no compromise in this this situation which I am finding difficult. I am willing to wait, but for how long for, I dont know. Talking bout a time frame like lots of you have said is my best option!
What about having legal rights and legal protections for yourself, (your husband), and your children do you not like about marriage? Genuinely baffled by women like this.
No other unmarried setup replicates the benefits and protections marriage would give you and your children. People on here go on about life insurance plans, wills etc. but these can all be changed in a heartbeat at any time by the other person, and without your knowledge.
How is your financial situation looking? Are your incomes going to be affected by covid?
What do you want in the future re careers or mortgages etc? How is it going to work with maternity leave/parental leave? Childcare? Etc What is important for both of you? Is this more what he is thinking about rather than not wanting to have a child?
Like yourself I have been with my husband since we were 14! I've always wanted a family! We wanted to get a mortgage and get married first so we did! We were both in stable jobs. I had a good maternity package and we had savings so I could take 13 months off and with my job I could go part time it's flexible so in the future I can go back to full time or do extra shifts etc and we would need childcare max 2 days per week and that would be provided by grandparents.
We decided on our second wedding anniversary (I would have wanted it as soon as we were married but hubby wanted to wait a little) so at 27 we decided to ttc. We got our miracle baby when we were 30.
What I'm trying to say is everyone is different and everyone says there's never a right time to have a baby etc but I'm glad we thought practical things through before we ttc cxx
Have you ever discussed marriage with him? Whether you want to it not, I wouldnt be considering kids with a man who had not even brought up wanting to marry me.
I'd be worrying that maybe he was just still with me because nothing else had come along yet. Because a man who respects you would have said 'ok I hear that you want children, I think we should marry first (how do you feel about that?)'. He would have asked.
And he would be giving you a timeframe.
I would ask him 'do you actually want kids? Really think about it. Do you want kids, ever? If so then when?'.
Dont miss and hit the wall.
But as pps have said, he is still young tbf, I can see why he wouldbt want kids for a while yet. Maybe even another decade. But I don't believe it has anything to do with money.
It sounds like you're intending to become a sahm? It doesn't sound like he's that sold on the idea of being the only breadwinner. It's a heavy weight.
It's also a huge mistake to be an unmarried sahm.
OP, as others have alluded to, you're trying to run before you can walk. Before you have kids, you need a firm foundation of a committed relationship. You yourself sound like you're in this for the long haul but in your shoes I'd be concerned about your boyfriend. I've seen this so many times with friends and acquaintances who got together young. If by mid 20s, there was no proposal from the guy they are either still in the state of perpetual boyfriend/girlfriend with no marriage in sight (and the woman secretly pulling her hair out at the lack of commitment which carries on even if they have kids together), or they've broken up and both are with new partners where the subsequent relationships progress much more quickly because the guy in particular has found someone he's excited about committing to.
The blunt truth is that most men take women for granted who they've been going out with that long. You have already given them everything they want on a plate (convenient sex, emotional support, someone helping them with domestic chores and financial costs etc.) plus with the bonus of no need to progress the relationship. They like the comfort of being with someone they know well and make all the right noises so the woman doesn't leave, but often boredom has seeped in because they've been with the same person for so long and they start wondering internally if "this is it". They normally dont leave until they find another woman who excites them and they want to marry, or the woman issues an ultimatum to stop him wasting her time. Beware.
@OnTheBenchOfDoom I am in Yorkshire too, I was just adding to your comment!
Marriage has of course come up in many conversations. We have discussed that in the future we would like to, if anything him more than me. Maybe have different priorities and goals compared to others. Marriage hasn't been a priority for me because my parents were together 37 years without being married so this is why I am a 'woman like this.' @LilyWater. I do understand the legal aspect which is a great point and something to have a deeper think about.
I don't think it's unreasonable to ask him -
a) How much will you need to earn before you feel it's enough to have children?
b) How long do you think it will take to achieve that and is that realistic?
Those questions really rely on trust and honesty and I hope you have both of those things in your relationships, otherwise you could be with someone who's stalling, who'll never be ready.
It is extremely important to be ready to be a father, but that might come as a sacrifice to you too. I was fine at 26, but in my late 20s I developed pretty bad migraines - ones that would disable me for a whole day, and sometimes leaning into the next. They progressed until I was in some sort of pain every other day, and lack of sleep is a factor in them. If I had had a baby at 26, I would be none the wiser of what awaited me. I went from being one of them most headache free people I knew (having a very mild one every 2 - 3 years or so, or even less), to full blown migraines, and my parents never had them so I had no clue I'd get them. I've had scans done so I know nothing's growing up there - it was just how my body developed. You may also get other health issues you don't presently know about.
I understand your boyfriend is being sensible, but they are things you need to consider, and accept the risk if you continue with this relationship.
How much is he earning now, and would you considering yourself to be living in an expensive area compared to the rest of the U.K?
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