I’m losing my baby fever

Guest post by Baska
Why are you so obsessed with me? onesie by Etsy seller ModernChicKids
Why are you so obsessed with me? onesie by Etsy seller ModernChicKids

I’m almost 35 years old. My whole life, I’ve known I wanted kids, and the baby fever was ramped up to 11 in my late 20s. My husband and I got married two years ago, after seven years of dating, but we decided to put off “starting a family” until he could find steady work.

Long story short: he still hasn’t.

My husband still wants kids, but I’ve found my baby fever has started to fade. I love kids, but I sometimes find myself thinking, “Maybe I don’t want this for myself after all.” After a lifetime of wanting kids, it’s a super-weird feeling.

I’ve seen all sorts of articles about previously childfree women who are surprised to find themselves contracting baby fever (like these)…

…But almost none about previously baby-fever-filled women who unexpectedly are losing the itch for kids.

Has anyone else experienced this? If so, what advice do you have?

Comments on I’m losing my baby fever

  1. My baby fever has ebbed and flowed with my health. I had a couple years of shitty health, followed by many years of moderate health. Through all of it I had virtually no urge to procreate. I was not opposed to the idea, I just had none of the strong hormonal drive that I saw in my partner and remembered from before I got sick. In the last two years I have pulled together a number of health pieces and now I have baby urges, but only when I am eating according to the whole30 food rules. As in the baby urges come on when I cut the junk out of my diet and disappear as soon as I backslide, only to come back if I go back to eating well.

    • This is so interesting! I’ve known since I was a child that I never wanted to have kids, but I do have these weird moments when I imagine what it would be like and kind of get lost in the fantasy of having a baby. It always passes, and my mind hasn’t changed (about to be 28), but I wonder if it’s in any way a biologically-explained thing!

  2. I went through this with my husband last year. We both wanted kids when we got together. He has a daughter from a previous marriage, and he talked about wanting a son. I wanted to have 2 kids. We talked about names, I looked at geeky cute nursery photos, and just generally assumed that when we got settled into our marriage we’d do it. We got married at 31, and about a year after, I got gung-ho about health to minimize pregnancy risks (I have a couple of triggered genetic issues that I take chronic meds for). Then I realized that the prospect of raising a baby, toddler, or young child was freaking terrifying. I don’t know how to deal with them, and I don’t want to rearrange my life to do so. I’m an introvert and I place an extremely high value on alone time and personal space. We kept talking about it, and one day when we were having an intense discussion about life in general (I think it was about money), I blurted out that I didn’t even know if I wanted kids anymore. A few weeks later, I explained that I was exaggerating a bit and was upset that day, but that the whole idea scared me. It turns out, he felt exactly the same way. So we took the entire concept of kids off the table. Not that we’ve said NEVER, but that we will bring it up again if one of us ever gets the urge to start a family, but that right now, it’s not the right thing for us. The best thing that he says is, “I don’t feel like anything is missing from our relationship. I like it being just us.”

    Point of all of this is, talk to your partner. Often. Tell him how you feel. Ask how he feels. Talk about the lifestyle you’ll have to adopt. Most of all, don’t “start trying” until you know 100% that you want to.

  3. For me it goes up and down. sometimes I just want a baby so bad, and then other times it seems like so much responsibility and I have doubts. I know I want kids, but I think “do I really want them NOW?”

  4. I had strong baby fever in my young twenties after knowing that I wanted kids my whole life. Then in my mid twenties, I became ambivalent for a while following a few very stressful events in my life. When things stabilized, it came back and now I’m a mom to a fantastic 18 month old and over the moon about it. In retrospect, I think the ambivalence was an evolutionary response to the stress we were under, as if my body understood that it would be better to wait out the highly stressful period before becoming pregnant.

