Any advice on deciding to TTC?

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from framerican51008. Show framerican51008's posts

    Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    I'm the type of person who can't make a decision without carefully considering all the angles.  I would really love any advice/info on how you knew it was time to try... or the things you considered first... or for parents out there, the things you wish you knew before you had a baby.

    Basically, we decided to start to TTC after an approaching trip.  We moved the trip up to a month from now, so all of a sudden this seems REALLY REALLY real.  I'm excited, but also nervous.  I know we are going to be great parents, but are we ready to do it 11 months from now?!

    There isn't anything in particular making me feel insecure or anything like that, I just agonize over big decisions and I can't think of anyone to have a good talk with about this stuff.  We're ~29 and our friends either don't have kids or didn't actually mean to get pregnant, so I don't feel like they can relate.  Thanks ladies!
     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from ALF72. Show ALF72's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Fram, are your having doubts about having kids or about WHEN to have kids. Huge difference.  If it's just about when to have kids, then it's never going to be the right time.  You can always make more money, take one more trip, etc. But if you really want them, and can feasibly do it, then just go for it. If you aren't sure whether you want to have the actual child - the midnight feedings, the lack of sleep, the expense, the dent to your career, etc, then think about it some more and make sure you and your DH are on the same page.  Good luck.
     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from KT75. Show KT75's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Personally I think its always a little scary to make a decision this big.  DH and I sort of just felt like the right time had rolled around - not sure how to describe it.  I will say you really can't imagine how much babies cost!!  We have affordable daycare (800/month) but honestly everyt ime you turn around you are shelling out a lot of money -- new wardrobe every couple of months, diapers, wipes, forumla, etc -- She is VERY well worth every penny and we do not struggle to get by, but I think I had under-estimated how much babies cost!!
     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from KAM2007. Show KAM2007's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    I don't think one ever feels ready for kids. As prepared as you can be, when you make the decision to TTC there's a "am I ready" fear. Then you get the BFP and you get the "wholy cr@p, am I ready???" fear. Then you connect and bond to that little person growign and wiggling inside. Then labor and the "wholy cr@p, this is real, I'm not ready" fear hits, and you hold that little baby and looks up at you and you know you may not be fully ready, but you're ready to do what ever it takes.

    I get the sense that you're ready.

    Things we considered when TTC-where we settled? We waited until we moved into our house and did some construction. Was work all set-where we in a place to take the time off? (I switched jobs that had less travel, and was supposed to be less stress.) Those were the major things we waited for-but I probably wouldn't have really waited on the job thing, it just worked out.

    things I wish I knew: well, I knew I'd have to take a lot of time off after I returned to work for sick baby stuff...but seriously I haven't worked a full month without taking a day off. The worry about my little guy is so intense, but also so rewarding. I wish I knew how much I would love my little guy, how much fun he is, how much fun I have with him, how it breaks my heart when he cries, and how it melts my heart when he gives me a kiss, or hear his giggles, or points to my nose when I ask him to, and how much fun his first birthday party was, and how amazing it is to see the world through those little eyes.
     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from Daisy75. Show Daisy75's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Re:  cost of babies:  babies ARE expensive, but somehow, people always manage to get by.  DH was completely freaked out about money before we started trying.  It was only after pointing out to him repeatedly that there are many people who make considerably less money than we do and who manage to afford 2 or 3 or more children that it really sunk in.  People make it work.  There are LOTS of ways to cut costs too.  I buy all of my babies' clothes 2nd hand at my mothers of twins club tag sale (2ce/year).  The clothes are in great condition--some still with tags on and only cost $1-$2 per piece.  And "equipment" can all be gotten 2nd hand from these sales or craigslist at considerable discounts, too (just be sure to check the CPSC website for recalls).  Unless someone else buys it for us, it's 2nd hand.  When they're older and start to "care" about where their clothes come from, then we will probably not rely on the 2nd hand ones so much, but for now, they're 7 months old and don't know the difference.  Even my mother, who is a "clothes snob" has been surprised at the quality of the clothes and equipment we've gotten.

    Otherwise, to answer your actual question about knowing when you're ready, I think you just get to a point where you feel ready.  You've done enough travelling to be satisfied for a few years, the bar scene isn't as interesting as it used to be, you'd rather stay home on a Saturday night or would like to be home by 11 rather than just be getting out the door at 11.  You have more gadgets than you know what to do with.  You're looking for something "more" that can't be bought.  It's an intimidating decision and certainly one of the biggest decisions you'll ever make, but don't get caught up in the "how can we afford it?" and "are we really ready" questions too much, because then you'll never have kids.  And as Alf said, it may seem like there will always be a "better" time, but really, the best time is when you feel ready.  Most importantly, once you have kids, it's not longer all about you.  Every decision you make will be about your child/children.  What temperature to keep the thermostat on in winter?  That would be the temperature that your little one will be comfortable at--NOT the lowest temperature you can tolerate.  When to eat dinner--even if  you are so hungry you can barely stand it?  Probably AFTER lo has been fed.  When to go to the store?  When lo is awake/asleep.  Where to go on vacation?  Somewhere that is appropriate/not boring for LO.  What movie to see?  The one that is rated G. 

