I met my boyfriend 1 year ago. He is 40 and I am 30. He told me about 3 months into the relationship that he does not want to have any children. I am confused because I am not sure if I want to have any. I know that my current circumstances will not suit a child at all and to be honest, when I see how much work goes into looking after them. It is very off putting.
I have done some inner searching to see which voice is louder. My boyfriends voice saying he doesn’t ever want any or my own which never really knew, just went with the flow of life.My mother these days though has being putting some pressure on me. Asking when I will marry and have children. When I got sick of her pestering, I told her I am not sure if I want any. She was stunned by this and I can tell that she is heart broken. She says I will regret it and to not let anyone put pressure on me. Now I am very very down and upset because I know my mother is heart broken and I am so confused about everything because I have a fear I will regret something. I love my boyfriend and my mother loves him too, she thinks he is perfect for me but she was surprised he did not want children. My mother is good at reading people and I am afraid now she will say even though he is a good person he is not for you. In my previous relationship she was right. The guy wasn’t right for me at all. He treated me badly though. I don’t know what to do. I am so confused. I don’t know if my mam is right or I am right. I am afraid he isn’t for me but also he is for me because he makes me so happy and I have never felt so lucky. I have no clue if I want children. I have no desire right now to have them so I believe it would be wrong to put pressure on myself. Please any advice would be a great help.
View related questions: heartbroken, no desire, want children
|<– Rate this Question|
Reply to this Question
Fancy yourself as an agony aunt? Add your answer to this question!
A female reader, CindyCares + ♥, writes (8 November 2018):
I don’t think you would make a baby just to please your mom and make her happy, right ? ( At least I hope you wouldn’t ). That would be going well above and beyond the call of duty in the department of being a good, caring daughter. Having , or not having, a child will influence and impact your life 10, or 100 , times more than your mother’s life, so while it’s a pity that you cannot please her in everything… your mom’s opinion is something you should not take into account at all in reference to this particular issue. Mothers can’t always get what they want ( they try hard, some times 🙂 – and they know it well , even when they pretend they don’t. If you decide that you won’t have a child, so your mother won’t have a grandkid- she’ll get over it, I promise you. She may be disappointed for a while, but she won’t be ” heartbroken ” forever. Not if she is a ” regular ” mother ( see, I am not even saying a good one , just regular ); she will want you to be happy, or as close to happy as humanly possible- even if YOUR definition of happiness is different from hers and does not include having and raising kids.The problem is another, IMO- you should try and decide what you really want. You don’t want a child now- but can you conceive ( pun not intended ) that you might possibly change your mind in the next future ? Unluckily, now it’s already time to decide : if it’s no kids for now, or no kids forever. If you have doubts, and you think that you might want kids at some point, and are afraid you’ d be” missing out ” not having them- alas your partner is not the right one for you. You’d end up resenting him, irrationally if you want, for having deprived you of a big thing.Note that I have friends who are childless by choice, and they live happy , fulfilled lives. As for that, I also have friends who desperately wanted children and could not have them, and, guess what, they TOO live happy, fulfilled lives, they focused their energy on , and get gratification from, other stuff . So, it’s not as if there’s no life without maternity- a mother is one of the things that , hopefully, you can be in your life, not THE thing which defines and validates all your existence- Yet, this is a very personal, intimate, sensitive decision, and one you have to take on your own, looking deep into yourself, and being true to yourself.This is a decision YOU have to be fine with. Not your mother. Not this guy, or the next.So start listening to those inner voices and try to sort them out. You are young, sure, but it is certainly not too early to choose which way you will shape your future.
|<– Rate this answer|
A female reader, YouWish + ♥, writes (8 November 2018):
The real issue is whether YOU want children in your life. Forget about your mom for a moment, and think about what you want your future to be. If you have even the slightest desire for children, then you should leave your boyfriend, who is NOT going to change his mind about the subject. Too many women suppress their desire for kids in hopes that a guy they’re with will change his mind once he marries her or gets older. No way. He is 40, which means he’s had plenty of time to think about this. If you stay with him, you will NEVER have children.Can YOU live with this? Wanting or not wanting children isn’t the measure of a man, so your mom would be wrong if you decided you never wanted children either and so stayed with him. You don’t owe grandchildren to your mother. However, if you do want kids in the future, then this is an absolute and complete dealbreaker, and you should end things sooner rather than later. Never suppress your wishes for a guy who says he wants no children in hopes that he’ll change his mind.
