29 answers

Wanting a Third Child

I am ready to start trying for a third child. My husband doesn't want a third child due to money and he says he's too old now. He says when is it "his" turn to start saving for retirement and other joys in life if we are continuing to pay for babies? I told him we didn't have the money for the first two so what's the big deal? He really wants to get fixed and I feel like I want to try and beat the clock before he has the procedure but than that's tricking him. He doesn't have the appt. scheduled but he doesn't want any accidents. I have two boys and just wanted to try for a girl but even if I got another boy - three feels complete to me esp. since both my husband and I came for a family of three it feels normal to have three. How can I change his opinion about this.?

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Thank you to everyone for all your responses and continued heart-felt stories. Being a woman, wife and Mother sures gives us great joys in our lives but also gives us hard decisions to make.

To answer some of the questions, YES I'm a stay-at-home Mom!! And if I did have another baby I already figured I would have another boy lol. So that would be three wonderful boys! I'm not wanting to have another baby just to try for a girl but that would be welcomed too but I would definetly get fixed after #3!

I'm going to have a heart-felt serious conversation with my husband and couldn't imagine tricking him into it because I agree he would resent me. He's a wonderful father and has been there for every ultrasound, check-ups, events, etc. He helps with the dishes, vacuuming and helps with the boys. We are truly blessed to have these two miracle babies!! We did inferility for 4+ years with one round of IVF and still nothing. Then moved back home and it happened on my own. Between the two boys we didn't use birth control and they are 22 months apart. Felt like I needed to start trying again quickly due to that reason of not ovulating but a couple times a year and yes my age too. Just lost lots of weight and feeling better than ever and in better shape now then when my first son was born - yipee!

I think I'm just going to ask him not to get fixed until we have exhausted all the options and worked on a budget together that we'll both be in agreement. I still have all the baby stuff and even an extra bedroom upstairs which is his "computer room". I'll keep you posted and thanks for all the input!

More Answers

Hi J.. I am a mom of two beautiful girls. Both times we conceived, I was ready but my husband was not. My "trick"? Prayer. I prayed to God that either He would change my husband's heart or that He would change mine. Both times He changed my husband's heart and I was pregnant within a month, but I was ready to accept a change of my own heart as well.

Hope this helps!

2 moms found this helpful

I feel like women rule on this subject. I don't know how you change his mind but he needs to understand how important this is to you. Once he had another child he couldn't imagine not having the 3rd. However, you both want to agree before you get pregnant! A child is always a blessing, no matter what. By the way, you need to question his argument that a 3rd child will keep you two from saving for retirement. What does that have to do with anything? Does he have anything that he does for extra curricular activities? Boating, Fishing, Golf, motorcycles....anything? Do you? There are things that can be sacrificed for the sake of saving money for retirement. It's all about priorities! Look at the Duggar's in Arkansas? They have 19 kids (I think) and they are debt free! There really are no excuses at all. If something is important to you, you make it work. How much do you have saved for retirement now? Perhaps not much? Why? Probably not because of your children. If you are anything like us, its because we have not been smart with our money as we should be. Certainly not because of our children's arrivals.

1 mom found this helpful

J., There are a lot of negative opinions about having another child. I have 3, my stepson who is 9, daughter is 3 and son is 1, and just found out I am about to have another. I worked on my husband for over a year to try to convince him I want another one. Although my situation is not the same with a girl and a boy, we are in the same boat as far as money. I don't think God ever said to Adam and Eve, go multiply, but only if you can afford it. God provides! Look at your first two, and see the miracles that happened there. You have made it, they eat, they are healthy. So, don't let money stand in your way. I promise you, in 20 years, you will always regret it if you blame it on money. Try to look at all the positives of having kids, and talk to your husband about that. I had a hard time with mine, too, but eventually, he came around. Don't give up! Be strong, and stick to your convictions. It has to be both of your decisions, true, but don't just give up if he says no. If you really, really want another one, you have to find a way to let him see the joys of having three.

1 mom found this helpful

I'm going through a struggle with something similar. I want four children and my husband wants 3. I don't want an odd number because I'm the youngest of 5 and I don't want someone to get left out, because I always did! I think 4 is a great number but he says that's too many...he says he's going to get a vasectomy when i'm in labor with #3.

imo, if he's trying to take it out of your hands by getting a vasectomy, you have the right to do the same. why should HE get to make the final decision? I ask my husband that all the time, I think we should just leave it up to God...don't TRY but don't PREVENT and if its meant to be, He'll make a way...

