How long to wait to have children

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Lori82 Posts : 151 Registered: 3/21/08
Re: How long to wait to have children
Posted: Jan 18, 2010 7:08 PM Go to message in response to: coleapril87

Cole, it seems like we are in similar situations. I just got married 4 months ago. However, I have lived with my husband for 2.5 years now. We still plan to wait until our first anniversary to start trying for kids. I am just about to turn 28 and he is 33. I feel like we have had a lot of time to ourselves since we've lived together for a while, but there is still a trip that we'd like to take and some other things we'd like to do within the next 8 months. I feel by our first anniversary we'll be better off financially since by that time we'll be rid of most of my husbands debt. I know I would also like to lose weight too before a pregnancy.

Like one of the previous posters said, I feel that you don't have to totally give up your life when you have a kid. I see people all the time bringing their young kids on a vacation. I know it's kind of nice though to at least have a few vacations for just the two of us, though!!



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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: How long to wait to have children
Posted: Jan 18, 2010 7:32 PM Go to message in response to: Lori82

Dear Lori,

" I see people all the time bringing their young kids on a vacation."

I took my children along traveling a lot when they were younger. It's a lot of fun, but it changes the way you travel. Forget about "packing light". Forget about staying out late. Forget about a rigid sightseeing schedule. Forget about long afternoons in the Louvre.

Instead, you have the pleasure of watching children play in the park, and swapping child rearing tips with French mothers.

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agd1017 Posts : 464 Registered: 9/14/09
Re: How long to wait to have children
Posted: Jan 18, 2010 9:31 PM Go to message in response to: coleapril87

Eric and I just had this conversationon Saturday. Well it wasn't the first one we've had on the topic, but yesterday's was a big shocker. Ever since we first met, I've been the one talking about babies, and having a family together. Eric has always been the one to say, let's wait. Let's wait til we've been married a couple years.

But, on Saturday night, in the car on the way to our date night, Eric shocked the living heck out of me by saying "I think we should start trying to have a baby after the wedding." I was like, what? He said he'd been thinking about it and he wants us to start trying shortly after the wedding.

So we're talking about it. There is one big trip we both desperately want to take, and we've agreed to take that soon. It may mean putting off TTC til our first anniversary, I don't know. But at least we're talking about it and figuring it out.

It's easy to see your friends having babies and starting their families and start to want that. But it has to be what's best for you and your partner.

Amanda and Eric
10/10/10

Amanda and Eric

 

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ArtBride Posts : 4,838 Registered: 5/9/07
Re: How long to wait to have children
Posted: Jan 19, 2010 7:35 AM Go to message in response to: auntofthebride

Forget about long afternoons in the Louvre.

Urgh...my kids are going to hate me! And so will everyone else in the Louvre, for that matter...because I'll drag them through there kicking and screaming if I have to! Oh well, at least I have tons of local museums to practice on for free beforehand. If I'm going to pay for a trip to Paris for my kids to have a massive, public tantrum, I'd better get my money's worth! :)

But seriously, I intend to do plenty of traveling with my children, regardless of their ages. They need to be exposed to other cultures, belief systems, foods, etc, etc - and while its wonderful that we are such a diverse country and you can get much of that cultural exposure without leaving town, I don't think it's a replacement for actually traveling and experiencing other countries. I think it's far better to take children traveling than to let them grow up having experienced nothing...and then leave them to find their own way to Europe or Asia after college when they're broke all the time.

Incidentally, DH and I always joke that our five-year old will speak French and German, will know how to tell the difference between Ionic, Doric, and Corinthian columns, could tell you Gilbert Stuart's favorite breakfast food, could draw you a diagram of how to break down and rebuild a Corvette engine, and could discuss the finer points of pre-strike vs post-strike NHL...but won't know how to count to ten, since we never stopped talking about all the rest of that stuff.

DaisypathWedding Ticker

Vice President and Guardian of the Toilet Brush of POOP: People Offended by Offended People

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weddingcrasher Posts : 3 Registered: 1/19/10
Re: How long to wait to have children
Posted: Jan 19, 2010 10:41 AM Go to message in response to: coleapril87

I think 30 or even a few years older is a great Age for becoming parents. Certainly - getting a child quite young might be also a good thing, but a child is a decision for lifetime.

