I have been with my partner for 8 years. He is 40 and I am 31. He recently proposed to me. Although I said yes, we agreed to wait just a little longer to make it official to our families and friends just to be sure of our decision. When we first got together, I really thought that I wanted to have a child with him at some point in the future. However, over the past year or so I found myself questioning whether I really wanted to be a mother. Tonight, I ventured these doubts to him and he was really shocked to hear that I was still debating in my mind whether to have a child or not. I think he feels betrayed because he thought we were on the same page about this. He feels the clock is ticking and we should start trying for a baby within the next 2 years but I find it hard to accept that after taking so long to propose he expects me to meet all his demands in a short space of time. Although I didn't say I never wanted a child, he thinks that be telling him how I feel I have changed the rules of the game. As a result he no longer knows whether he still wants to marry me and we are now at breaking point. How should I handle this?
#825637 - 06/12/1307:46 AMRe: My partner isn't sure he still wants to marry me
I would take a break away from each other. You are not sure about your feelings regarding having children and this issue is definitely a deal breaker in a marriage. We'd like to think that men marry us just because they love us and that will be enough, but sadly often times that love is just not enough. Many men want to have families. It is ingrained in our species.
You are perfectly within your right to be unsure or to decide not to have children at all. I never did have kids and I am not sorry. You have to do what is best for you. Don't marry him thinking he will change his mind about it either some day. That does not work. I have been there. My marriage of 16 yrs ended because of it. It was almost 20 years that we were together. He never did change his mind to decide it was ok for him not to have kids, even though he told me he was ok with it. He lied to me and to himself. Don't put yourself through that. The longer the relationship lasts and then has to end, the harder it is to recover from.
Bottom line.....it is your life too and also your decision. If you are not sure then do not marry the man. Do not let him pressure you into doing something you will have to live with for the rest of your life. You both need to be on the same page with this. Be sure about you and your priorities before entering into the commitment of marriage.
Debbie Grejdus Spirituality Site Editor Spirituality Forum Moderator
#827398 - 06/26/1312:07 PMRe: My partner isn't sure he still wants to marry me
Debbie is so right. She has real life experience with this issue and can reveal what you have in store for you if you and your boyfriend keep holding onto false hopes of changing each other.
Either you or he will end up being very resentful if coerced into an unwanted lifestyle. Being a mother is a serious lifetime commitment that will change everything. Sometimes, those changes are positive; some are negative. Yet, he may never forgive you for denying him fatherhood. It's interesting that he waited 8 years to propose and only did after mentioning his ticking biological clock. This is what is driving him to get married. Does he only want a baby mama? He must if he is willing to break up with you over this.
If you're at a breaking point now and somehow keep going, you'll be back at that breaking point in the future...going around in circles...until one of you decides to get off the merry-go-round.
"Enter into marriage with your eyes wide-open. Afterwards, keep your eyes half-shut." ~ Benjamin Franklin
Now is the time to be ultra-picky and certain. Please don't give into something you truly do not want. It isn't fair to you, to him or to a future child. If he says he'll give up fatherhood just to be with you, take it with a grain of salt. Most men in this situation will bury unhappy feelings about this but they can fester and erupt in the future.
I know it's hard to let go of someone you love but if it is not meant to be then you are delaying meeting the one you were meant to be with.
My husband and I have been together for 36 years, 34 of them as a married couple. Neither of us was that hot to have kids. After we were married for several years, we did decide that we wanted them. Our two boys changed our lives forever. We took journeys down paths that we had never considered. All-in-all, I would not change.
That being said, Lori is right. Kids are a lifetime commitment. If you do not want them, do NOT let anybody coerce you into having them. Life is full of unexpected events. You could find yourself with a child who needs a lot of care. You might wind up raising a child as a single parent. That would not be fair for you or the child.
Find the person who you are destined to be with. Eight years is a long time. Think of all of life's lessons that you have learned over those years; then, you might decide to move on.
I have a friend who is going through a divorce right now because of this issue. She has been with her husband for 5 years, married only 3. A few weeks ago out of the blue he tells her he can't stay married to someone who doesn't want kids. When they got together, she told him this, he was ok. She is of course crushed and will not change her mind just to make him happy (he is military, she will have the kids the majority of the time if they had any). She asked him and begged him, why did you do this, why did you marry me knowing i didn't want any kids. His response was "i thought you would change your mind". Follow your heart. don't do something that you don't want to do just to make him happy.
healtheditor BellaOnline Editor Jellyfish
Joined: May 2005
Eight years is a long time to be with someone. In that amount of time, you both know certain things about one another and have accepted these things. For him to start pressuring you now after all this time, I think is unfair. He's had enough time in my opinion, to realize and accept what you want and need. I see him stating that he is unsure of getting married, I see this as an excuse for not wanting to get married for other insecurities he has. Try and talk about things more. I think that may be the only way to work things out. I don't believe him being unsure about getting married, is about the fact you don't want children.
Best Wishes From Danielle Family Health Editor BellaOnline
#829818 - 07/16/1308:28 AMRe: My partner isn't sure he still wants to marry me
I don't think the issue over here is that you don't want to have a child. The issue is that you don't want to have a child RIGHT NOW. And he wants to start trying in a couple of years. If it's his condition that he doesn't want to marry you unless you want to have a child, then it's OK. It's perfectly OK for him to want a child. And it's perfectly normal for you to not be sure. You guys can postpone the marriage until you are sure whether or not you want a child.
#831357 - 07/29/1301:55 AMRe: My partner isn't sure he still wants to marry me