Starting in the 1960s, couples’ desire to have children has changed, like life, career, and achievement expectations revolve around other aspects of life.
In recent decades, the decision to have children has been a matter of agreement between the couple since it is not currently taken as a natural consequence of coexistence, relationship, or marriage, as it was before.
If the situation arises in which one member of the couple expresses their desire to have children, and the other does not, it is essential to establish fluid, healthy communication that allows defining the reasons why they make this statement since it should not be a unilateral decision, neither imposed nor a mandatory requirement for the permanence of the relationship. It is a mistake to think that if this conversation is delayed or postponed, the other person could change their mind. Suppose it is a firm, long-term and definitive decision. In that case, it is time to consider how they see the relationship’s future and if they are willing to consider having children or not. The couple should seriously consider the relationship’s future and thus start a relationship new stage, either acceptance or breaking.
Many times this issue of motherhood or fatherhood is not addressed at the beginning of a relationship and progresses until reaching a commitment and marriage, without really elucidating how they see a future together, whether with children or not. Therefore, it is vital to know what your partner thinks about it.
According to psychologist Cristina Pérez, Director of Siquia.com, understanding the other’s position or approach and subsequently making a decision is of the utmost importance before bringing a child without having the couple’s acceptance, with the consequent problems that this would entail.
On the other hand, Dr. José Luis Carrasco, director of the Blue Healthcare Mind Personality Unit, affirms that having children does not necessarily ensure coexistence or the permanence of relationships. For this reason, it is essential to reach an agreement when deciding to have offspring or not as a couple.
It is crucial to find out why there is no agreement on this issue. There are fears, life experiences in childhood, uncertainty, feelings of ambiguity about performance as a father or mother, and certainty of their decision, which cannot be changed. These topics must be addressed with respect and tolerance, with great listening and understanding skills. If, in the end, there is no possible agreement, it is time for the couple to decide to continue or not with their relationship or if it is time to go their separate ways. But at no time do they agree without being fully convinced that it is what they want together, because this leads to feelings of frustration and, at some point, blaming the other for feeling incomplete or with an unfulfilled life project, and here lie the painful ruptures.
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Sometimes these issues belong to the field of personal growth and may not coincide with the expectations and plans of the couple. If this is identified early and promptly, they may conclude to separate their destinies in a manner consistent with their desires and thus avoid resentment and a deterioration of the relationship consistent with these repressed desires regarding parenthood or motherhood.
In this case and many others, clear, fluid communication with a great capacity for understanding the feelings and perspectives of the other are the key to decision-making as a couple and is a practice that ensures the permanence of a healthy relationship.