Why did you decide to have kids? And how did your life change afterwards?

  1. This is for parents who already have kids or who are expecting to have kids in the near future. There is already a thread titled "Not keen on having kids", which has sparked some interesting discussion. I wanted to have a place where parents could discuss the pros and cons of having children without stepping on the toes of other people.

    So my question, which may sound extremely stupid to some people it: why, and at what age did you decide to have children?

    Was it a) a societal expectation b) A personal decision c) a joint decision between you and the child's other parent or d) an accident? (Accidents do happen!!)

    AND, since you are now a parent, how has your life changed? Do you enjoy life more? less? If you had to live your life again would you have children or not?

    In my case having children was an expectation of my culture, same as going to college. So I would say having a child was a societal expectation, and the decision we made was not whether to have a child but when to have a child. My life has changed dramatically since my son was born. There have been trips I could have gone on, places I could have visited, things I could have purchased with the money I spend or save for him...There is the fear of any harm coming to him - as I read someplace else, once my son was born I learned caution because I knew I had to exist not only for myself but for him.

    Is it worthwhile to me? Yes. Why? Because I see him growing up to be a good person, and that makes it worthwhile. I would like to see him have both his parents' good qualities and be a useful member of society. (I'll do my darndest to make it happen, of course!)
     
  2. it's becoming common not to have kids in my country. parents do try to pressure couple to have kids but it's up to the couple to decide. in the past my culture view having kids as like having insurance - provide for future. the more kids one have, the more likely there will be someone to provide for them when they grow old. i have friends who do not want to have kids and i do not judge anyone whether they choose to marry anot &/or to have kids anot. personally i feel it's better not to have kids vs having kids and do not care for them.

    with my biological clock clicking every second my hubby and i decide now is the time to decide. we are currently planning to have a kid. i've gone through the have or not have phase. i do not believe having kid = insuring myself for future. in fact i think it's a high risk, costly "investment" that one can have many other option if one needs to invest. my hubby and i agree it's okay not to have kids if we are not sure although we adore children and plays with our friends' kids.

    i met up with some other older couples and ask them how do they decide to have kids, and how do they bring up good kids. deep inside me i'm very afraid of having a kid who'll turns out to be the irresponsible kind. the older couples replied in many sense there is no sure proof way to bring up good kid, we can only lead by good example and leave the rest to God.
     
  3. Thanks Merika for starting this thread :yes:

    My daughter was a wonderful surprise. I got pregnant at 25 & had her at 26. I was three months pregnant before it was confirmed. After taking 6 pregnancy tests all positive I refused to believe I was pregnant. I still didnt believe my ob/gyn when she told me. Her exact words "Let's see if we can hear the baby's heartbeat....well, there is your non existant child.":wtf:

    16 months later I still cannot believe I have a child; I'm a mother! It is still very surreal. There are people who love to remind me how I swore I was never having kids, & even though she's here, they still cant see me as a parent etc..-Oh well.

    My daughter is an absolute blessing & I'm glad she is in my life. I want her to be a LOVING, well rounded, human being. There are enough people filled with hate in this world.

    There is nothing I would do different in regards to when/if I had kids. I'm a firm believer in everything happens for a reason. Being a parent definitely isnt cake, but it's the most exciting and rewarding event in my life & as they say parenting is an investment that has the biggest returns. :heart:
     
  4. I can't remember at what age I wanted to have children, but I know that I just always felt I wanted them. My two were definitely not accidents, it was a looooooong road to bring them into this world. I am amazed at the love that I have for them. Do I miss my single life with my husband, sure I do sometimes, but the love and fun that these two little girls give me far outweigh a night out (and a hangover) anytime! They make me laugh and learn every single day! Watching them grow up is amazing and they're mine...all mine to love!!

    I did read the other thread and I certainly respect any womens decision to have or not have a baby, it's no ones business but their own, but I gotta say I was hurt by some of the comments made and the extreme to which they were made in regards to people who do have children. I for one an extremely sensitive to how my children are in public. I was raised to be courteous to others and I'll raise my children the same. I'm the first one to remove myself and the child if they are going to cause any disruption, but I'll be damned if I'm going to stay home altogether just to appease someone to whom children don't appeal to.

    lol....now tomorrow if I have to go somewhere with the kids I'm going to be paranoid someone around me is resenting me and my children for just being there.
     
