Children..Is it a true deal breaker ladies?

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anonymous user
Registered: 12-31-1969
Children..Is it a true deal breaker ladies?
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Mon, 07-30-2012 - 8:59am

Just wanted to ask if it is a true deal breaker if one partner does not want children. I have alot of 30yr old single female friends that claim if they were with the 'one' and he decided he did not want kids they would leave the relatiohnship.

Now I do have a child and since my divorce dated a special person and now have lost someone I loved deeply because she wanted a child someday and I did not. It was literally the only thing we could not see eye to eye on.....For me it was hard to start down that road of baby time and diapers again after already doing it once. Plus I am fearful of blended families etc... Not an easy break up and still question my decsision. Deep down I would be doing it for her and I know that is not fair and love her enough to let her go and find what she is looking for. We both agreed we had found the 'one'

So I guess I get stuck on the idea that you should put your relationship first(to be the best you can for your children), you will be with this person to the end after the kids leave home but in essence the relationship ended over a baby that is not even born...... So to me she was loving something more than me that doesnt even exsist.... what would happen when we actually had the baby, would I not be chop liver :smileyhappy: I wonder if she would have said we were more important and needed to work it out if It would have motivated me to share that experience with her someday.... I do love being a father and cherish every minute. Selfish to already have one and not let someone I love experience it as well...... So tricky....

 

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2008
Mon, 07-30-2012 - 9:19am

It is indeed a tricky situation as you already have a child.  There are women, myself including, have zero interest in having children.  The problem is those who want to be child-free probably do not want to be with a man with a child.  (I mean, if I don't want a child of my own, why would I want to deal with somebody else's child)?  Those who want children probably want one of their own as well.

The question is are you against having another child or just against going through the diaper-changing-sleep-deprived-feeding-and-toilet-training part?  Because there are many women in the same situation as yours, divorced/single with an older child/children.

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-29-2002

It's not that she was putting an unborn child before you.  It's that she wants a certain life that includes children of her own.  If you are not wanting that same lifestyle with her, then it is fair for her to move on to find someone who does.  A relationship is more than just how you feel about someone, its about building an ideal life together.

I totally get what you are saying, you don't want to alter what you currently have going for you.  And you shouldn't, unless you WANT to, or prefer something different.

I most definitely would not make such an extreme compromise, with the risk that in the end I would find myself in the same situation, but with 2 different exes.

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Community Leader
Registered: 01-03-2004
Mon, 07-30-2012 - 12:41pm

Hi,

This is where shared VALUES are more important than shared interests. Shared values are those things that cement a relationship: religion, money, family, etc. You can both like the same movies but come apart over where you spend the holidays or whether you take her religion or she takes yours. Having a family, or not, is an important value you must share to be successful. There's no "faking" wanting to be a parent.

As painful as it is to breakup it is far better you didn't "go along to get along" when your heart wasn't really into being a Daddy again. It would be far more selfish and painful to agree to father a child you didn't want and then have those true feelings show themselves afterward.

For some people having a child together "seals the deal" and shows them and the world that this is it. For others, as you honestly state, they didn't want to go back down the diaper road again. Selfish? Yes. Honest? Yes. As I said, better for the relationship not to continue than to go on under false impressions.

In my own case,we were both young enough to have child(ren) and could have done so at the time we married. However, we recognized we did not feel a strong and enduring sense to be parents.  Now as 50somethings we are glad we did not have children. (Not that we don't like children.) It was the right choice for us. Instead we are godparents and legal guardians to a bunch of kids our friends and family. That these people would trust us with their offspring in the event of their untimely demise is a high honor (and one we hope and pray we never have to carry out!).

Good luck. Your heart will heal.

Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997
Mon, 07-30-2012 - 3:55pm

I agree with others who have said that what your now-ex wanted was a certain life that you don't want because, well, you already have the kid part of it and you don't want it any more.  You were honest, and that IS the right thing to be.

Funny that you should post this when I was just thinking over the weekend about a friend who broke up in her late 20s with a guy that she was madly in love with who didn't want children.  It felt tragic, because she loved him so much, but she knew she'd never be happy without children.  Within a year of the break-up, she reconnected with a guy from high school, got engaged 9 mos later, had her first baby 10 mos after the wedding and her second 18 mos after that.  She did the right thing by breaking up with the prior guy, because the lives they wanted were so different from each other - AND she found someone she loved just as much who wanted the same life she did.

