It seems that as soon as M and I got married, we were instantly bombarded with questions about when we were going to have children. Some people do it just to harass us, while others are just being nosey. No matter what their intentions in asking, it has really started getting to the point where it is annoying, and extremely predictable. I’m sure many of you out there can relate. Why do people automatically assume that babies are the next thing on the mind after getting married?
Before getting married, M and I had discussed our plans for a family in the future. I highly recommend this to anyone on the road to marriage so your partner clearly knows your feelings on the issue. M has always known that I would be just fine not having any children. I am very happy with it just being M and I. However, he has always loved the thought of having a family someday. Though it seems like we were on polar opposites on the issue, we decided to get married anyways, after all, my views could someday change as my “biological clock” kept ticking.
M and I have now been married almost two years, and the topic of children has come up several times during our marriage. Though I have warmed up to the thought of having kids with M, I still don’t want it to be anytime in the near future. After all, I just graduated from college and still feel too young to be having kids. M is a few years older than I, and he has brought up the fact that he doesn’t want to be really old when our kid/s would finally graduate from high school.
So here is my dilemma. Do we start a family sooner than later and be able to enjoy a younger retirement, or do we wait and enjoy our youth and freedom together? I find myself asking, “When is the right time to have a baby?” I personally feel like I am not ready to give up the freedom I have now and be tied down to caring for a baby. I want to have more time for M and I to be alone and enjoy being newlyweds. I know that sounds completely selfish, but I am just being as completely honest as possible. I don’t want to lie to myself and M and say that I am ready when I am not. I believe that would just cause problems in our relationship, and the experience of raising children wouldn’t be appreciated. Another thing I have felt guilty about is that I have never been a “baby person.” Some women just go crazy over babies, but I definitely do not. In fact, sometimes other people’s babies gross me out, just to be completely honest. Am I the only one like this? I feel horrible about it, but it’s the truth. Because I feel this way about other people’s children, I am afraid that I might despise of regret having my own child. In this way, I feel totally unprepared and incapable of caring for a baby.
On the other hand, parts of me like the thought of having a baby with M. For example, I know he would be a great father. He is incredibly good with kids, and he has such a gentle way with them. I have visions of him playing catch in the backyard with our son, or holding our daughter in his lap, reading her a book. I know he would be the best dad ever. But then it makes me doubt my ability to be a good mom. Growing up, I was a big daddy’s girl, and I always seemed to clash with my mom. I fear that this would be the case with my kids some day.
Another thing I struggle with is the thought of bringing kids into a world that is going downhill fast. Even though I’m a Christian, it is scary to look around and see all of the horrible things going on in the world and the fact that it will only get more dangerous as the end nears. Would I really want to bring children into this world? Is it selfish to want to bring kids into the world just to fulfill a “void” in my life, or because it’s what we’re supposed to do?
I have heard it said several times that there is never the right time to have a baby, but when it happens, you make it the right time. No matter how much planning, there is never enough money, never enough time, never the right emotional or mental state to have a baby at the right time. There is no such thing as the perfect age either. The only thing I can rely on is that God has a plan and if and when it is supposed to be, it will. The few core things that I need present in my life to consider having a baby are a part of my life. First of all, I am married. I wouldn’t have a baby out of wedlock. Secondly, I have the support of my husband, who respects me and my decisions, and is a great partner. I can trust him to be a good father as well. I would never bring children into the world if I had problems with my mate. Adding children would only make it worse. Last of all, we are financially stable enough to afford a kid. Okay, I realize that you can never really “afford” a kid, but M has a great job and we own a home. All of these things are very important to me.
I realize that I have mostly written about my own thoughts on this issue and how I rationalize when the “right time” to have a baby is. However, I am hoping that in sharing my thoughts, you may think of something you have never thought of before, or you maybe even have some advice that you can share with anybody else asking the same questions. I wish you luck in finding your “right time.”