I Had My Tubes Tied So My Son Would Have a Mom


I had a premonition I was going to have a difficult time giving birth. No worries … I am not going to go all voodoo on you or anything, but I had a primal fear, a gut feeling that it would be a cliffhanger. A few weeks before my due date, I made the decision to have my tubes tied if I wound up with a C-section.

Big deal, right? Lots of women get their tubes tied. But it was a bold choice for me because I was pregnant with my first child. I’d be a one and done mom. My son wouldn’t have a sibling close in age. They wouldn’t build forts, tease each other, plot mayhem behind my back, double-team me with kisses, walk home from the school bus stop, fight with each other on family trips, or fall asleep together on the couch after a playful day at the beach. But he would have me, and I decided that was most important.

I was 37 years old when I got pregnant with my son. Not that old by today’s standards, but still, I was up there. I developed pre-eclampsia. Further complicating matters was my family history of ovarian cancer.

I watched my mom suffer and succumb to the insidious disease, and it shook me to my core. She was only 52 years old when she was diagnosed, and doctors told me my risk spiked 10 years earlier than that … at age 42. Tying my tubes would reduce my chances of ovarian cancer significantly. It would give me a better chance at being around for my child.

As I endured days of labor, three hours of pushing, the fetal monitor beeping, the unbearable pain, and the worried looks on doctors' faces, I kept wondering about how it would end. Would we be okay? Would I have to have a C-section? I was clear that I didn’t want one unless absolutely necessary … but doctors ultimately determined it was the safest way to deliver for both of us. 

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They peppered me with questions: Why do you want your tubes tied? Are you sure you want to make this decision? You understand that it’s often irreversible, correct? Women go on to have other kids after pre-eclampsia all of time. Are you sure you’re sure?

I called my mom before I was wheeled into the operating room. Thankfully, she was still alive at that pivotal moment. I needed to her her voice, to run my decision by her just one more time. Calm and steady, she told me I was just about to meet my everything … and he will need his mommy more than anything. A feeling of calm washed over me. I gave my doctor a nod to take me in for surgery. And I never looked back.

Have you ever had to make a big decision about yourself that you knew would impact your kids? How did you decide?


Image via © Curi Hyvrard/Corbis

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tbruc... tbrucemom

Lots of women have c sections and have pre eclampsia, myself for one. I don't think that's sufficient reason to have your tubes tied. The benefits toward ovarian cancer protection are inconclusive. However, waiting until 37 to have your first baby it makes sense to not want another. I was 34 when I had my second and if it would have been my first I wouldn't have had another. I'm not sure if I would have had my tubes tied during a c section since I wouldn't have realized at the time how difficult it is to be an "older" mom, but I would have if I had known.

nonmember avatar Asdf

I also had preE and a C section. I have two children and am about to have my third.

The greatest gift I have given my children is each other.

Mommy... MommyHuman

I had my tubes tied at the age of 28, with two kids. Our reason was my husband and I didn't want anymore, and didn't feel we could provide well financially for another one. Our kids are really close in age, so I felt it was the best choice.

iicar... iicarmerin

I am about to have my 3rd and final child via csection and I am getting me tubes tied. I am only 30, but my husband doesn't want anymore children and I don't think my body could handle another pregnancy. Like the author I feel I need to be the best mother I can be to the children I already have. I'm glad that my children have siblings to play with, but I am definitely done.

nonmember avatar youngmommyof2

I had csection with both my pregnancies. With the second one my uterus rupture leading to having mytubes tried at 21(which my doctor said was rare for my age). my husband nor I was happy about it because we both wanted another baby later. It was for the best. I am blessed to have 2 wonderful kids and I want to be around for them as long as I can. The doctors told us my son and I are lucky that we made it.

nonmember avatar Ayla Dawn

The choice of how many children to have and rather or not to have your tubes is a personal choice. I had my tubes tied after 1 child (a pregnancy that almost killed us both) and couldn't be happier with my choice. I do not need to have more children as a gift to my son. My gift to my child is a family who loves him and can care for him 100%. To each her own. I do not believe anyone has a right to judge me, or anyone else, for their choice on how many kids to have.

vegana vegana

You know you lowered your chances of ovarian, uterine, cervical cancer by 70% by tying your tubes my lady. I got my tubes tyed at 28, best decision ever.

Marcela Blunck Bowidowicz

Good job making the best decision for you and your family! I know it can be hard when so many people can be very judgmental, but it's awesome that you are truly giving yourself the opportunity to be there for your family.

cherylam cherylam

I had my tubes tied at age 20. I knew in my heart the only way I was getting off welfare was to stop being pregnant. My son was born at 4:05 am, and at noon they wheeled me into surgery. I had two living children, one stillborn, and four miscarriages under my belt. I did get a great job, got off welfare and did good for my family. Do I regret have my tubes tied? You betcha, every single day that I was fertile. Was it a wise choice? Under the circumstances, most of the time I think it was. My husband refused to have a vasectomy, so my options were extremely limited. I'm a lot older now, that beautiful baby boy just turned 37,and oh how I wish I had had more, but that chance is long gone.

JIJsMom JIJsMom

This is beautiful.

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