    Obviously, you and DH will (hopefully) still have adult time and date nights and time alone on occasion, but things WILL be different, and your decision-making day-to-day will change drastically.  And that's ok.  If you're ready for it, it won't be a big deal, and you'll do it happily, because at the end of the day, seeing that toothless grin is all that matters.
     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from KT75. Show KT75's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    That is a good point from Daisy - you and DH need to realize your needs/wants will almost never come 1st again - but honestly, one look at that baby and you would never think about even wanting to put yourself 1st again!  Fun changes - we find its hysterically funny to watch DD's reactions to things - For dates we do go out less but we got Netflix and have lots of order in & watch a movie nights - really just spending time together is more important to us than actually doing anything.
     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from Trouble30. Show Trouble30's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    As someone in the middle of her pregnancy, I can tell you that it's terrifying and exciting at the same time.  You always think, after this, then we'll be ready.  But I agree with most of the other posters that there's never a perfect time and you are never certain you are ready, but as soon as you get that BFP the excitement and anticipation is overwhelming (even for DH!).  And it can happen quickly, I will be a mom 11 months after going off BC!   So be ready for that too!  It sounds like there is no question that you want children, so just go for it!  People make it work somehow, and you will too :)
     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from Brighton1. Show Brighton1's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    I freaked out briefly, but as soon as we started trying, all I can think about is becoming a mom.  It's like I need to have a baby NOW.  I don't care about the money, the sleep deprivation, round-the-clock feedings, dirty diapers, sore boobs, etc, etc.  I don't think the timing will ever perfect, but right now it's pretty good.  We still have some projects to finish up around the house, and DH will need a new car, but other than that we're in good shape.  We'll find a way to make it work.
     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from framerican51008. Show framerican51008's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Thanks ladies, I appreciate your thoughts and advice.  I definitely don't think there will ever be a perfect time... it's just such a huge step!!  I think we're ready in terms of life style - we mostly enjoy just spending time with each other and being homebodies anyway.  (Note to self: sign up for Netflix.) 

    We don't own a home yet, but that doesn't bother me.  I love my job and plan to stay there indefinitely and we've been saving for years.  We'd be ok... although I wouldn't mind hearing more about just how expensive babies are!  I've been convincing myself lately that they can't be that expensive, but clearly I am wrong...

    It's funny that Daisy mentioned temperature because we may need to find a warmer apartment :o)
     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from Daisy75. Show Daisy75's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Babies are cheap; parents are expensive ;). 

    The reality is that most of the little doodads and gadgets that you "have to" have, you could do without.  Babies need love, a warm place to sleep, clothes, food, and clean diapers.  That's about it.  The price of the crib, clothes, food, and diapers can all be controlled if you're smart about it.  A 2nd hand pack 'n' play can be bought for $10 - $20 and baby can sleep in it for 2 years if you need them to.  You don't HAVE TO buy a $500 crib.  Again, good quality, 2nd hand clothes are easy to come by via friends and tag sales.  Formula is expensive, but store-brand is half the price and equally nutritious due to heavy govt. regulations.  Breastmilk is free.  Diapers depend on the brand--store brands are cheaper than Pampers or Huggies, but quality varies greatly, so you have to experiment.  When it comes to baby food, you can make your own in a blender (since you won't be using it as much for margaritas anymore) from fresh produce to save money.  Otherwise, the jars of Beech-nut are 50 cents each at Market Basket and somewhat cheaper if  you buy in bulk online or at BJs.  Gerber is 2ce as much, yet they all contain the same thing:  pureed food w/water.

    So...as far as other expenses go, technically those are all "optional."  Again, good-quality toys/equipment/accessories can be purchased 2nd hand from tag sales or craigslist.  Examples of what we've gotten:  Bumbo seat $2 used ($30 new, I think); Exersaucer $25 used ($60 new); double snap 'n' go $30 used ($100 new); Pack 'n' play $10 used ($50 - $200 new); double umbrella stroller $20 used ($200 new); little toys free from other friends with kids, and as gifts from Grandma. 

