Starting Over

What Would Debbie Do? Starting Over Dear Debbie, I am a 36-year-old woman. I have been married for almost 13 years and have two sons, almost 10 and 8. My husband did not contribute much at all in the raising of our boys (he was still in the hang-out, party mood), to which I finally […]

What Would Debbie Do?

Starting Over

Dear Debbie,

I am a 36-year-old woman. I have been married for almost 13 years and have two sons, almost 10 and 8. My husband did not contribute much at all in the raising of our boys (he was still in the hang-out, party mood), to which I finally said “enough” about a year and a half ago. He realized his family was important to him and has since done a complete turnaround. He has severed ties with his single, childless friends and we are now a family. We do things together all the time, vacations, bike rides, dinners, movies, sponsored runs – you name it. Life is grand. The issue is, my husband has wanted to have more kids since our family transformation. I am thinking about it also, and we have even made an appointment for a vasectomy reversal. Am I crazy? The kids are getting so independent, and that makes me a little sad, but to start over again is huge. What do you think?

Dear Wondering,

First of all, I’m thrilled to hear that your husband has prioritized his life in a way that benefits your family. Sometimes it just takes a while for people to realize what’s important to them. Thankfully he did this before it was too late.

As to the question of whether or not you should have another child, well, it’s really not my place to advise you on this. But I will offer up some thoughts that you might want to consider before ultimately making a final decision.

The first thought is whether or not a new baby fits into YOUR life at this time. Let’s face it, as mothers, it’s our responsibility to take care of a baby. I don’t care how much a partner helps; ultimately, this is your job and your job alone. A baby brings joy and happiness – you know this, you have two kids already – but it also brings a complete and total shift in your daily routine, at least for the next five to seven years. I would guess that your life has gained much independence since the births of your children more than a decade ago. Are you willing to go back to square one?

The next thing to consider is how a new baby will impact your relationship with your husband. As women, we know that our bodies, our sex drives and our lack of sleep (!!) impact our intimate relationships in ways that are hard to ignore. Is your husband willing to give you a hall pass, so to speak, for this short period of time? Or is he incredibly demanding and unable to set aside the difficult years for a bigger gain? As we get older, we become more set in our ways. Is he flexible enough to go with the flow?

I have two children. If I had stayed married, I most likely would have had another one. However, if someone came into my life today and wanted another child, I’d have to say no. I’m just not there anymore. I hope you can evaluate the situations in your life and arrive at an answer that honors yourself, your family and your sense of where YOU are in your life right now.


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