How Do I Adjust?

I am 50, and have always wanted children.  I thought I was fertile, but I waited to marry until late, at 37, and only then learned that complications for being a "DES Baby" had compromised my ability to have children.  Several surgeries later, I was still told it was possible to conceive, but unlikely.  Then I went through a divorce, which took me three years, until I was 45.  Now, I am remarried to a guy my age who has two teenagers from a prior marriage, and of course I am incapable of having children even using a donor egg (even if I was, by some miracle, able to carry), and contemplating adoption and retirement at the same time.   I feel like a complete failure at life, like I was unable to succeed at the most basic level: having a family, having children.  And while my husband would adopt, I am totally conflicted because of how old we are (50).  While we are very vital and active people, we should be planning retirement, not adoption.  Is anyone out there, by any stretch of the imagination, in a similar situation?  I am just about to finally admit that I should not have kids because I am too old, but it is so hard to accept this.  Even my instincts say don't adopt, and the thought of it scares me for the financial as well as lifestyle consequences, but I really dispair at not having children and the fullness of a family life. Should I just get over it and move on? Or is there some other hope?

LydiaBlue LydiaBlue
1 Response Feb 25, 2009

Celainn: Thanks so much for your considered, thoughtful reply. It helps to share these thoughts and to get insight from others in a similar situation. The tension between the urge to be a mother and to nurture a child, and the feeling that the opportunity has past, is overwhelming sometimes. You are right: the prime issue is the welfare of children. It would be devastating to bring home an innocent child, and then find that I am now too old/achey/tired/self absorbed/poor/unprepared to provide the best possible family environment... I think I could be a great parent, and certainly want to be. I just don't want to make a mistake at this point, having had the time to think it through and make a choice about it.