Thanks so much to all the contributors in this thread. This one is really topical for me too.
My partner and I have been on the edge of this one a lot lately. The idea of having a child and starting a family was never a serious part of the conversation until about a year ago when she got pregnant. We decided to have an abortion, which was a pretty horrible experience, as we really weren’t ready or stable to be able to be parents. But since that experience, my partner has said that it made her realize that she does want to have a child (and holds some resentment about having the abortion). We’re both in our early 30s now, so if she does want to have a child she needs to know that I want the same thing, and commit to doing that within the next 5 years or so, and if not then she needs to move on to find someone who wants the same thing. The problem is that I’m not so sure if I want to have a child. I’ve always thought that I’d like to someday, but I’m not too sure if I’d want to have one so soon, as I want to focus on my career and life as a musician. The next 10 years I could probably say yes to, but maybe not the next 5. Being a musician is all I’ve ever really wanted to be, after trying many many different things in life I’ve always come back to wanting to do that. Now that I’m 30 I’m facing this reality that if I don’t fully focus on being a musician I’ll never make it as a career, and I’ll always regret not at least giving it my best shot. I think that I could make a humble living off being a musician, but it will take time, dedication and of course a lot of hard work and persistence. And I don’t think I’ll ever be making big money off it. This conflicts with the idea of starting a family so soon.
This has been an ongoing conversation ever since the abortion a year ago, and my response still hangs as a vague maybe, when my partner really needs more reassurance than that. It’s become a lot more tense lately, which is opening communication up further, but is leaving the future of our relationship uncertain.
On the positive side of the idea of starting a family is that my partner is studying psychology and would be the bread winner, while I would be a stay at home/work from home dad. I may have room to be a musician, which she is supportive of, but if I don’t meet her expectations in terms of responsibility and carrying my share of the weight for a family, it will create tension, while on the other hand if I’m not working towards my dreams or feeling like I’m being held back it will create resentment.
I would likely have to work a part-time job on top of home/father duties, and be slowed down from reaching my career goals. My worry is that taking on that responsibility I won’t be able to meet my goals, as I won’t be able to hit the road and be able to focus on building a name for myself.
Reading the above comments on this thread is helping provide some perspective in my situation. I still don’t have an answer but it helps!