Marriage then Kids - > how long did you wait?

My wife and I are 33 and 34 respectively, and have been married for nearly 8 years. Westarted out in Grad school dating…then married after having been with each other for a year and a half. Then…life sped up! To say the least. Both professionals wanting to start careers in our respective fields, I was picked up by my alma mater as an adjunct teacher…she came along for the ride back to CT. Then got picked up almost instantly by a large pub. house in Hartford.
It’s been seven + years since we emigrated back to CT from AZ and the biological clock is tick-tick-ticking away. My wife recently moved into a home office with hopes that when the litt’lin comes she’ll be able to work part time and be a stay at home mom…Eventully, I hope to retire and start my design business full time, but thats not for a good 10 years…

So how long did you wait before having children? Anyone trying now? Any tips for thirty-somethings having first kids :slight_smile: ?

I am 30, and have been with my boyfriend for 2 years (who is 29). We are getting married in March, and the baby is due in August. You do the math :slight_smile:

Married at age 22. Got pregs (accidentally) just shy of a year later and was a mom by 23.
Wait two years and repeat. I’ve now got a two-almost-three year old and a 8 month old and am 26.

My parents on the other hand did much like the OP. Married very young, as soon as they were legal, but waited nearly 8 years before my older sister was concieved. It was a bit more uncommon to wait so long back then, and my mother has mentioned a couple times that she took quite a bit of flak for doing so.

I married my high school sweet heart at the ripe old age of 20 in March '93 our oldest was born in December. We are going on 11years in March and have three kids now. My only reget in having our first so young is the lack of time the wife and I had alone. On the flip side though I will be young enough to enjoy the grand kids. I do believe that we are an exception to the rule though married with kids at 20 does not usually bode well for a couple in this era. Until the last couple of years money has been a huge, issue kids are expensive! So having your career squared away first is a real plus. Good luck and grats.

We have neices and Nephews all in the double digits…we get flak from all sides, beit my parents or her’s. Most understand we were book worms in college and knew what we wanted…a career and the fam…one had to come before the other. It just worked out career came first for us. could have been the other way around, easily.

Well, we’ve got you beat. My husband and I didn’t have our first until we had been married for 14 years. We were both 37 when my daughter was born. We got married right out of college, then there was grad school and first career jobs, including one year when I was working in Ohio and he was finishing his Ph.D. in California.

The only advice I can offer is that there is never going to be an absolutely perfect time and situation–jobs change, health changes, all sorts of stuff continues to happen. If you think you want a kid, then go for it. You’ll find a way to make it work.

My wife and I had our only child last month; she is 38, and I am 40. We worried a LOT about birth defects, had great difficulty getting pregnant in the first place, and we’ve started Little Label on formula because Mrs. Tag’s milk never came in. We waited a fairly long time because we (a) hadn’t met until 1996, (b) didn’t marry until 1999, © bought our house late in 2000, and (d) ovulation was getting kind of hit-and-miss. Were all of our difficulties due to age? I can’t say, but it probably didn’t help.

You mean you’re supposed to get married BEFORE you have children? Heh. My son was 20 when I got married for the first time…to his uncle. (I know, I know…someone cue the banjo music)

My now ex-wife and I married in 1987. She was 22, I was 23. Lilly, Queen of the Universe, wasn’t born until 1999, when her mother was 34 and I was 35.

In the intervening years, we both got started on our professions, I attended and graduated from graduate school, and my ex-wife went into recovery for alcoholism. We had a tremendous amount on our plate without the extra added responsibility of a child.

As for tips for would-be parents:

  1. There is never a “right” time. If you wait until you’ve got enough money and done everything you think you may want to do as far as travel, etc., you’ll never have kids.
  2. As trite as it sounds (and I know I heard it before and never believed it), you’re world will turn completely upside down the very second the child arrives. It was almost like a physical phenomenon. We are two - now we’re three and the third is wholly and completely dependent upon us. Just like that…BAM.
  3. Your relationship will be tested like at no other time. Adding a third person to the mix changes the marriage dynamic. See #2.
  4. GET PLENTY OF SLEEP NOW, WHILE YOU CAN! I’m pretty sure I got some sleep between April 1999 and December of 1999, but I can’t be sure. My ex-wife has absolutely no memory of going to sleep during that time. It is a tremendous credit to her that her sobriety remained intact during an extremely stressful time.
  5. Hearing your child say “I love you, Daddy” is the greatest gift you’ll ever get.

Sometimes I think that I have lived a full life til now: I read things like that and I know I have not. Thanks Plnnr :slight_smile:

We married at 22 and waited about 4-5 years. I was 26 when DangerGirl was born, but I had a failed pregnancy and a long time trying again before that.

My folks waited about 5 years–very unusual. They got bugged about it (and therefore never said a word to us!).

