Hello Aunty Jee!
I need a little advice about when I should think about having children with my boyfriend. We’ve been together for over 3 years, lived together for over 2 and are planning to stay together for the long run. The only reason I’m thinking about kids now is that I’m 23, but my boyfriend is 32. I feel like I have quite a few years left before I’d feel like an old mum, but I don’t want them to have a super old dad, either. I’d like us to be in our 30’s at the oldest when our kids are born. We both have our degrees and are working pretty good jobs, but are also interested in going back to school to get our MAs. What is a good compromise age for us to have a baby? Thank you for your advice in advance!
Anonymous female, Leeds
Beti, if you are ready for children now and you and your boyfriend have both decided that you want children it would be my best advice to follow your own instincts. No one, not even me, can tell you what the right age for you to have children is because it is completely subjective. If you are ready, then you should start preparing! However, if you do not feel ready just yet, give it a year or two to fully come to terms with and understand what having children will mean. It is a massive responsibility and you need to make sure that you are ready for that. Although I cannot advise you when best to have children, taking into consideration what you have said I would suggest it may be best if you start trying within the next two years.
Dear Aunty Jee,
I am a 40 year old married man from India. I had an arranged marriage which is the norm in India. A few years ago I was abroad for 3 years where I met this single Indian woman who was working in the same organization as me. We became good friends, interacted by emails, chatted over cups of coffee etc. She was unaware of my marital status and indirectly asked/proposed me about my marriage plans. When I disclosed, she was surprised and kind of blushed. Anyway, our friendship continued and we discovered we share a brilliant chemistry and respect and trust for one another. Slowly my feelings of friendship turned into a respectful love for her. I met her once before relocating to India and parted with a goodbye hug. I kept in touch with her by emails regularly.
As luck would have it, I was allocated the same office again for a short term (6 months) and I would be going alone this time. Needless to mention, I would be meeting her again. She is also looking forward to my visit. Though I love her deeply, I know I cannot become her life partner. But I want to express my feelings to her and tell her I love her from my heart. But I also apprehend what could be the consequences of this, I mean how she might react to this? Meaning she might get kind of angry, confused, or decide to put an end to our friendship? I want to be as polite and decent to her as I have been with her till now. But I want to tell her I love her. I am in a dilemma. Thank you!
Anonymous male, India
This is a very difficult situation betah, but you must understand that by confessing your feelings to this other woman, you will be severely hurting your wife. I understand that you have deep feelings for this woman and you can’t help your feelings. But you can help your actions. I would advise against confessing your feelings to this other woman as you do not know where it may lead. If she does not share the same feelings with you then you may lose her as a friend. However, if she does share the same feelings, where will that lead? There is another person in this situation and that is your wife who will be hurt if she learns of this. I can’t force you to do anything, but please think very carefully about the potential of what could happen.
Dear Aunty Jee,
I would like your advice please. I am a British born Pakistani girl and currently at University. I have been fortunate to have a very good upbringing by my parents and share a very good rapport with them. When I started going to University, as always, I wore western clothes such as jeans, long skirts etc. and it was never a problem with my parents. Over the past year I have noticed more changes with my parents as they have become more religious. Last month my mother purchased a hijab for me to wear but I do not want to wear it. It has caused commotion and it has come to a point where my father is no longer talking to me. I dress appropriately and do not see why I am being forced to wear the hijab. What is the best advice you can give me?
Anonymous female, Bradford
I am really sorry to hear about your situation Beti, but firstly I must stress that it is wrong for anyone to force you to wear something you do not want to wear. If I was you, I would try to sit down with my mother and father and talk to them about why they are pushing this decision. When you talk with them though please go in with a positive frame of mind, and try to keep it from becoming an argument, because you don’t want that, of course. Try to explain to them that you have always listened to them, but this is something that you are not comfortable with. I really do hope that they come around and that you and your father are back on speaking terms soon.