ratdog

Relationship Advice

30 posts in this topic

I had a wonderful partner I'd been living with for 15 years, and I loved her dearly.

However, I also knew that she was desperate to have children. It's what she'd wanted since she was a young girl, and had planned names, schools, house, the whole deal.

She would have made a fantastic mum, but I'd been resisting it because I was convinced and afraid that I'd make a really crap father who would have likely just managed to parent f*-up kids.

After going through a difficult period, partly because of it, I decided that it was unacceptably selfish of me to continue the relationship while not agreeing to her desire for a family, and ended it with her best interest in mind.

It was a horrible decision to make, which I handled really badly and which hurt both of us very much. Understandably, she never forgave me, and I never forgave myself for the way I did it and the pain I caused her.

She eventually found someone else and people tell me she is now happy, but she never had kids.

I never found anyone else (she was the one) and these days my biggest regret is not having kids.

It never occurred to me at the time, that the decision was not mine to make, and looking back it's obvious now that it was just as selfish of me to deny her the opportunity to know my thoughts, feelings and fears, and make her own choice or perhaps even change my position.

I guess the thing I perhaps learnt the hard way is that you don't make decisions like this based on what you think is in someone else's best interest, but can only do it via honest conversation where both parties have the opportunity to understand the other's thoughts & feelings, and then make their own choices, which the other needs to accept and trust, because that's what relationships are about.

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8 hours ago, XCOM! said:

I had a wonderful partner I'd been living with for 15 years, and I loved her dearly.

However, I also knew that she was desperate to have children. It's what she'd wanted since she was a young girl, and had planned names, schools, house, the whole deal.

She would have made a fantastic mum, but I'd been resisting it because I was convinced and afraid that I'd make a really crap father who would have likely just managed to parent f*-up kids.

After going through a difficult period, partly because of it, I decided that it was unacceptably selfish of me to continue the relationship while not agreeing to her desire for a family, and ended it with her best interest in mind.

It was a horrible decision to make, which I handled really badly and which hurt both of us very much. Understandably, she never forgave me, and I never forgave myself for the way I did it and the pain I caused her.

She eventually found someone else and people tell me she is now happy, but she never had kids.

I never found anyone else (she was the one) and these days my biggest regret is not having kids.

It never occurred to me at the time, that the decision was not mine to make, and looking back it's obvious now that it was just as selfish of me to deny her the opportunity to know my thoughts, feelings and fears, and make her own choice or perhaps even change my position.

I guess the thing I perhaps learnt the hard way is that you don't make decisions like this based on what you think is in someone else's best interest, but can only do it via honest conversation where both parties have the opportunity to understand the other's thoughts & feelings, and then make their own choices, which the other needs to accept and trust, because that's what relationships are about.

Hi XCom,

Sorry to read about the regrets you've had.  But why have you not allowed to get yourself to get back on the horse (I'm reading between the lines that's your angle)?  Are you punishing yourself unnecessarily?

Cheers

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10 hours ago, GSP said:

Hi XCom,

Sorry to read about the regrets you've had.  But why have you not allowed to get yourself to get back on the horse (I'm reading between the lines that's your angle)?  Are you punishing yourself unnecessarily?

Cheers

Sorry, that wasn't intended to be about my regrets, and for the record, I've tried 'to get back on the horse' a few times over the years, but it's never worked out - so perhaps I'm just really shit at relationships, and my input should be ignored.

But FWIW, it was simply intended to be about how totally wrong I got it, in believing that I could make such a decision alone, and thinking that I wouldn't be able to trust her choice.

It turns out that she was able to be happy without kids (I'm not saying that she chose or prefers it) whereas I now wish I had kids - both the opposite of how I saw it at the time.

If I'd been more of a partner in a relationship, given her the opportunity she deserved, and trusted her as I should have, rather than making a unilateral decision to justify my own selfishness, things might have worked out very differently.

Of course I have no idea what might have been, she might have told me to f* off, it might have been all days of wine & roses, or it might have just been a disaster of a different type, but the point is that I wouldn't be left wondering 'what if', and recalling her words (while very angry with me) of how I'd end up a lonely old man.

 

Edited by XCOM!
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On 4/14/2017 at 2:58 PM, The Customer said:

Never assume you understand how a woman feels about having children. The maternal instincts of a woman are immeasurable compared to how a man feels. In 10 years time if you are still together, the love you have for each other will be very different to what you are experiencing at this present moment - you are still in the honeymoon phase. At 45, there's a very good chance the woman will be asking herself why she let the chance to have a child slip away. Once it's gone for her, it's gone. Don't deny her just because it all feels too inconvenient right now for you.

Rattie, I first saw this thread last night and had to let the news sink in, before responding. A relationship / family breakup is pain you wouldn't wish upon your worst enemy. Then glad to hear you're (or were) settling into a good one again.

My $0.02. TC is on the mark here. My experience since my marriage break up (crikey, over 20 years ago now). Three times I've encountered the biological clock. It's strongest at around 39-41. You will have this conversation again, and maybe again, and maybe again... as has been said by previous respondents. Rather than spilling the beans on here (read: too knackered to type it out)  If you want a chat give me a call.

iFoz

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On 4/15/2017 at 8:35 AM, Cranky said:

This is very very very likely

The last relationship I had before my current wife was with a girl that wanted kids so badly, she asked me after the break up that if she found no one by 30 would I be the donor so she could be the mother.  (I didn't agree to that one)  She ended up marrying her next partner, she would be about 12 years married now and no kids and from what I can gather this was their decision.  While she wanted kids, they never were going to fit in with her preferred way of life.  I'm guessing that shortly after our break up seeing her sister have kids really showed the non-romanticised version of kids and was enough to make her change her mind

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