When my husband, “Brian”, and I got married (well, actually before we got married) we decided that we didn’t want to have kids. Now five years later, I’m 31 and he’s 32 and I’ve changed my mind after a variety of experiences.
For example, I often see friends with their children and how much they love them. And sometimes these are couples that said they didn’t want to have kids anytime soon, or at all. Other times I will feel kind of jealous when friends get together with other friends who have kids, and they talk while their kids play together. It just looks like what a family should be.
All of these experiences have got me thinking that I want to have kids now, and it’s not only is it a possibility, it’s a certainty—I know that I want to have a kid(or kids). But every time that I’ve broached the subject with my husband, he shuts it down by saying, “We agreed before we got married that we were not going to have any children.” What really bothers me even more than the fact that he doesn’t want to discuss it is the way that he acts like he can just decide, and that’s that.
Am I stuck because of what I said before we got married? Can’t a person change her mind? I don’t want to leave my husband, but I’m feeling kind of desperate about doing something. What do you think?
Wants to be a Mom
What I think is that even if you had signed a No-Progeny-Ever- contract, you could still void the agreement if you changed or change your mind. But even that kind of intent only has force as long as both parties agree. The fact is that you changed your mind, no matter how adamant Brian is that you are not allowed to.
You say you don’t want to leave Brian, but from the desperation you convey, I sense that you aren’t willing to drop the matter in the interest of staying with him either. That being the case, you need to talk to Brian in a way that keeps him from dismissing your hopes and desires peremptorily. Ask yourself if you want to even be married to someone (children or not) who confronts complications by denying their existence, let alone their legitimacy.
You are going to have to legitimize your wishes directly and forcefully. For example, preface the subject of your wanting to have children like this: “Brian, I really don’t want us to break up over this, but what really bothers me about the whole issue of having a child is that you won’t even consider what I have to say.” Then see what he has to say. If he repeats his objection, then the rigidity he displays is even more crucial to your decision than how he feels about producing offspring.
If nothing else, you will get his attention when you let him know that the marriage is in jeopardy if you two don’t talk. Don’t back down or hedge or let him browbeat you. If you do, I think you might shock him into an awareness of how he is squashing your future, which includes him–or not.
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