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Girl Talk: Second Baby Compromise

Q. I want to have another child, but my husband adamantly doesn't. Neither of us wants to bend on this issue. What can a couple like us do?


A. Forget the bending. On this issue, a double-jointed Pilates instructor couldn't be that flexible.

This is not to say that compromise isn't essential to building bridges over many a marital impasse  -- you give an evening of intimacy (okay, 15 minutes) in exchange for a girls' night out. But here there is simply no item of equivalent value that you can present for barter. (I'll let you buy a sports car if you give me a baby? Yikes.) In any case, I bet you don't want a sperm donor. You want an involved, loving dad.

The best way to achieve this end isn't through compromise, but conversation. You need to talk about why your husband doesn't want a second child and why you do. As you probably know, this may unpack all sorts of nasty baggage, so you may need an objective valet to help. (No, not your mom. I was thinking of a counselor.)

Once you're both open and honest about your motivations, you can start addressing the real concerns and come to a mutual decision. And if that doesn't work, remind him that "trying" for another baby means he'll get more than his usual 15 minutes of fame.

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