I saw a friend’s post on facebook today complaining that he was annoyed with the typical “dah ada isi ke belum?” or “bila nak ada anak?” which striked me to do this post. This is a typical scenario experienced by all newlyweds.
I got married about a month after I turned 21 (in 2011). Such a young age in today’s world. I too was bombarded with those typical questions usually by makcik-makcik. However, after I told them that I was gonna pursue my final year degree first, most of them asked me “when are you gonna have kids, then? Jangan tangguh lama-lama”. I usually just fake a smile and try not to show that I was annoyed.
Here’s the thing.
I don’t believe that having kids is the first thing you should do after getting married. No one should be pressured to do it if that’s not what they want. Some people (like my husband and I) prefer to enjoy our time alone and get to know each other first, adapt to each other before having an addition to the family. Of course this is purely subjective to everyone.
Some people believe that having a baby will be ‘pengikat kasih’.
Personally, I beg to differ. I feel like if you were to love your spouse, love him/her for who they are, and not because he/she is the father/mother of your child. What I’m saying is, that should not be the basis of your love. If you are the lucky ones, over time you will come to love each other because of each other. Some, will be quite the opposite, God forbid. Of course, best if you can love your spouse for Allah. But let’s face it, not everyone know how to do that.
Seriously, go have fun with your partner. Get to know each other first. Fall in love. Then have kids.
Now, let’s move on to our main point, family & peer pressure.
This can be tricky to deal with, especially if you are sensitive by nature. The pressure from people around you to have kids can be overwhelming. The worst people who can give you the pressure are your in-laws and perhaps your own parents. There is no avoiding this. The difference is how great the pressure is. Mine wasn’t bad at all. The only one who pressured was my own mum and it was annoying enough, no thank you. Hahaha. The best way to deal with this is (not quite simply) to ignore it.
It can be hard to ignore, and having an understanding husband is crucial. Even if you both want children, you should not feel the pressure to do so. Here’s why: if you are stressed, you are less likely to ovulate. If you don’t believe me, google it, or ask a doctor. Not to mention, it can rip the joys of being newly married or trying to get pregnant out of you.
If you are not ready for kids, try to dodge the question or try to be patient and say “InsyaAllah bila ada rezeki“. Usually that will shut them up.
When you are ready, you are ready.
Sure, we can’t all just wait to be ready. It’s the same concept like getting married, you will never be ready. That’s why they call it, taking the plunge. Same goes with having babies.
Thus, personally, the decision to have a baby should be an informed decision that both of you ARE (or sort of) ready to be parents. Again, I must stress here, not purely because you want your husband to love you more, or worse, because anyone pressured you to.
Also, when you are ready, before you even try to conceive, do a little bit of research. Some people don’t even understand how the science works and in turn, got frustrated (not to mention increased pressure) when they don’t get pregnant as fast as they hope. So, making an informed decision is as important. You don’t have to know the details down to the microscopic level, just find out how to understand your body and take the right supplements.
Lastly, consider your S.O.
Of course, sometimes you have to consider your significant other (S.O.). If your husband has been asking for a baby, maybe you should consider it. Eddie played a big role in my decision to have a baby. He kept planting the idea to have a baby while I was still studying, and I got the hint, okay. Although, when I asked him, he always said it was up to me because it’s my body.
So finally, I agreed because I pitied him (haha), and I can’t be selfish. He’s turning 30, and he would really like to have a kid by 30 so that’s what I’m giving him. There are several reasons, actually. He quit smoking, and that’s also a major cause as an encouragement for him. Not to mention, I feel like the time is right, for every reason. and Alhamdulillah, Allah is making it happen and He knows best.
I’m a firm believer of do-what-want-if-you-feel-it’s-right. And now it’s my opportunity to say, do what you want! If you’re not ready to have kids, that’s fine. Go, travel around the world, do the things you want to do, because once you start having kids, you may not be able to do certain things, at least not until your kids are at certain age. If you are ready to have kids, no matter how early, do it! And, never stress about it, let it happen in the hands of God. ;)