1 mom found this helpful

I am a 60 yr old mother of 4 and grandmother of 1. My first 2 (boys) came when I was 22 and 24 - both boys. I wanted a girl but found for medical reasons I couldn't. But I kept trying. I finally found the answer in New Orleans. By that time I was 35 years old. I had my girl when I was 36 and back then it was a bit unusual. I also had another boy 2 years later. I can tell you I am so glad for my daughter and 3rd son. My son is in school and lives at home. Our life would be a lot emptier without him. My daughter is the only one married and the reason I have a granddaughter- the light of my life. I work from home and take care of her for her parents while they work since she was 6 wks old. It is wonderful. Having two sets of kids 12 years apart was a bit trying when the 2nd set were toddlers and I had high school kids also. We had big time money problems back then, but got thru it. I wouldn't change a thing. If I had decided not to have the last 2 because of money problems, I wouldn't have had the joy that comes from my large family, I would still have had money problems(not now - things always change) and my life would have been diminished. However, you wouldn't want to have a child without your husband's support. That would wreck your marriage and hurt you children. By the way, you are only too old if you think old. I'm 60 but certainly don't feel or act it

1 mom found this helpful


I have been exactly where you are, with a husband who did NOT want more children and with my biological clock going "tick, tick, tick". What I did will bother me the rest of my life because it was pure deceit. My DH is a typical man and for the life of him doesn't know when my menstrual cycles are; he has no clue when I'm fertile either. So, I took advantage of that ignorance and got pregnant in a fit of planned passion. I will never forget the moment when my pregnancy was made real to him. I had known for over a week that I was expecting but understanding he didn't want a third child I didn't know how to bring it up. He was wanting to be intimate so asked if I should use the diaphragm and I said, "Ummm, no." He slit his eyes and asked why not? "Because I haven't had a period in like six weeks." He was even more suspicious but said with hope, "Is it menopause?" I said it wasn't and he just stared at me and didn't say another thing.

Six months later at a routine sonogram the doctor found that this little boy I was carrying was missing part of his brain and had a very rare condition called Dandy Walker Malformation. In my grieving I took that as a sign from God that I was being punished for betraying my DHs trust. The baby was born healthy in 2006 but we had to wait another six months to have a definitive answer as to the state of his brain. God performed a miracle in the meantime because his MRI was totally normal!

The moral of the story is...if your husband says no, then listen to him. I knew in my heart of hearts that if I didn't get MYSELF fixed after the baby's birth, I'd do it all over again, no matter what hell I had been through. I'm already 40 and DH is 44 so I would be risking having a baby with a chromosomal problem which isn't easily healed and might have ruined the relationship I've nurtured with DH for over 16 years. Children are a blessing but your marriage comes first.

I hope this makes some sense!


1 mom found this helpful

All I can tell you is good luck! My husband feels the same way. I have a 7 year old son and an almost 5 year old daughter. Becasue I am from a family of 4 girls, I want desperately to give my baby girl a sister. I am so close to my sisters, and there is just a special bond between sisters that brothers and sisters don't seem to have. If I had another boy, it would be no big deal; at least I tried to give her a sister. I would of course love my baby boy as much as I would another girl. In anycase, I have given up. I know that it would make my husband miserable to have another child. If it happened, he would love that child, but he is wanting the surgery. It's going to be his 35th birthday present. It's just a matter of keeping the peace at our house and enjoying the two wonderful children that we have, and thanking Godevery day for the two healthy, beautiful, smarth children that we have been blessed with. I wish you luck, but you may have to do as I did and find peace with having only two.

Hi J.,
You are brave for even thinking about a third child. I understand you both coming from a family of 3, but is it really worth disrupting the harmony of your family life. I guess I'm saying if your husband doesn't want one, why push the issue? You say 3 feels complete but then you say you want a girl. If the next one is a boy, would you still try for a girl or would you be happy with 3 boys? Maybe you should do a little more praying and soul searching instead of trying to change his opinion. This decision doesn't only affect you, even though you'll be the one doing most of the work:-).
Take care

I definitely wouldn't even consider getting pregnant without your husbands complete support. You wouldn't want him to be bitter torwards you or even towards your child.

Why should you want to try and change his mind... He is right it is expensive for children and it is only going to get more expensive. It is hard enough making ends meet trying to save for retirement and college... If it was meant to be for you to have 3 it will happen but trying to trick your husband is wrong and could end up backfiring on you... I too wanted a girl but have been blessed with 3 boys. I wouldn't trade them for the world.

