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one child too many - termination? Final update #99


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#1 worldsapart

Posted 05 February 2013 - 10:49 PM

The usual - old member going anon for privacy reasons.

We recently found out we are pregnant with our fourth child. I am 5.5 weeks along. Our three children are aged between almost 5 yrs and 14 months. This is an unplanned pregnancy. My husband does not want another baby AT ALL. I have reservations about having another baby but don't know that I could willingly go through with a termination - not without immense regret anyway. I am pro choice and have had a termination in the past that I believe was the right thing for me to do. However, this situation is different as I am with the person I want to share my life with and we already have children which makes it easier for me to imagine what a fourth child might be like.

We never ever entertained the idea of having four children and I find it hard to picture my life with so many children in it, to be honest. Having said that I am already really excited at the idea of another. I have imagined how we could set up the car seats in our car to accommodate them all, I've written pregnancy milestones in my calender eg .8 wks, 12wks. I've thought about the way the kids rooms could fit them all. I've noticed other mothers with four children and imagined being like them. I've imagined how we could tell our own kids the news - our eldest would be thrilled!

On the other hand I worry about upsetting our family dynamic. Our two eldest are the absolute best of friends who both dote on their baby brother. I worry that their relationships to one another may be strained by adding another sibling into the mix. Also, our baby is growing up and becoming easier, our eldest has just started prep... It's finally time for our middle child to shine and get the attention she deserves. Plus, having 3 children under 4 yrs old was really tough. Our youngest was pretty sick for a large portion of his first year which made him (and us) feel quite miserable.

My husband feels he has nothing left to give to another child. He feels he doesn't have enough quality time with our children as it is. He is just completely and utterly drained and completely believes that another child would break him. My husband would not say this unless he was at beaking point. He is truly a remarkable person who has put up with so much and asked for so little. He always puts me and the children first so I completely understand that he is feeling trapped and desperate. I guess our relationship has always taken a back seat to the children, which hasn't helped. He told me tonight that the men he works with who have larger families are struggling with the demands of family life. He says he wants to protect the family that we already have.

I have been a mixture of tears and sadness when thinking I will terminate and then feeling energised and positive when I think I'll keep the baby. I am still unsure as to how to tackle this situation. I don't think i could bring a child into our family that wasn't wanted, I couldn't imagine having a child without my husband's support, but I think I'll forever hold the sadness of wondering about our fourth child if we terminate. I don't want to end up feeling resentful.

We are in our mid-late 30s.


Has anyone else been in a similar situation? What was the outcome?
Also, can anyone recommend a good counselling service to help us through this.

Thank you

Edited by worldsapart, 17 May 2013 - 10:05 PM.


#2 Soontobegran

Posted 05 February 2013 - 11:18 PM

I am sorry for your situation sad.gif

I have to say we had a similar dilemma when we found ourselves with number 5 very unexpectedly.
We had our 4 children in 4 years, we had just bought a new car and put an extension on our home to house our family of 6. We had just got it to lock up stage and wham I was pregnant,
We were frightened by the the prospect, we both needed to work to maintain our lifestyle, we had not factored in the need for me to have more maternity leave which back then meant no pay or BB and our little family of 4 girls seemed so perfect.

I took the news quite badly, my DH took 12 hours before he could even talk about it and when we did there was a fleeting moment when termination crossed our minds because we simply didn't think we had the ability to care for another child but deep down I was already imagining this future child, I put a face to it, I was secretly really happy but I couldn't be happy if both of us were going to be.

I rang my obstetrician and asked if I could come in to talk but the receptionist put him on the line instead and I told him what had happened and his response was that he would do whatever we wanted but that he would find it difficult to terminate a beautiful B baby and that was it.

When DH got home from work we just looked at each other and started to laugh and decided then and there that would would welcome this new baby no matter what and we did.
Financially things were hard, I went back to work earlier than I really wanted to but our little guy did not detract from our family, he did not upset the dynamic, his sisters loved him and I can not imagine life without him. All the concerns that DH and I had were unfounded, we just made do.

It is a big decision OP, one that I totally understand and have a great deal of empathy for you having to make but for us it did become an easy one. As for finding the time, it just happens OP. original.gif

#3 Tobias'smum

Posted 05 February 2013 - 11:20 PM

We have 1 DS and we love him to bits and at this stage are happy with one if i was to take a test tomorrow and i was pregnant in all honesty we would highly likely go with a termination  for us it financial / dynamic reasons , i would nt have leave DH job doesnt earn enough and we have had to ask for help in the past year financially from family.

