Talk About Marriage banner

Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Biographical information- 33 year old, married 2 years to a woman I have been with since we were both 17.

My wife has always wanted children. It's just something she has always known about herself. Being a parent is something I have always felt ambivalent about.

We put off trying to have children until we had some level of security (job & financial). With the biological clock ticking we decided that this was something we had to do now or quite possibly never be able to.

My wife is now almost 3 months pregnant. I thought that perhaps this was something I could do for her. Even if I wasn't sure parenting is what I wanted, I reasoned that I might warm to the idea.

I now worry that my good intentions will ruin our relationship. I can not see parenting as anything other then a life sentence to be responsible for someone else. I love my wife and I didn't want to loose her. Being parents is what she wants if she stays with me. In effect, I can either forgo my own feelings about having children, or loose my wife.

I decided to go with keeping the woman I have always loved, but I'm not sure how to live with my choice. I feel now that I was hugely stupid to try to give her this family with me when I am not sure I can be a parent. It's a miserable situation that makes me hate myself, my wife and our unborn.

I guess what I am wondering is, is there anyone who might have some insight into this sort of issue(s)? Men who were not at all sure about being fathers? People who had to give up one thing they love to try to keep another? I just don't know what I am doing...
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,273 Posts
I would not wish my kids on anyone, but I wouldnt sell them for all the money in the world. They require lots of love and patience, but to me it was worth every second that I spent with them. Good luck to you. I hope you change your mind when that beautiful innocent baby shows up.
Posted via Mobile Device
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,082 Posts
Your feelings will change once your child comes into the world. I used to feel just like you. Now I wish we wouldn't have waited so long.
It will be the hardest and most rewarding job you will ever have.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Thank you for your perspectives. I sincerely hope that everything will just fall into place. At the same time, I don't want to count on an unexplainable epiphany to fix things. Part of what is making it hard to feel happy or optimistic is the sense that I felt forced. I agreed to do this because I didn't want to leave my wife. While that was my free choice the alternative (trying to start a new life on my own) didn't seem like much of an option. For those of you for whom having children was not only not a first choice but not even much of a choice, how did you deal with the resentment and negative feelings?
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
3,107 Posts
For those of you for whom having children was not only not a first choice but not even much of a choice, how did you deal with the resentment and negative feelings?
You understand that it was a choice that you made. Actually, it was a long series of choices. Your wife didn't spring this on you. She always wanted children. You knew that and you chose to date her for 14 years, and then marry her and agree to have children with her. If you knew you didn't want children, you could have broken up with her at any time during the >5,000 days you dated her. Each day, for 5,000+ days, you made the choice to keep dating a woman who wanted children in the future. That's 5,000+ choices to be a parent.

If you took your wife to a gourmet restaurant, ordered wine, seven courses, and went all out, you shouldn't balk when you get the check. You knew you were going to get a bill before you walked in the door. If you wanted cheap, you should have gone somewhere else.

Sometimes, we see bait and switches on these boards. Both people have sex 3x a week before their wedding, then, after the wedding, one spouse declares that sex is icky and won't be happening anymore. That's a case for resentment. Yours isn't.

Good luck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
That is a fine point. I agree that this was not a surprise in our relationship. Perhaps resentment is a poor word choice.

I suspect that any successful long term relationship is going to be a series of compromises. I thought this was one of those that I could make to keep my wife in my life. It is now my profound fear that I have agreed to something which I can not handle.

I do not claim to have been mislead by my wife. Nor do I think there is anything wrong with her behavior. However, just as I knew she wanted children she knew that I was very uncertain. One of us was going to have to do something they did not want to. I decided it would be me.

My resentment is for the situation. I have to do this thing in order to keep my wife. I am not looking to place blame (except perhaps on myself) or whine (too much). I want this to work out. I thought perhaps someone might have had some sort of similar experience and could share that perspective.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,095 Posts
That is a fine point. I agree that this was not a surprise in our relationship. Perhaps resentment is a poor word choice.

I suspect that any successful long term relationship is going to be a series of compromises. I thought this was one of those that I could make to keep my wife in my life. It is now my profound fear that I have agreed to something which I can not handle.

I do not claim to have been mislead by my wife. Nor do I think there is anything wrong with her behavior. However, just as I knew she wanted children she knew that I was very uncertain. One of us was going to have to do something they did not want to. I decided it would be me.

My resentment is for the situation. I have to do this thing in order to keep my wife. I am not looking to place blame (except perhaps on myself) or whine (too much). I want this to work out. I thought perhaps someone might have had some sort of similar experience and could share that perspective.
You may not be aware of this, but you are pulling a bait and switch on your wife. She always wanted kids, you knew it as well. Like PHT stated, you continued to date her. Now, after marriage and pregnancy you are having second thoughts. Please don't express these things to her, they will backfire. Just go along as you have been doing before, supportive in her decision to bear children.

