Are You Childless by Marriage Like Me?

Annie 9215A
Babies? What’s that?

Dear friends, I’ve hit a wall. After 11 years, I feel as if I have told you everything there is to tell. Because I’m childless, widowed and aging, spending my days with people well past menopause, I’m completely out of the baby/no baby loop. It’s just me and my dog Annie riding this spinning globe together. I can write endlessly about the neighborhood dogs and Annie’s upcoming knee surgery, but I rarely interact with children or young parents except on Facebook, with a “like” here and a “love” there.

Being childless means that while my friends are either visiting their children and grandchildren or hosting them at their homes this summer, it’s still just me and Annie. It would be different if I lived closer to my family or they were the kind of folks who actually got together. My father and I often have telephone conversations like this:

Dad: Have you heard from your brother?

Me: No. Have you?

Dad: No. He never calls. Have you heard from anybody else?

Me: No. In fact, I had to call myself to make sure my phone could still receive incoming calls.

Dad: Don’t your friends call?

Me: They text.

But my dysfunctional family is beside the point. I’m living in a  green forest bubble with  my dog. I have nothing new to say. But I have no intention of quitting this blog. So let’s talk about you. I surrendered my chance to have children before many of you were born. Times were different. I want to know how it is for you now. Let’s start with this:

What brought you to the Childless by Marriage blog? Do you consider yourself childless by marriage or fear that you will be? What’s going on? How can we help?

Please share in the comments. Let’s get this conversation going.

Thank you all for being here.


25 thoughts on “Are You Childless by Marriage Like Me?

  1. I’m newly married to a man who is quite a bit older than me and never thought I wanted to have kids. That has always been something he and I have agreed on. When we got married and revisited the subject, he said he would want to have children pretty soon if we did decide to have them because he doesn’t want to be an “old dad.” Unfortunately, I’m currently in graduate school and it’s not the most ideal time to have kids. My body would likely be inhospitable due to the stress. Anyway, I’ve been pretty down about not having the opportunity to have kids later on and knowing he will probably pass before me. Guess we will just try to enjoy being childless to the fullest extent possible.


  2. An unhappy marriage in my early years. A divorce and stressful time in my late 30’s. I’m now 40 and with a great guy who has 3 kids from a prior marriage and does not want more…
    I guess this is my reality – trying hard to move past this but difficult to do when your younger sister just had her 1st and only baby. Sadly I’m not even at a point in life where I can look at the baby or pictures she sends me. Then I feel guilty about that so I send her money instead of being there… 😦


  3. I’m sorry in advance for posting this, because I’m no longer childless, but for a while thought I would be and was trying to deal with that via reading things like this blog. Maybe my post will encourage women in a similar situation to mine? I got married at 30 and wanted no kids. Husband felt the same, perhaps more so. Much of this was due to a dysfunctional family of origin and having no friends with kids. Well, husband got a vasectomy and I was okay with it, though I thought it a bit extreme. The night after the procedure, I had a terrifyingly realistic dream that my daughter was taken from me, and all I had was her picture. The feelings of fierce maternal love were so intense that I woke up questioning everything. It was about a year until I came to terms with the fact that I desperately wanted a child/children. I also had a religious conversion in this time, which changed how I saw things and caused a bit of an upheaval as well. I had to tell my husband about my longing for a child. Reading this blog helped me come to the decision to tell him and to be willing to leave if he weren’t able to get on the same page. A controversial decision for sure, but at 31 I felt time was still barely on my side if I wanted to start over and create a family with a willing partner. I was giving husband a chance essentially before divorce. Not easy. We were in therapy at the time and our therapist was a Catholic who was very much encouraging my husband to explore why he didn’t want kids and consider that. Well, it was terrible for months, but he and I worked through and he began to see where he could be a father. This wasn’t easy because he has a troubled past with his father. Long story short, we got a reversal and with much prayer (on my part, husband’s not religious) seven months later our baby girl was conceived. Husband is so in love with her and has been an awesome dad! He and I would like to have more now, if we’re able, in the time I have left (I’m 34). So your blog helped me a lot. Thank you. I’ll probably unsubscribe soon though. Good luck to all the women working through this issue, I know it’s a personal thing when you’re going through it.


    • Oh Jennifer, thank you for sharing this. Praise God. It’s a beautiful story with a happy ending. I’m so glad the blog helped you speak up. I wish to God I had. And I’m so happy your husband is happy, too.


    • Thanks for sharing. My husband and I have been through a lot, and I think if we were both married to different (more secure) people, we might have had children with those people. We’re “almost” there, but at 43 I’ve made my peace. I still have daydreams about adoption but it’s just not something we’re pursuing. Who knows. maybe one day we will. Anyway, it’s nice to see it work out for someone who has been in our shoes. Enjoy!


  4. My husband has a son from a previous marriage. When we found out that we couldn’t have children, I was 35. Because he had a child already, he was not interested in extensive fertility treatment or adoption. I prayed for a miracle, but it never happened. I am now 45, and working towards acceptance of the life I have. It’s definitely not the life I envisioned. Yes, I am a stepmom, but it’s not the same.
    Knowing there are others sharing a similar experience helps me.