  5. Many of my friends assumed I would be the first to have kids. I was always babysitting or working in a nursery as a teen, taught swim lessons and even carried crayon band aids around with me for any boo-boos. It wasn’t until I met some adults that were happily married and child free that I even considered a life without mom in the title. The more I listened and watched, the more liberated I felt. I’m now in my mid thirties and am confident that I can be a whole person without children, I might even have a better chance at authenticity and happiness.

    It is totally ok to change your mind. Don’t wait until you are SURE to talk to your partner about it. Let him be a part of the process, or at least let him know there is a process. There are many ways to adult, having kids is only one of the ways.

  6. I grew up expecting I’d have kids, and wanting it. I read Offbeat Families when it launched and had all sorts of grand ideas about exactly what kind of pregnancy and birth I’d have; I had names picked out. But my husband and I always said “someday.” When we’re more financially stable, when we’re older and more mature, when we’ve had certain experiences, etc. And over the last few years we have both realized that maybe kids just aren’t for us. Financially, we are okay for just the two of us. We are older and I think more mature. Mature enough for me to admit to myself that I am a selfish person, and I’m okay with that. I see what my friends go through with lack of sleep, lack of boundaries, inability to participate in a lot of events or activities, and I don’t want that for myself. I enjoy my hobbies, and the things my husband and I get to do together without having to worry about finding a sitter. I once read a quote from a celebrity, I wish I could remember who, who said “I’d rather regret not having kids, than regret having them.” And that has become my mantra. I admit, I like kids, and I’d love to see what kind of interesting person we could produce. I might regret never having kids. But that is a much more bearable regret than the alternative.

    So glad to read so many other people with similar viewpoints on not having children. I don’t get a ton of push-back in my circle of friends and family, but I’m also kind of the only one not interested in procreating so it’s nice to have some of my feelings confirmed by others here.

  7. I’ve had varying degrees of baby fever for a very long time. It started in my teens and stopped about two years ago, when I was 32. Then baby fever disappeared after a few bad experiences with my nephews. My eldest nephew has autism, and this is especially taxing on my sister-in-law. Husband and I agreed to look after the kids a few times, so that sister in law and my brother could get a break. This was a horrible experience for me. I had a very little experience with dealing with little kids before this, but clearly not enough. I feel like I got a taste of how difficult parenting can be, and it scared the hell out of me. Obviously parenting is different when it’s your own kid(s), but there’s no guarantees you won’t get a kid with severe autism.
    I still kinda want kids, sometimes. But mostly all I can think of is how insane life will be with kids, and I don’t know if I could handle that.
    My husband is sweet and supportive and is fine either way, which is a relief. But I reallly want to quit obsessing over this, and find some kind of answer for myself, because this constant internal monologue of ‘should I, shouldn’t I’ is exhausting.

  8. Thank you so much for writing this, I found this post at the exact right time. I always thought I wanted kids. I’m lucky to come from a long line of kick ass moms and just a wonderful family in general. I was a babysitter in high school, a nanny in college, and I taught theatre to kids off and on through my 10 year career in theatre. As I started to get into my 30’s and still hadn’t met the right guy, I think I started to convince myself it just wouldn’t happen and I got a point where I was peaceful with that. Well my husband and I just got married, like 2 weeks ago, but I still don’t think we want kids. We love to go camping, rock climbing, and adventuring in general. We absolutely love our dogs and love taking them with us on our adventures. But that’s about the extent of “parenthood” that I think we want. The part I’m having a hard time with right now is, I had come to terms with not having kids when I thought I wasn’t going to meet the right guy “in time”. Now that I have, I’m not sure I want kids because we just love our life the way it so much, but I have doubts every now and again. I see my friends with their kids and how in love with them they are and I wonder if in 5 or 10 years I’ll regret the decision not to have kids. If I were still in my early 30’s, like my brain is convinced I am, then I’d say we could wait a few years and see how we feel. But at 37, I don’t feel like we have much time left to make that decision. I certainly don’t want to have kids just in case I’ll regret it, that seems like a terrible reason. But I don’t want to end up regretting it either. Is anyone else making themselves nuts like this?

Read more comments

Comments are closed.