You said, "I get stuck on the idea that you should put your relationship first," but what you really mean is that you think a relationship-ONLY should be enough.  For some people, it isn't.

People have all kinds of things that are dealbreakers.  I'm a devout Catholic married to an agnostic - for some people, that would have been a dealbreaker, but we've found respectful ways to work with it.  No amount of respect, however, can reconcile wanting a family with not wanting a family - there IS no compromise. You want things that are completely opposite and mutually exclusive.

I'm actually kind of surprised that anyone who says they cherish every minute of being a father would be so against having children with someone else that he would give her up rather than go through diapers again.  I mean, diapers are not what children are about.  Loving, exhausting relationships are what having a family is about.  (In case you couldn't tell, I am one of those people for whom "no kids" would be a dealbreaker - lucky for me, my husband feels the same.  Hence, three kids.)

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-22-2007
Mon, 07-30-2012 - 7:44pm

Morissey, you've received some great feedback and I agree with what has been written.

Now, in my own words: When we find a life partner, we're actually looking at the whole package.  The partner him/herself - while they are a very large part of that package - they are not 100% of the package.    We also have to consider our plans and goals and whether or not our partner will be a good fit.   

While you may view a potential baby as something which doesn't even exist, to the person who wants it - it's very real.   What makes it real is plan which this baby is part of.   The plan is real and we must make choices to ensure the plan comes to fruitition.   

Lastly, I agree that finding a woman who doesn't want kids of her own but will accept yours is a long shot.   Though time will be on your side.  As women enter their 40's, having their own biologial children becomes less of an option.   Perhaps you just have to wait till the women you meet are getting too old to consider kids of their own.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-22-2007

I don't believe the desire to have children is vastly different between men and women.  There are women who don't want kids and men who really want to be a father.    One of the main reasons my husband left the girl he was dating before me because she didn't want kids and he did.  

While you could see yourself spending the rest of your life with this woman, it's important to remember that you can only invisage it on your terms.   It's clear that you cannot imagine spending the rest of your life with her if she is to realise her goal of a family.

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-29-2002

I don't think your choices are selfish in any way.  You have found a way to make an often difficult situation work, and you value your son enough to know that you are not comfortable comprising a good situation for him.  That is genuine.

I will admit, I don't have much experience dating, I married young.  And it has been a long time since the last time I was on a date.  BUT, my DH does have several friends who have found great partners via second marriages, and most of them do not have kids with their second wives, only with their exes.  There seems to be something that works for them.  So, it is possible. 

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Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997
Mon, 07-30-2012 - 9:03pm

Maybe you ought to think some more about what makes a blended familiy.  Your experience as a child was negative, but your own childhood is not a blueprint for the rest of your life.

DH & I are both influenced by our upbringing, but that doesn't mean we do exactly what our parents did.  For starters, we'd both be alcoholics.  Loving alcoholics, but alcoholics nonetheless.  Our kids, like our nieces and nephews, have been raised to see themselves as integral parts of a family unit, in which no one person is more or less important than anyone else.  Parents make the rules, but one person's wants don't trump anyone else's.  Everything has to be good for the individual AND the family.  Needless to say, being an alcoholic is not part of that picture.  That's just one example of "how you are raised does not equal how you have to raise your children."

My sister's ex-husband already had a 16yo daughter when she married him.  She and he had two children before they divorced.  Her ex remarried and had yet another child (30 years younger than his first).  She made sure her children kept close with his children, and in fact her ex and his third wife named her guardian of their child if they died because they knew they could count on her to keep her and her half brothers together.  Complicated, and a lot of work, and a lot of humility, but everyone managed it. 

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Mon, 07-30-2012 - 9:54pm

I just don't see that your scenario of if you have a baby w/ your GF that you will lose time w/ your son or that he will suffer -- you were in therapy, you said, but I think you should go back because there is something that is missing there.  Your mother made the decision to choose her new DH & child over you--therefore, you could make the decision not to do that.  It's like families who have multiple children.  Just because they have 3 or 6 children doesn't mean they have less love for the older kids.  It's really possible to have a successful blended family if you work at it.  But it's also ok if you decide you don't want to do that.  When I married my 2nd DH we were older anyway (40s) so it wasn't much of a consideration but I had 2 kids & he had 1 from the 1st marriages, so we agreed that we didn't want more kids.  I think it would be unlikely that a woman who doesn't want kids would also want to be a stepmother or would be a good one.