Help - Search - Members - Calendar
Full Version: Childfree by Choice!
The BUST Lounge > Forums > Friends and Family
Pages: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62
turbojenn
missladyj - you are definitely entitled to feel insulted by that parent...that was rude no matter how you slice it. And really, teaching is an *exhausting* job...I bet most parents would struggle to maintain control of a classroom for a full day, let alone teach lessons while maintaining a proper learning environment. I'll give you a (((((round of applause)))) for doing the work you do...I couldn't do it, cod knows.

Syb, I think you're right, that the parenting and non-parenting worlds are getting further apart, and that it makes things challenging sometimes to bridge that gap. As my friends here in the city are starting to have kids, we're definitely seeing them less, but still trying to find occasions to hang out with them both with child and without, and I'm not opposed to the odd night of babysitting...I'm just glad they've got the parenting responsibility and not me.

And you're totally right, there is waaaay too much pressure on parents and families these days - from the glares in the grocery store, to having the latest in learning tools for your child...when did things suddenly get so complicated, and why?

Another reason I'm glad to be childfree: Not passing along my extensive list of food allergies to my children, and then having to police food intakes to make sure they don't get sick...honestly, sometimes its enough just to scrape together dinner for myself.
doodlebug
I don't think parenting is necessarily any more or less exhausting or difficult than other occupations - and yeah, I did my share of childcare duties when I was younger, both with a roommate (who frequently depended me - with a definite air of entitlement - to pick up the slack), and also when I ran a 24-hour dayhome (which I did for 2 years, and it was the final nail in the motherhood coffin for me).

I think working two jobs is exhausting, and when women have to work a paid job and then do the "second shift" at home, that's exhausting.

BUT parents aren't the only ones who put in that kind of time and effort, either. (AND I also think women need to keep demanding equal participation from male partners, b/c they're still not getting it.) Many childless people are looking after disabled/sick/elderly relatives and friends, and/or work more than one job, and/or do community service work, and/or do a thousand other things.

On the other hand, some people are full-time parents and homemakers - that's their only job. How is being a full-time homemaker inherently more exhausting or difficult than having to work three or four jobs to pay the rent and buy groceries? I don't buy that. At. All.

On the other issue...if parents and childfrees are becoming polarized, I think it's just a microcosm of larger society....we are all becoming more and more polarized - politically, socially, economically....I wish I knew how it could be fixed.

ETA: all of this reminds me of a discussion I had with a colleague a number of years ago....it was when I was still coasting on the idea that "women with families" (i.e.: women with children) were somehow different or more special, or more entitled, than "other" women. And my colleague said, "Well, don't you have a family?" And you know, at the time, I was dealing with a father who had Alzheimer's and Parkinson's, who was a mental child by then, and who couldn't be left alone for a half hour lest he set fire to the house. And while there are all kinds of daycare subsidies for families with children, at the time, you could only get 2 hours per month of subsidized home care for situations like my father's. Plus, being a small community, no outside day facilities existed for people with my father's condition. Yet I had somehow formed this concept that my version of "family" and "family responsibilities" were somehow "less than" those of women whose families contained children....
missladyj
thanks turbo
nickclick
so what did you all think of the article in the newest issue, "Newborn Free" ?

parents who get uptight about their children hearing swear words in public, janet jackson's nipple, or seeing lingerie displays at victoria's secret need to chill. it's an adult's world and parents, as adults, need to prepare their children, as future adults, to make good choices. and tell them what's for adults and what's for children.

actually, i'm psyched about become a parent in the future. i'm afraid that future generations will be overpopulated with uptight pansy aliens that have been shielded from the real world. i want to raise a smart freethinking adult (like me!).
turbojenn
I haven't picked up the new issue yet, but I'll pick it up this weekend, and let you know...
go_kayte
That article actually convinced me to "come out" to my boyfriend as wanting to stay child-free. That caused some friction. He says I will change my mind in a few years, and he wants a family and if I don't change my mind in a few years we'll have some things to deal with, blah blah blah. Mr. Kayte is wonderful and smart but he loves children and I hate them.
Ok I don't hate children, but I had a terrible time as a child and I hate remembering it and even seeing a child of a certain age is sometimes enough to totally depress me. I don't want one of those living in my house. I like being an adult and I never want to re-enter that world of lies and vulnerability.
So there's my reason.
deschatsrouge
I'm so glad the Mrs. and I are on the same 'don't want kids' page. smile.gif
turbojenn
I started a response to kayte a few hours ago, but didn't have much time to really think on it at work. But I'll say this...that it can be challenging having a partner who is not with you in your choice to not have children. Turbomann would like to have children, in that sort of dewy fantasy way, where its all smiles and tickles...not in the 24/7 responsibility kind of way, where you get up at 3am because your baby is sick...he's half full on kids, I'm half empty, I guess. We just try to be gentle with each other around the topic, and not force anything on each other. After 11 years together, I'm not sure I'll change my mind, but we'll just see where the future takes us, I guess.

