It’s no surprise that life after kids can be vastly different from your life before you had your bundles of joy. But, as one parent recently admitted, what if it felt like your kids primarily brought you stress?
One dad recently wrote a candid post on Reddit admitting he regretted having children. He explained that he and his wife have a six-year-old and a four-year-old set of twins, including one child with what they suspect to be ADHD and ODD. He and his wife are now in marriage counseling because, as he wrote, their “marriage basically went to sh*t after having kids.”
Dad admits he regrets having children, and his wife is furious.
He continued that while he loves his children, he wouldn’t choose to have children if he had the opportunity to do it all again. “I had a much happier life before having children and have gone from someone who loved life to someone who just…..makes it through the day, working a job he hates to provide for the wife and kids while silently wishing this wasn’t my life,” the dad of three wrote.
His wife was “furious” about his take on life after kids and even told their oldest that “daddy wishes you were never born.” The father wrote that he doubts the marriage can be salvaged after such a huge fight.
The dad posted the question on the Am I the A**hole (AITA) Reddit subforum and received more than 5,000 comments. For the most part, people agreed that the dad was not the a**hole for being honest about his feelings.
“It is still a big taboo to admit that having children isn’t the most amazing thing in the world, but for a lot of us, the lows far outweigh the highs,” one mom wrote.
“As a mom, I agree with you. No shame in being honest about parenthood and the stress that it puts on a marriage,” another wrote.
Many commenters noted that they wish people would be more open and accepting of these feelings in general and particularly if you’ve decided not to have children.
“I used to want children until I spent years working with them and realized just how much work they are. How they change EVERYTHING and your life no longer belongs to you. Everyone is supposed to say how wonderful they are, but I’ve seen it on exhausted parents faces. They aren’t always that wonderful. I feel like if more people were really honest, it would stop this compulsive need for people to feel like they HAVE to have children,” one commenter wrote.
In the end, the dad edited the post to include a note to ensure people weren’t confusing his statement with being a bad dad. “Just because I wouldn’t do this over again doesn’t mean I’m not committed to being a good dad and being present in their lives,” he wrote. We’re glad to hear that, as least.
When I’m not hanging out with my three-year-old and husband in Brooklyn, I’m busy writing stories for Mamas Uncut and managing PR + Marketing for Magnolia Bakery, based in New York City. On weekends, you can usually find me at a local park or playground pushing my daughter on the swings, “researching” the best almond croissants in Park Slope or launching into impromptu family dance parties at home, the sidewalk or, every once in awhile, a restaurant bathroom. I’m still trying to master the whole parenting thing, but I have learned that copious amounts of coffee, humor and humility are involved on a daily basis.
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