While like you i might go what if ---I would rather regret a child that was not here than one that was ( IYKWIM).

When i was younger i had a termination - so glad i did i would be stuck with my ex's screwed up family

I hope you can come to a decision that you are BOTH comfortable/ ok with



#4 mini mac

Posted 05 February 2013 - 11:33 PM

oh dear worldsapart...

bbighug.gif

I am way out of my depth here... We have two under two and that is enough right now even thought we both really want more.. If this were me in your shoes, I don't know what i would do if DH and I weren't on the same page...

I just wanted to say I feel for you and good luck with talking with your husband and I hope you can agree on an outcome that is 'right' for you and your family!

All I can suggest, is don't let finances be a big deciding factor. Everyone I know that has had more children than they intended, yes, they have been stretched that bit further but they are happier than so many others and have always managed to make ends meet...







#5 Feralishous

Posted 06 February 2013 - 01:18 AM

QUOTE (Mini Mac @ 05/02/2013, 09:33 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
All I can suggest, is don't let finances be a big deciding factor. Everyone I know that has had more children than they intended, yes, they have been stretched that bit further but they are happier than so many others and have always managed to make ends meet...

I agree.
Good luck op

#6 AbbottProofFence

Posted 06 February 2013 - 01:31 AM

Good Luck with whatever you decide, OP.

I fell pregnant unexpectedly with a third when my youngest was 5. I wanted to cry as soon as I saw the stick. We'd just took out a loan to purchase a new car and do some renovations on our home, I was well settled back into work now my youngest was school aged and tbh, I didn't feel thrilled about the idea of another pregnancy and going back to the baby stage now my daughter was going to school and I was concerned about finances and how I'd afford a third set of school fees, we'd given away all the baby stuff etc. But at the same time, while I am 110% pro choice, the thought of terminating my son and daughter's potential sibling made me feel uneasy iykwim when we could have found a way to make it work by tightening up the belt buckle and cutting out luxuries.

DH was really excited about the idea of having the baby, I felt termination was the best and we spent a few days unsure what to do.

As it turns out, I miscarried a few days after we learned about the pregnancy, so 'fate' made our decisions for us, but I can relate to what a hard time this must be. Good Luck OP.

#7 piper-jane

Posted 06 February 2013 - 02:30 AM

Biggest of hugs Op. When your husband says he has no more to give and he's feeling stretched to the max as it is - boy that's a tough one. Since you are already picturing the baby, a termination could be very difficult for you emotionally.

I've had a termination, and despite my pro-choice beliefs, and the fact that is was the right thing to do, I still grieve the loss.

Really difficult situation you're in- choosing between your own grief and suffering should you choose to terminate, and your husband's mental well being. Whose  suffering would be the worst is what it comes down to. My heart goes out to you. A few more long discussions and tears shed with your dh will be forthcoming no doubt.

Sorry, I've no advice, just want to express my sympathy. hhugs.gif

#8 Alina0210

Posted 06 February 2013 - 03:12 AM

Personally I couldn't do it.... Id keep the baby. My thinking is that in 10yrs would I regret a 9yr old child or would I regret/feel sad about this baby that never was..... And would is make my feeling towards my husband change as he 'made' me give up the baby etc.... This last reason I have seen first hand happening.

#9 JustBeige

Posted 06 February 2013 - 05:48 AM

Coming from an outsiders POV (my BF went through the same thing) You both need to go and get some counselling. The family planning clinics have them and will be able to help you both.

Neither of you want to live with resentments of each other. These will destroy your marriage.

Good luck with your decision.

#10 *lightning

Posted 06 February 2013 - 05:58 AM

I unexpectedly fell pregnant with baby number four and was a bit nervous when those two lines showed up on the test. A fourth means we need a new car, one on one attention for each child can be challenging, you need to stretch money further, going back to the baby stage can be stressful but that depends on your baby. Luckily our fourth child turned out to just like the other three and sleeps beautifully.

We never talked about termination and when I told my DH the test result he smiled. He was more relaxed about it than I was.

I haven't found four kids much different to when we had three. We budget, try and share the attention around but we are happy.

