How do you bring up having a baby with your partner?

March 16 |
@offbeatfamilies runs these advice questions as an opportunity for our readers to share personal experiences and anecdotes. Readers are responsible for doing their own research before following any advice given here... or anywhere else on the web, for that matter.
By: BrookeCC BY 2.0
My husband and I have always been the type of people who just take things as they come, and rarely talk about things in advance.

But lately, I've realised that I really want a baby. Like now. And I don't know how to bring it up gently. I've tried talking a lot about our friend's pregnancy, which he does get excited about, but unfortunately it doesn't transition into talking about us.

I don't want to bring it up head-on in case it scares him off (because to him it's probably coming out of nowhere) but more ease into it gently if possible. I always thought that this would be something that I wouldn't think about for a while, and didn't expect the sudden surge of longing.

Now I'm panicking about what to say, because I can't lie to him and pretend nothing is wrong. How did you initiate the discussion of children in your relationship? — NP

We asked some of our most trusted readers to share their responses — here's a few of our favorites:

I can understand being uncomfortable just blurting out what may be a "scary" topic. We got where we are by starting talking about abstract future kids a while ago. For instance we would be out in public and see a mama wearing her baby — I would say something like "When we have a baby, I want a sling and not a stroller." After a while, these little comments on my side, became comments originating from both of us, to discussions. So not only did it bring up the topic of babies in a "non-scary" way, but it also eventually opened up conversations of how we both feel about different parenting issues, techniques, and discussions. — Briana
I've learned over time, that the "hard stuff" discussions go better if I choose a good time to bring them up. For me, a bad time is if either my partner or I is tired or cranky or at the end of a tough day. A good time is when we're relaxed, not in the middle of something and not in a rush to get somewhere. I noticed that we had particularly good conversations on "hard stuff" topics over weekend breakfasts (after the first cup of coffee), so now I sometimes save things like "where are we going for Thanksgiving and Christmas" for the weekend, rather than when they first pop into my head.

Potentially having a kid/trying to get pregnant has been an ongoing discussion for us (lots of Sunday breakfasts). I guess my only advice is that it may be an ongoing discussion and not a one and done conversation. You're ready, and have been thinking about it a lot, but it may be a new thought for your partner. Be prepared to give them time to think about it. — ReadingL

I think for us it started when my husband I were dating. We were looking at a friend's baby pictures at a concert and he said "Let's make a baby!" I'm pretty sure we were both drunk, and I thought it was cute and funny at the time. Then a month or two later, (after some more serious and sober conversations) I was pregnant! He actually doesn't really remember saying "Let's make a baby." and I didn't take it seriously, but it must have planted something in my mind… Anyway, talking about your friends' kids seems like the place to start. You can start with something like "Someday soon, I want us to have this." — Jessi

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