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When You Want a Baby And Your Husband Doesn’t

When You Want a Baby And Your Husband Doesn’t

When Mark and I first met, during our nine hour first date, the subject of kids came up. A weird first date conversation, I’ll admit, but as we had both just left long term relationships, it was on both of our minds that any prospective future might involve children. In the course of our conversation, we both said that we imagined having three kids one day. Mark said he wanted two boys and a girl, with the girl in the middle. I said I’d be happy with that, of course, but I’d always imagined three boys. I grew up on episodes of Home Improvement, and I just loved the idea of being a mom with three boys.

Little did we know that only a few short months into our relationship, I’d fall pregnant, and our little imagined family would become a reality. We both hit the jackpot with our first, as it was the boy we’d both desired. Our second pregnancy was discovered just after we made a HUGE trans-Atlantic move from the UK to Florida. That child was also a boy. I was 2 for 2, but Mark said that that was fine. He was happy with two boys. In fact, he was happy with no more kids at all. At the time, overwhelmed with two small children, the idea of stopping sounded great to me. Two under two was enough to be getting on with. We took precautions to ensure that we didn’t have more.

But wouldn’t you know it? On the day of our second son’s first birthday, we had ourselves one of those WOOPS moments. And once again I was pregnant. That third pregnancy was hell. It didn’t help that when I was seven months pregnant, we moved across the country from Florida to Utah, driving our little minivan the whole way. The stress was out of this world. I was on bed rest for the rest of the time, but it didn’t stop me going into early labor again and again. We ended up inducing at 37 weeks and out popped another amazing little boy.

I had my greatest wish. Three boys. My perfectly imagined family.

In the course of that final pregnancy, I’d suffered so much that I decided that I wanted to get my tubes tied. I was adamant that it was the right decision for us. I knew that if I didn’t do it, I would get a few years down the road and talk myself into the idea of another child. I told my doctor that this is what I wanted. She agreed. But when the time came, she said that she wasn’t comfortable doing it until I was 6 weeks postpartum. I knew then that it wasn’t going to happen. I could talk myself into doing it when I was pregnant and huge and tired and swollen and miserable. But once that baby was here, I knew I was a goner. No one could talk me into ending the possibility that I could maybe one day have another child.

Mark, for his part, was frustrated. He knew without a doubt that he did not want another child. He was overwhelmed with two, and three was even more work. He knew that he loved our kids more than anything, but he loved me, too. And the idea of putting my body through another pregnancy like the three I’d already endured was not something he could bear. While he knew we could deal with another child if we had to, for him it was a worst case scenario.

For the most part, I agreed with him. I was happy to say I was done, though in my secret heart I hoped for another WOOPS moment. I knew that another pregnancy was a bad idea – for my body, for my mental health and for my relationship. But I couldn’t help it. I told myself (and tried to convince Mark) that I desperately wanted a daughter. But that wasn’t really it. Though I’d love to have a baby girl of my own, I would be just as happy with another boy. I love my boys, and my heart would be full.

Two months ago, we had our WOOPS moment. I had already finished ovulating, so it wasn’t a big deal, but somehow my period was late anyway. I found that I was extra irritable, crying at the drop of a hat and feeling pretty crazy. I convinced myself that I was pregnant. I just knew it. I told Mark all of my symptoms and told him that I’d bet money I was. But I wasn’t. Only an hour or two after I’d told him, my period came, and I felt like an idiot.

Then this month, once again we had a more major WOOPS. The WOOPS that happens smack dab in the middle of ovulation when you are at your most fertile. We knew exactly what had happened, so the next day we hopped to the pharmacy and asked for a morning after pill. I took it and knew that was that.

But once again as it got near to my time of the month, I started having overwhelming symptoms. I had a small amount of bleeding a few days before I was due. It was brown blood, the kind that has been inside for a little while. I thought of the only times I’ve EVER had that before – implantation bleeding when pregnant. I waited for more, but nothing came. The next day, once again, I had the smallest amount of blood when I wiped. The same brick color as the last one. I had been very nauseous the last couple of days. I thought I was sick. I had had some serious dizziness, which I put down to too much caffeine. I had had some insomnia. I was having trouble catching my breath even when sitting. I was bloated and irritable beyond reckoning.

In short – I was pregnant. I knew it to be true. I didn’t FEEL pregnant like I had the other times. But I just KNEW I was pregnant. I went out and bought prenatal vitamins and a double pack of pregnancy tests to confirm it. I’d already told Mark, and he’d been as upset as I thought he’d be. I even told Dexter that I had a secret, though thankfully I didn’t tell him what it was. Because even before I’d been able to take the test, I got my period – three days earlier than it was due. Heavy and painful and miserable.

And I lost it. I told Mark that I desperately wanted one more baby. I cried and I railed. I told him that I KNEW it was a bad idea, but I didn’t care. I swore that I wanted a baby more than anything. I couldn’t help it. I didn’t know why it was so important, but I couldn’t stop this desire inside of me to have one more child. I could see the pain behind his eyes. Mark has never denied me anything I’ve ever wanted. He goes out of his way to make every one of my dreams come true, no matter what. He keeps every promise to me, and he lives to make me happy. He is a wonderful husband and partner and father to our kids. But he couldn’t give me this.

He doesn’t want another child. He is done. He’s angry at himself because he’s been threatening to get a vasectomy for so long, but he hasn’t done it out of respect for me and the fact that I have struggled so much. He doesn’t understand why I am not happy with our three amazing and wonderful children. With Chester having turned two in October, he’s finally starting to feel like we’re getting our lives back. Our older two are potty-trained and sleeping in their own beds instead of between us. They are in school Chester is a very independent kid who is learning and growing every day, and things are so much easier than they used to be. Why would we want to add in a screaming, sleepless baby?