Wife and I had our son when we were both 36. We respect the sanctity of marriage so much, we waited a full six months after the wedding before he was born! :smiley: So far, been the best 2 1/2 years of our lives. Even talking about brewing up a second.

Everything changes, but not for the worse. You need to keep a cleaner house, put things away, spend less “personal” time, clean constant messes, rearrainge scheduals and such.

We haven’t had to give up anything, really. The wife quit her job (she hated it anyway) and stays home. We have plenty of money, so we’re lucky there. We take the kid to any events, shows, trips we want and so far, its worked out pretty well. He is a well behaved guy and we have been able to take him pretty much anywhere. As he gets a little older, he won’t sit still for Shakespeare, so Grandma will watch him for some things the wife and I want to do. The trade off is that as he gets older, you can do more things with him at home. We play ball, ride around the desert in the Jeep and on motorcycles, play with his cars and other stuff.

Haven’t missed a nights sleep since he was born! (Who started that rumor, anyway?)

I would say “Do it!” Been the greatest thing that has happened to me (since finding the wife- I need to add that part because she stalks me here and I get in trouble for joking around in threads)

plnnr has it right. There is simply no way to communicate the instant change that gets you the minute that first kid arrives.

We were much like the OP. We got married at 26 (after dating for many years) and didn’t have Baby Kate until 33. It’s worked out well for us.

I even had nieces and nephews in high school before Kate showed up. No biggie. We never got particular flack from the family about it.

Single until I was 37, became a Dad at 41.

What, me hurry?

We were together for I think 11 (5 dating 6 married) years before we had our twin girls a year ago. All I can say is the longer you wait the more difficult it is to become pregnant. If my wife was reading this I know what she’d say: “NOW!! NOW!! do it NOW!!! What are you waiting for??!!! DO IT!! NOWW!!!”

There is no perfect time to have a kid, but there is such a thing as a right time. And a time when you have other things that are higher (or at least equal) priorities than having a child is very much not the right time. Once that baby gets here, he or she eclipses everything else, for good or bad. If there’s other stuff you’d rather be doing with your time and money, it’s a lot harder for you to deal with the tough times of parenting. (Anyone who tells you there won’t be tough times is lying through their teeth, just like anyone who tells you there won’t be wonderful times.) Thinking, “I gave up ___ for this!?” is unnecessarily rough on you, and more importantly, it stops you from being the parent your child deserves.

Kudos to you and Mrs. Phlosopher for waiting till having kids was your top priority. You’ll be much better, happier parents for it.

Parallax and I met in college when we were both 19. We got married at age 23 (having waited until we both had ‘real jobs’) and had our daughter at age 28.

We wanted to have kids sooner but the fertility gods were not with us. I had completely given up on the idea of having my own children to the point that I completely did not consider the chance that I could be pregnant - I thought I had mono - when I started showing symptoms.

I stay home with the kids and he works at home so we’re pretty lucky and the kids seem pretty happy having mommy and daddy around all the time. Being parents is fun and rewarding and hard and thankless all at the same time. There is nothing better than when they spontaneously decide to bestow love upon you or when they master a new skill and just beam with accomplishment.

The best advice I have is just go for it. As you two are academically inclined, do your research but be prepared to throw it all out the window and go with what works for your children. You can have all the nieces and nephews in the world but when you are finally handed your own child everything you thought parenthood would be disappears. Oh and don’t get caught up in the idea of creating a perfect childhood for your kids. They only grow up once! Let them guide you.

Next month, I’ll have been married for nine years and my son turns seven!

Quick timeline: Married at age 23, finished BA later that year and started Master’s program, child born at (my) age 26, finished MS later that year and started Ph.D. Finally finished that when I was 31 and he was 5. So to date, he’s lived most of his life as a graduate student.

(Don’t tell my wife–I screwed up the math! We got married in 1995 when I was 24, not in 1994, which is what I based my calculations above on. Now the calculations in the above post might work out… Married at 24, Father at 26.)

Seems I have heard this before! :eek: Oh yeah! Mrs.Phlosphr tells me that all the time :wink:

We are currently trying…she has been for every test, as have I we are just waiting for the right connection :slight_smile:

This is one aspect of raising children we feel very confident on. I diagnose, deduce, and otherwise analyze behaviors to the core all the time, I am looking forward to throwing that out as much as I can and taking my licks as they come. My wife and I had our two year old nephew for a week recently and loved every minute of it…at times he’d be pulling the dogs ears or having a tantrum and I’d try and console him or do what I could…but in the end he would simply use his two year old little brain to do what he pleased. I always knew though that he’d be asleep on Uncle Phlosphr’s chest by the time 7:30 rolled around…that or he’d be face deep in his spagetti O’s right after dinner :slight_smile: