A little rough

Just one of those weeks, I guess. I keep thinking about the future. And of course, the internet wasn’t helping to curb that, lol. Just a lot of reminders about how great having a family is. Also, though, a lot of comments about how horrible kids seem to be. Not the blunt “kids are horrible” type of comments, but the “enjoy not having kids” or the comments about how unlucky someone in particular is for having kids. Sometimes I’m in a mood where that kind of stuff makes me mad or sad, but for now, I’m just kind of annoyed. I spend so much time thinking about how great it could be, when it seems like all some people can focus on are the bad things. That’s true of a lot of people about a lot of things though, so it shouldn’t surprise me. I’m no exception to that. I often tend to to focus on what could go/would go/is going wrong, when instead I should be trying harder to focus on the good things. I’ve always been a worrier at heart though, so again, no surprise. Did I learn anything this week from all this? Probably. Honestly though, nothing comes to mind right now. Just a week for toughing through the negativity. Keep fighting forward.

P.S.- I know that a lot of these posts start to sound repetitive, and quite frankly, a bit whiny, so for anyone that reads these, I should explain why I’m writing these. Ultimately, this blog isn’t really a “blog”, as in I’m writing it to find an audience and sell my “product”, as it were. The truth is, I started writing my first post here as a private journal entry. Just a place to moan about my week and get it all out, even if it was only out on a screen to myself. As I was writing it though, I thought about anyone else who might feel like I do, and I recalled trying to find blogs or sites or any kind of outlet like this online before, with no luck at all. So I decided that while I would still write these private-journal style, I’d allow them to be public. I guess I figured at least one other guy out there feels like I do, so maybe seeing my posts will make him feel better about everything. Misery loves company, and even if they don’t read it, simply knowing they’re not alone may be enough to help. And if not, then oh well. I still feel a bit better writing these, so they’ll keep coming.

Not a bad week

Ok, so this week wasn’t too bad. I managed to stay busy without really trying, and it was nice. I didn’t have much time to think about everything, and more importantly, I didn’t experience too many reminders. The few that I did see didn’t even bother me too much, not enough to mention anyway. I wasn’t even overly bothered when my wife was showing off some cute baby clothes she got for a friend of hers daughter. Normally, when she puts energy into her friend’s kids like that, I just imagine her being that happy for our own kids, but it wasn’t bad at all this time. Like I said though, I was very busy this week with a lot on my mind and plate, so it was nice to be distracted.

I just started a class this week, and between the reading and studying, the gym, the volunteer thing I do, my jobs, the occasional hobby time, and napping to have the energy for it all, I haven’t had a lot of time to dwell on the negatives. I have started worrying about one thing though. This class and the volunteering are things I’ve wanted to do for a long time, and me doing them now is just good timing. I’m worried that she may think I’m only doing them for the distraction. That I may not actually like them, but more so that I need to take my mind off being so sad. The truth is, I love these things, and I wish I had even more time for them, although I’m not denying how much I do appreciate them for the fact that they help me focus my energy into them instead of just being bummed about life and everything we don’t have, or won’t have.

I’m taking this whole week as a lesson. Sometimes, you don’t have to TRY to forget things. Sometimes, if you just live life without forcing anything at all, you glide through smoothly and quickly. A watched life never boils, I suppose.

Keep fighting forward

An interesting week

So this week had an odd experience. It made me happy, then sad, then happy, then….I’m not sure. It all started when a friend online asked everyone for ideas for his daughter’s birthday party. I fired off one of my ideas and ran with some touches, and he liked the idea. A couple days later, I got an invite to his daughter’s party, and he went with my idea! At first, I was happy, and proud. Someone liked my idea so much it helped influence a decision 🙂 But then I got sad. The idea came naturally because I have a hundred ideas like that in my head. Birthday parties, craft ideas, family activities, all kinds of fun, geeky, nerdy, kid and adult friendly things that would be a blast. But I most likely will never get to enjoy them like I imagine. I’ll never take my kid to a movie dressed as the characters. No trips to the toy store where we both play with everything. No themed parties with games and a cake shaped like a spaceship or anything. 😦 I thought about this for a while, but then I got happy again. My idea didn’t go to waste. Someone will get to enjoy it. There’s a family that will have a great time based off an idea that I offered up, a kid out there who will always love her party, and I like that thought, but it also hurts. If one of my ideas worked, how many others WILL go to waste? It reminds me that I think I would be a great dad, but I’ll never know. Now the happiness and pride are clashing with the sadness and I’m kinda stuck, like having the wind both in front and behind you, so you can’t move.