Just be real careful about the decision. Make sure it's for both of you because the last thing you want is for him to end up resenting the baby. And that resentment could last a lifetime if he really doesn't want it. And look at the bright side, you have 2 healthy boys which is more than alot of people get in a lifetime. So either way you win. But he and the baby could lose if he isn't in it whole-heartedly. (And I think all moms get baby fever when either their baby starts getting older or your clock seems to be ticking, and it's a panicky feeling having to make that decision.) And you're right, you can never really afford kids, you just make it work. Good luck. I hope it works out for the best for everyone. You're only 35 though!

I don't think you should try to change his mind. He doesn't want more kids.

My honest opinion is to let him go ahead and have the procedure. It isn't just economics that prompt me to say that, although certainly that is a concern. The main reason is that he doesn't want another child.

It is one thing to want another child and not get one, but it's quite a different matter to NOT want another one and get one anyway. Resentment can grow very quickly in that case. First, your husband will resent you for doing it against his will (although it takes 2 to make a baby, being dishonest about birth control will really make him mad), and for another thing, you risk making him resent any new child that comes along. Do you really want a child to go through life knowing his or her father resents the very fact that he or she is in the world? I wouldn't want that for any child of mine.

Sure, you think he will get used to it and grow to love the child, and that may or may not be true, but either way, he will lose his trust in you, and you probably don't want that.

My feeling is that you have already been blessed with 2 wonderful children. You should count your blessings and spread your love between them and your husband. I know it would seem like 3 would be normal for you, but that is just a number. 2 parents and 2 children can be just right.

Now, if you and your husband agree together to let him get his procedure and have no more children, you might think about taking the money you would have spent on another child, and banking it each month towards your two existing children's college, or perhaps your retirement account(s). Diapers, formula, baby food, wipes, car seats, swings, burp pads, clothing, doctor visits, emergency room visits, hospital stays, c-section out of pocket costs if that is a concern...all of those things really add up to a whole heck of a lot of money, even if you already have some items there from your other two. Add it all up into a yearly cost, divide it by 12 months, and that is how much money you can save by NOT having another child. Further divide it by how many paychecks you and he get each month, and then bank that amount each paycheck (or put it into your IRA, however you want).

Obviously, there is no one giving you advice who is really going to know exactly how YOU feel about this, but then again, you might not know exactly how strongly your husband feels against the idea of another child. I wouldn't risk my marriage and future happiness when you already have two blessings.

When one person wants to have children and the other doesn't, the one that doesn't has to have the final say. Even if you keep at him unil he agrees, there is a chance that he will resent you for it, and possibly that he will resent the baby as well. You don't want to have to deal with that for the rest of your life, and it really isn't fair to a baby to bring it into a situation where it isn't wanted 100%. And if your husband is to the point that he's ready to undergo surgery to prevent another pregnancy, then I'd say that he's pretty serious about not wanting any more babies.
Not to mention that, at 35, you're already at risk for birth defects such as Down's Syndrome. Are you really prepared for the possibility of having to care for a disabled child, especially one that your husband didn't want in the first place?
And don't just "forget" to take your birth control pills. It's lying and it's not fair to your husband or any "oopsie"
baby that might result.

I do not think I would want to bring another child into the marriage unless both of you want another child. I had my last child at 36, he is only 23, and I am 60. I love him, but 60 is old to have such a young child. I still do a lot with all my children, but at that age age, your are ready to start slowing down and planning for your future and retirement. The way the economy is now, you really need to think about what is in all your families interest. You have a long road ahead of you with the two young ones you already have. Enjoy them and enjoy all the young things while you can. My Uncle tried for a boy 5 times. He never got that boy. All girls.

S. Miller

Pay attention to your husband's wishes. Just because you want to be a new mommie again, it doesn't mean he wants to be a new daddy. Unless you want to experience single parenthood. I suggest you reconsider and enjoy what you've got. Many would die to be in your shoes.

Hey, J.! Just wanted to let you know that you are not alone! I'm 35. My hubby and I have two boys who are 5 and 2, but I also have a 15 year old son from a previous marriage. My husband also complains about money and that he's getting too old for more kids. My husband has also talked about getting fixed and that really scares me. I also want to try for a daughter. I know I won't feel complete until I have the little girl that I've wanted all my life. So basically, you are not alone and can send me a message if you want to talk. Good Luck and keep praying.