Sounds like you want the wife and the sex without the kids. This is like the women who are LD who knowingly snag men to marry then give up on sex after eating the wedding cake. They want the kids and the money without dealing with the man.
 
  • Like
Reactions: loving1

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Sounds like you want the wife and the sex without the kids. This is like the women who are LD who knowingly snag men to marry then give up on sex after eating the wedding cake. They want the kids and the money without dealing with the man.
With respect to this particular point, I can see why you might think this but I am not sure how accurate it is. "The sex"? If that's what I wanted this would not be the relationship for me. My wife was a HD who was become more and more LD over time. "The wife"? I'm not sure what that means.

What I want is her. She is my friend and I love her. I wanted to do this for her and to stay with her. Not mislead and trap her.

Has no one ever done something similar? Say, move around the world to be with someone (or ask someone to do that for them) only to discover that it may have been a mistake? Or alter your religious practices because that's what your partner wanted?

Perhaps the question that so worries me is this - Is it a mistake to try to change so much for love of someone else?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,095 Posts
Perhaps the question that so worries me is this - Is it a mistake to try to change so much for love of someone else?
Yes it is a mistake, why are you changing yourself for her?:scratchhead:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
723 Posts
From what I understand, many men have mental panic attacks when they realise they are going to be a father. It is a huge responsibility and if you have not had a good father role model, it can be daunting.

All I can say OP, is that you take some time to process your thoughts, do some reading, and support your wife through this time. You may find when the baby arrives you cannot imagine life without the child.

You may think you are not a 'kid' person, but it is different with your own children than other peoples. Whatever you do, don't go telling your wife you are having second thoughts. You can tell her you are scared about how you will go as a dad, tell her you are concerned about how it might affect your relationship, but not that you wish the pregnancy had not happened.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Yes it is a mistake, why are you changing yourself for her?:scratchhead:
Because I have to change to keep her, and loosing her has always felt like it would hurt too much. I am perhaps more sad and scared for that then the idea of parenting.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
2,527 Posts
I never really wanted to have kids, but my now exwife certainly did. So I went along with it.

When they were born, my whole attitude changed and for the first 14 and 10 years of their lives I was a doting father. Then we got divorced, they both stopped talking to me- for years.

To some extent we've patched things up, but if I was going to do it all over again, I'd definitely skip marriage and I'd most likely skip the whole parenting thing.

The sacrifices we make to be parents, the money, the time we give up to raise our kids.. just doesn't seem worth it.

My advice to you, if you had written this thread before she was pregnant would have been to tell her that being a father is not in your plans, and you're sorry but if this means it's over, well then good luck.

But.. she's pregnant. You are going to be a father (unless she miscarries).

So you'll have to suck it up and hope once the child is born you'll have the same attitude shift I did, and that you have a great relationship with them.

But don't have any more!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Once again, thank you all for your thoughts. Perhaps my decision was huge mistake, or perhaps I am just having normal(ish) panic over what will be a huge change. At any rate, I appreciate your advice.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,620 Posts
You've received a lot of good advice. Chances are good that you will get past this panic and when that baby arrives, you'll find you can't imagine life without him or her.

But please, please, know that not every father does feel that shift into loving the new baby once it arrives. Do give it a few months, but after that if you find that you still really don't want to be a father, suck it up and tell your wife. Talk to her and let her help you decide what to do - whether it's marriage counseling, individual therapy, divorce or some other option.

Don't spend years and years being pissed off and resentful of your wife and your child, while pretending you aren't. Don't lie to her or make her guess. Don't set her and the child up for years of impatience, indifference, or that seething resentment that's always just below the surface.

The absolute worst, cruelest, most destructive, thing you can possibly ever do is stay when you hate being there. Eventually they both will be able to tell.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 3Xnocharm

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
9,736 Posts
You've received a lot of good advice. Chances are good that you will get past this panic and when that baby arrives, you'll find you can't imagine life without him or her.

But please, please, know that not every father does feel that shift into loving the new baby once it arrives. Do give it a few months, but after that if you find that you still really don't want to be a father, suck it up and tell your wife. Talk to her and let her help you decide what to do - whether it's marriage counseling, individual therapy, divorce or some other option.

Don't spend years and years being pissed off and resentful of your wife and your child, while pretending you aren't. Don't lie to her or make her guess. Don't set her and the child up for years of impatience, indifference, or that seething resentment that's always just below the surface.

The absolute worst, cruelest, most destructive, thing you can possibly ever do is stay when you hate being there. Eventually they both will be able to tell.
This is excellent advice. You really need to heed this one.

You have known all along that your wife wanted children. You chose to be with her anyway. If you didnt want this, then you should have spoken up before causing this lifelong, life changing event. But, I think once your child is born, you are going to be very surprised at yourself at how much you love and want to protect that little person. There is nothing like it.
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top