Thursday, July 13, 2006

to breed, or not to breed

that is obviously the question that i never even realized was a question until the other night.

boyfriend and i had a really, really, nice talk about whether or not we'd like to have kids together once we get married. i had just assumed that he wanted a baby. like i didn't even think that maybe he wouldn't want one. we always talk about our unborn kid and he jokes about how it had better be a boy and i torment him with the fact that it will be a girl (and then i chase him around target with girly dresses yelling, "daddy.. yook at me- don't i yook pitty?") but he isn't sold 100% on the idea. and i was surprised. not upset at all- just surprised. so we talked about the why's and why not's and we both are thinking the same types of things. who knew? communication.. it's such a brilliant concept. everyone should do it.

we talked about how comfortable our lives are now. how we aren't struggling financially and how having a baby would completely change that. how we'd go from being comfortable, to most likely, struggling. how possibly having a child means never owning anything in this god forsaken state. we discussed the fact that it is nice to not have blake every other weekend and have a life. go away for the weekend, go out, or just mentally be more free than normal. it doesn't sound like much and you might think i'm an awful mom, but i enjoy my blake-free time. (not at the moment because he's been gone for over a week and i miss him like crazy). also, how having a baby, means having a kid full time- you know, like most people do. but that alone would be an adjustment for us. i'm sure it wouldn't be a difficult transition at all, but who knows?

i brought up the fact that sometimes, just thinking about being pregnant again makes me want to throw up. losing control of your body like that, and having to struggle to lose all the weight again, and how much of a mental battle it is- just doesn't sound like fun. hell, i still haven't lost all the baby weight 8 years later. ha! but the thought of starting over and having a little baby with diapers and formula and doctor's appointments up the ass.. it has been SO long since i've had to do any of that kind of stuff that sometimes, it's honestly, not appealing in the slightest.

boyfriend talked about feeling timing pressure. like if we had a baby, it would have to be soon after the wedding. and even though i'm 6 years older than boyfriend, the pressure really isn't from me and my body. for some reason, it's not about that. it's more about blake and how he's 8 years old already. and that we'd like to give him a sibling when he could actually enjoy it. that sounds funny, but you know what i mean! boyfriend and i both have brothers and sisters who are 8 and 10 years older than we are. we're super close with them now- but growing up, there are just too many years inbetween. and it makes me sad for blake. i know he'd be an amazing older brother. and lord knows he needs someone to be his biggest fan constantly (which really means he needs someone to watch him do things, like build a puzzle or play a video game. note that i didn't say play with him, but watch him). and i understand that timing pressure, because it's not like i want blake to be 15 by the time we have a kid. it seems so pointless to have them each grow up practically without eachother. plus, if we wait that long to start having kids, they won't be out of the house before i'm practically 70! who wants that? i want a life with my husband and no kids in the house when we can actually enjoy it!! although i'm sure by then that 70 will be the new 50. but seriously, it is appealing to think that the kids would be gone and out of the house (in theory) while we're still "young" enough to totally enjoy it.

a lot of the discussion was based around money. it's not that we can't afford to have a baby, it's more that maybe we don't want to give up our comfort level for it? maybe we'd like to be able to do more fun things and travel with blake and just have a more comfortable life without all the sacrifices and restrictions. having a baby changes a lot of things. and we just aren't sure we want to change what we have and are working towards. it seems like a lot of what we'd want would be put on the back burner, or eventually never reached if we have kids.

i think boyfriend brought up a very important point during our talk- he said he wouldn't feel like he was missing out on something if we didn't have a child together.... because we have blake. i think that's key. but in all honesty, can he really be certain?

we also both agreed that wanting to have a baby with one another, isn't even a question- the want is there.. based on love, emotions and all of that good stuff. and we pointed out that the wanting for a baby together is purely emotionally based. and that's reason enough. because it's really all the reason you need. want and love. and that was pretty much the end of the why we should list. lol

we didn't find any answers that night. i'm not sure we were really searching for any. it was an interesting evening and a conversation that neither of us feel bad about having. and now i'm sharing it with you...

42 comments:

cj said...

My husband and I had a similar conversation once. I have a 15 year old stepdaughter, and there is 11 1/2 years difference between Nina and Thea, and 14 years between Nina and Grace. Both the girls were "accidents" and I thank God for them. I had never felt the "need" to get pregnant or have kids... I have a whole list of reasons why. I am happy with my life and happy the accidents happened when they did. Good for you for having the kind of relationship where you can openly and honestly talk about the realities of children and your lives.

Piece of Work said...