Hi J., as you know having children is the most wonderful experience in the world, but if your husband is not on board with you it could be devistating to your marriage. When my husband and I were younger I wanted children so bad, I became obsessed with it. He did not want to have children at the time. Long story short we ended up divorcing because of it. Fortunately we did remarry a year later and 1 year after that we had our first child, and 5 years after her our second child. My husband turned out to be the best father to my children I could ever ask for. But he was wanting these two beautiful children. If your husband does not want anymore children I definately wouldnt trick him into it. The effects of that could be devistating. Focus on being thankful with the two healthy children that you have. Times are harder now than when we were kids. People are having smaller familys. Our parents started having children much younger then we did. Your husband has a valid point of view about the expense of having children and wanting to save for retirement. I would continue talking to him about it but I wouldnt push the issue if he is not ready. Good Luck to you.

Definitely don't trick him! I would sit down and have an in depth conversation. See what he says and let him hear what you have to say. If it is money that he is worried about maybe you can try re-arranging the budget for a few months and see how much extra money you can come up with by cutting back here and there. Pay it down is a great book by Jean Chatzky, and so it the Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey. Also Suze Orman has a lot of great books. Hopefully by reading some of these you both can figure out a way to save for retirement and have another baby. Good luck!

Trust me. You don't want to have a child with your husband that he feels forced to have. If you can't afford another - *especially* if you couldn't afford the first two!! - you will probably regret embarking on such an expensive pursuit. At 35, it becomes absolutely critical to save for retirement if you haven't started a serious plan for this that you and your husband have been contributing towards already. This is a sign that you really do need to focus your budget away from accruing more expenses and towards necessities (which is not a "joy" if by that you mean "luxury"!).

I know you hate to hear all of this, but it sounds to me like your husband is right.

My husband grew up with a brother who is his best friend. I grew up with two brothers who made an enormous difference in my life. But we both had to just face facts. We knew that our time, abilities and especially our finances would be stretched with one child. But we looked at our situation carefully and knew we *could* do it. So we went ahead, and have one beautiful daughter who is so dear to us. She will have friends and extended family, and we will involve her in charities, sports and other hobbies and projects to give her a sense of the wider world and the needs of those around her. As much as we might like to have more children, we know we can't, and this is ultimately best for the one that we DO have. We are happier now, I think, knowing that we're doing what's best for everyone involved, and that *includes* any children we might have added to our family!

Besides all of that, it really is sad when a child is forced on a father, or he is tricked into having a child. I've seen it happen. She was my maid of honor and she has NO self-esteem. She grew up knowing that her own father never wanted her. It's not pretty.


Well I think you need to consider your husbands feelings as well. Plus not that I am taking his side but I am soon to be the mother of 4 under the age of 5 and I am the one who only wanted 2 children. I have had children becasue hubby wanted them (I ofcorse love all of my kids and wouldnt change a thing). The only thing I am asking you to consider is how old will you be when your kids are 20 and able to venture out on thier own. When will the time for you and huby be again or ever. Was you hubby aware you wanted three kids to begin with? He has got a point about money if you havent been able to start a savings for yourself/or children having another child to add to the list of expenses is high in the civilian world. Well just a few thoughts for you to ponder. You can always snuggle other peoples kids or start a day care to influence the lives of other kids as well. There are so many ways to reach out to children without having them yourself,lol.

I had to add I read the responses below and I felt I should add my age I am turning 30 this year and I feel for the most part I am done now becaue of my age. I do not want to be a old parent either. When I am old I want to be able to enjoy my grandchildren and let my kids be adults. I am a SAHM and we are definitly one of the more responsible peoples with our money we have savings for us and a large amount for our children as well each has thier own college fund almost as much as our IRA. But just becasue we could afford another child (and we are not rich actually close to poverty line, just manage it well) doesnt mean we should. There is a bit of my own background so you can see where I am talking from.

Listen to him !!! You are at a high risk age for SERIOUS birth defects, Down's (a mild one)for one. You are going to have kids in college over a 6 year period at least,. possibly putting your poor husband into his late 50's when thoughts of ruining grandchildren should start looking like fun. Your husband sounds like a concientious, sensible man. Can you imagine how he would feel if, god-forbid, something happened to you and he was left without you.....or if you had to deal with the emotional and financial demands of a child with serious birth defects.....or if you ended up with a disability as result of the pregnancy (eclampsia....stroke...paralysis), remember your age J.. You are so blessed to have 2 children. Enjoy them and your wise husband. God bless. A.