    Having 2 at once has forced us to be somewhat frugal and resourceful, and I am always amazed at the quality of the 2nd hand items we've gotten.  Kids get more expensive as they get older.  I look at the money we're saving now by getting things 2nd hand as money we'll be able to spend on gymnastics, dance and music lessons, sports, NEW clothes, etc. when they get older and start to care about such things.

    This is why it CAN be done.  People make it work based on what they have to start with.  When baby comes, you don't go out to eat as much, you don't go to the movies as much, you don't travel as much, etc. (well, most people cut back on those things considerably, but not everyone, I suppose).  Basically, once baby's needs have been met, everything else becomes "extra."  Your mindset shifts completely.  That $50 pair of shoes you've been eyeing comes in a distant 2nd when you have to buy formula and diapers.  And the best part is, you no longer care about the shoes.  Sure, it would be nice to have them, but the 10 other pairs you have are just fine, and it doesn't feel like a sacrifice.

    Don't stress about the money.  Look around you.  You will be able to find at least one other couple who makes less money than you and who do fine supporting their kids.  It's do-able.  You just need to be smart about it.
     
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from framerican51008. Show framerican51008's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Thanks Daisy, I appreciate all the advice.  It isn't really the money that worries me... It's just that there is no turning back!!  That always freaks me out a little, but I guess I have always made good decisions in the past so I need to trust myself now too.  My husband actually doesn't have a steady job right now, so money does have to be a factor, but I know we figure things out.
     
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from lauratf. Show lauratf's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    You are hesitating because you are hearing that tiny  inner voice that is telling you that your husband doesn't have a steady job and can't provide for his family right know.   That inner voice? LISTEN TO IT. No one should start a family without having their 'ducks in a row".  If your husband needs to go back to school to get the skills needed to keep a steady job, then he should do so immediately and you should both wait to have a baby until you are both secure.   Your child deserves to have two parents who are financially secure.   

     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from Trigirl627. Show Trigirl627's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Don't worry about the no turning back thing. Once you have that little one in your arms, you won't even want to look back...I started to get that panicky feeling toward the end of my pregnancy and as soon as DD was born, nothing else mattered. It is a life change, for sure, but a positive one.
     
  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from GC1016. Show GC1016's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Fra, I have to ask -- how long have you been married?  We're TTC and celebrated our two-year anniversary in the fall.  I'm really grateful that we waited a bit after the wedding to settle into married life and just enjoy that time together.  If I weren't 35, I might hold out another year or so, just because I love this time with DH ... but maybe not.  Who's to say? 

    But time waits for no ovary, and we're ready to take the plunge.  If you guys are still on the sweet side of turning 30 and you're feeling unsure, I see no real harm in waiting.  It may only take a few months for you to feel more secure in climbing aboard the TTC Express.  

    I ask because we had initially discussed TTC after our one-year anniversary, and as that date approached I was consumed with anxiety about money, where we were living, schools, my career, etc ... all very Logical Rational Things.  And while those things all changed for the better, admittedly, I think I was just not ready.  Because now most of what frightened me seems perfectly doable, and there's no way that's logical or rational, as I've recently priced daycare and yowzas, the math on THAT doesn't work in real numbers.  But we'll figure it out. 

    Now, that's how it worked for me, but it may be that your gut, too, is telling you to wait a bit, and that's perfectly OK.  Hope I'm not overstepping, but I feel like you're looking for hard facts to make a decision that can't be made that way. 
     
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    I agree with ALF.  I'm not sure from your posts if you are unsure of the timing of TTC or the idea altogether of having kids at all.   

    Have you considered exploring this in professional, personal counseling if you can't sort it out on your own?  You're right, you can't go back once you have kids.  And, it DOES happen that people wish they hadn't (I know someone personally), but it's taboo to say it so no one thinks it happens (or, if it does happen to them they think they are the only ones on earth). 
     
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from framerican51008. Show framerican51008's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Gee Kar, you know I value your opinion, but I don't think I need speak to a professional about this!  I would think a large percentage of women give it a lot of thought before TTC.  There is no question that we want to have kids, just not sure if we are ready to take the leap.  I think we've decided to hold off for 6 months or so and hopefully DH will have steady work by then.  It might sound crazy to be not-so-concerned about his work, but if we waited for it to be all worked out, we'd never have a baby!

    GC - we've only been married 7 months, but we've been living together for over 2 years and dating for 6.  We both have agreed for a while that we wanted to have a baby soon after getting married... maybe that's why we stretched out the engagement :o)
     
  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from tomarra. Show tomarra's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Framerican51008,

    Most people have fears and  concerns when entering any major stage of their life.  My advise is listen to your gut and your husbands as well.