I’m also worried about something I said to my wife. She asked me if I was going, and I told her no because, in addition to having another obligation that day, I had no interest in going to a kid’s birthday party. I try not to talk about my feelings regarding a possible (probable) future without children because I know it bothers her, not just because she says she eventually wants them too, but more so because she knows I want them now. So when I reject an idea because children are involved, I think she knows it’s because I’m bothered on a serious level. I don’t want to hurt her, but I can’t always suck it up and say nothing, or act like I’m not having trouble dealing.

I’m not entirely sure there’s a lesson for me in all of this. I wish I could find comfort in the thought of being a good dad, but I may never know, and that hurts. Maybe there’s a lesson there though. That while it’s always gonna hurt, not having a family, there’s always some benefit to be had, large or small, even if it’s for the benefit of others instead of myself.

Keep fighting forward

Maybe this will help

Hello,

If you’re reading this, it might be because you stumbled in here looking for some kind of comfort. If that’s the case, I’m not sure what to tell you. I’m writing this because I need to feel like my emotions are out there, if that makes sense, so I’m not really sure how much comfort this will bring. It’s probably just gonna be depressing and sad. The thing is, I was looking for articles or advice columns or some kind of help about this issue, and there doesn’t seem to be anything online for it, so I figured writing is my last hope.

The problem is, as you might have guessed, that I feel like a father without a child. I want children so much, and as we get older, it’s becoming more and more apparent that it isn’t going to happen. We’ve tried fertility help, with no luck, and according to doctors, there’s no reason we shouldn’t be getting pregnant. I’ve also been tested, and my boys are good swimmers. It just……isn’t happening. How do I reconcile that? How do I fill that hole in my life? I read something in an article that made perfect sense (the article was about this subject, but written for women, like all the articles I found).

“Yet if you’ve spent years (decades even!) of your life longing and planning to become a mother, and for a wide variety of reasons, some of them mundane, some of them tragic, you ended up without a family, you’re expected to just ‘get over it.’ But it’s not the flu; it’s not something you ‘get over’. You lost your family! You lost the chance to be a mother, to be a grandmother, to give birth to another life, to be the person that brought your partner’s children into the world, to be a grandmother. To have a hand and say in shaping the next generation. To have the respect of others, a place in the community of mothers and a say in how things are done.  So, no biggie, really. We really must all be making a fuss about nothing…”¹

Obviously, I’m not concerned about not becoming a mother or grandmother, but the latter points are exactly right, especially the last line. It isn’t “nothing”. I find the coping tactics I often come across online treat the issue like this. Articles always say things like “make plans to take trips or do things you couldn’t do” or “consider the fact that other people have worse problems”. These ideas just seem to be saying “get over it”, but when you’re bombarded with images all day of happiness and family, it isn’t easy to just put out of your mind. It’s hard to talk about this with my wife because she’d end up blaming herself, and my friends all already have children, so it’s hard to take any advice they have to heart.

So for now, I’m choosing to put my feelings to keyboard and screen (that just doesn’t have the same flow as pen and paper, but oh well, lol), and who knows, maybe someone has that piece of advice that can turn things around. What I think I want most of all is to help people realize that while it seems to be an uncommon problem, men wanting children and having trouble coping with not having them IS a problem that exists, and maybe some other men feeling alone in that can rest a little easier knowing that they aren’t.

Keep fighting forward

¹ http://gateway-women.com/2013/01/20/do-you-ever-get-over-not-having-children/