First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes a baby in a baby carriage –
But what if your partner doesn’t want a baby?
Should you immediately call it quits? Should you try to reason with them? Should you put their seed in a turkey baster and impregnate yourself Jane the Virgin style? I won’t tell you NOT to do the last one. I’ll just say…it depends.
Why don’t they want kids?
People’s plans change. Just because your partner isn’t feeling kids today doesn’t mean that they won’t be buying cribs tomorrow. Even if your partner claims that their minds are set in stone, there’s room for wiggle room depending on several factors.
- How old are they? If they’re below thirty, then there’s a good chance that age, life experience, and a decade of parents asking for grandkids will change their mind.
- How old is the relationship? If you and your partner have been together for less than a year, then it’s possible that as your love deepens, so will the evolutionary drive to procreate. Give it some time.
- Are they too broke to be parents? Supporting kids seems impossible when your partner is eating ramen for every meal, but a 401k and a steady job may eventually tip the odds in your favor.
- Do they want to focus on their career? This is a tricky one, because the glass ceiling is real, and it’s hard for partners (especially female partners) to have a family and dominate in their career. But sometimes the tide shifts. When your partner finally gets their next promotion, they may be ready to think about a family.
If your partner has other reasons for not wanting children – such as being abused, or having children from a previous relationship – then the chances of them changing their mind are significantly lower. In that case, you’ll have to do some soul-searching within yourself.
Why do YOU want kids?
I’d like to say that there are no bad reasons for wanting children, but that is a lie. For example, look at the baby that Blac Chyna is having with Rob Kardashian in order to get back at her ex, Tyga. Or think about all the kids who got knocked up just so they could be on Sixteen and Pregnant.
What’s your reason for wanting children? Is it to appease your parents? Is it just because you think you should? Is it because you expect them to fill an emotional void in your life? If you’re having children in order to satisfy someone or “fix” yourself, then pause.
Children are a lot of work. They are rewarding. But they can also be exhausting, parasitic little demons who eat all of your food and spend all of your cash. A human’s entire life is in your hands. If your child is born terminally ill, are you willing to endure the heartbreak? If your child is born mentally handicapped, are you willing to take care of them for the rest of your life?
Children will stretch you to the limit. There’s a reason your mama always looked so tired.
If you’re not willing to sacrifice your entire life for this child, then you’re not ready to have it.
Is your partner willing to adopt?
Okay, if you’ve decided you absolutely must have children, but your partner absolutely does not want biological children, then consider adoption.
Adoption is, of course, infinitely more complicated. Gone are the days when people left their spare babies in front of a church- now you have to fill out reams of paperwork, go through endless interviews and pay costly fees. However, it’s completely worth it when you hold your child in your arms for the first time.
If not adoption, then what are you and your partner willing to compromise on?
Maybe your partner hates the thought of dirty diapers and doesn’t want a newborn squirming around. You could adopt a slightly older child, or consider being foster parents. Being a foster parent is no small task and comes with complications of its own, but you’ll get the chance to affect a child’s life for a short period of time. And if the ABC show The Fosters is any indication, then gay people make excellent foster parents.
If your partner absolutely, positively does not want children, then how would they feel about animals? It would allow you to take care of something, but your partner wouldn’t have to worry about paying tuition. Perhaps after adopting a dog, they’ll be a little more open to the idea of expanding your family even more.
If you and your partner cannot reach an agreement, then you’ll have to make a tough decision. Do you love your partner enough to sacrifice future children?
Be honest with yourself if this is a deal-breaker. It’s okay to admit that you two are on separate pages here.
Don’t feel bad if you need to take time away from the relationship to think, or if you need to end the relationship completely. Your partner will be happier in the long run when they don’t have to take care of children they don’t really want. And you’ll get the family you’ve always dreamed of with someone who is eager to be a parent.
Make the decision that is right for you.