When i ever have children i don't want think that i could have missed anything because of them. If you 30 or older, you already had your "free years", you already did go to school and made a career and you had enough time to think about if you want kids or not. When you're young why not using the "twenties" to make preparations for a possible parentage?

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AmyJustin2010 Posts : 201 Registered: 1/18/10
Re: How long to wait to have children
Posted: Jan 19, 2010 12:54 PM Go to message in response to: coleapril87

We've decided to wait 4-6 years before starting to try for our first baby. We're quite young and we've both decided we want time for just "us." We want time to spend with each other and to nourish our marriage before we add babies into the mix. Once you have a child your number one priority is them, since they cannot fend for themselves, so we want to do "couple things" while we still can. If somehow a baby happened before then, we would be overjoyed and blessed, but we're not ready to stop using contraception and start actively trying.

FH's aspirations to be a career Marine had to do with the timing as well, but I'm not going to bore everyone with the military mumbo-jumbo.

Edited by: AmyJustin2010 on Jan 20, 2010 12:08 PM

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08divabride Posts : 831 Registered: 11/17/07
Re: How long to wait to have children
Posted: Jan 19, 2010 4:57 PM Go to message in response to: AmyJustin2010

I agree with AOTB and Bally. Having a baby has slowed down things but not stopped! I found out I was pregnant 1 MONTH after we got married! Not at all in the plan!

I can give you a long list of reasons to wait and not wait but the ultimate decision lies on you and your hubby.

Just to explain my situation quickly. By having a baby so soon after the wedding, we didn't have time for just us. That can be good and bad. While we never got a honeymoon (yet), now we aren't spoiled to doing things spontaneously! We don't gripe and moan about having our freedom taken away because we never had freedom to begin with! LOL

While we do have our date nights, and we go out on a whim sometimes, that's not always the case. Also, by having my baby young, my career has not taken off yet. The bad thing is it's more of a financial strain. The good thing is when my career is established, I don't have to worry about taking off for maternity leave.

Again, those are my personal circumstances, thoughts, and opinions. I do not regret Jordin for a second. My husband and I adore her and she is the light in our lives! We still have our ups and downs as a newly married couple, but at least we adjusted to marriage and parenthood all at the same time!

Good luck with your decision and make sure you and your FH are on the same page.

 Lilypie - (8e8A)

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: How long to wait to have children
Posted: Jan 20, 2010 2:17 PM Go to message in response to: ArtBride

dear AB,

Ah, but you would be one of the "good" mothers who would expose her children to art in an age-appropriate way.

"What is the first thing the painter wants you to see in this painting? What is the second thing? What do they have in common?" etc etc etc.

Museum passes and museum memberships are great. You can stay for as long as the children are engaged, well-rested and well behaved. Then you can leave when things go south, take a break, then come back later that day, the next day or the next week.

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: How long to wait to have children
Posted: Jan 20, 2010 2:19 PM Go to message in response to: 08divabride

Dear Diva,

" I do not regret Jordin for a second. My husband and I adore her"

Heck, I adore her, too, and all I've seen are the ultra-cute photos. She's darling.

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08divabride Posts : 831 Registered: 11/17/07
Re: How long to wait to have children
Posted: Jan 20, 2010 3:28 PM Go to message in response to: auntofthebride

Thanks AOTB! If you met her, you would really adore her, she is a charmer!

 Lilypie - (8e8A)

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ArtBride Posts : 4,838 Registered: 5/9/07
Re: How long to wait to have children
Posted: Jan 20, 2010 4:09 PM Go to message in response to: auntofthebride

"What is the first thing the painter wants you to see in this painting? What is the second thing? What do they have in common?" etc etc etc.

LOL, some of my college students can't answer those questions correctly...but my five-year old will sure be able to! :)

Many museums have WONDERFUL programs for children, which are a great way of introducing kids to art and culture that they wouldn't encounter in day-to-day life. Two of my close friends are museum educators and the programs they run at their museums are so cool that I almost want to have kids now so I have an excuse to go to them! Almost...but as I said earlier, the time is not right.

