Remaining a couple after parenthood

P and I have discussed our views on parenthood for years, one silver lining of infertility. One thing that we have firmly 100% decided is that we will not lose “us” once we become parents. Yes, we will make sure that our children’s needs are completely met but we still need to remain a couple within our family. For me, I believe that a strong happy marriage is the most important part of being parents. If we aren’t strong as a married couple then I don’t see how we can be strong parents to our kids. (I am only talking about OUR marriage, not anyone else’s.)

We talked the other night about ways that we will stay us once we become parents. First and foremost, we will continue to have dates. It might not be every week that we go out on a date but we will do it a few times per month. We will also do our “staying up late watching movies” thing on the weekends after the children go to sleep. For us, dating and us time has always been important. It’s even more important to us once we become parents.

We also plan to take our kids out with us to places that we enjoy. We envision taking them to BWW for lunch/dinner, hiking in the mountains and to the movies (age appropriate ones). In fact, I cannot wait to take them with us to do many of things that we enjoy. I imagine us walking about Manitou Springs with strollers and 2-4 kids with us, enjoying eating, drinking and shopping.

I also want to take them to concerts πŸ™‚ I don’t mean any crazy out of control concerts but definitely want to take them to some. I remember seeing children at the Lilith Fair show and thinking “I can’t wait to be that mom.” I want to share my love of live music with them and even with future grandchildren.

So what do you do (or plan to do) to stay a couple while still being parents? Please share πŸ™‚

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40 Comments

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40 responses to “Remaining a couple after parenthood

  1. I completely agree about the dates thing. I fully intend on dating my husband after we have children! I also think it’s great to involve your kids in the things that you love. I remember going to so many great places with my mom as a kid – especially concerts. I attribute my love for all types of music to my mom taking me to concerts as a child.

    You and P are going to make wonderful parents!

  2. YES!!! We feel the very same way. When we have DH’s daughter, it’s hard… because we it’s a split custody thing, but we have to do better with this little one about being “us” even when kids are there. πŸ˜‰

    Good for you!

  3. I loved this post. Wait, I love all of your posts. Actually, I just love you! =]

    We are parents…well, okay, I am still having trouble accepting my role as a “parent” when I don’t get to be much involved in my stepchildren’s lives….but anyway, I think it’s really important to have time away just to yourselves. When we have had the kids we have made it a point to just take a ride on the Harley together or run to the store alone. T and D know that there are times when it’s just going to be Daddy and Sara…and they look forward to spending time with their uncle or “aunt” or whoever is going to be babysitting.

    I know that it’s going to be a lot more important once we have a baby that will be with us 24/7. I am looking forward to a little time alone and a lot of integrating kids into what we already love. I also think it’s really important to make sure that you’re putting your marriage first and establishing that example for your children. Not that I think the kids should be in the background or anything, I just think that parents get so involved with their children that the marriage just dissolves and that’s not a beneficial situation for anyone!

  4. Myrtle

    I love how infertile people say What Is Going To Happen when they have kids. The truth is, you have no clue.

    And you wonder why fertile people pity you…

    • Jessica

      Dear Myrtle,

      Take a long walk off a short cliff. You may be fertile, but you’re also an insensitive ass. Every parent has hopes and dreams of what they’ll do with their kids. I’m sure you had some too, once upon a time. Back off.

    • Lori

      I’m sorry Myrtle but I believe every person talks about what is going to happen when they have children whether they are an infertile or not! Do you have children Myrtle? I think having a plan to keep a healthy and strong marriage while striving to give your kids some culture and education is key! Why the negativity? Oh and for the record, I don’t think she is asking for your pity! Maybe it’s you we should pity for being such a negative person! Shame on you Myrtle!