Boy does this take me back ... I am a mom of 4 ... 3 girls one boy we had our first 3 close my oldest was 20 months old when we brought twins home! AND I still found myself wanted another one?? The twins where 7 when I had my 4th! My husband too tried to talk me out of it but he gave in?? He doesn't like me to cry ... tears worked for me. BUT on the flip side he is right about the money every thing cost so much and here we are in our fifty's with 3 college loans and a forth one coming up!?!? People just think diapers cost a lot just wait till they get a car, a phone (which you want them to have when they get a car)insurance oh my gosh for boys can break the bank! Diapers are cheap mush cheaper than gas for a car but I didn't think ahead when I wanted other baby?
So I got my baby and I wouldn't give him up for the world but when I was 8 months along with him I was backing out of the drive way to take the girls to school and it hit me WHAT WAS I THINKING! So before you use the tears make sure you can give three kids as much as you can give two... Because money ranks right up there with oxygen! Good luck! B.

I have to say I am SHOCKED at the women who are writting thinking "they rule" on the subject of having more children. I am a step-mom to two older daughters. My husband & I have a little girl & a baby boy together. I am a christian woman & following that belief saying "God will provide" is NOT the answer. If you want to get technical, the husband is the Head of Household & you are to obey his wishes.
I think you need to look at the reason behind why you want more children. Is there something missing in your life, are you in fear of an empty nest, or maybe you just love to take care of babies. I have to ask, are you a stay at home mom. If not then I would definitly say no more babies. We certainly do not need day care raising more children just to feed the egos of the women who want more.
I know I sound harsh, but the plain old fact of the matter is for every reason you may want more children, your husband doesn't. My father-in-law is a perfect example of what happens to the man who gets to be a daddy just one last time. He had much resentment & ill will towards his youngest. And he legitimatly was an "accident". So my brother-in-law has tons of pent up issues with his dad for his attitude & behaviour towards him growing up. Does he love his son? Of course, but you can't hide or erase resentment or ill feelings. And no amount of a Mother's love can replace the love of a father.
I have to tell you, my husband is a junior & after 3 girls he thought he was destined to be a daddy to girls. We both wanted at least one more baby & PRAISE THE LORD it was a boy. So now we have our III. As wonderful as babies are I completely miss my sleep & even with a 5 year old who is pretty independant, she gets deprived of things & pushed aside a lot of time when we have to take care or pay special attention to the baby.
I can't imagine adding one more to the mix even when our son is older. It just isn't fair to your other children, because whether you believe me or not, they miss out on things when you are busy paying attention to the others.

J. - you are going to have to sit down and have a heart to heart discussion with your husband about how you feel and are really going to have to listen to how he feels. Hopefully you will come to some agreement.

Hey J.,
I am a 24 year old mother and I have 2 boys 4 and 2 also. My opinion is to not have another one unless your husband is all for it because if you force it he will resent you for having another one. If one parent doest not want it no need to cause problems in the marriage my forcing it. My husband got a visectomy and it had been the best decision of our lives. There is this great sense of releif in our marriage to know that we cant get pregnant and we soon will have our lives together back. We also love that by the time we are 40 aur kids will be grown and out of high school so we can retire together and do what WE want. It is so important to find that median, if you dont no ones mind will change. I hope this helps its probably hard taking advice from someone 10 years younger but I am not your normal 24 yr old.

I say just keep seducing him so he can get you knocked up before his procedure. Sexy lingerie never hurt anyone.

Dear J., I remember my first husband didn't want children but I begged & begged. He said yes. Our son turned 3 and one year later we divorced. I was a single parent for 7 years before I remarried. George & I have now been married 29 yrs. He adopted my son. God is good !! We do not have children together. And our son loved not having to share his "dad".
If you have a good, loving man and it sounds like he is thinking of the future (money wise ) for his family, is n't this worth more than another child ! Another child now is starting over. When he graduates high school, you will be a grandmother. Just something to think about.

Hi J.,
I understand that you want a 3rd kiddo but if your husband does not, then I don't feel like tricking him is fair. What if the shoe was on the other foot? I think, and this is my opinion, that you should just come to an agreement together without being deceptive. You do already have 2 children and he has valid reasons for not wanting any more. That's hard, though, I think I would want to try for a girl, too. But I strongly feel that you should both be on board with it.
Good luck!

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