Monday, 10 October 2011

His Selfishness Vs. My Dream

Photo Credit: Chicago Parent
I have always wanted a big family, so because my husband doesn't want anymore children, should I have to give up my dream? Am I selfish or is he? That's what I am faced with everyday.

I want more children, always have, always will. He has always known this about me. He knew that not having children would be a deal breaker.  He had agreed that we would have children. We never decided on how many. I just figured we would see what happened.

He's a great dad, but he doesn't want any more, and he's pretty adamant about it. I am resentful towards him over this. He thinks I am on birth control but I am not. I am hoping for an oops. I know this doesn't sound like the right way to bring a child into the world, but why should I give up my dream of a big family?

I love being a mom, being pregnant, nursing, raising my child; it has been the most amazing experience of my life.  I want my child to have siblings. Our marriage is obviously flawed.  I love him, but I am not in love with him. I love the way he loves our child, but if I could go back and do it differently I would. I would not have married him.

I know this all sounds horrible, but it's my reality. I don't have one of those marriages where my husband is my better half or my partner in crime and that I couldn't live without. I feel like we are more like roommates.

Again, I know that bringing another child into the world with him doesn't sound like the right thing to do.  But what do I do? Accept that this is my life and be ok with it; be happy with just one child and stay with my husband? Continue to hope for an oops? Leave him, start over, and hope to find someone who I am completely in love with?

I really don't know.

What I do know, is that I love being a mom and that I am pretty good at it. My husband is a great father. We made one beautiful baby, who is happy and loved beyond words. Will my husband love another child just as much? Or will he then resent me? Where do I go from here?

This is my confession. This is my life. I want more from it. How I get there I don't know. I do know that I will have more children one day. With who? Who knows...


  1. Gosh that is such a difficult one. This is just my opinion (others I am sure will differ). Firstly can I say that loving your husband but not being in love with him is so so common (I am there too). I am lucky to have 4 children and I think there is nothing stronger and more mentally time consuming than so desperately wanting a baby. I have always felt that if I went through the menopause today, would I be happy with my lot?
    From a practical point of view and looking at friends who are in this situation, it is so much easier to have children by the same father if a marriage breaks down. There are also questions about if anything should happen to you would the children be split up to different fathers?
    Again, from a very personal point of view.... I really hope your opps happens and if he is a great dad now, I am sure he will be a great dad again.... those feelings can not be turned on and off. A baby is a baby and will be loved and welcomed by all - especially by you regardless of the circumstances it is concieved.

  2. Blimey that's hard. Unfortunately the biggest part of me wants to shout NOOOOOO at you because of your relationship. I absolutely KNOW that if we'd stopped at one (and if that one had been a lot more like our second i.e. easier in almost every way) then our relationship as a couple and as a family would have been quite different. Having a second has made things so much harder, has put us through the wringer so much more, and despite an incredibly solid relationship which has come through all manner of shit life has thrown at it, we've come extremely close to giving up on each other.

    I know you're not expecting your relationship to get better in having another child, but I would urge you to think about how much worse it may get, and whether you're ok with that. It's one thing to love your husband and remain friends, but if that were to break down too under the stress of another child (especially if he's not keen on more), that could be pretty horrible.

    Only you know your husband and how things may go - everyone's different. But I too once had dreams of a big family, and nothing - except hormones and the odd weak moment - would make me go through with more now, I know the price is too high on the health and sanity of the rest of the family as a whole.

    I hope you find your answer!

  3. I think you should tell him all of that. (Maybe leave out the part that you lied to him about birth control.) But tell him how big a deal this to you. Tell him you want to stay with him (it sounds to me like this is what you want) and you want to be happy with him. Tell him it is his decision if he doesn't want more children, but let him know that the consequences of that decision. That you will still want more children. And eventually you may find that you have to make a choice between him and more children. Tell you don't want to have to make that choice, because either way you both lose.

  4. I think the only way is the honest way. A second child puts huge strain on a relationship, so you have to really go into it as a team. I wish you well with you decisions.

  5. If you don't really love this guy, regardless of him being the father, that will grow into more and more resentment over the years surely. Your child will feel that resentment, it will colour your household to your cores. I would agree that you need to be absolutely honest about it and let him choose which path he wants to take, of his own free will. Either of you feeling forced into staying for the wrong reasons will bitterly regret it. Equally maybe it's possible that you have fallen out of love because of the grass is greener syndrome.... If so maybe you need to throw on some fertiliser, water and sun to make your own patch greener... Xxx

  6. I'm in, well, not exactly the same boat, but a very similar one. I DO still love my husband, very much, and he knows HE is in charge of birth control because I don't trust myself not to accidently-on-purpose forget a pill. I too hope for an oops. More than that, I hope he'll change his mind.

    Thing is, we talk about it. He doesn't like it (I'm always the one who brings it up - every few months I burst into tears about it, usually when I'm emotional and hormonal!), we've been over it time and time again. He knows how I feel, I know how he feels, and HE is the one saying maybe we shouldn't've got married because this will never go away. And that leads to more pain for me - because I do love him and don't want to be without him.

    I also have a 4 year old son who adore babies, has loads of friends with pregnant mums or newborns, and KEEPS ASKING why he can't have a baby sister. That hurts more than anything. And I know my husband thinks I encourage it (which maybe I did a bit at first).

    I'm rambling. The thing did ask the question ... sorry, but yes, you ARE being selfish. Not for what you want, but for what you are doing. How would you feel if he had a vasectomy without telling you? And then said you could try for another kid, knowing it wouldn't happen? THAT is the equivalent of you pretending to use birth control and not. Believe me, I understand. I've been so tempted to get a pin and the condom stash... but if it worked I would have to live with the guilt of that the rest of my life - and the lie would tear our marriage apart - and I can't do that to my son.

    My advice? Talk to him. Ask him exactly WHY not. Try to change his mind. Tell him how it feels to have to stop crying in order to swallow that hated pill every single day and put HIM in charge of contraception. Chances are your man is less determined than mine (and has a higher libido!) and you will be able to persuade him in the heat of the moment to take a risk... and your dreams will come true.

    You will come to a point - and it sounds to me like you'll reach it very soon - when you know one way or the other which is more important - your desire for more children, or your marriage. If your desire IS more important, you can ask him if he will be the father of your next baby or if you have to leave. And then he will have to make that decision too - his desire not to have more, or his marriage.

    I hope I haven't been too harsh about the pretending to use birth control. I just...I know how hard this is. You are not alone. And this is your choice. But it isn't really about your dream vs his selfishness. That would be so much easier. It's your dream vs his dream. And that is why there is no one right answer.

    Good luck. I hope it all works out for you. For both of us. x

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