    • Myrtle’s comments is one of those trollish drive-by things I would delete in a heartbeat. But since it’s here, I’ll respond with the words of a wise woman (from this post http://www.intentionalbirth.com/breastfeeding-whose-business-is-it/):

      “I think we live in a culture that allows us to express ourselves about subjects which are none of our business. And that gives many the feeling that their thoughts should be shared simply because they have permission to express them. That isn’t the case.

      Using these 3 questions: Is it True? Is it Kind? Is it Necessary? it is possible to filter what might not be helpful to the discussion, no matter which side of the equation/debate your thoughts may hold.

      It’s not just about what you think. It’s about the impact of your comment. Does it help? Does it bring comfort and support? Does it bring peace? Does it promote love? Are you bringing forward a part of you- authentically sharing with another with no expectation, just to be helpful?

      Or are you being critical? Skeptical? Are you expecting others to conform to your standards? Is the comment divisive? Does it purposely breed controversy? Is it ignorant or hurtful?

      It matters.”

      Myrtle – next time you want to leave a less-than-supportive comment on some random person’s site, ask yourself if you’d say the same thing to a friend over coffee. Or whether you’d feel outrage if some random stranger said the same thing to your friend.
      If you hesitate, simply move on. There’s no need to make it your life’s work to ruin someone else’s day.

    • Myrtle, please don’t pity me for being infertile. Instead envy me for having the time to plan with my husband on how we will raise our child. I pity the people who don’t have a clue on what it means to be parents. We Infertiles completely value any children that we have and understand the importance of family.

    • Thegirlwithpcos

      Myrtle. Your a bitch. Even fertile people think about the future. I’m infertile but I expect pity from NOBODY, infertility has given me experiences and friends that I treasure. Fertile people don’t pity us, they fear what they don’t understand. Just because infertiles don’t go and have a quick shag with a random bloke and get knocked up doesn’t mean we are weird. Go climb back into your hole Myrtle and grow up, then come back and say you pity us.

    • Myrtle,

      I know people with kids always say “you’ll never understand until you have kids.” I get that statement and it’s true in a way, so if thats what you meant to say, fine. However, there are proper ways and improper ways to share your opinion. This kind of falls into the “improper” category. Because the same is true for being infertile: you’ll never know what’s it like unless it’s happening to you.

      Becca,
      I’m sorry Myrtle’s comment has somewhat taken away from the point and spirit of your post. I think it’s wonderful you and your husband are talking about topics like this. There are so many conversations couples should have before they have kids, or even get married for that matter… not a bad side step for blog ideas huh? πŸ˜€

  5. CB

    Wow, Myrtle, what a mean and spiteful thing to say. Did somebody steal your Cap’n Crunch this morning? I suggest you get yourself a date night stat. Sounds like someone needs some foreplay.

    Well, Becca, this infertile mother applauds your commitment to your marriage. It’s good to have these chats now, because once the kids come along, it really does become hard to keep yourself (and your spouse) a priority.

    Line your friends and family up now!

  6. Jessica

    Myrtle you’re a Douche

  7. Myrtle –

    I, for one, have no need of your pity. I have an amazing life with a wonderful, supportive, fertile husband and wonderful, supportive, fertile friends who aren’t ignorant and don’t hide behind pathetic anonymous blog posts. From where I stand, you’re the only “fertile person” who has expressed pity at my situation…so you can take that pity and shove it up your fertile ass.

    How can anyone, ever be prepared for parenthood? When you were expecting, didn’t you make plans for your future? Didn’t you worry about what would happen, and try to plan accordingly? Is that a right that is only granted to you fertile people right along with a sense of superiority?

    At least when I conceive our child, I will know that that child has been hoped and prayed for beyond anyone’s comprehension and that I will have prepared myself as much as possible and that I am truly appreciative of the gift that has been granted to me. I will know that my child will grow up to be an empathetic, supportive person unlike yourself. That, to me, speaks volumes about your character.

    And a note from my amazingly fertile husband (who must be far superior to his infertile wife in your eyes): Go fuck yourself. =]

    P.S. If you need to find me to pity me some more, you know where to go. I’m not afraid of your idiocy.

