The End of Childbearing


Childbearing Desires and Behaviour

For today’s blog, I’d like to reprint an article of mine that just appeared in the Mom Writer’s Literary Magazine. I think it reflects the feelings of a lot of women when they come to the end of their childbearing days…

I just read an e-mail from a new friend. She’s adopting a baby girl from China! Seconds later, I opened a note from another friend. A picture of her co-worker’s adopted daughter from China was attached. I couldn’t take my eyes off that little girl’s face.

A woman at church just adopted a girl from Guatemala. A business associate adopted a daughter from India. Enough already! I feel like I’m being haunted.

I always wanted to be a mother childbearing. In my youthful dreams, I saw myself holding the hand of a little girl. Imagine my surprise when I was blessed with four sons whom I love dearly.

What Are Childbearing Years

What Are Childbearing Years

But I’m over forty now, and for various reasons, I’ve decided I’m done with childbearing. I know this decision is for the best, but my heart grieves. I loved being pregnant, and the thought that I’ll never bear a child again saddens childbearing me. But I also love being a parent — and perhaps I’m not ready to relinquish that dream quite yet. Yes, I am a mother — but not to a daughter.

So, I have to ask myself, are these adoption announcements some sort of sign? Or are they just a reflection of the pining I feel to hold a baby girl in my arms? Am I subconsciously seeking news of my heart’s desire?

I haven’t convinced my husband to adopt yet. Where would we put her? He’s right. We don’t have room in our house, but there’s ample room in our hearts. We’d manage somehow childbearing.

Thus, I continue to ponder — and to grow older. Soon, the decision will be taken out of my hands. I’ll be forty-two soon. My husband is forty-four. Do we really want to be raising children into our seventies? Parenting childbearing youngsters while running around grandkids? Forfeiting years of freedom for ourselves? Maybe not.

And would my teenage boys think their mom is crazy? Or, worse, that I wasn’t pleased with them — that I wanted a girl instead?

Who really wants five kids, anyway?

I do. I think. So, as if all the adoption announcements weren’t enough to convince me, I’ll continue to look for a sign — a stronger sign. A voice to tell me that the time is right childbearing. That I’m not crazy. That a beautiful little girl is just waiting for her new mommy to make up her mind.

And I long to tell my daughter, “Hey, Mommy’s coming!” I’m just taking the long way. And praying I don’t get lost.

What is childbearing meaning?

Relating to the process of conceiving, being pregnant with, and giving birth to children women of childbearing age.

What is the best childbearing age?

Women are most fertile and have the best chance of getting pregnant in their 20s. This is the time when you have the highest number of good quality eggs available and your pregnancy risks are lowest. At age 25, your odds of conceiving after 3 months of trying are just under 20 percent.

Bad Moods All Around

At one point this afternoon, I looked at my 13-year-old son and asked, “Are you in a bad mood, too?” When he said no, I replied, “Okay, you can stay.” I’ve got two teenagers and two toddlers. The bad moods are a daily occurrence! Or should I say “hourly”?? At the time I asked that question of my son, I had just returned from picking up my 16-year-old, who apparently had a very unsatisfying weekend with his youth group at Disney, because he proceeded to complain about his horrible life all the way home. Then, my two-year-old twins woke up from their naps acting extremely grouchy, so the sight of my 13-year-old entering the room was cause to put up my guard. “Will you become moody when you turn 16?” I asked him. “I hope not!” he said. Hopefully, I’ll get lucky with one good-natured kid through the teen years, but based on the moodiness level I know I exhibited in my own teen years, I doubt I’ll be that fortunate childbearing. In the meantime, I’m really looking forward to when the twins turn about 5, my oldest teenager exits the teen years, and hopefully harmony will reign for a while! But then it will be time for my husband’s midlife childbearing crisis and my menopause . . . yikes!

Husbands, This One’s for You!

Men, if you want to know why you’re not “getting it” from your wives, read on! (I know this blog is supposed to be about parenting, but it’s all related. A satisfying marriage makes for a happy family.) First, if she tells you she’s tired, it’s the truth! It’s not an excuse. She’s taking care of the kids all day, perhaps working another childbearing job, too. As soon as her head hits that pillow at night, the thought of sleep is just too enticing. Aaaah! But, the other big reason you’re not getting sex is because she has to LIKE you first! She has to have some “warm fuzzies” for you. Sex is not just a physical release for her childbearing. She has to feeeel the love! The good news for you is that this is SO easy to accomplish. This isn’t anything new, and yet so few men seem to “get it” (pun intended). Guys, hold her hand when you’re watching TV. Put your hand on her back when you’re following her through the door. Give her a kiss for no reason. Touch her on the arm. Don’t just grope her when you want some action.

Show an interest in her. Quit nagging and criticizing. Listen to the words that come out of your mouth. Do you ever compliment her or tell her you appreciate her? Have you told her that you like her new haircut? Have you shown an interest in what she did that day? When was the last time you called her just to say “I love you”? Pick up a little gift for her just to show that you know what she likes childbearing. It might be as simple as her favorite fast-food French fries! Now, some of you might be saying this is asking too much. Or this is putting too much of the burden on men. But I bet you used to do all of these things before you were married! Why stop now? If you’re going to argue that she never does these things, either, I can tell you how to get her to do them: Take the initiative! Touching leads to more touching. Thoughtfulness leads to more thoughtfulness. Just try it. Make it your mission to pay her a compliment every day. Think of something nice to say to her. Show an interest in her beyond “What’d you make for dinner?” Do this for a week and see how her mood has changed. I guarantee you she will respond. She’ll feel romantic toward you, and that’s going to show up in the bedroom. Trust me.