DaisypathWedding Ticker

Vice President and Guardian of the Toilet Brush of POOP: People Offended by Offended People

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: How long to wait to have children
Posted: Jan 20, 2010 4:41 PM Go to message in response to: ArtBride

Dear AB,

Bottom Line: Children change every aspect of how you live your life. You can still travel; you just travel differently. You can still visit art museums; you just do it differently.

And with lots less money!!! LOL!

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Mushaboo Posts : 2,165 Registered: 3/22/08
Re: How long to wait to have children
Posted: Jan 20, 2010 7:25 PM Go to message in response to: ArtBride

Art, I will take pre-strike any day of the week over the post-strike NHL. NJ still plays the trap despite all the rule changes to stop them. :-)

In an imaginary world if I were to have children. I would begin TTC at 30. My mom had my brother at 30 and me at 35. She was level headed and wonderful by this age, just more settled and ready to be a mom. I'm not concerned about preggo leave during career. I have no interest in being a woman 12-16 weeks on preggo leave, maybe 2 or 3 and DH could do the other 3 weeks.

I'm glad I'm not preggo no nor planning on it any time soon. I'm 28; DH is 31. DH and I have been together 5 years, married almost 1, and have a heck of a crazy schedule. I work days; he works 2nd shift. We never have meals together or normal family evenings. I wouldn't want to bring a child into a half-way home. In my imaginary world, DH is the one holding things up.

In my real life, I do not plan on children coming from my body. My doctor refuses to tie my tubes before 35. I would prefer using a surrogate.

wedding ticker

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ArtBride Posts : 4,838 Registered: 5/9/07
Re: How long to wait to have children
Posted: Jan 21, 2010 9:22 AM Go to message in response to: Mushaboo

And with lots less money!!! LOL!

Gah! Getting married already did that to me! How I can now be living on two incomes (and a promotion on my part) rather than one and somehow have LESS MONEY than I used to is totally beyond me...yet somehow it works out that way.

Art, I will take pre-strike any day of the week over the post-strike NHL. NJ still plays the trap despite all the rule changes to stop them. :-)

I totally agree. I HATE the new NHL!

Incidentally, I always find these conversations fascinating - people's different ideas and opinions are so interesting. I especially find it funny that some people view 30 is 'old' to have kids and others view it as young. My own opinion depends on my age. Five years ago, I probably would have told you that I wanted kids before 30, since people who were 30 seemed so old and wise. HA! Now that I'm mere months away, I can tell you that's not the case! On my last birthday, I asked my mom when I'm going to start feeling like a grown-up. She said that you never really do, and that she's never felt a day older than 22, which is disconcerting to her since her body keeps getting older and she never FEELS any older. AOTB, do you feel the same way?

Anyway, I've really experienced both ends of the spectrum as far as parental ages are concerned. I'm the oldest of four, and when I was born my mom was 30 and my dad was 24. By the time my youngest sibling was born, my mom was 42 and my dad was 36. Now...my mom certainly isn't old, so I find it kind of funny to hear people saying that they don't want to wait until X age to have kids because they want to be young enough to enjoy them and their grandchildren. My mom will be 60 this year, but she looks AT LEAST ten years younger than she is and can run faster and farther than my 17-year old sister.

As a kid, I never noticed any stamina, etc differences between my parents, even though my dad was in his 20s and my mom was in her 30s. As I got older (looking more at my younger siblings childhoods than my own), I haven't noticed my parents slowing down at all. If anything, they're healthier and more active than they ever were.

The major differences between my childhood (dad in 20s and mom in 30s) and my younger siblings's (dad in 30s and mom in 40s) are the following:

1) My dad went to school evenings when I was a kid, first to get his BA and then for his MBA. I don't remember seeing much of my dad, except on weekends. In fact, I would get up every morning to eat breakfast with him because I rarely got to see him in the evenings. In contrast, my dad was well established in his career by the time my two youngest siblings came along. However, he is now senior management and often works long hours. Oh yeah, and the blackberry can never be out of arm's reach.

2) My mom has been a stay-at-home mom since I was born, so they've always been a one-income family. On my dad's entry-level salary when I was a kid, that wasn't easy. While we never went hungry or anything, it was even clear to me as a 5-year old that the budget was tight in our household. In contrast, my younger siblings go on vacations to Europe at least once a year.

