I am afraid my husband will leave me unless we have a child together

The issue: My husband and I have been trying to conceive for the past 4 years unsuccessfully. We are both in our 40s. We had 4 rounds of IUIs, which resulted in 2 pregnancies and 2 miscarriages. The option now is IVF using an egg donor. The IVF costs $53,000 (including $14,000 for the donor). I don’t feel comfortable doing this, but because of my husband, I said ok, let’s see what happens. We went to see a doctor and started all the exams and check-ups. It turns out that my Endometrium is not getting thick enough (the ideal is 8 mm). The best it gets is 6.4 mm.

Now is time to move forward and make the deposit for the Full Cycle. The doctor says that chances are lower but some women get pregnant with thin Endometrium. I don’t want to take the risk and get into this path of IVF. It can take multiple tries, and what if it doesn’t work? It will be no money and no kid. It is a lot of money and I am not sure that I want a baby so badly that I’ll use up all the money I have saved my entire life. I love my husband and don’t want our marriage to end because of that. I am afraid he will leave me. He says life has no purpose without a kid. What should I do?

Nina’s answer: Something you said in your message caught my attention and it is “I am not sure that I want a baby so badly that I’ll use up all the money I have saved my entire life”. That’s how my husband and I felt when our last attempt to have a child failed. That was back in 2013. It was IUI with donor sperm. Before that, we did try IVF too. We knew that we could not keep on trying for ever and that we would have to stop at some stage. And thankfully, we were both in agreement when that time came. Just like you, we didn’t want a child so badly as to use up all our savings trying to conceive, or worse, end up racking up lots of debt.

As you can see, we both felt the same way. I honestly do not know how things would have turned out for us, if one of us still wanted a child, which is where you are with your husband. This is one of those moments in all our lives, when we are required to make a choice that will change the course of our life. Only you can make that choice. You say that there is a real chance your husband may leave you, since he cannot imagine his life without children. Well, that is quite a difficult position for anyone to be in, and I am sorry that that’s where you are.

Have you had a frank discussion with your husband about how you feel? Have you told him the truth about not wanting to spend your life savings on trying to conceive, since there are no guarantees that you will be successful? If not, then that’s a conversation you both need to have, and fast. Also, have you considered adoption? My husband and I did and eventually decided against it. What put us off was the sheer bureaucracy of it. But of course, that’s how we felt, it could be a completely different experience for you and your husband.

I hope that in the end, the love you have for each other is strong enough to keep you together, no matter what. Always remember that, as human beings, we all go through trials and tribulations. That’s what ultimately makes us who we are, however unpleasant those experiences can be. Also, based on my own experience, acceptance is key to a peaceful life. It comes a time in all our lives, when, after we’ve tried our best, we must find the courage within ourselves to accept that, whatever it is we are chasing, it was never part of the picture for us. You seem to understand that, although the same cannot be said for your husband. At least not yet. Those who choose never to accept their path, suffer greatly as a consequence.

Nina Steele is agony aunt. Send any dilemma you may have to: [email protected]

Impact of childlessness on relationships

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