  8. I love the post.
    I hate the comment.
    Why are you here Myrtle? Why are you reading this?
    There is no need for negativity and pity?
    We don’t want your pity or your comments.

  9. Hey myrtle why don’t you take your ass and POOF be gone. Or better yet SUCK IT!

    We do not need your damn insensitive ass around here.

    B – love you girl and I couldn’t agree with you more on this subject!!!!

  10. Dear Myrtle:

    Obviously you are unhappy with your life. Please don’t use that as an excuse to attack people who 1) you don’t know and 2) will make far better mothers than you are. Do you know why infertile women make better mothers? Let’s see. Probably because they had to work for their miracle instead of getting knocked up in the back of a pickup truck by a drunken, random sperm donor. Or maybe it’s because they have a stronger marriage for having gone through such a traumatic life experience together. Or maybe it’s because we value children instead of considering them burdens.

    You pity us? That’s funny. I pity you. I pity you because you will never understand the gift of a wonderful, strong marriage. I pity you because you will never truly appreciate what it’s like to be a mother. And I pity you because you obviously don’t enjoy the BEAUTIFUL gift that you already have in your possession: a child. You know what? I’d rather spend the rest of my life being barren than being as miserable as you are.

    Oh, and next time you have someone to attack, come to my blog. Becca is the sweetest, kindest person. A person whose husband is currently risking his life for this country, and a person who is about to take on two children that are not her own. So next time, come pick on someone your own size. Because if you want to be a fucking bitch, I’ll gladly engage.

    Best wishes,
    Katie

  11. Wow. I can’t even believe the ignorance of “Myrtle.” I agree with what everyone else has said in response to her idiotic comment. My question is this: why are fertiles following these blogs anyway only to make nasty comments to people who are hopeful and possibly hurting? It makes no sense.

  12. liberalgranolagirl

    My friends rock my world ❀

    And Myrtle, your pity is not wanted or needed. I have a wonderful husband, fan-fucking-tastic friends, a rocking family and will soon be the guardian of 2 beautiful children. One of the pros of infertility is knowing that over the past 3 years that we've been TTC, we've had a chance to PLAN for parenthood and discuss what kind of parents we want to be to our children. If you are married (and if you're who I suspect you are, you're not) then I pity your husband. If you who I think you are, I pity the boyfriend who is playing father to your child and I pity your child even more.

  13. Dear Myrtle,
    Go to hell, mmmmk?
    You clearly have NO idea. None whatsoever.

  14. The hubs and I were just talking about date nights once our little one arrives. We don’t have many people here that we would trust our baby with, but we will try! I also agree that your marriage should always come first. We’re on the same page, sister!

    Dear Fertile Myrtle,

    I think a lot of people talk about what they envision their future family life to be like. It’s called being prepared, forward-looking, having goals…none of those things are bad. Sure, things might not always work out as planned, but that’s not always the point. I’m sure you have an amazing marriage and you appreciate your family very much (sarcasm), so why do you feel the need to write such rude comments here? You so-called pity and extremely thought-provocing comments (again, sarcasm) are not wanted here.

  15. FamilyDreams

    Perhaps if Myrtle had thought ahead she wouldn’t be the miserable spiteful unloving person she is now. I know many parents who save time for dates and they are some of the happiest couples I know and have beautiful contented families. Myrtle, sounds like you should give it a go. I almost pity you for all the things you’ll miss by being so unloving. I bet you even take delight at upsetting people on here. It’s a shame your so inadequate!

    Great post Liberal Granola girl! I know you will get to live that dream soon! Xx

  16. I’m a fertile and embarrassed to be associated with Myrtle in any way. Why the hell do we need fertiles against infertiles and vice versa? We’re all women and we all want to be parents. Let’s support each other instead of fighting each other according to the hands we’ve been dealt in life. And if anything, fertiles should be dishing out loads of support and respect for women and couples with fertility challenges. What could your motivation possibly have been for making that comment, Myrtle?