I don’t know why I can’t let this go. I am not in the greatest health. I feel like I’m a terrible mother a lot of the time. I’m exhausted and really rather overwhelmed with it all.

And I have THREE kids. That’s more than some people get. It’s more than I ever expected when I was told at 23 years old that I’d never be able to have kids without IVF. Why am I so greedy for more?

The truth is that I am grateful for my kids. I love them more than my own life, and I am amazed by them each and every day.

I just don’t know how to stop wanting what I can’t have.



Wednesday 30th of March 2022

Oh, and he said "I didn't know it meant that much to you". Absolute lies! He knew that since day one. I told him how badly I wanted children long before we married. This is why I feel that he's deceived me. People have a right to not want kids, but they DON'T have a right to marry under false pretenses. I love him but I would not have married him if I knew this would happen.

Now I wonder what else has he been dishonest about? I feel like we may need counseling, because it seems there is much more to this than he wants to share. His mom implied that it's the former girlfriend who is somehow standing in the way. I'm trying to see how this is possible because she is married with two kids, lives far away, and he hasn't seen her in decades.

I envy you ladies with even ONE child. I know children are a responsibility, but I've always wanted to be a mom. It hurts more than anything to be married to a man who basically lied, got my hopes up, and dashed them. I see no real future in this anymore. I'm depressed and I have no home or family to go back to. I would be homeless if we divorced, because I can't get a job anywhere. I will most likely end up alone in life the way things are.


Wednesday 30th of March 2022

Also, I grew up in a rather abusive environment, so I always hoped to have a family of my own where things could be better.

He made me believe that he wanted this too. What does a person do in this situation?


Wednesday 30th of March 2022

To some of you gals were lucky if your partners at least wanted ONE child. My husband decided all by himself that we won't have ANY at all. He doesn't even care how I feel. He won't talk about it. So every month, I have my period and realize that none of my dreams of a family or happiness will ever be possible.

He didn't have sex with me for years. Now he does constantly, but that's only because I'm almost 40 and he will only do it with a condom. When it's unprotected, he pushes me off immediately as he starts to climax (apologize for TMI). I almost hate him now. I see him as a liar, a possible cheater, somebody who manipulates and deceives people.


Wednesday 30th of March 2022

I found this because I was looking up women who want a child, but their husbands don't. I find myself in this position after 13 years of marriage. I'm 38, met him in my early twenties.

Before we married, he convinced me that he wanted children. It was apparently a way to trick me into marriage. He had no intention of ever having a real family with me at all. This whole situation has been a lie from the start. Now my eyes are open to what he wanted...a full-time sex partner (only when he wants to), a travel partner although I now have problems with traveling, and a full-time maid/assistant who does grueling work (but is still seen as hardly doing anything).

So I'm pretty much more of a girlfriend with some benefits. I don't feel like a wife although I am one. And he doesn't want me to be the mother of his children. He married me (I now believe) because he felt he could control me and make all the decisions. He says that isn't true. I'm hurt by his inability to consider my feelings, or to even talk about it.

I'm starting to resent him deeply for this. I'm starting to see him as somebody who is dishonest and has a rather weird view of things. I love him, but he has damaged my view of him in some ways. I can't divorce him because I'm unable to support myself, and I have no family or friends that care. I'm stuck in a lonely and difficult position with no advice from anyone. I'm thankful that he provides me with a place to live, food to eat, most of what I need. But his reasons for wanting to be "childfree" are selfish and manipulative.

One reason (that his mom shared with me last year!) is that an ex-girlfriend from his past may still be in the picture. He denied it when I asked him about it, but I believe he's lying. He might not want kids with me (or any other woman) because he hopes that one day she will come back to him. How utterly crazy that is! He is also the type who likes to travel, gamble, and he puts his family above our marriage in many ways. He also has a female coworker "friend" that I dislike because they are a bit too friendly. I asked him to stop having inappropriate conversations with her, and he keeps doing it. It's clear that he married me wanting sex and all the benefits of having a wife, but he wanted to live some "childfree" life this whole time (without asking how I felt).

So now my time has run out and I'm stuck in this marriage, will probably never meet anyone better who actually wants the same things in life, and things look very bad.


Tuesday 2nd of November 2021

This is my story, my husband and I has 20 years age gap. we have a 4 yo daughter. I really want to have another child but he won't touch me thinking I will get pregnant right away. at least what he heard from my OB that I could not get pregnant until my daughter turns 2 because it will be easy for me to get pregnant after our first baby. Imagine 4 years with no sex. My daughter is now 4, and I'm hoping and praying for her to have sibling, it doesn't matter if it's a boy or girl, as long it's a healthy baby. But he doesn't want no more, a straight no answer, no way, not in my lifetime, maybe on your next husband, not from me. Sometimes I would start the conversation what if I get a sperm donor? then he said we'll get a divorce first. I just feel that in unfair. just one more child that's all I ask.. :(

Katie Reed

Tuesday 9th of November 2021

I am so sorry you and your husband are not on the same page. It is so hard. My heart is with you. I will say that I have two girlfriends who both wanted more than one child, but both of their husbands refused - one for medical reasons and one for financial reasons. Both were really upset, but they have made peace with it and have found true happiness with one beautiful child. They have made very happy lives giving their attention to their individual children, and they have found other ways to fill the gap. I know the heartache of wanting just one more, but I hope you can find peace one way or another with your daughter and your husband. Sending you love and strength. <3