It's a lot to think about. I think it's great that you guys can communicate like that--it's also great that you both seem to be on the same page, regarding kids. It's when one partner wants them much more than the other that things can get sticky.

Stephanie A. said...

I'm with you on so many of those points and Hugo's still under a year old. I think you two are really going about this in a healthy manner and no matter what you choose your family will thrive because of it.

spidey said...

Sounds like you guys had an awesome conversatin. Communication is a wonderful thing that we seem to forget about all too often. I know that Jason wants a baby like yesterday, but I go back and forth on like an hourly (maybe minute-ly) basis. So I just stay off my bc pills and if it happens great, if not, maybe we will start trying harder in the future. I'm sure you both will figure this out eventually--or else have the decision made for you if you get knocked up accidentally! :)

Kristen said...

I wish my boyfriend and I would start a communication like this. Not about having more kids, because we're pretty decided on not having another, but just on everything, ya know? Ever since we had our daughter, communication has shut down, and we have no "US" time anymore. I'm taking a clue from you and your boyfriend and starting a dialogue ASAP. Thanks for the wake up!

Becky said...

thats where we are right now. we take this whole vacation thing at work as a blessing in disguise cuz we had to discuss the pros to NOT having a baby now and it totally sounded better than having one at the moment lol i'm still young and i wanna travel too! a baby DOES change everything and we're just NOW starting to get comfy financially. if we had another we'd not be comfy at all. i get your point. you guys have time and maybe you wont ever have one. but blake is amazing and he might be all you really need! and you can be comfy and travel and have fun when hes not home!

Virginia Belle said...

this was funny to me. my parents were on the same page about kids. they both wanted as many kids as possible, as soon as possible. i mean, my mom (wisely) decided to have a couple of years of just newlywed-dom, but after that, it was go, go, go!

5 kids later....

anyway, i'm older than my little sister by almost 13 years. and we are still close. the older she gets, the more we have in common, which is cool. at the rate i'm going, we'll still be able to double date when she's in college! ha!

i know my childhood wouldn't have been nearly as fun/crazy if i'd been an only child. i really had a good time hanging out w/my sibs. still do. --but that's me.

this is a VERY personal decision, ster. don't let anyone judge you. i think it's good that you guys are talking about it so well. good sign, IMHO. but remember what happened w/renee zellweger and kenny chesney! he wanted kids, she didn't--zip! that was the end of that!

so i say, make sure it is all settled before you walk down the aisle.

just more stupid advice from a girl who has no children and who has never even been engaged. *sigh*

gosh i am a know-it-all.

please tell me to shut up.

Beth said...

Claire was a suprise. I was on the pill. I always knew I wanted more than one, but not sure how many. Patrick and I wanted them about 2-3 years apart if we could help it. Obviously we could. Claire will be exactly 2.5 years older.
Now our conversations are similar. Dh says he wants to be done now. Two seems to be enough for him. I told him that I obviously could not commit to a desision yet, because we need to focus on this one for now.
I thought I'd have 3 or 4 kids. Now, 2 seems really appealing. It's the difference between camping a few hours from home for a weekend and calling it vacation, or going to visit family in Belgium and Holland for a month for vacation.
It's all about what are you all willing to sacrifice.
I am really glad to see that you are both open and honest. Perhaps you wont have to make that choice. Maybe you'll have the choice made for you either way kwim?
Great post!

Caryn said...

This was fascinating. You've hit upon many of the reasons why I'm nervous about having a child, though I think I would regret it if I never did. It sounds like you've given this a lot of thought, though, and whatever you come up with I'm sure it will be the right thing for all involved.

mothergoosemouse said...

Definitely a good topic of conversation. If I were in your position, I'd be hesitant too, for all the reasons you listed. I might also feel a bit wistful too, for those emotional reasons you listed too. But I'm one to err on the side of practicality.

Melissa said...

That is great that you had that conversation. And I love Point for saying that Blake is enough, if you never had any togeather. While it is a bit different, since there were 3 of us, but my step-dad never had any of his own. But having us was enough for him.

You know, there is nothing wrong with Blake being an only child. Plus at his age, he basically is used to it. Baby's are great, but having older kids is too.

But hey, you don't have to decided right now. Hell you could always leave it up to chance. And no, I'm not saying not being safe....I'm just saying, if it happens it happens. If not, enjoy your life that you have.

Elizabeth said...

How great that you communicate so well, and that you agree on something so important.

Chris and I never sat down and said "let's have three kids", in fact we originally didn't want any! We're lucky that we are both happy to be parents. How sweet that your boyfriend said "WE have Blake". It sounds like he already is an excellent father to Blake.

MelissaMM said...

There you go, in my head again!

