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Dad Admits He Regrets Having Children During Marriage Counseling

This dad asked the folks of Reddit whether or not he was in the wrong for admitting during a marriage counseling session, that he regretted having kids. This confession comes with a statement from him, saying that he loved the hell out of them, but in hindsight realized that the whole parenting/marriage situation wasn't for him. To make matters more grim and complicated, his wife proceeded to tell their six-year-old about what he said. Ouch. 

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  • 1
    Text - 2 O 1 AITA for admitting I regret having children. Not the A-hole My wife and I are both 42 and in marriage counselling after our marriage basically went to shit after having kids (6 and 4 year old twins). A lot of issues and disagreements have come up in our marriage that have driven us apart and I have been working through my resentment that going back for one more baby resulted in twins, including one which we are pretty sure has ADHD and ODD and is a nightmare child). Our counsellor a
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  • 2
    Text - I love my kids and would take a bullet for them, but if I had the chance to go back to 24 when I finished grad school and could do my life over again, I wouldn't choose fatherhood. It is not the fulfilling experience everyone claims and while I love my children, the sacrifices are not worth it to me. I had a much happier life before having children and have gone from someone who loved life to someone who just..makes it through the day, working a job he hates to provide for the wife and ki
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  • 3
    Text - It has become a huge fight, our marriage is not going to be saved now, and I know she will try and use this against my in divorce court to try and get sole custody and take everything and lie to the kids who I do love and still want to be a Dad to them. She is incapable of understanding that you can love your kids but also feel that parenthood was the best choice for you. AITA for saying it though?
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  • 4
    Text - amie71 • 1d • Certified Proctologist [20] 3 1 Award NTA you said it in a counseling session where you are supposed to be able to talk through these things and listen to your partner without judgment. Your wife was majorly in the wrong for taking a comment out of the session and telling a child. If she didn't understand how you meant it, she should have discussed it further IN the session
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  • 5
    Text - ChibiSailorMercury • 1d WTF Your wife is trying to get to you by emotionally abusing and scarring the children. NTA Also, see a lawyer about this. Where I live (not an English speaking, common law jurisdiction), it is called "parental alienation" and if proven in court, the custody goes to the parent who wasn't causing the parental alienation. Maybe it is the same for you.
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  • 6
    Text - pretend_unicorn • 1d I would 100% bring up in the next counselling session that she is (a) telling the kids things you said in confidence, (b) telling young children things they'll easily misconstrue, and (c) attempting to alienate the kids from you by doing so. Ask her why, with the counsellor there, why she told them that.
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  • 7
    Text - koeghls • 1d • Asshole Aficionado [10] This is so sad. I'm so sorry. You're NTA at all. A lot of parents feel exactly this way - you love your kids but you regret having them. That's pretty normal, and so is the guilt associated with that feeling. You're doing the right thing by going to marriage counseling, and I suggest going to individual counseling as well. Your wife should not have ever said that to your child. I doubt they'll ever forget hearing that.
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  • 8
    Text - piximelon • 1d • Asshole Aficionado [12] NTA, your wife wouldn't have been either if she hadn't brought the child into this. What you said is obviously going to be upsetting for your wife to hear, and she had the right to feel whatever emotions about it, but she crossed a line big time. OP, you are not an asshole for admitting something that many parents feel, and I just want to tell you that it can and usually does get better. Our middle kid is diagnosed with ADHD and ODD so I really, tr
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  • 9
    Text - daswonderhammer • 1d NTA, your wife is a serious asshole for saying that to a six year old, truly an abusive and psycho thing to put in a child's head. As a 32 year old in a committed relationship where we do not want kids, I sympathize with how you feel. My gf and I get all sorts of dirty looks and condescending remarks when we say that we do not want children. You sound committed to your children, but truly unhappy.
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  • 10
    Text - qhvmsk • 1d 1 Award Throwing for this: I'm in the same boat. Having my son ruined my life. My husband left me when she was a baby because he hated it and I was left a single mom. He dodges child support and my career is ruined because I have little support and had go onto the mommy track, I don't get to do a thing for myself outside the house and my son has autism and is just....a handful and a really difficult kid. I love him, but honestly, l'd command+Z my son if I could. NTA for feelin
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  • 11
    Text - canithrowitaway9999 • ld • Partassipant [1] 3 6 Awards Throwaway for this: I love my two daughters so much, but if I could do it all over again, I wouldn't be a mom. It is still a big taboo to admit that having children isn't the most amazing thing in the world, but for a lot of us, the lows far outweigh the highs. I'd never ever tell my kids I feel this way, but I think this is something you should be able to be honest about with you partner in marriage counselling, and the fact she told
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  • 12
    Text - sadsadsadsad2018 • 1d NTA. The way society claims parenting is the best thing in the world is absolutely deceitful. No one is willing to discuss that being a parent can suck, and for some people the "reward" isn't worth it. As long as you do not tell your children you regret becoming a father you're not TA. Your wife however is TA for telling them.
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  • 13
    Text - BoodyChew • 1d • Partassipant [3] NTA-I wish parents were more honest about the regret rate of having kids. It's so bizarre that it isn't talked about more. You did the right thing by getting it out rather than letting it fester.
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  • 14
    Text - MidialaSTARLA • 1d • Partassipant [1] NTA She is hella TA for involving the child like that. She inflicted a permanent scar on that baby by saying what she did. Good on you for therapy and actually trying to work through your feelings.
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  • 15
    Text - fizzwitz • 1d You said this in counselling and your wife repeated it? To your kids? SO TOTALLY NTA. Brave for being honest. And you were the opposite of TA because you were willing to show up with what was real and walk through it and work through it. Your wife, OTOH, is a real piece of work. I really wonder how your counselor is going to react to this. But you need support for you. I would recommend going into counseling solo, and honestly, you might even want to start talking to a lawye
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  • 16
    Text - nonanonaye • 1ld • Partassipant [2] NTA for sure. That's an atrocious thing for your wife to say! It's also not an uncommon sentiment for you to have. You're right, counselling should be a safe space for you both. I hope your divorce goes as smoothly as possible, and you find a therapist for yourself if you haven't already.
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  • 17
    Text - ManonRheaume91 • ld You're so not alone. So far from alone. One of my children is on the spectrum and will rely on me for life most likely. Their version of normal will be drastically different than most which means so will mine and by extension also my husband's. The stress has altered my health. For a whilel wondered if my husband would find it all too much (I'm remarried) but thankfully he's embraced this all and has learned asl, learned his coping techniques, gives me breaks. Bottom l
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  • 18
    Text - infamous-hermit • 1d My mom loves us. But she always says that if she was born in these times, she would never marry nor have children. I really believe you love your kids, but saying : one which we are pretty sure has ADHD and ODD and is a nightmare child Shows that you are resentful even against your child. You are NTA for admitting you regret parenthood, your wife is TA for saying that to your children. Please talk to them and assure them you love them, and that that wasn't what you me
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