We Chose Not to Have Kids…

(…and This Was the Right Choice for Us)

I can’t have kids.  Well, ‘shouldn’t’ is more accurate.  I don’t want to give anyone my Bipolar, depression, or Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome and then watch them suffer knowing I chose for them to suffer.  It sounds a little strange, but how could I live with the guilt of that?  They hurt because of me.  They might die young because of me.  They’re depressed because of me.

On top of this, with EDS childbirth and pregnancy can be incredibly dangerous, and my husband isn’t willing to risk my life just for a child with his DNA.  Not just that, but I would have to go off my meds lest the baby be horribly deformed, and that’s just plain dangerous for me and miserable for everyone around me.

Hey, on my meds I’m pretty mellow.  Off my meds?  I am the Queen of Drama, most of it self inflicted, all of it irrational.  So, yeah.  No.  Let’s not do that.

We have talked about adopting, but the costs are prohibitive and the paperwork ridiculous.  My husband worries that all of the work of caring for a kid would fall on him when I’m sick.  This is fair.  I can barely function enough to work when I’m sick, much less help a small tyrant.  He’d have to take care of me and the dog and the kid and work on top of it all.  How is that fair?  And he has his own health issues, and this would just be too much.

Fortunately, friends and family have been accepting of this decision and have supported a choice.  So there’s only the uncomfortable conversations with strangers, and we never get into detail, just say that I can’t have kids.

This used to really bother me, but I’m getting used to our pleasant little life in our pleasant little house with our ridiculously huge dog… sans kid(s).

And I know we’ve made the best choice for us, however unconventional it might be.

But I do worry about our old age.  We won’t have kids to rely on to care for us.  What if one of us dies and the other is too sick to care for themself?  What will they do?!?

I have God Kids though.  Four of them.  (I’m not sure if the fifth is officially a God Kid or not.)  I watch their pictures on Facebook, their events, their lives so very distant from my own.  I’d say it’s like having kids, but it isn’t, really.  It’s just the fun highlights of their lives with none of the stress and drama and effort.  It always makes me smile to friends and family and classmates post happy photos of their milestones.

It’s not like I don’t want kids, desperately so sometimes.  There’s points where listening to a baby burble prompts tears, anguish dredged up suddenly from the depths where I hide it away.  I do want kids.

Instead, we’re careful.  I have an IUD.

Our house and my arms remain empty.

We brush off questions with a smile.

It isn’t bad.

But it is lonely.

Have you struggled with deciding whether or not to have kids?  Do you have your own rambunctious toddlers?  I love hearing about kids, even if I can’t have them.  *smile*

7 thoughts on “We Chose Not to Have Kids…

  1. Sometimes I wounder what it would be like to not have kids. To have that freedom and ability to say OK I’m going to another country for a month or just to have that extra cash that I spend on the kids. When I met my husband, I didn’t want kids and he did. Well, we have 2 not the 3 he wanted and to be honest I wouldn’t change having them. I just sometimes wish I had the freedom of not having them. Sometimes, I miss that time when it was just us and it ment him and I not also the mini versions of ourselves.

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    1. We’re definitely spoiled that way. We have to make sure our dog is taken care of, but that’s about it. Sometimes I wish you were more free to visit, but your kids are wonderful. Also, it’s really nice to just go to the in-laws for an evening or drinks, or my husband can go for a motorcycle ride without any elaborate planning. And it’s nice to sleep in! On top of that our spending is all our own priorities which makes things much easier and less tight.

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  2. I had my first child when I was 19, I was diagnosed when I was 24 and had my second child 9 months after. I wouldn’t change it for the WORLD. Without them I’d be dead, they are my motivation, my inspiration and everything I live for. I only went to get help when my daughter was four and I was still an emotional mess, I realised it wasn’t just me I was affecting it was my other half and my baby girl too. That’s what pushed me to get help. Second pregnancy was a nightmare because of meds (going to write a post about that soon) as I was off them for 3 months then put back on them. Because of my kiddies I do everything in my power to have a normal life as possible for them, and I really do mean it when I saw I don’t think I’d be here today if it wasn’t for having them. All I want is to be a good mum, which includes taking good care of myself mentally, I never had that motivation before xxxxxxxxxx

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    1. I’m glad they’re such a help for you! It sounds like you’re a great parent, and you really put your kids first. 🙂

      It’s wonderful that it’s been a positive experience for you! Would you say you were bipolar before you had kids? I was diagnosed when I was 15, and I think that has really affected my decision making process throughout this.

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      1. Thank you so much that’s so sweet!! Oh yes I’ve always been this way I can’t remember being any different, no one could pin point what was wrong growing up they always said it was depression, but as my mum used to say that doesn’t explain the hyper months where I’d only sleep one hour a night!
        It’s a hard decision to make. Our first pregnancy was a surprised which is not what I had planned but I think everything happens for a reason! I think being well medicated now had made a HUGE difference but having them has made me a lot more aware of what I say and my actions when I’m around them I think I hide the bad times pretty well. Which in a way helps me keep functioning. You’ll do what’s right for u but I can’t tell you how much joy those little monkeys have given me ❤️ xxxx

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