Name: Katie Comment: As I near 30, having children become increasingly important to me. I've been dating my current boyfriend for 1.5 years. He is tall, hot, plays the guitar, we have many shared interests, and the same sense of humor. However, he makes half of my salary. (I work in a technical field and make the upper range of my salary bracket for my experience level.) Since I desire a family, his ability to pull his weight financially in raising children is a concern for me. You may wonder why I didn't take his earning ability into consideration when I decided to commit to him. To be honest, I only started thinking about having kids as a realistic possibility about 8 months ago and have been slowly working through the practical implications since then.
I discussed my desire to have children with him, and he admitted that he needs 2-4 years to prepare both emotionally and financially, which is understandable and predictable. He is working to switch into my career field in order to make more money. But I think realistically, it would take 4 years to him to be at where I would like him to be financially.
He is 3.5 years younger than me, so my desire for children makes the age difference (which has never been an issue before because we look about the same age) apparent, and I can't help but wonder if we're simply at different places in life.
I'm pretty and I understand men fairly well, so I know I would have no trouble attracting the type of guy who is ready for children right now if I were to start looking. So I don't know whether I should stick it out for another 4 years or call it quits now. Thanks in advance for your insights. Age: 29
It's understandable that you would want to get on the stick as far as planning for a family. You're still quite young and have many years to achieve this goal, if that's what you want. There's still time for your boyfriend to make the move and focus on his career so that he's in a more stable place to have kids.
That said, you seem to place a high value on looks - both yours and his. From my perspective, it sounds like the only reason you're with this guy is because he's hot, and vice versa. You chose a guy based on superficial criteria, now you're realizing he very well might not bring anything else to the table beyond what he looks like. In addition to that, you're crossing your fingers hoping this guy will grow-up fast enough for him to make the amount of money you think he should make in order to be a decent parent or in order to support you if you choose to stay home with kids. Does he serve any other purpose to you than financial or ornamental? Because if he doesn't, do him a favor and cut him loose.
If you don't accept him for who he is now, you shouldn't even consider having kids with him. You liked his slacker persona when it suited you. Now that you have a schedule to keep and priorities, you want him to be something more. Well, maybe he doesn't. Maybe he's perfectly okay with his life as it is. Believe it or not, you can be a great parent regardless of how much money you make. He's 25 years old. He's still figuring it out, like most of us were at that age. He's still a kid. I don't think he should be rushed into having kids just because your biological clock is ticking.
I do think you and he might be at different stages in life, but like I said, you still have quite some time for this to course-correct before you start a family. However, you need to decide if you're looking for a partner or a prop, someone you tan trot around and pose in pictures with so you can post them on Instagram. To me, it sounds like you're just looking for someone to fill a role in your life. Listen, if you want to base your romantic choices on superficial criteria, be my guest. But when it comes to raising tiny humans, either raise your standards, accept you'll be the breadwinner, or go it alone and have a child on your own.
Those are your three choices.