If you are picturing your baby and are happy a termination might make you resent your DH. I think you should both sit down and talk about it. I understand your DH being worn out and imagine I would feel the same way if I found out I was pregnant with number five.

I think going from 2 kids to 3 made a bigger impact on our family dynamic then going from 3 to 4.

#11 worldsapart

Posted 06 February 2013 - 08:07 AM

QUOTE (piper-jane @ 06/02/2013, 03:30 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Really difficult situation you're in- choosing between your own grief and suffering should you choose to terminate, and your husband's mental well being. Whose suffering would be the worst is what it comes down to. My heart goes out to you. A few more long discussions and tears shed with your dh will be forthcoming no doubt.


This is what it comes down to.

Before posting last night I told my husband that I couldn't go through with a termination. He went and got a bottle of wine and drank it in the front room. This morning he get up and dressed as quickly as possible and went to work. He's very angry with me and as this is not a usual emotion for him, it makes me feel very unsettled. I basically told him not to worry, that he would ultimately 'win' this. In turn I am consumed with anger as i do not believe he has any concept of what he is asking me to do. Gives me a glimpse into how seemingly good relationships can break down...

On top of this I feel very pregnant today.

Anyway, thank you so much to everyone for the replies. I'm feeling quite alone in this so it really helps.

If anyone can see into my future and tell me what the best thing to do is, I would be very grateful!

#12 Ianthe

Posted 06 February 2013 - 08:15 AM

I have five children. They were planned so it isn't the same situation at all. But I found the fourth and fifth child just fitted right in. But your husbands concerns are very valid.

I do think counselling would be a good idea.

I do think you shouldn't terminate. If your mind has automatically gone to how you would structure things with a fourth child then I think you would regret not having the baby.

#13 Beancat

Posted 06 February 2013 - 08:25 AM

QUOTE (JustBeige @ 06/02/2013, 06:48 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Coming from an outsiders POV (my BF went through the same thing) You both need to go and get some counselling. The family planning clinics have them and will be able to help you both.

Neither of you want to live with resentments of each other. These will destroy your marriage.

Good luck with your decision.


This is the way to go at this point I think.  

FWIW (and prob not much) we are expecting no 3 in 12 weeks.  Totally uplanned and we already had two.  I got pregnant with no 3 when dd was only 6 months old and I was in the middle of PND.  I'd had failed mirena and recently had it taken out.  I never wanted a 3rd but DP was ok with the idea.  however as soon as I found out I just knew I couldnt terminate.  Three was never in my plan, but now I couldnt have it any other way.  Maybe your DH will come around, maybe not, but there is always a chance.

#14 sparkles30

Posted 06 February 2013 - 08:26 AM

Can't tell you what to do, but from what you have written, it sounds like you would find it very hard to live with a termination.

Counselling would definitely be something I'd want to do with my husband as it is a big call either way. Also, sitting down with your husband and nutting out exactly why he is so stressed and what would help relieve some of that, could help him feel a little more secure.

From what I see in the families around me, people somehow make ends meet. I have lawyer friends who are 'struggling' to afford two children, and centrelink funded friends who afford three children. I think you just make the lifestyle adjustments to cope with what you have.

Good luck OP. I do hope you can keep the baby, are able to enjoy life with him/her and your husband and have no regrets.

#15 Soontobegran

Posted 06 February 2013 - 08:27 AM

QUOTE (worldsapart @ 06/02/2013, 09:07 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
This is what it comes down to.

Before posting last night I told my husband that I couldn't go through with a termination. He went and got a bottle of wine and drank it in the front room. This morning he get up and dressed as quickly as possible and went to work. He's very angry with me and as this is not a usual emotion for him, it makes me feel very unsettled. I basically told him not to worry, that he would ultimately 'win' this. In turn I am consumed with anger as i do not believe he has any concept of what he is asking me to do. Gives me a glimpse into how seemingly good relationships can break down...

On top of this I feel very pregnant today.

Anyway, thank you so much to everyone for the replies. I'm feeling quite alone in this so it really helps.

If anyone can see into my future and tell me what the best thing to do is, I would be very grateful!



