It seems like people are more interested in what’s going on in my uterus than what’s going on in my universe.
The short answer to this question is no. There is no perfect time to start a family. Regardless how well organised you think you are, it’s almighty life-changing shock. In fact, the longer you wait, the harder it’s going to be to adjust.
Sure older people might have a few extra bucks in the bank, climbed an extra rung or two on the corporate ladder but, unless it’s a few hundred thousand tucked away or you’ve managed to touch the glass ceiling, it really won’t make any difference. Starting a family is hard work regardless of whether you’re 15 or 50.
For starters, sleep deprivation has a habit of making life unbearable. The older you get, the harder it is to wake up every three hours (if you’re lucky) for a feed. That 3am feed is a nightmare!
If your plan is to have a few months off and return to work, good luck. Some babies just wanna party all night and then you’ll need to function at work the next day. Repeat this over and over for several months and you will be ready for them to open the door of the nearest mental health facility and check yourself in. Haha, you think I’m joking!
Also, babies are expensive. Teenagers, on the other hand, are something no one can prepare for. Do you know how much one pair of Nikes cost? You can’t just go to the nearest K-Mart or op shop. Teens are relentless, they want what their friends have. Now picture the kid growing out of their shoes every six months for over a decade. No wonder Nike are doing so well!
Most teens also have a rip roaring social life and because it’s so damn good they won’t have time for a job. God forbid. They go to school, isn’t that enough “work” for one day? You need them to get a great education so you give in hoping they will eventually afford to cover their own feet. So basically your finances will never be the same again. Unless your pockets are very deep you’re guna have to adapt.
Then there’s the incredible strain on your relationship. Couples hit their 30s and think a beautiful bouncing bubs will complete their prefect life together. OMG – if you want to test a relationship try having a baby that doesn’t sleep, eat and has a fever. They all get them so that’s not stretching the truth.
Plus parenting styles differ. That puts additional strain on your relationship. No matter how well you get along and compromise, there will usually be some difference of opinion along the way. Parenting is generally when you discover that you came from different families and the pressure begins to mount. No-one wants to get it wrong so people get very passionate about how they raise their kids. As kids get older this issue becomes more prominent. It’s a wonder any relationships actually survive!
Lastly and most importantly, the longer you wait the greater chance the baby will have problems after birth. Women don’t produce eggs, they are born with them. Therefore every-time you drink too much, smoke a cigarette or chose to consume unhealthy food it effects the eggs you have. If you’ve spent time partying think of the damage you’ve done already. Add the natural aging process to the scenario and the longer you wait the greater the chance of miscarriage and birth defects. This isn’t a joke, this is a reality.
So, have a completely put you off of starting a family? I hope not. Although it is by far the most significantly challenging thing you can do in your life, it is also the most rewarding. There is no better feeling on earth when they get older and say to you, “Thanks for everything. You’ve been a great parent.” All that sacrifice, work and effort pays off tenfold. Any parent (on a good day) will probably tell you the same. Be sure it’s a good day, because on a bad day you might get a very different response!
Image via e-mama.gr
Having a healthy baby is surely up there on the scale of life’s most momentous, amazing and precious experiences; it’s a gift unlike no other. And so you would think that a child’s sex is irrelevant – who cares, right? At least, that was the case for my husband and I both times we were blessed with a bouncing, healthy baby – two gorgeous, much-wanted daughters, as in our case.
Both times, I was certain I was having a boy, but secretly chuffed, actually, to be having girls. I’d always wanted a sister growing up and I love that our girls will (hopefully) always have that special sisterly, best-friend bond; they’ll never be alone, no matter what happens to us.
And yet, both times, before I’d even left the maternity hospital, some no-doubt well-meaning family member, friend or midwife had asked either myself or my husband if we would try for a third baby given we hadn’t yet achieved the miracle of a boy child.
Quelle horreur!? We couldn’t actually – gasp – just be happy with our two girls and be done with it?! No, I/we had failed in the breeding stakes and now we must surely get on to the all-important task of making a boy ASAP!
Excuse me, but f*** that. I’m so done. In fact, we’re both done. A vasectomy is our next pressing task – not more breeding. And we’ve both been a tad shocked and then saddened each time my husband or I have been, quite rudely, asked: “Do you feel like you’re missing out, not having a son?”
Our family is complete and we’re very happy with our lot in life, thank you very much. Besides, what is not to love about having girls? It’s hard to believe that in 2015 there’s still a pervading sense of familial and societal disappointment when a woman/couple doesn’t produce a son. You’d think society had progressed since the time of infamous Henry VIII of England in the Tudor dynasty, who allegedly killed off several of his six wives for not producing a son and heir, but apparently not.
Unfortunately for Hazza’s poor, blameless victims, this was well before science discovered it was actually a man’s genes which determine a baby’s sex. Our bright, curious, loving, affectionate, endlessly fun and wilful daughters aged one and three are wonderful and – long may it last – absolutely adore each other.
I love dressing them up; taking them out shopping/for babyccinos and reading endless books to them, at their request. They’re boisterous, friendly wrestling is a sight to behold and both can kick a soccer ball in manner of young Ronaldos.
Long live the sisterhood and girl power: I can’t wait to teach them everything I know – feminism included.
Every child is a precious gift – girls included. So, don’t feel sorry for us, thanks very much. Daughters rock!
What do you think? Did you feel pressure to try for a son?
Images via www.pixabay.com