Thursday, July 10, 2008

Did he lie or just change his mind?

Dear Miss Attitude,

I am writing to in the hope that you will be able to give me some advice.

I have been married for 5 years and this July I will be 32 and my husband will be 29. We met and fell in love very quickly but our courtship was long-distance so we talked and email a lot... We talked extensively about all the major issues and we both agreed that we wanted to have children - not right away but it was certainly something we both wanted.

As time has moved on, my desire to have children has grown and grown... We have discussed when to start a family and what started out as 'I need a bit more time' from my husband has turned into 'I am not sure I ever want children'. He feels bad because he knows it is important to me. I feel betrayed that he has changed his mind and I feel bad because I know I definitely do. We have been discussing it (and then shelving the discussion) on and off for about 18 months-2 years. Our relationship has suffered because of this but we have both made efforts to improve things and at the moment, things are pretty strong.

I have considered that he is younger and perhaps he will change his mind - how long do I wait to see? Do I just decide to stay with him regardless? If I do this, will I resent him? I have suggested we see a therapist to try to talk things through since he can't seem to make sense of his feelings. He refused initially but since I raised the issue again recently, he seemed more open to it. I am not sure it will help (or at least, get me the answer I am looking for).

This seems to be a very common problem (having Googled it quickly) but there seems to be no real constructive advice or support for this.

I look forward to hearing your take on this even if it is not what I want to hear.

Dear Reader,
I've been giving your problem some serious consideration and you're right, there is no simple answer. The best advice I can give you comes from what you're already thinking. I definitely believe seeing a therapist is a step in the right direction.

It's important to figure out if your husband is simply not ready or doesn't ever want to have children. There could be reasons behind his change of heart or he may not have been completely honest to begin with. Your husband may be more frank with an impartial third party, and conversations like this are often better mediated with a licensed therapist.

I don't think you have to rush to make a decision since many women who are older than you have children every day, but I wouldn't suggest waiting much longer to have these conversations. If you know being a mother is simply something you aren't willing to give up, then you can't afford to simply hope he's going to change his mind. You have to know for sure and make an educated decision about your future.

In the end, only you can know for sure if it's worth staying with him regardless. But if you give up your dream of having children, it's a pretty good bet you will resent him.

Stylishly yours,
Miss Attitude

P.S. Don't forget if you need advice, you can e-mail me at

(Reader e-mail has been condensed and name removed for anonymity.)

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