Ron & I had this converstation a couple of weeks ago. As soon as I turned 31 (a few years ago), I knew Madison would be my only child because when she's 18, I'll only be 37. How cool is that! I can take that time to do things like go back to school and travel. Things I found difficult to do as a young single mom. Plus, I enjoy my Madison-free weekends too.

But I always assumed he'd want kids. It was like this mental torture for me. Until we talked about it. Once we did, lo and behold, found out he's cool with not having any. He also agrees with having the freedom to travel and not having the financial responsiblity. He'd rather just continue to enjoy being a part of Madison's life and helping me out anyway he can with her.

Go figure! This was seriously eating me up inside for the last 1.5 years of our relationship and this whole time, we were on the same page.

Plus, I think the day Madison boldly told him "I don't want my mom to have any more kids so I hope you're cool with that" and my agreeing with her may have planted the seed in his head that it wasn't going to happen. He could've turned & walked out the door then but he's still with me.

Communication, what a concept! Glad you and Boyfriend have that in your relationship. But I have to say, a little Jenn running around would be the coolest cutest thing EVER!!! I'd fly up just to babysit.

Mel said...

It sounds to me like you both have your heads on straight about the whole thing, and that when the time comes to make that ultimate decision, you communicate well enough to make it the right choice.
:) I'm not surprised in the slightest. :)

Kristin said...

You guys sound so mature and Dr. Phil-ish... I am IMPRESSED! Whatever you decide to do it is wonderful that you are both on the same page.

Jenn said...

You need to go and visit someone with a little baby and hold them and take in that baby smell and then that baby will MELT ALL OF THOSE RESPONSIBLE POINTS AND CONVERSATIONS!!! And leave you with BABY-FEVER!! LOL

LOL Just kidding. Mike and I can talk and communicate like that too....it's so good for you, and I'm so happy for you that you have that kind of relationship.

Me and my brother are 8 years apart. I do have to say that although Blake will be fine as an only child, it is easier to have at least one sibling when you get older. I wish I had more than one....but my mother had a hard time having kids...I'm lucky I have one.

I'm sure this wont be a popular comment....but as your get older
.....you need someone to commiserate with about your family
....you need someone who will always be there for you, because your friends come and go as you age
....and you need someone who will take responsibility with you when it comes to taking care of your parents.

I'm not saying YOU SHOULD DEFINITELY HAVE MORE THAT ONE!!! But you should keep in mind while discussing this, Blake as he gets older, and not just about him as a child with a sibling.

My measly $0.02 take it for what it's worth.

Nikki said...

Charles and I had this same conversation.

It is soooo great you are able to talk to hot bf and have him really listen. It's sooo great that you listen to him.

It sounds like you've already made your decision, at least for now.

Lisa said...

Its a good thing you are both having this conversation now. Very wise. And I can completely see all of your points...

Bonnie B said...

the kid talk is a touchy one. It shows a strength in your relationship that you discussed it.

Bonnie B said...

Hey, if you ever need help deciding whether you want more than one kid-- I'd be happy to send you my three for the weekend

CAT said...

I think the way you 2 talk and cover all bases is great--even if you dont end up with an answer at the end--at least you cover things and know where you stand and you can grow on it. Whether there is a baby Dot or not........you 2 sounds like either way, if that time comes, you will deal with it and be just fine!

Mommy off the Record said...

The other thing to consider when deciding on whether to have another baby is that it would be GREAT new blog fodder.

j/k

Amy said...

Communication is key to a relationship. It sounds like you guys are on the right track!

point45 said...

we talk to much.......or should i say you do!!!!!!

hehe

come home and beat me.

and read my blog

Lisa Goldstein/Kelly Kelly said...

Holy shit that is fantastic that you are being that honest with yourselves/each other!!!

My husband has a 14 y.o. son, my stepson. He and I talked a lot about all of the issues you mentioned before deciding to have our now two year old.

Though we don't regrest the decision to go forward, we do feel like enough is enough for all the reasons you mentioned.

The age difference between siblings is substantial. But hey so is the age difference between husband and self, so age appropriateness is just not in our family.

I hope the boys will be close down the line when they are like 30 and 42 or something. Know what I mean?

I know with he kind of relationship you have with each other, you will make the right choice. And have a fantastic time with whatever direction you go in.

Lisa

wendy boucher said...

Marry that guy. If you can honestly communicate so well with him, he's a keeper regardless of the baby or not issue.

Mrs. Chicky said...

That is a tough one! I don't envy you your decision. I'm going to be really non-commital and say you'll make the right decision for your family when the time comes. And if that time doesn't come, then at least you won't have to worry about losing that baby weight!

alison said...