|<– Rate this answer|
A female reader, MissKin + ♥, writes (8 November 2018):
Forget about what your mother wants. She doesn’t have to raise any children you have, YOU do. Yes she will feel sad but you are not here to have children for her benefit.I would try to think about this outside of your relationship. If you weren’t with someone who didn’t want children how would you feel about children? have u ever wanted them? Are u feeling like you don’t want them because you dont want to ruin this relationship? You need to figure it out somewhat soon because it could be a lot of wasted time and heart ache for both of you if things change further down the line and you want different things.Do you have any friends with children? Young ones especially. If you can spend time around other people’s children you will have a better idea of if you yearn to have them. Try to think about your old age life with and without children and grandchildren. It’s 100% okay not to have children and not to want them. People act like its a definite certainty you’ll regret it but I know quite a few middle aged people who spoil nieces, nephews and friend’s children and that is enough child interaction for them and they love their life. Children are not for everyone. No one can really tell you if you want them or not, but I think you need to try and work it out sooner rather than later instead of just going with the flow this time 🙂 Goodluck!
|<– Rate this answer|
A male reader, Code Warrior + ♥, writes (8 November 2018):
While it’s a shame that your mother is heartbroken, and she certainly has the right to feel that way, at the same time, she has no right to expect you to live your life according to her vision. You have to live your life according to yours. That being said, female fertility has a shelf life, so nature will eventually make the decision for you and your mother is right to warn you of the consequences of the decision to have no children.Raising children is the most difficult thing a person can do. It can also be the most rewarding and meaningful thing a person can do. Nothing else even comes close. However, raising children is a young person’s game because it’s exhausting, time consuming, and it curtails your freedom.Typically, as a person ages, they become less tolerant of childish behavior and restrictions on their time. I can tell you that my wife and I are extremely intolerant of poorly behaved children and we really like our free time. We’re much more intolerant now than we were when we were young. Most of that is the result of being so strict with our children’s behavior. It’s not that our kids didn’t act out just like everyone else’s kids, they did, we just acted immediately to remove them from the situation so as not to inflict their behavior on others. Consequently, our children learned that we weren’t going to tolerate bad behavior, and other people who had our kids for overnight stays always gave us glowing reports about how well behaved and respectful our children were. However, even with all of our experience, we wouldn’t even entertain raising children at our age. We paid our dues and we’re both high earners and we want to enjoy the fruits of our labors in our older age. Young children would make that exceedingly difficult. Grandchildren would be fine, as we get all the benefits of having young children, and can just give them back to their parents when they’re misbehaving. But having to deal with misbahaving children at our age would be far more difficult. Frankly, we would resent having to give up the nice vacations, travel, and freedom that we can finally afford to enjoy. We can do whatever we like without concern for how the kids will like it. It’s very liberating.So, if you wait too long, when you’ve finally reached a financial position where you can afford the nicer things in life, young children will make it exceedingly difficult to take advantage of those nicer things, and that will breed resentment. Best to raise children when you’re young.It’s easier to deal with the loss of freedom before you’ve had a chance to experience it, than it is to experience it and then have to give it up for the sake of the children. You’re already experiencing that freedom. Consequently, you’re likely to resent the restrictions that children will place on that freedom. Also, it’s easier to deal with those restrictions when all of your friends are in the same situation than it is when your friends are in different situations.Lastly, I know my children will be there for me in my old age when I’m too feeble to be doing much. At least I have comfort knowing that they’re only a phone call away when I’m feeling lonely – especially after my friends have started passing away.I know I’ve rambled, and I’ve written more of a stream of consciousness than advice, but, hopefully, there are some bits that will help you gain more perspective.
|<– Rate this answer|
A female reader, Youcannotbeserious + ♥, writes (8 November 2018):
My advice would be, as you are now 30 and not a child, you need to start deciding what YOU want in life and stop feeling you have to keep your mother happy. As someone who chose not to have children (and who “disappointed” my mother in that way), I know I made the right decision for ME and I also know my mother eventually got over her disappointment and accepted my decision. Your mother will not be the one looking after and responsible for any children you have. YOU and your partner will. It is not your mother’s call to decide whether you should have children. This decision is down to you and your partner alone. Your mother can feel any way she chooses but it is not her place to make life changing decision for you.Your relationship is still in fairly early stages. You are still young enough to start over again and look for a new partner if you decide further down the line you would actually like to have children. Remember there is no guarantee you will find someone who wants to have children or that you can even have children yourself. Your partner cares for you and makes you happy. He has been honest about his choice not to have children. It doesn’t sound like you were too upset by this until your mother waded in with her sense of entitlement to have grandchildren. Think this through for YOU, not for your mother. Make your decision on what is right for YOU, not for your mother. Your mother has had her child/children. That was HER choice. Whether YOU have any is YOUR choice. In the meantime, make sure you use effective contraception otherwise you could end up raising a child alone.
|<– Rate this answer|
A male reader, anonymous, writes (8 November 2018):
I think before you worry you head on this you should be thinking of getting married first. Maybe he doesn’t want to get married either.
|<– Rate this answer|