So very hard OP but the decision to terminate must sit well with you too or I believe you will forever hold some resentment. His feelings are valid but so then are yours. One does not trump the other.
I know you said your relationship has been/is a good one then he needs to be able to work through this with you and not treat you like a disobedient child. I would seriously try to organise some counselling for you both and if he isn't compliant I would be furious with him.
He helped make the baby that he now feels is going to be a burden and the fact that he has no concept of the maternal response to being pregnant is no excuse for you to bow down to his pressure without being heard.

I wish I could tell you what to do, I know what I would do but it probably wouldn't be a popular choice for some.
Lots of luck



#16 ***Bella***

Posted 06 February 2013 - 08:35 AM

Coercion. A word that has been on my mind daily for 15 years. Please, I beg you, under no circumstances allow anybody to coerce you into making a decision that is not right for you. Please do not do something that does not feel right to you just to please or at the very least, placate somebody else.

It is very difficult when under such immense pressure to keep a clear head and follow your instincts. Please do not think that the problem will go away if you do what your husband wants, for if it is not what you want, then you will resent him indefinitely which can cause problems that last for many years. Far longer and more damaging than the difficulties that come with a new baby.

I feel terrible for you right now, but please, please do not let anybody else decide for you.

#17 worldsapart

Posted 06 February 2013 - 08:37 AM

Thank you again.

He is open to counselling. I will make some calls today - if anyone knows a good place to start, please let me know. We are in Melb.

This is our second unplanned pregnancy - the last one was our youngest son and there was no mention of termination then as my husband knew how much I always wanted three children.

At this point the financial side of things is not an issue as such. It is primarily around my husband's mental well being and I guess his percieved 'quality' of life with three, as opposed to four, children.

Doesn't help that none of our children have been easy babies - 2 still don't sleep through the night (at all) which is very tiring.

#18 ***Bella***

Posted 06 February 2013 - 08:39 AM

Also, given my time over again, I would choose my baby over a man any day, even if he was the father of my 3 children. It is a decision that you can never, ever for the rest of your life change and it is heart breaking. But grown adults can always change their feelings and perception of things.
If he 'wins' this, you will probably never ever forgive him.

#19 againagain

Posted 06 February 2013 - 08:53 AM

I really feel for you, but I feel for your husband too.





#20 alwayshappy

Posted 06 February 2013 - 08:56 AM

Personally, I would rather be a single mum of 4, than a bereaved mum of 3!
This is not to demean your husband's position.  He is being honest about what he feels and his feelings are valid.  However, living with an unwanted termination could be soul destroying.  It could have a life long impact on your mental health.
Definitely go ahead with your counselling to help you both talk through your fears and try and problem solve your way forward to a decision.  I don't think it's going to be an easy decision, or one that you are both going to be happy with.  There will be losses either way, as you'll need to negotiate.
Wishing you all the best.

Edited by alwayshappy, 06 February 2013 - 08:57 AM.


#21 Chelli

Posted 06 February 2013 - 09:10 AM

I think it is a great idea that you start with the counseling before making any decisions.

I wish you all the best.

#22 YodaTheWrinkledOne

Posted 06 February 2013 - 09:10 AM

QUOTE (worldsapart @ 05/02/2013, 10:49 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I have been a mixture of tears and sadness when thinking I will terminate and then feeling energised and positive when I think I'll keep the baby. I am still unsure as to how to tackle this situation. I don't think i could bring a child into our family that wasn't wanted, I couldn't imagine having a child without my husband's support, but I think I'll forever hold the sadness of wondering about our fourth child if we terminate. I don't want to end up feeling resentful.

If you do something against your will, you will feel resentment.  But the same also applies to your DH.

QUOTE (Mini Mac @ 05/02/2013, 11:33 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
All I can suggest, is don't let finances be a big deciding factor. Everyone I know that has had more children than they intended, yes, they have been stretched that bit further but they are happier than so many others and have always managed to make ends meet...

agree with this.

Another one who thinks you and DH need to speak with a counsellor about how you are both feeling and how you can come to an agreement

QUOTE (worldsapart @ 05/02/2013)
Before posting last night I told my husband that I couldn't go through with a termination. He went and got a bottle of wine and drank it in the front room. This morning he get up and dressed as quickly as possible and went to work. He's very angry with me and as this is not a usual emotion for him, it makes me feel very unsettled. I basically told him not to worry, that he would ultimately 'win' this. In turn I am consumed with anger as i do not believe he has any concept of what he is asking me to do. Gives me a glimpse into how seemingly good relationships can break down...

From his perspective, you didn't give him an option - you said that you couldn't go through a termination, full stop.  The next morning, you told him he would "win", which I seriously doubt that made him feel better (just more like crap).  And it sounds like you don't really mean it anyway because you don't want to terminate the pregnancy (which is fair enough and valid, but it's not fair to place that guilt on your DH, as you don't want him to do the same thing to you).

I think you both need to step back and stop giving ultimatums.  Both you to him and he to you.  You need to discuss how you are feeling, what your concerns are, what his concerns are & how he is feeling, is it possible to resolve or alleviate those concerns, etc. And you both need a couple of days to process the news.  I would imagine it's still a bit of a shock and hard to get your head around it all.

Seek counselling, as soon as possible.  Even if it's just with your GP to begin with.

Good luck.  You will work it out, although it will be a bumpy road to get to a decision.    bbighug.gif

#23 noi'mnot

Posted 06 February 2013 - 09:32 AM

QUOTE (JustBeige @ 06/02/2013, 06:48 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Coming from an outsiders POV (my BF went through the same thing) You both need to go and get some counselling. The family planning clinics have them and will be able to help you both.

Neither of you want to live with resentments of each other. These will destroy your marriage.

Good luck with your decision.


This is such good advice.


I'm glad that you're both open to counselling. Don't commit yourselves to a decision yet - get some professional help.

Depending where you are in Melbourne, you have a few options regarding counselling:

The Women's have and excellent pregnancy advisory service - it's public, so free. They can also provide terminations, if that's your choice.

If you're out east, Family Planning Victoria have both an info line you can call initially (they'll also be able to refer to somewhere closer to you if you're not in the area) and they have pregnancy choices support at their clinic in Box Hill. They're very low cost.

Marie Stopes also provides unplanned pregnancy counselling and support (as well as terminations, if that's what you decide to do) in East Melbourne and Maroondah.


If none of these locations are convenient for you, I'd advise that you call The Women's or FPV and they'll both be able to refer you to somewhere closer.

Best of luck OP - you're in a truly difficult situation. Working with your husband on this, as you've shown you're both willing to do with counselling, is the best solution. Take care. Xxx

#24 littlemissmessy

Posted 06 February 2013 - 09:42 AM

You're already excited about the idea of another baby and planning how to fit the child in, so perhaps you've already made your decision? Hopefully your DH will come around to the idea. When I fell pregnant unexpectedly this lady said to me, " Sometimes these babies are meant be born."

I love my unplanned DS and so does DH, but  having DS has put a lot of stress and pressure on our marriage and there were times I didn't think we'd stay together.  

Good luck with your decision and keep us updated.

#25 Mama8

Posted 06 February 2013 - 09:48 AM

When I found out I was pregnant with number 7 we had only just decided that 6 was all we could handle with the current car we had and room in the house etc and I'd been totally drained by the others.
Literally we came to the conclusion that we had enough even though I secretly longed for another child.
He said he would move into the shed laughing2.gif

My husband works very hard to support us, he's a contract builder and sometimes it's a stretch.

I took a test after missing my period and bawled my eyes out and kept it to myself for nearly a week because after having our talk I wasn't sure how to broach the subject and how the news would go.

He had a bad day at work and we had a house inspection and he was whinging about something the older kids had done or not done and I heard him say what a cr@p week it had been.
Something in me snapped and I threw the test at him said " well this will top off your bloody week then" then burst into tears as I ran out of the room.

He followed me and hugged me then we went back and discussed it.
He said he would support me in which ever way I wanted to go, he knows my stance on abortion but I must admit it did cross my mind more than once.
At first I took it that he wanted me to go through with a termination because he and never suggested it before.

I mulled it over for 2 weeks before I said I couldn't do it and if he didn't like it then I'd just have to struggle on my own with 7 children.
I was wrong, he was just concerned by my reaction and because of previous PND he was worried about my mental health as well as my body.

My heart was happy then and we both enjoyed the pregnancy and even then we decided to add number 8 who is due in June original.gif

I'd suggest having a very serious talk with DH and see if you can sort it out,
It's not a choice to be taken lightly and by the sounds of it your heart is telling you to do something different to your what your head is saying.

Good luck Op





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