Well, this is a question I was confronted with at the age of 20! Yes, well as you can imagine it was the furthest thing from my mind. All I wanted to do was travel and have fun! But, my gynaecologist at the time suggested that this would somehow cure my Endometriosis and that it would be really good to hurry up about it! He said it would be easier than going for operations every year and half! What a joke!
First of all – please do not believe that this cures your Endometriosis. It doesn’t. It merely changes the hormones in your body and it can still come back afterwards.
Secondly – what if I didn’t want children or be placed in a position where having them could make or break my condition with Endometriosis!
Where is the freedom of choice here?
So, I had this incredible pressure to now find a man, get married, get a house and then pop out at least one child to get rid of the pain I was going through! Right, no pressure there????
Well, I am now 34, which according to my previous Gyni was way too late to even try to have babies and I am glad I wasn’t rushed into any of the above decisions – life changing decisions I might add. I waited and found the ideal man to marry. I waited until I was ready for all of it and there are some things I am still not ready for. – buying a house…. I have travelled extensively and enjoyed life and didn’t want the commitment of all of the above (apart from my man of course) I perhaps rebelled against what this silly doctor said as I didn’t like the stereotype of it all.
The thing is, it got me thinking. How many women out there with Endo hear this same silly statement of having babies and that it somehow cures one of the condition and do actually follow it? I know one such girl. She married early, has three kids and yet she doesn’t seem genuinely happy with her choice. The Endo did come back but she manages it okay with some of my suggestions – :). She always feels restricted by the kids and the house and the commitments with all of them. I know she rushed into marriage just to get it ticked off on a list of ways to heal herself but my question is this really the best?
Do we really want them?
My question is now, do we really want babies? I know for myself when I first found out about Endo and they told me that my chances of conceiving were substantially reduced – I had stage4 Endometriosis and they said I only had a 25% chance…..- I was really upset. It upset me for years as it was like someone had taken away my choice, so I wanted it more!
The thing is now, now that I have the potential to have a baby, well let’s say the stability is enough to potentially have one in the next couple of years, I am not sure it is really something I want. For me. Or for me and my partner. When I think about what is really involved, I don’t feel the desire I know my friends describe in wanting babies. They talk about wanting to create a home and to settle down and to nurture and care for their babies. I don’t see that when I think of having a baby. I see a massive responsibility which needs ongoing care and love. I am perhaps scarred I will not provide it with the best that I can.
Sometimes I reflect on woman who have children and I feel their choice to have them was not always fair. They often lead very busy lives and are stressed out and don’t provide the best that they can for their children, from a love perspective. I don’t want to do that. I would want to give so much more than what I felt I got. It is a choice after all. I wish we had to fill in a form, like a personality test or something to determine how good a mother we would truly be. I reckon half the population would fail!
The other thing is we sometimes also want to have a baby just to say we have one. We want to give our lives more meaning and having a baby does that. The baby needs us and it shows to the world that you are a mother as well as other things. It makes you more. Is it really for the baby then? Or is this a selfish reason to have one? Are you having it or wanting it to give you something more? For you?
The sad reality is, we are so wrapped in this notion of “reduced ability to have children” that perhaps we are not really thinking about whether it is something we really want.
This is a really hard topic and I would love to hear your feedback. Please share your thoughts as I know I have gone pro baby and anti baby all within 4years of each other! It is probably those naughty hormones mucking with my head!
This Post Has 10 Comments
Thanks Scinia – am I showing my age a little LOL 🙂
Your articles have been making a lot of sense to me. The way you have dealt with the issue about ‘to have a kid or not to have’ seems philosophical; so much ahead of time. Great reading and thanks for sharing!!
Lovely to meet you 🙂 We are currently travelling through Europe but it would’ve been lovely to chat about lifestyles :). I know how you feel about friends having different interests and perhaps “missing out” but we find our friends now miss that we are so free and can do anything, cos we don’t have kids. We have to make the most of whatever situation we face in life 🙂
Enjoy the joy of finding hte love of your life and continue on your healing journey – life has a funny way of surprising us!
You can sweet Kate! Just keep going with it 🙂
Stella, you read my mind. I am going through exactly the same thing. Do I do IVF or is it fate telling me to leave things be? I am determined to have an amazing life with my husband and am seeking happiness in the form of people/places/spaces that will provide me with equal joy!
Hi Melissa, mmm. I am exactly the same as you. I was diagnosed at 24 and told to have babies. I didn’t and am glad because I would not have been happy in that relationship. I am now 33 and not pregnant.. with possible damage to my ovaries and no option but to do full blown IVF (not sure re this- I worry about the side effects- it feels very wrong to me)I married the most wonderful man and now some time has gone past we are adjusting to this lifestyle. My biggest fear has been that he will be alone later in life if something happens to me.. he says he will be happy as long as there is an i-phone 24! You could also then say if I have a child I will then be worried about something happening
to the child and it goes on and on. The biggest problem for us now is that we have very little friends left who don’t have children and the dynamics change, they still love us however you can’t help feel like you are missing out.
(1)- If you and your lovely partner are in the yarra valley in near melbourne- come for a visit and a meaningful chat about our fantastic lifestyles!
(2) -Read Sarah Wilsons blog on fertility. I read it whenever I feel a little sad about our
(3)-Keep posting, you are helping people like me feel less isolated and more motivated.
Thanks for sharing your story Ashley. I am glad you were able to have children too 🙂 It is nice when one has the choice, whichever way that might be. I do hope my site can help you with your Endometriosis and that it gets easier!
When I was 22 and diagnosed with endometriosis, my gynocologist, whom I really did like, asked me the same question. At the point, I didn’t think that pain-relief was a reason to bring a life into the world. I was in a relationship with the man that I did eventually marry, five years later, but when we were ready, not because of my biological clock, but actually his.
We now have three children together, we had our first when I was 29. Now, at age 35 my endometriosis is back, actually worse than ever, but that is another story. We always wanted to have children, I was greatful that we could, and I can’t imagine life without any of them. But that was our choice, I am sure that you will find yours.
Yes, I have had exactly the same thought process! Not sure whether I want children or not but also what is my prime motivation for wanting or not wanting children.
I would love my child so much if I had one, but would I want to bring a child into this world for my own selfish reasons? And the result would be letting her/him suffer in a difficult world just because I wanted a)company b)to keep up with the Jones's c)to cure my endometriosis d)to make sure I have children while I still can.
This topic goes much deeper into what the point of existence really is – is it to face difficulties, overcome them and learn lessons? Or is it to do that and also procreate so that someone else can do it too. Why would I wish that on my worst enemy?
Of course my mind goes back and forth on the subject – some months I see a little baby and I choke up wondering when I will have one, but other days I think rationally about the situation that a) I might not be able to have children due to endo (I am 30yrs old) and b) Would I want my darling child to suffer in a cruel world.
And then of course I veer towards thinking that the world is not cruel but full of love, but still I feel like I am caring for my unborn possible child by considering not having him/her in the first place so that they can remain safe where they are.
Great article and site, thank you!
Also, it is interesting to note the connection between the relationship with your mother, endometriosis, inherited emotional patterns and the conflict of whether you want or can actually have children.