    My husband has also been out of work but we have decided that we would start TTC soon!  Our main resaons were ready, he's 37 & I'm 32 plus I have issues with endometriosis so it may take a while.

    So, whatever you too decide to do I wish you all the best.
     
  18. You have chosen to ignore posts from GC1016. Show GC1016's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Just curious.  There's no magic number, my personal experience was that I felt far less anxious/ambivalent about taking the TTC leap after we'd celebrated a few milestones together as a married couple.  Don't ask me why, but somehow it FELT different to me. 

    Sounds like you've hit on a plan, though, and I'm glad for you. 
     
  19. You have chosen to ignore posts from ALF72. Show ALF72's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Fra, I don't think Kar meant any harm.

    As for me, I've changed my mind about wanting kids but there is no way in hell I'll ever tell DH that. He wants them and I agreed to them, so if I get pg, we are having them.  I would prefer not to have them, but am sure I'll love any child that we do have.  I just don't think DH realizes just how expensive they'll be and how much they will change our lives.  And I am virtually certain that the second I get pg, he will be sent to Iraq or Afghanistan b/c that's just the kind of luck I have.  Well, only 2.5 more years of trying. We are stopping TTC when I turn 40.  I know you can still have healthy kids then, but I think it's unfair to the kids to have parents who are that much older than they are. 
     
  20. You have chosen to ignore posts from GC1016. Show GC1016's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Oh, and to echo Alf -- I doubt Kar meant to offend you.  While I know it can be sort of a taboo or sensitive topic, going to talk to a therapist or other professional doesn't mean your broken or nuts or anything. 

    I'm a huge believer in talking to a pro about Big Life Decisions, in fact. 


    Alf, I didn't realize you'd changed your mind ... that has to be tough.   

     
  21. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Oh, I certainly didn't mean to offend you.  I went to a counselor to sort some things out, and I found it TREMENDOUSLY helpful to have someone trained to know the right questions to ask in a neutral situation to get at how I really feel.

    Counselors know what to ask to get you to clarify things in your own mind.  Most people do not know what to ask themselves or even what the deeper issues might be that are holding them back from knowing what to do (with BIG life issues like this, anyway).  They don't tell you what to do, they draw out what you want to do from your own heart and help you sort out your feelings in a useful way.

    Most people have insurance that covers mental health visits so what the heck, why not have a trained, impartial professional help you dig down and figure things out?  Sure helped me.

    ~kar

    P.S.  Of course I know there's nothing "wrong with you" for having these feelings.  Counselors can help everyone, I think, who are...which is most of us, frankly.  What's with the crazy stigma with seeing a counselor?
     
  22. You have chosen to ignore posts from framerican51008. Show framerican51008's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Oh no!  I wasn't offended!  Absolutely nothing wrong with counseling - I just don't think it's warranted in a case like this.  I was just looking for advice from some wise women because I don't have too many in my life :o)
     
  23. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    But even as wise as we might be, we don't know your family history, emotional history with respect to the idea of having children of your own, or goodness knows how many other arenas that could be impacting you personally (not everyone in a general sense).  If you are having trouble (which isn't uncommon or crazy) with this decision, yes, we can be helpful with sharing our own experiences.  A counselor can be helpful in a much different way.  Same goes for talking with your parents, his parents, your "real life" friends, etc - it's all different types of guidance based on different information.  Between all of us, you can get the best possible picture of how you feel and what you should do.  Dismissing any one of those resources could be a mistake, depending on what you might get out of the discussion(s).  All of those sources have pros and cons as input to your decision. A professional counselor is a unique and often underutilized resource, IMO.

    Glad I didn't upset you, my friend. :)
     
  24. You have chosen to ignore posts from ALF72. Show ALF72's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Thanks, GC. It's been almost 2 years of TTC at this point and I'm not pg yet, so I'm not overly concerned about it.

    Cannot even discuss it w/ DH b/c I know he has his heart set on kids. We did discuss it at length before we got married and during precana. I was okay w/ it originally and would get very upset every month when I DIDN'T get pg.  Now, seeing how tired mothers are w/ their kids, hearing about all the side effects and after effects of pregnancy, and seeing how pisspoorly most kids are behaved, I really don't want to go down that road. Nothing sets my teeth on edge more than shrieking kids [of course we went to the Air and Space Museum today and it was totally packed /w screaming kids so that could be part of it. lol.].  Everyone says it will be different w/ your own kids, but I always wonder, what if it's not and they turn out as wild and unruly as kids I see at the mall and in restaurants.  Eeek.
     
  25. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Any advice on deciding to TTC?

    Eek, indeed, ALF.  I have the same fears.
     

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