  5. I've known I wanted to be a mom forever. I've always love dkids and always envisioned myself doing the whole "mommy" thing. I had my first child at 33 and am pregnant with my 2nd one who is due at the end of August, beginning of September. I also have a stepson who is 11. I would've loved to have had a biological child earlier, however my first husband was the wrong one and I knew from the start that I wasn't going to have a child with him. My second husband has many qualities that made him the kind of man that I wanted to have a kid with. We had similar childhoods, have the same values and want the same things in life. In addition we have similar philosophies regarding raising children and believe that family comes first. I know that finding him as a spouse played a huge part in the whole wanting to have kids thing.

    My daughter is 17 months now and the change in me is much more evident to my friends than it is in me. Prior to having her I went out a lot, always dressed up, and was a lot more spontaneous. Now, I've had to trade my beloved Subaru Forester for a mini van (that's what cracks my friends up the most), no longer smoke or drink, have days where my clothes are stained, have roots that show, natural nails, and wrinkles!

    Nevertheless, I wouldn't go back to my old life for antything. As naughty and exhausting as my daughter is, I truly have a sense of being now that she's here. I have a reason to leave work early, can easily give it all up to spend a day with her, and think that she's the thing that makes me look the most beautiful.

    Then again, you may want to ase me again in 3 months when I have her and another little one sucking all the energy out of me and I truly have not time to myself.
     
  6. Phew! The "not having kids because I hate them" thread reeally was getting bad - this has GOTTA be the flip side!
    My four children are the joy of my life - 2 girls, 2 boys - 11, 8, 6 and 4...
    I was raised as an only child and do appreciate my "down" time when they're in school, but the house is alive with fun and noise.
    In the other threads that say kids are a nightmare and shouldn't be allowed in public, mine are absolutely fine. They're a pleasure to be around - and frankly, probably a lot more intelligent than some of the other posters in this forum...:okay:
    (&(*&**& - that thread really pissed me off....:hrmm:
     
  7. Hmm... I don't have children yet, but they're something I have more or less expected out of my life.... schooling, job, marriage, kids...in that order.

    My ex didn't want children, and I made that mental adjustment b/c having kids was more an abstract expectation than a definite desire, whereas at the time, my ex was someone who fit my life & lifestyle. (Hoo...was I wrong about that!)

    The current SO is very vocal about having children, so a mental re-adjustment was in order. I think he's going to make an awesome father someday.... we even joke about him being the stay-at-home parent. We're both nearing the big three-oh so I remind him from time to time that I'd prefer to have the kids he wants out of college before we retire... :rolleyes:
     
  8. thought of a similar thread - probably should have opened that instead of posting in the not keen on having kids (somehow still seem to feel guilty about that... hope they didn't mind although it wasn't my job to post there)

    anyway, I always wanted a child, even when I was a kid I imagined having my own. weird, yes? still I waited until late twenties and when we discussed having a child I got really panicked - you know how it is, will I manage, oh I still wanted to do this etc etc. well it just happened and everything fell into place now. I was 28 when I had my child.

    yes life surely has changed in so many ways. for one I haven't seen my husband in a while bec we both had to do our thing and I needed parental support (haha, parental support to be a parent???) no, to get my work done anyway. the money situation will be different, your time is limited and of course your life evolves around another person (that is if you let that happen - in my case my life evolves around 3 people - son, hubby and myself ;)

    I still think though you can manage time to yourself with 1 child - I don't know about more. I can't complain, when he sleeps I have time to work/ be on tPF/ eBay whatever - fair enough my life is pretty virtual at the moment but I didn't have many friends anyhow in the last few years - my life has been geared towards family for some time and I don't mind.

    there is tons more but I have to go meet my supervisor.... laters!
     
  9. just wanted to add that maybe we could keep this thread for discussing children rather than other members' opinion on why they don't want children. the title did state to those who do not have children - so I don't understand why anyone would get upset. it is perfectly fine to feel that way, as for instance I have my own feelings about dogs (which I choose not to publicise at the moment as this thread is not about that - maybe I should start another??).

    now I personally think that children are just fine in public but what may be totally fine to me is not totally fine to everybody else, kwim? that is just the truth - I never speak of a bad or awful child, don' t like the brat, monster whatever comments bec children are who they are - sometimes it is the parents fault, sometimes it is the time of the day, the food, maybe they are sick whatever whatever... you all know what I am talking about. sometimes the people next to me are bothered by my child laughing loud (ehm excuse me if you wisper we will...) and don't understand the child wants to participate etc.

    and i will be honest: when i was in my late teens and wanted to sleep late mornings I was bothered by the neighbours kids playing in the garden. to me a playing child is not a brat but to some it can be annoying. I think we gotta respect that as long as no one comes up to my child or me complaining, or being rude to me personally. they get an earful for sure. (as it will be the other way round).