I thought we had decided this when I was up. You and the boyfriend are going to have one baby. Dammit, YOU ARE! We decided! :) Just kidding, Jenn, but really, you are going to have one. What the hell else am I going to do with all these little girl clothes? I'm saving them up to pass on to you like you've been doing with Blake's!

H.A.Page said...

Having children is a definite stress -- economically and emotionally. The pressure for education, for trying to balance work, for time spent in the car to get everyone around (or commute if that is an issue)...

Sacrifice? The ultimate choice... to choose to become a mother. We've come a long way post-pill.

MotherPie Hatch 'Em Cheers!

sweatpantsmom said...

Sounds like you two communicate very well, which is the first step in solving any problem. I'm sure you'll make the right decision.

But if you're looking for votes, I say get knocked up already!

tAnYeTTa said...

wow! that was a deep conversation you and boyfriend had. at least you're both on the same page knowing that you will DISCUSS things before hand. that is sooooooo cool.

so when you having a baby? LOL

you know I had to go there :)

p.s. i named the new mommy jennster so i could have my own jennster with me everyday. you know cuz u so cool but, so far away ;)

i'll be back to read more of your blog. i gotta go to bed or.......................

Painter Beach Girl said...

I can see where you struggle with the decision...you want the bond but the life change is huge...now that I am a single mother, I love my time with my girls but also love the balance of having one on one time with the man I love. A baby would totally change that. And perhaps that is good too! Tradeoffs for everything!!

FFF said...

I love that he said Blake was enough! It sounds like you guys are discussing all the right things. It's so nice when you can talk honestly and figure things out together!

J's Mommy said...

first of all it's nice that you guys are sitting down to discuss this and not just rushing into something. i felt the same way about getting pregnant again. J is 3 and i feel like i've just started to get my life back again. she's not as much work as she used to be. i sleep through the night. she can do a lot of stuff "all by herself," and it's nice. however, i wanted her to have a sibling. i can't imagine not having had one. i am a twin and i have 2 brothers. my hubby has 3 brothers and a sister. we come from a big family and we want J to have that too. i waited so long because i wasn't sure i was ready emotionally. she was, and still is, a difficult child and it scared me to think i might have to go through it all over again. i don't know what happened, but i feel comfortable now. i feel like i can go to battle again and come out on top. good luck with your decision.

creative-Type Dad (Tony) said...

Impressed that you two talked about it! Usually people don't and just assume each other’s thoughts on the subject.

You both have many valid points but honestly, if I were in your situation - I would probably vote no. You have a great son there (and your now boyfriend will too). Again, that's if it were me. You two seem like great people and would make a good decision either way.

greenamp said...

I'm with Chris on this. Having a kid of my own really isn't all that important to me at all. I'd actually much rather adopt when the time comes. There are just so many kids out their with no families who need to be taken care of.

norcalgirl28 said...

Well now I don't have to bite my tongue until it bleeds when you talk about this and wonder how life will be different. You hit all the points...it will be very different. Whichever way you decide will be fine as you both are so good together and Blake is so lucky to have both of you. Besides, if you are watching a baby during a LL game, who is going to beat my kid when he needs it? Just kidding. The only other thing I will say is Jenn had a good point. The one thing that makes me sad for Drew is that he will not have anyone who remembers all of his childhood when Frank and I are gone. I don't mean to make it harder, just a thought. XOXO

carmachu said...

Lots of folks have that thoughts. One look around my house and yard, adn the amount of stuff thats for the little girl, you realize you could get x, y, or z.


But then when they come running over and jump into your arms and smoosh your face and give you kisses and hugs and say "i love you mommy" "I love you daddy"

Its all worth it. There are just some things money and confort cant buy.


We're stuggling right now about having a second one....

socialworker/frustrated mom said...

Great you have such good communication. Kids bring a lot of extra stress to a marriage, very difficult.

Softball Slut said...

Good communication. If you were to accidentally get pregnant, would ya'll be happy? Would you/he get upset? I want kids some day more than anything, but I am going to have a hard time having my own. Adoption is an option. I just commend you for talking about this before hand. You need to retalk about this in a couple of months and see if anything has changed for either of you. Maybe he changed his mind. Maybe you changed yours.

Angelika said...

I totally understand!

IF I met a man and lost my mind and got married, he'd have to be one who didn't want kids.

Evan's independent now! Diapers and colic and terrible 2s and having to go through elementary school AGAIN???

Hells No!!!!!!!!!

gina said...

Wow Ster! That all makes total sense. It would defenitly be a life change for all of ya'll. I know ya'll will figure it all out. :)