    BTW, my friend who is also a midwife and a mother told me her number-one recommendation in the process of becoming a parent is to have a date night once per week.

  17. Cynthia

    Myrtle,
    Why so bitter and mean? Just remember, payback is a bitch.

  18. It’s unfortunate that people like Myrtle find it necessary to be so douchy. In reading your post, I never once saw a cry for pity (or in ANY of your posts, actually). At all. I saw two loving people who still had hope for their future. Which, any of us “infertiles” will tell you that sometimes it’s hard to hold on to that hope.

    So Myrtle — You and your “fertile” self can go fuck off. Go be a douchbag somewhere else. Your comment was not only totally inappropriate, but I find it hard to believe that you would ever have the courage to say something like that to somebody’s face. Becca didn’t ask for your pity. And I guarentee that you had NO CLUE what your life was going to be like after you had children. But I’m pretty sure you had those hopes and dreams as well. Don’t act like you are better than somebody else, when from the looks of it, you’re a pretty pathetic excuse for a person.

  19. Laura

    Becca,

    I love your post! I think it’s great that you two are so open with each and your expectations when you enter parenthood. I too agree that the marriage of parents are the essential foundation to your family. You NEED to have your time alone, to stay intimate. Your family is what you make of it. You and P will be wonderful, loving parents.

    I’m sorry that Mertyle said what she said. It’s unfortunate that she is so ignorant and close minded. I know that if I alone could make infertility disappear, I would. When I was pregnant with Wyatt my husband and I discussed how our lives would change, and what we wanted to stay the same. It may not always work out in the way you dream, but the point is it is so important to talk about those things. So again, I love this blog! Continued prayers your way.

  20. hope

    whoa myrtle sure is a negative nellie! who pissed in her wheaties? any who… i love the post and can’t wait until you’re a mom and get to share those moments with your kiddies ❀

  21. Um… I’m not sure if I’m “welcome” here or not, as I’m not an infertile… but I don’t think that makes me any less enraged at Myrtle’s post. I almost never comment on posts regarding infertility, because as much as I sympathize and pray and my heart breaks for evey story that I hear I guess I can not every truly understand the hurt and pain that takes place.
    But, what I can tell you is this… for one, I think this post is great and I think those plans are amazing and I’m so excited for you to do all those wonderful things with your beautiful children. And two, I must admit that although I sympathize I never pity and in fact there is a part of me that is envious of the infertile world. Though I’m on the outside looking in, I’ve never seen so much love and support thrown out for others and while I love my husband more than any words could ever describe I do think that there is something so much stronger about a marriage that has been through these challenging times and survived.
    Becca~ I’m so sorry that someone felt the need to spew such ugly things here, clearly it was disgusting, lacking class and hateful.
    And Myrtle- Karma is a bitch.

  22. I LOVE this post! Mark & I did this too, before we had our son. Quite frankly I don’t see why it matters if a person is fertile or infertile…every couple should do this kind of planning! Maybe the divorce rate in the US wouldn’t be so high if couples planned from the beginning how to not lose themselves as a couple when they become pregnant (or, for that matter, when they are TTC or going through fertility treatments or having a financial crisis or whatever big life changing event may come up).

    Will your plans be unchanged once you have kids? No. But, just by having plans from the get go you are more likely to keep at least some of them. Our date nights out have turned to movie nights or playing a couple of games of Mastermind before bed, and that’s ok.

    You and P are going to make fabulous parents. There is no doubt in my mind.

  23. Myrtle- I’ve met rapists and murderers with more humanity than you! What an evil vile person! I cannot believe that someone could be as awful as you. You have just given yourself 20 thousand years of bad karma. Enjoy being reincarnated as a sack of shit. I never once thought I would say this about another human being and mean it, but you are indeed a douche.

