Woman Unsure if Marriage Can Survive Husband's Baby Revelation Splits Views

A mother of one has divided opinions online after questioning her marriage because she wants to have another baby while her husband says he's done with children.

In a post shared last month on the U.K.-based forum Mumsnet under the username Wantanotherandanother, she said that when she got married to her husband, who already had three teen children from a previous marriage, they discussed having kids, just not how many.

A few decades ago the typical American family had, on average, 2.5 kids, according to Statista. In 2022, this number had gone down to 1.94 children under 18.

After having a first baby, the poster, who is 35, now wants to have another, but her husband, 48, doesn't want to have any more.

She wrote: "I always hoped to have more and he knew that. I feel like he went into this knowing he'd always refuse any more. His reasons are related to his age and that he just feels physically done with having young children around. Financially we'd be ok.

"Can a marriage even survive this difference in opinion about something so huge? Neither of us [wishes] to compromise. I feel so sad every time I see a pregnant lady or baby and don't think that ache will ever go away," she said.

woman who wants more babies splits views
Stock images show a pregnant woman holding her belly and a woman sobbing. A woman questioning her marriage because her husband doesn't want another baby has split views on the U.K.-based forum Mumsnet. Getty Images

Evan Schein, the head of litigation at the Berkman Bottger Newman & Schein law firm in New York City, told Newsweek that the first phone call should be to a therapist, not a divorce attorney.

"Before deciding whether the marriage can last going forward, I would suggest having an open discussion with a third party," he said. "While this will not be an easy discussion, it will be an important one. Decisions about whether the marriage can survive a difference in opinion over this issue should be made only after careful thought and discussion."

Among the 1,259 users who voted in an Am I Being Unreasonable poll on Mumsnet, opinions were divided, with over 51 percent saying the poster was being unreasonable.

One user, DuplicateUserName, commented: "Why didn't you discuss the number when you knew he's already got three kids? That's a fairly big leap from 3 to 5. As for whether your marriage can survive you not having another baby, I'm afraid only you know that. It sucks for you though."

The user went on: "Sorry I meant to add, what do you mean by compromise? What sort of compromise could there possibly be?"

User Coyoacan said: "I don't know OP. You don't seem to have [much] faith in your husband's integrity, so that is obviously not a good basis for a marriage."

Araiwa said: "[You are being unreasonable] to think people can't change their minds when new information comes to light."

Rupiduti wrote: "He is more than entitled to change his mind. There is no compromise, you want 1 more, he doesn't. One of you may end up unhappy. He's got 4 children already and is close to 50, I can get why he may not want anymore. You maybe should have discussed how many."

Viviennemary said: "I think if you have only one child and want another your DH should agree. It's not your fault he has children from a previous relationship. Maybe he can be talked round. That's what I would do."

Newsweek was not able to verify the details of the case.

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