In other news, this is from the latest blog post from Salon.com's broadsheet, and I thought it was good:
QUOTE
Why do women feel like they have to define themselves as mothers or as motherless, as stay-at-home moms or working women, or the endless variety of identities that veer from that looming norm? Why aren't there articles about men who are choosing not to be fathers? The problem for me about the childless by choice phenomena isn't that it exists but that it's a category of identity at all. In the sense that it's a choice not to do something, it still feels reactive and defensive. In the end, I feel annoyed both with my tears and a culture that still makes women who don't have children feel so out of step that it must be a banner of identity.
doodlebug
So...BFF was babysitting last night, and brought the kids over here...they were 5 and 2. And they were pretty well-behaved, pleasant, cute, and even fun. Considering their ages and the number of breakables in my house, it went well, and I have to admit I enjoyed their company. BUT I was very relieved when the kids were gone!

I think I realised the core of why I don't want kids...it's the attention they require! It's a constant hypervigilance, even when they're "good." You can't just let them do their thing, and even if you can, they soon get bored and turn back to you for entertainment, support, assistance, or something else. They really are the centre of their universe. And I get that, and I understand it - kids should not have to feel insecure within the family, if they are going to become healthy, fully-developed adults. But I don't want that in MY universe. It IS selfish, but I LIKE being the centre of my universe!

I think it's that I feel I have "more important" things to do. I'm not trying to denigrate people who choose to parent, or say that what they're doing is unimportant. But rather, that there are things more important to ME than raising children. For the last 11 years, it's been politics and social/community service work that's been "more important" to me, and now I want to focus back on my art, and I DO think my art is "more important" than raising kids - to ME. I have always felt like I had something "important" (that word again, sorry) to do to make a difference in the world, and I've always felt I had something "important" to do with my art...in the latter case, I don't know what it is yet, but I want the chance to find out. I don't think I could do that with kids...and doing the political/service work has confirmed it for me...there's no way I could have accomplished what I have if I'd been a mother - that's something I've known all the time I've been doing the work.

It makes me wonder how many women have let go of their calling as creatives - and as political forces - because they've had to give it all into motherhood instead, and b/c women still do the majority of household/childcare work in most families. AND it makes me wonder how many women have given up "other" callings because they didn't realize they had a choice about motherhood....

This is really rambly, and I apologize - I've only been awake less than an hour....another reason I can't have kids....I am WAY too bitchy and weird when I wake up in the morning!
moxiegirl
*shyly delurks* Doodle- you are one wise, wise lady. The attention a child deserves is sometimes a vaccum to the adults in their lives. I yearn for the day when moxette can entertain herself for 5 minutes.
maddy29
yep, when it all comes down to it-that's why i don't want kids. it's exhausting never-ending work. i babysat on saturday and it was great-love my little dude so much, we have a great time together. but dang, was i exhausted after 5 hours of playing! he wants my pretty much constant attention. i just could never deal with that 24/7. it makes me nuts! there's lots of other reasons i don't want kids, but really it all comes down to-too much time, too much work-i'd rather take a nap smile.gif
mouse
ah, doodle, you're so wise and levelheaded and honest and respectful.
missladyj
doodle,
some how you are always able to clearly articulate what I am thinking / feeling. thanks
turbojenn
*one more standing ovation for doodle*

Most excellent thoughts, my dear, and I feel that 100%....and I don't even have a feeling that I need to do some GREAT work in this life, just that the work I do needs to be pleasing and fulfilling for me, and add a good partner and wonderful friends to my life, and well....that's as good a life as I need, and not lacking in anything.
doodlebug
Wow, thanks! *blush* That's cool that you guys grooved on that last post....I re-read it and kept thinking about how inarticulate I can be! I often think that's why my posts are so long, because I'm struggling to find the right words and I feel like I just keep missing the mark.

Cats rule, kids drool. That's what I really wanted to say. Heh.