    Becca – I can’t wait to take our kids to Disney World. I remember that first moment from my childhood, and can’t wait to share it again.

    Never thought I’d use douche and Disney in the same post, but there you have it.

  24. I won’t be responding to Myrtle because I don’t think she’s brave enough to come back and see the comments left in her wake.

    Becca, I think this post is great. My DH and I also want to have date nights. And we also talk about how excited we are to share the things we love with our kids. Museums and sports and zoos and plays. Yes, our lives will be different but I cannot wait!

  25. NicoleK1974

    I guess all the traveling we have been doing, I missed a step along the way!

    SOOOOO excited for you and P to take “guardianship” over those two little angels! (hoping for much more very soon!)

    All I can say is as far as planning goes…you know me….I would never say “never” and never try to rain on your parade….but MAN…my only advice is to keep an open mind….

    I thought the same thing as you…
    Dates a few times a month, time for “us”, but as a military family, our little one (who I can’t believe is nearly 2 1/2 years old already!) has been it same time zone (let alone country) as her father for a total of 56 days of her entire life.
    The Army will undoubtedly try (and often succeed!) to throw a million monkey wrenches in many well laid plans, life will takes it’s twists and turns, and I know you will roll with the punches like the champ you are….

    Buuuuuuut…..don’t be suprised when a date night or two get cancelled at the very last second…as in….babysitter is already in the house…and one of the little ones begins to projectile vomit, one of the fur kids comes in bleeding profusely (or ends up missing!) or frankly, you just look at those little faces and think “I just don’t want to leave them tonight.”

    Been there done that…all of the above….LOL!

    I love that you are open to taking them to taking them to so many places!

    I take E, EVERYWHERE!

    I often get looks from other adults like “why do you have a child here?”, but I think if they can behave (APPROPRIATELY!) in the environment and not bother others around them, that they can go ANYWHERE!

    She has been to 6 concerts, numerous plays and children’s theater events, the orchestra hall, The Melting Pot and other “high end” eating establishments (AND we have our first mommy & me day at the spa coming up on Friday!) and never once behaved inappropriately, even if other children were going bannanas….it is all in the parenting….children can do ANYTHING as long as they have appropriate parental examples and those parents can and DO discipline appropriately.
    So don’t be afraid to push the boundaries of what some parents may think is “inappropriate”, and blur the lines of “normal” once in awhile!
    You will be amazed at how it shapes their young impressionable minds!
    πŸ™‚

    Stay strong and positive!
    I am super proud of you, love you to pieces and am so excited for you to jump in head first to this whole “and kids” side of the house!
    πŸ™‚

    As far as Myrtle….you know me….I could go off and fry her, but frankly I’m better than her….infertile or not….and so are you!
    :)~

    xoxoxoxo

  26. I’m back to ask about Manitou Springs. Do you mean the one in Saskatchewan? If so that would be so cool! I grew up in SK and while I no longer live there I love to hear about people that visit.

    Also – Hubby and I are planning a family ski trip in February – baby and all. Life doesn’t stop after having children, you just have a whole new viewpoint!

    • liberalgranolagirl

      I wish! It’s actually a small town here in Colorado. I freaking LOVE it! It’s a little hippie mountain town with a “main street” that has lots of local shops and restaurants πŸ™‚

  27. Myrtle,

    May your crotch be infested by the fleas of a thousand camels!

  28. Myrtle is a hoebag!! LOL.. but really, what a bitch, and I dont believe she is welcome back here.

  29. Myrtle, Don’t pity us. We are only momentarily experiencing infertility and then we will go on to be parents. Experiencing infertility only makes us stronger and appreciative when we do have children. I feel bad for someone who is clearly such an inconsiderate person.

    I pity the fool who pities us. I pity the fool.

  30. pam

    date night is a big thing for us. even if we have to put the kids to bed early and have it in our own livingroom

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