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well that's a load off my mind

November 14th, 2009 at 01:14 am

Lately I have been feeling the pressure to have a baby. It is not something on my mind every day, but I do more often than not get the comment 'oh, so when are you guys going to...?' when we are in large groups, whether it be friends or family.

Funnily enough, it does not occur as regularly (actually - hardly at all) in DF's group of friends - who are the group with the massive amount of babies born this year (7 at last count...). And they are all aged between 28-32.

It mostly seems to be coming from family (which is no surprise) and MY friends - who are all around the same age as me (22). Excuse me? I know that all the studies and news articles are showing that people are having children later in life, but seriously, it does not look like this from my point of view. The only woman I can think of off the top of my head who has left children til a later stage in her life is my stepmother, who had my little sister at 39 - my little sister is now 11.

With all the pressure of 'When are you guys going to give us a niece/nephew/grandchild/great-grandchild?etc etc' or as one of my friends likes to ask rather crudely: 'when are you going to pop one out?' (I don't know why, but that statement makes me want to vomit), I know I have mentioned that DF has asked me a couple of times "When ARE we going to have a baby?" He is worried about being an old dad, worried about the health side of things, worried about timing etc etc. All this has had my mind whirring quite a bit.

On one hand I'd love to have children now - as disappointed as my dad would be to hear this, I really would not have a problem in the world being a SAHM for the next 10 years or so. I know that women are pushed to strive for 'more' than this, and sometimes it feels like an expectation, like a massive weight on my shoulders. I remember mentioning this once to our old flatmate (that I wouldn't mind being a stay at home mum) and GOSH, you could SMELL his contempt in the air. I was quite shocked really. Isn't the point of equality that people can CHOOSE what they want to do?
On the other hand I have the expectation that I'm meant to do something with my life before having children. Which I'm trying not to care too much about, simply because I'm meant to. Also, our financial situation is the biggest factor in our decision on when to have kids. It's aaaallll about the money. So it's a catch 22 really: I have to get a decent paying job to make the money, but I feel tired just thinking about it. At the same time and am annoyed that I have to do one thing to achieve the other, but I don't WANT to. LOL!

Anyway, getting back to my point. So I was feeling not quite stressed out, but rather perplexed at everything surrounding this issue.

So imagine my reaction yesterday, when DF arrived home at 5pm (early for him - normally it is 6pm or later). He got home, dunped his things in the hallway, opened a beer, sat at the table and flicked through some junk mail for 15 minutes while talking about his and my day. He then tinkered on his car for 10 minutes downstairs and played with Jed. After having a shower (leaving his clothes in a pile on the floor which he will probably pick up later in the night when he brushes his teeth) he opened another beer and said "You know, I really don't think I'm ready to have kids yet. I'm too lazy in the afternoons and I can't imagine having to do anything when I get home other than what I've just done, which is sweet F-A."

And then we talked about all the other things which we weren't ready for (finances, taking time off work, house renovations, time, the fact that we still like to party occasionally). So it was not JUST laziness that was the major factor - but you get my drift. I think DF's time, the time he takes for himself, is important to him and he just realised that he wouldn't have that anymore. When he does work full time, he leaves at 6am, gets home at 6pm or later and often has to work 6 days a week. And it's not really laziness that he's worried about - he's worried about not being a proper Dad. He WANTS to be there for his kids, he WANTS to be home in the afternoon and there on the weekends.

I think the pressure of all his friends having children, as well as family pressure (which is always going to be there) and the age issue were really bearing down on him. It was one of those instances where he really just woke up and realised that now is not the best time, and that while some people aren't lucky enough to be able to plan when they start a family, if we are, we should take advantage of that fact.

So that's something neither of us have to think about for a few more years Smile

9 Responses to “well that's a load off my mind”

  1. monkeymama Says:

    Well that sounds like a good load off. All that matters is what you 2 want!

    Contempt is on both sides. It's the worst thing ever to be a working mom. It's the worst thing ever to be a SAHM. Good to learn now that you can't win! Big Grin Seriously, the mommy wars are completely out of control, and you can't win. All you can do is be true to your heart - that's what kids need!

    (I am lucky to get unwarranted opinions on both sides since I work and since my spouse stays home. Just means we get doubly insulted).

  2. frugaltexan75 Says:

    That's good that you and DF have such good communication and have come to a mutual understanding on the issue.

    I also have never understood why some people think the idea of a woman *wanting* to be a stay at home mom is so horrible. I had one person tell me they thought that stay at home moms were "lazy." Um... okay ... I don't know any that are ...I've also been told that women who want to stay at home, just don't want to work. Yah. w'ever.

  3. lizajane Says:

    I'm surprised so many people ask. I'd have to think really hard to come up with anybody that asked us that - and I can't think of anyone! Anyhow, I think your plan to PLAN for a child makes much more sense than what a lot of people do. And my opinion of the whole mommy wars is that jealousy often fuels the fire. The grass is greener for whichever side, but if they can't do the opposite of what they're doing, they seem to put down those that can.

  4. thriftorama Says:

    Uh, it's rude to bug people to have children. In a world with 6 billion people and growing, we already have plenty of people and babies running around. Plus, it's 2009-- not everyone has kids just because they have a mate. I say this as a new mom of two. No one should just do it because well, that's just what you do.

    And, no one should be bothering someone as young as you. You still have a lot of adventures to have before you are saddled-- they are a crushing responsibility and a sacrifice-- with children.

  5. M E 2 Says:

    Maybe I am old-fashioned, but I think its unGodly rude to ask any couple let alone an unmarried (although engaged) couple when they are going to have kids.

  6. whitestripe Says:

    I don't really think it is rude at all actually - the rudeness was not my point at all, it is more the pressure and expectations that bother me. I believe in open-ness with friends and family, be it money, politics, family, sex, etc etc. Nobody gets anywhere if they don't have the information they need - ignorance is NOT bliss.

    and the marriage thing - well, I'm sorry, but if you have read my blog you would understand my stance on marriage, so I won't comment on that.

  7. baselle Says:

    Hmm - maybe consider it a compliment. You are open about it, and so are they. Those that have the time to ask you are asking you; those that are spending the sleepless nights with baby or are otherwise engaged are too tired to bother Big Grin. Since you are getting mixed signals, its now very important to do what YOU want. If you have children, you're committed; your grandparents will only visit.

  8. baselle Says:

    Oh yes, I forgot to ask. How is your DF as an uncle? I think a few afternoons baby-sitting some of his friends children would tell him how he'd do as a dad.

  9. whitestripe Says:

    he's a great uncle Big Grin- we've had long and involved conversations about the type of parents we'll be - or want to be - and the principles that are important to us. i think the main thing that stands out is that he was bought up with his dad being very strict, and even though he hated it as a kid he has often said that he wouldn't be the person he is now if it weren't for his dad and the way he was bought up. the main thing he's carried from childhood is respect for your elders and the people around you, and while it's something that's kind of old fashioned now, it's what I grew up with as well and something we both think is important. it's something that i DONT see at all in any of my friends teachings to their kids - the basic things like don't interrupt someone's conversation, please and thankyou, sit at the table etc etc.
    isn't it funny, the simple things are overlooked and are often the most important? Big Grin

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