    also as parents we should be realistic that not everyone else will think of our child as this marvellous wonder. (like I said when I talk of dogs.... why does every dog owner think it is cool to have their dog running to everyone - put its nose INTO MY PUSHCHAIR TO MY BABY.... :throwup: - sorry had to let that out)
     
  10. a) a societal expectation:

    No. If anything, society expects the type of person I am to wait until they're done with college, are married, have a great job, a house, and a dog. ...Things just don't happen that way!


    b) A personal decision

    Bart and I had been trying for a little while, but since we were unsuccessful we decided to stop for a little while, get things in our life in order and then try again when we were ready.

    c) a joint decision between you and the child's other parent

    Like I said above, we were trying before - but at the time I got pregnant, we were not trying.

    d) an accident?

    Yes, but it's the best accident I've ever had :biggrin:



    There's no way that I can really compare my life now to what it was almost a year ago, before I was pregnant. My priorities are different now, and so is my whole viewpoint. I don't view things as "how is this going to benefit me" anymore...Now I wonder how it is going to benefit my family.

    I always wanted a baby. I've been very maternal for as long as I can remember - and everytime I saw a baby or a pregnant woman, I would get this longing feeling inside of me. Longing to feel like those women did, to have a little baby.. I dunno - I've always known that I wanted to be a mother. I'll agree that the timing wasn't great, but I wouldn't give my baby girl up for anything in the world. If this means that some things will be more difficult for me later, then so be it. I'll still be able to get my degree and I'll be able to work when the time comes.

    I'm not sure if I'd like to have another child though. In the back of my mind, I think yes - but...IDK. We'll see!
     
  11. I began posting in the other thread when some of the girls started degrading children, not because they are choosing to be childfree. Most of the women very respectfully stated their reason why but then you have 2-3 who are just being plain outy nasty-I feel sorry for them & especially their parents.

    I wanted to add more to my thread last night but I was tired. Right now I need to get my girl fed/bathed/dressed. We enrolled her into Gymboree Play & music today is her first day. Should be fun! Will be back later to update the rest of my thoughts.
     
  12. My two boys are true blessings in my life. In fact, I feel lucky to be their mom. They are four years old (twins). My husband and I married with the intention of having a child soon. He was 39, and I was 30 at the time. It took a few months of "trying" (or "not trying not to"), and we were both so excited when the home test was positive.

    At my first prenatal visit, the ultrsound found two! OMG, we were shocked, excited, and scared. Of course, my husband chose to view it as a confirmaiton of his prowess! hahaha

    To be frank, I had some bleeding early in my pregnancy, and we were really afraid that I would miscarry. My husband was very strong for me--to the point that I thought him insensitive. Then I discovered him sobbing in his home-office--the only time I have ever seen him cry. Just an example of how our boys became most important even before they were born.

    My delivery and post-delivery was not easy, but I would not give it back if it meant that I wouldn't have my boys. It's still not easy--going to work as a high school special ed teacher is easier. Even though they are well-behaved for their age and lots of fun, being a mom is 24/7 dedication. They remind me about what is important in life.

    Now my husband wants to try for another :rolleyes: We'll see...
     
  13. hi! this thread is really interesting to me - i don't have kids yet, but i'm really curious to hear answers to one of the OP's questions - how did your lives change after having kids? specifically, how were your careers affected, or did you decide from the outset to be stay-at-home moms?

    i always wanted a daughter - but as i go further along in my training i see how much work it is to raise a child. and if i had a daughter i would really want to be the best parent i could be - i know there's no such thing as perfect, but i don't want to be away 90% of the time. how do you guys juggle motherhood with work? do you just have to choose one or the other?
     
  14. I work from home 90% of the time - for right now, I might add. I'm in graduate school and doing my research and so I had to make a very tough choice at the beginning of my career. Do I become an experimental physicist or a theorist? I became a theorist because I loved it - I enjoy programming and I don't like being cooped up in a lab all the time.

    I never expected to stop working after I had a child. I never expected to not have children either. My mother had stressed that it was important to have one's financial independence and satisfaction in one's work. I would go crazy if I just had to stay home with nothing to challenge my mind - I'm used to being challenged.

    It's also lucky that I have a SO who is able and willing to take care of my child if necessary and who parents with equal authority (and sometimes better!) skill.
     
  15. Its really very simple and in my opinion, its mother instinct to have children!! Its the most wonderful thing ever!! truly.. With all the love i have for my sweetest dear husband.. i can live without him but i can never imagine my life without my kids