    • Hi Polly

      I’m reading this now, at 35, with a man who already has a son and who doesn’t want more kids. I am now at the closest I’ve ever been to feeling strong enough to leave him. I’m so tired. I’m angry at him because I think it is incredibly selfish and cruel of him. I struggle all the time when he organises things to do with his friends who have kids. I can opt to join or not, but when I do I feel like an alien. When I don’t, I’m left alone. The fact that you wrote “because he had a child already, he was not interested…” is the same reality I have now. I have no idea how fertile I am (or am not) but that doesn’t matter. He is adamant he won’t have more kids. I really don’t know what to do, because we genuinely love to be together so much. I’ve never been so in love with someone. But I feel like I come first to no one. I feel like an accessory in his life. I am angry and depressed, and I cry all the time. I feel like maybe I can accept never having kids, but to watch the man I love get to do it when I don’t is such incredible pain. Anyway, your story is so similar to mine I had to mention it. Thank you.


      • They say misery loves company, but I’m sorry to hear of your situation, Monique. I went through a rollercoaster of emotions, and I did seek out counseling, which did help some. Looking back, I wish I had pursued the issue further with my husband to let him know how important it was to me. He knows it now because he has seen the tears and has heard my crying when I hear of a friend or family member getting pregnant or having a baby. He doesn’t understand why I want children so badly, but he does see the hurt. I hope that you and your husband can work this out somehow.


  5. My husband was diagnosed with an untreatable and incurable neurological disease that I’m thinking may take his life before the end of the year…. am hoping for longer. I spent all my married life hating pregnant women or women with babies. Now I find myself hating women who are married and living a happy life. The thought of when my husband passes, I will be all alone–I’m really struggling with that. The other ladies in my support circle whose husbands have this disease all have children and grandchildren. The loneliness is just the worst, as you well know, Sue.


    • Candy, I’m so sorry. It’s not fair. I know how you feel about those women with healthy husbands. Me too. I know about that loneliness, too. Reach out to others as much as you can so you won’t be totally alone.


    • So sorry to hear this Candy. I enjoy reading your posts and I’m sorry you are in the middle of this. Prayers to you.


    • Candy, I am so sorry. I cannot imagine what youand your husband are going through. You have reminded me to be thankful for what I do have. Prayers for you 🙏


  6. I am not married yet. I met an amazing man one year ago through a calorie counter app (weird place to fall in love, I know). He is American, I am French, I visit him when we are both available. I am 27 and still a student, he is 41 and a single father of two kids. He told me two weeks ago he didn’t want any more children. I knew he had had a vasectomy, but since I kept talking about how I wanted kids, I thought we would probably have to turn to in vitro or adoption. But we had an argument over his own kids, who he loves more than life and for whom he sacrifices everything (they still don’t know I exist, and it is bugging me), and I said something about having other kids. That’s when he told me about not wanting any more, and since then I’ve been completely depressed. I am devastated. It is truly difficult. I have been raised by a loving mother and I have always wanted to pass that on. Yes, he is not my husband, yes, our relationship is somehow recent, yes I could find someone else in France (which would be way more convenient), yes, I could break up with him, but I love him. So much. I’ve had relationships before and nothing compares to what I have with him. Nothing at all. And he loves me very much too. I’ve been looking for comfort from my friends who ALL tell me to break up. So I turned to the internet and found your blog. I think I might hang out here for some time. I’m gonna need it. I also have an appointment with a psychologist next week. I can’t handle that alone.


  7. First of all, I would like to say thank you for sharing this blog. I came it across it last night as I realised I need an outlet to try and come to terms with what I am going through.

    I had an arranged marriage. In my late twenties, after four years of being in a very difficult marriage, I couraged up the strength and left him. I then went on in life, finding it hard to trust anyone. I then met up with an old friend of mine, someone I really connected with years back. We got married a couple of years ago. He has been married before and already has children from a previous marriage. I am in my late 40’s and would love to have a child. I am physically fit and had checks with my doctor to see if having a child is possible at my age, but my husband doesn’t want any more children. What do you do when you finally find your soul mate but your chance of motherhood simply remains a desire in your heart and mind never to be fulfilled?


  8. Hello and thank you so much for this blog! I’ve been feeling so alone with this problem and then I found this. Other women struggling or overcoming the struggle to live without a child. I’m 39 and a couple of months ago my long-term partner admitted that he is still not ready for children and he won’t be anytime soon. I don’t have the luxury of time. He knows that my greatest wish is to have a family and he has broken my heart with his honest admission. I love him though. It has taken a long time to meet a man like him who makes me laugh every day and is my best friend. I know if I leave him I may never find another partner that I have that connection with and I would then be childless and soulmateless. I will keep reading your blog and hope that one day, I can get through a day without crying for the life I wanted.


  9. At almost 40, I think I’ve made my peace with things to some degree. I did isolate myself for a while because I was so ashamed of how my life turned out, but I think in the past year or two, I’ve come out of that. I prefer to have friends who don’t have kids, but it’s not out of sadness or envy anymore. It’s just because they have more time to hang out and do things. I’ve made a new bunch of friends who are about 10 years older on average. Some have kids, but if they do they are in their teens or 20s, so they are in a phase of life where they want to have fun, go out, travel, etc. It’s just a much better fit than people my own age who are always busy or don’t have money to do things because of their other responsibilities. So that’s what I’m up to for now. I know nothing lasts forever though, so I’m also learning to be more at peace with being by myself, and going and doing things alone, beach, movies, whatever because as someone without any family, I can’t count on always having company. For now, I travel with my husband but I think, should I find myself alone, I won’t have any problem continuing to see the world by myself and I think I’ll still enjoy it.


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