turning 40 and living childless

I just turned 40. My family & friends tease me about all the aging things. None of those bother me, but what does, is knowing I'm turning 40 & hit that plateau of knowing I am one step closer to knowing I will never have children. I started trying when I was 24. My (now ex) husband and I tried for 6 years. He had low motility. My eggs didn't mature to the appropriate size on their own and my lining didn't stay a good enough environment for long enough to sustain a pregnancy. We finally decided to adopt. WE were all the way to interviewing perspective mothers when I said "what the heck am I doing. We don't even love each other anymore." We split up, divorced. I found a wonderful man who didn't want to do any treatments, but if we had kids, we did, if we didn't, we didn't. We never have. My ex has 2 kids with his new wife. I try to tell myself I'm OK. I can live without kids. But it hurts so much. Turning 40 feels like the final nail in my dreams. I'm that Aunt that obsesses over her nephews and nieces and great nephews and nieces because she doesn't have kids. I feel crazy sometimes.

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I know the feeling. I am 40 and even though I just had twins prior to that I was also nearing 40 , having marital problems and facing living childless. My life did a 180 in a years time and I truly believe it's something you want don't give up. There are many ladies on here on the over 40 board that are having babies.
There is a really good book I read about infertility and living childless. I will look it up and post it for you it was very helpful and humerous.
I know the sting of turning 40, and I hope you find peace with it.

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Silent Sorority: A Barren Woman Gets Busy, Angry, Lost and Found [Paperback].
Pamela Mahoney Tsigdinos
A great book...

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I'll be 49 in July and for me every year justs gets worse and worse. My husband thinks if he doesn't talk about it, it doesn't exist. It doesn't help that I have very bad depression. I just wish I had a childless friend who lived by me so I had someone to do things with, it gets so lonely. Let's face it, all women with children want to talk about is their kids. I'm sorry that I can't be more positive, but I KNOW what it feels like and you are not alone.

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Hi Sadnloney,

I just wanted to send some support your way....boost ya up a bit, and throw you a kleenex if you like... I understand completely, I am 55 and am childfree. My husband had children that were almost adults when I met him. LOL that is a stepmom story in itself! Please keep in mind that infertility is a grief that reoccurs. It is difficult when friends and people around you talk only of their kids, grandkids, etc. And yes, it gets a little old. I forgive them but sometimes if I am not feeling good about myself it can bother me.
I also want to say I am grateful for you writing your post because I sought out the website today as I was feeling low right now, was also searching for someone to talk to about it. Your post helped me remember my strengths and tools that I had and needed to use to get through life regardless of whether I had been able to have the precious gift of children or not. Please know that you have helped one person today that had been feeling pretty low.

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Thank you Crackerjack.

Since I don't have many friends near me, it's nice to know that I have someone in cyberspace. Would love to hear about your strengths and tools as I feel that I'm fresh out right now.

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Its what you can find peace with yourself with...I have two older children, bio. For years we tried to have another here and there, never trying really hard though. A couple years ago I told DH that I wasnt getting any younger and if we were gonna have another we needed to get some help...We did fertility for over a year and then after it failed before the transfer, I was devastated. We looked into adoption a couple of months later and the next year we welcomed our little daughter into our family. I knew there was another baby out there for us somewhere, I could just see her...always a her...For us it was the right choice. I am 43, DH is 42 and our LO will be a year in one month. Some people can move on, I wasnt ready to yet.
Its what you can move forward with, because with time, you cant go back...hugs!

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i wanted to send you hugs too...would you do treatments if it was your choice? Are you not pursuing treatment because of your DH. When DH and I married I agreed to having only one child which we knew would involve IVF. For many years I lived with that. But when I hit about 38 I really started to question what my choices were--not DH's, but MINE. What did I want?

I didn't like my choices: forgo trying for more children or try for more but risk going it alone. In the end I chose door number two and put it all on the line. It was very very tough, and very luckily my DH went along with it. But I make no bones about it, I needed to really be ready to do it alone.

I also had to come to grips with the fact that I was older and could not turn back the clock. I could not chose to be a mom at thirty or thirty-five --that choice was gone. But I could chose to be a mom at forty--and that was okay. It wasn't ideal to me, but I decided that I would rather be forty with a baby than forty without a baby.

I gave bith to my twins a month before I turned 41.

I am so sorry that you are struggling with this. I know that I made the right choice for me. I do not say this to dismiss your feelings at all but I like to believe that if the IVF didn't work that I could have been happy still. I would have just had to find ways to get those need met in other ways and made it a real priority.


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Yes, that is what I did too. I was at a point when I had to decide and I really wasn't ready to go on without at least trying to have another child...I told DH that and though he wasn't happy with my mindset at the time, he came around and understood my needs as well. My girlfriend told me that I needed to be happy too...and I think without all the support I received it would have been hard. I wish you all the luck with whatever choices you make.

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Dear Sadnloney,

I would love to say that the tools to give me strength came overnight! Probably one of the greatest influences in my life was a woman who raised me while my mother had to work. I was six months old when she started caring for me and she is still an important person in my life today. The amazing thing is that she also could not have children. So as I went through that difficult time in my life its not so much what she said as the fact she understood that brought me comfort.
I attempted two attempts of IVF after negotiating with a hospital to give me three. After the second attempt I felt like the devastation was not something that I was going to put myself through again with the risk of hearing a "no" at the end of the phone line when the treatment did not work. The situation can make you feel very powerless, victimized and not in control of your life. I opted to not try for the third attempt, which made me feel like I was in control of making decision for myself. During the IVF treatment time and after, I connected with Resolve. It was wonderful and helped me navigate through all aspects of infertility. When I realized that I must now create a whole new "garden of life" by tilling up the old one and planting new hopes dreams and goals that did not include me being a mother Resolve had resources. I learned to embrace my life and ran with it! A few years passed and I was asked to be on a Childfree panel with a few other people to discuss where we all were at that point in our lives. I walked away from this seeing and learning a lot about how we had all taken different paths. Each of us had a story to tell. Each of us were able to honor other's paths yet be at peace where we were at. Although much time had passed, some were still not able to move forward from the pain....some had moved forward from the pain.......
My parents played an important role in accepting my husband and I not being able to have children by letting me know they loved me for me. This was also a huge relief.
I have recently relocated and making new friends, being in a new area, going to school and not working yet all have contributed to me being a bit sad and lonely. Reminding me that I don't have siblings, children, grandchildren. Infertility is rearing its ugly head I thought to myself! I took the tools out of the toolbox and brushed them off. Tools like self care, reflection in the morning, exercise, and believing in yourself that I did have value. Tools that would remind me I am not the only one in the world who can't have children, and that many people have much greater burden. Reminding me that it is the time to embrace and honor what I do have and who is in my life, because, as we all know, there are no reruns in life! Sadnloney, for whatever reason you resparked that in me and I appreciate it. All we have is this moment. Worrying about yesterday, future tripping about tomorrow are things we cannot change.....the present is all we have. :)

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I just wanted to send a hug.

I just lost my child free aunt. She helped raise me. She was a third parent. She was always there for me. I celebrated every mothers day with her. She wasn't a mother or a father, but she couldn't love me any more if she were. She was a true gift. I am a better person because she obsessed over me.

I hope your dreams come true.


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Dear Tabby,

Hugs back.....my heart is right there with you.....she sounds just like the woman who raised me. I am so sorry for your loss. Remember what she taught you!!! The feeling of how someone can love us like that is wonderful, isn't it. :)

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