3) When it was time for me to go to college, my dad still had another 20+ years in the workforce, so he didn't worry (as much) about college expenses vs retirement. Now that he's closer to retirement, that's more of a concern (for my two youngest siblings). However, my dad is one of those people who would probably work until the day he dies regardless of financial need (he LOVES his job and would go stir-crazy at home, even if he found more hobbies), so that isn't really a big deal to him. On the other side of the equation, my dad makes much more money now than he did when I was applying to colleges, so my siblings will get less in financial aid than I was able to get.

As everybody says, there are pros and cons to having kids younger and having kids older. But as somebody who has experienced both, I can tell you that my mom at 30 was just as capable of running after me as my dad was at 24. And both were just as capable in their 30s and 40s of running after my brother and sister as they were of running after my brother and me 10-12 years earlier. So I wouldn't worry too much if you want kids in your 20s for that reason, but life doesn't end up adhering to your ideal timeline.

Having seen/experienced both, I adamently want to be financially ready for children. I don't want to be the mom who has to save all year in order to afford to buy her kids Christmas presents. I don't want to have to worry about my budget the way my mom did. I don't want to have to feed my kids canned vegetables because I can't afford fresh ones (heck, I don't want to eat canned veggies - ewww!) I don't want to have to use threadbare towels because I need to buy diapers rather than replace my towels. (Incidentally, my parents STILL have threadbare towels in their regular rotation of towels, which I threaten to throw away every time I visit. Every time I comment on them, my mom giggles and says, 'Yeah, I guess you're right. We can certainly afford new towels. I guess it's just habit, because there was a time when we couldn't.') I don't want to have to drive a car that isn't safe for my kids. (I was not allowed to ride in my dad's car, as there was a rust hole in the floor. He finally got a new one when I was about four.) I would rather take my kids to Europe.

While DH and I are already much better off than either of our parents were when we were born, I really don't feel financially ready for kids yet. We could make it work now, certainly, but we'd probably have to defer some of our student loans in order to have enough wiggle-room in the budget to be comfortable. I'd rather wait until I get my next promotion or DH finds a new job.

DaisypathWedding Ticker

Vice President and Guardian of the Toilet Brush of POOP: People Offended by Offended People

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MsDenuninani Posts : 3,962 Registered: 3/16/07
Re: How long to wait to have children
Posted: Jan 21, 2010 10:39 AM Go to message in response to: ArtBride

I'm 33, and I'm nervous about waiting much longer. Sure there's fertility, but I am also nervous about having to wait FOREVER for them to leave the house. I want at least two. And, I want to have kids out of the house before I'm 60.

Other little things that concern me about having kids too late:

  • keeping up with them is a concern. I don't think right now, but if I waited until my late 30s/early 40s (again, under the assumption that fertility would somehow not be an issue), I think I'd have more trouble chasing after them. Already I'm noticing the beginning pangs of getting older -- my neck and back are doing experiencing pains and discomfort that I'm pretty sure are age-related -- and I don't want to strain myself to pick up a toddler.

  • grandparents. My parents are in their late 60s. I'd like them to know their grandchildren. They are both in decent health, but who knows what will happen, and I want my kids to at least know who my parents are. I'm fortunate enough to have both my fraternal grandparents alive at 93 (and my grandma says she wants to see a great-grandchild before she dies, of course)

  • did I mention yet that I want them out of the house? I don't want my just him-and-I traveling days to be over. I see the way my parents and my in-laws live now that everyone is out of college, and they are enjoying themselves. I don't want to wait until I'm 70 before I can too.

All of this balanced against the fact that I still don't have a lot of markers that you're "supposed" to have before you have kids -- house, stable job (I contract and hubs really dislikes his job), etc. However, I have more than either of my parents did when they had me (I was raised in apartments -- I've never lived in a house in my life). But once the "clock" starts ticking -- and it has, though I can still drown it out, I figure we're just gonna have to figure it out.

__________________________________________

"I'd hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, or insanity, but they've always worked for me." Hunter S. Thompson

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