ETA: I don't know if anyone else feels this way, but sometimes I wonder if part of the reason I don't want kids now is because I never had much of a childhood myself - my childhood was filled with family violence and other serious family dysfunction. Being able to be the "centre of my universe" now, of the kind I talked about in my last post...it's a kind of security I never had as a kid, which kids SHOULD have. It's like...I think Gloria Steinem wrote a lot about this in Revolution from Within, but it's like you have to find a way to give yourself what you didn't get as a child...and to me, having children would naturally overpower that, even though I'm still in the place of trying to meet my own missing needs...it seems like if I had kids, I would never get back to "me"...does this make sense? Anyone else find themselves in this boat?

Saying this feels like it's one of those things an anti-childfree would point to and say, "Oh yeah, you ARE one of those self-centred childfree types"...but then, they didn't experience what I experienced as a child, so how can they know what is self-centred and what is necessary for someone like me to move beyond survival mode and into true functionality? Am I making any sense?
mouse
you're absolutely making sense, doodle. my main reason (after overpopulation) to choose to not have kids would be simply that your life is no longer your OWN, for the next 20+ years. and you know, some people love that, they love having something to love more than they love themselves, and that's totally respectable but i get scared thinking about never having my own life back.

i think that's why it has to be such a momentous decision--you're not just deciding to have a kid, you're deciding to devote yourself to another person for the rest of your life, and to do so intensely, constantly--physically emotionally intellectually and monetarily, for the next two decades. and it's not comparable at all to the kind of devotion of a longterm relationship or marriage, because the give and take is so different. as much as they may love you, your child is not going to be actively invested in your well-being until the time comes that you can't take care of yourself. with a partner, it's a mutually beneficial relationship--and it could easily be argued that parent child is mutually beneficial as well, and i would believe it, but in such a different way. your spouse (hopefully) comes self-sufficient. a kid doesn't.

i feel like i have soooo many things i want to do before i ever do have kids (if i ever do), so that i won't regret not doing them because of my children. i did, however, have a really fantastic childhood and my parents are awesome, whole people with a lot going on, and always have been--and are still together, pushing 30 years of marriage. the illustrated journals my mom kept during my infancy blow my mind to look at--but i wonder where the hell she found the time!
prophecy_grrl
*delurks*

Just wanted to drop in and say that doodle really hit the mark (for me) in that last post. As much as I would like to say that my desire to remain childfree is altruistic or even practical, and as much as kid-culture and rude parents/offspring get my blood boiling, it really comes down to my own experience as a child/adolescent. Not to say that those other issues don’t figure in, but in some ways they really are just the “icing on the cake.”

I too come from a dysfunctional family with a history of violence and abuse. My mom was 19 when she had me and I’m the oldest of 5 siblings. My sisters, the youngest 2 of the family, were born when I was a teenager. I spent my teen years as the third parent as my mom tried to recapture the teens/20’s she missed out on by becoming a parent so young. I spent a lot of time resenting my mom and certainly went out of my way to not make the same mistakes she did, but I’ve also learned a lot. I think I have a better understanding than a lot of people of just how much work/expense/aggravation kids are – and also how easily you can screw them up!

I guess I just feel like I’ve put in my time already – there’s only so much of myself I can give, ya know? I continue to nurture and be supportive of my sisters (oh yes, the family is still dysfunctional), plus there’s my marriage, which is far more important and rewarding to me than having kids. My life is so different and so much better now than it was 10 years ago; I just feel like having a kid would fuck everything up.

That being said, there is a small, tiny part of me that fears being alone when I’m old and I think a kid might remedy that. Problem is, I don’t want to give birth to it or raise it smile.gif .

Wow – I’ve really rambled! ohmy.gif
katiebelle2882
I am afraid about this next generation being like that too. I hear horror stories from so many teachers (including my mother) who have parents who NEVER think their child is wrong and seek to shelter them from everything and anything. How are these children going to grow up? Afraid of their own shadow is how. My mom got yelled at for having books in her library that have witches in them at halloween bc this one family are fundies. Yet another reason i am not a teacher, I would totally flip out on parents like that. Part of me thinks they are like that because everyone just tip toes around them catering to their every psychotic parental whim. ugh.

doodle, as always, you say what we are all feeling.
roseviolet
Doodle, let me add my voice to the chorus. I have a handful of friends who are very vocal about their choice to remain child-free. And they are very honest about the fact that their childhoods were far from happy. In many ways, their parents took over and stole their childhoods. Abuse and neglect are common themes. Most of them ran away from home, gained legal independence, and were living on their own before most kids graduate from high school. Granted, all of these friends have lots of reasons for chosing to remain child-free, but I think that some of what drives them to this decision is a desire to take back what their parents stripped away. Does this make any sense at all?

