Five years ago, my husband and I began the process for adoption out of the foster care system. Our intent was to adopt a sibling group (two to three children). We’d been through a few miscarriages, and my doctors were sure my combination of medical conditions made pregnancy impossible to sustain.
Surprise! I got pregnant. (I was on birth control pills for THREE pregnancies, folks. I took it correctly, but it just doesn’t work for everyone. It also won’t work if you’re on antibiotics, and some other meds. Make sure you know you’re protected!) The pregnancy was hell, but I survived. And my daughter was born in 2013. She’s an actual miracle. We’re the luckiest people alive.
But, not-so-surprisingly, my pregnancy and her birth derailed our adoption plans. Now my daughter is four years old.
We have no intention of trying for another biological child, and have taken permanent steps to prevent it. The pregnancy was high-risk and miserable, and a miscarriage would be even harder now that we know what we’ll be missing. All that said… here’s my problem:
I want to adopt another child. My husband doesn’t want to adopt another child.
My husband carries the burden of parenthood with much less ease than I do. He’s the best dad I’ve ever seen— truly incredible — but the worry and stress associated with it really wears on him. He’s scared that adding child number two would double that burden. And, knowing what I know about raising kids, I can’t assure him it won’t. It very well might.
I have motherhood in my DNA. It’s the best and most fulfilling thing that I’ve ever done. I’ve always been a caregiver; that’s just my personality. And I feel guilty even thinking that my daughter isn’t “enough,” but I do feel that I’m meant to mother more than one child. I want my daughter to have a sibling. It’s incredibly important to me.
We’re at an impasse. We fundamentally disagree, and we completely respect each other’s feelings on the subject. A mediator or therapist seems unnecessary, since we’re already completely open about our thoughts and feelings with one another. We just don’t agree.
One of us is going to “lose” the argument here, and I don’t know how to cope. In 13 years together, we’ve never been in a situation where we could not reach an agreement.
Has anyone else been in this situation? How did it feel to “lose” and/or how did it feel to “win?” Are there any other outcomes?