Oddly enough, both of my parents came from destructive, abusive households. Physical abuse, emotional abuse, alcoholism, suicide ... it's hard for me to even comprehend. Luckily, they were determined to keep history from repeating itself when it came to their own kids. Now that I am an adult and I finally know the details of my parents' childhoods, I am just beginning to understand all that they had to overcome & I'm amazed by the work it must have taken for them to overcome their past experiences.

Prophecy, a woman once told me that it is important to love your spouse more than you love your children because one day your children will grow up and leave, but your spouse should be with you always. I've always wondered how well she was able to carry out that idea.
uplate6674
Is anyone else childfree because they don't want to pass on genetic health problems? I'm a bipolar, psoriatic, asthmatic, moody, itchy, wheezy person. I don't particularly think my genes should be propagated.

Also, my bipolar meds can cause birth defects, but if I (theoretically) were to go off them for nine months during a pregnancy, I'd basically become suicidal and psychotic, as I do whenever I'm off meds or my meds aren't working properly. For me, being pregnant could kill me (indirectly, via suicide).

Also, I'd have to be stable most of the time to deal with kids, and with the degree of stress kids bring with them, I doubt ANYONE is all that stable sometimes.

Plus, I just don't want to give over my life for 20+ years for the same reasons elaborated by previous posters. So, no adoption for me, either.

And has anyone seen the commercials for that TLC show "Tiny Terrors"? They follow three families with toddlers around for the holidays. The promos show little ones whining, slapping, crying, shrieking, and spitting up food. I think the intended audience is supposed to nod their heads in commiseration and think, "but isn't it all worth it?" But to me, it just makes me glad I'm childfree and will never have to deal with that.
pollystyrene
I saw that commercial, uplate- same reason turbo and I watch shows like Supernanny (though I was pleasantly surprised last night when the mom made such a turnaround.)
maddy29
i saw that commercial and rubbed my belly (my iud is like my childfree charm) with happiness that i'll never have kids.

i do like those shows in some ways, because the parents are ususally clueless, stuck in patterns that don't work, and overstressed/worked. it's amazing to see how quickly kids can change when the parents learn and stick to certain techniques.

it all just makes me want to barf though, at the thought of having kids.

i don't want to pass my genes on either, they aren't all that great smile.gif
oceandessa
Yep, not wanting to pass on my genetic material is another reason why I am childfree. Nothing I have is that serious, but I have a lot of things that are not well understood, and there's a chance that they are hereditary. I also do not want to have kids when chances are I will get sicker with time and not be able to look after them properly.

I am getting my mirena today. Wish me luck!
girlygirlgag
QUOTE(doodlebug @ Dec 3 2006, 08:20 PM) *



I think I realised the core of why I don't want kids...it's the attention they require! It's a constant hypervigilance, even when they're "good." You can't just let them do their thing, and even if you can, they soon get bored and turn back to you for entertainment, support, assistance, or something else. They really are the centre of their universe. And I get that, and I understand it - kids should not have to feel insecure within the family, if they are going to become healthy, fully-developed adults. But I don't want that in MY universe. It IS selfish, but I LIKE being the centre of my universe!

I think it's that I feel I have "more important" things to do. I'm not trying to denigrate people who choose to parent, or say that what they're doing is unimportant.



Doodle, this was/is the hardest thing for me adjusting to step-parenthood. It can get down right, annoying. I know I have to do it, and engage the kids, etc. They are little, though the boy is six and getting better, but the girl, MAN, constant attention.

Maybe my parents were bad parents, because I can remember at a very early age, being encouraged to play amongst ourselves, or alone and leave my mom alone. Granted my brothers, sisters and I go right in a row, so that could have been preventative measures for my mom to not jump off of a building.

So, a lot of times, I am conflicted. Should I be concentrating so much on her every action, like she wants me too, or should I be encouraging her to entertain herself and not ask me if every other word out of her mouth is funny, (if you have to ask, it isn't), tell them same stories over and over again about what she did when she was a little baby, play ponies, etc.......I think I am putting myself into an anxiety attack just thinking about it.


Do any of you read Heather Armstrong's blog, dooce? She writes about the difficulty of going off her meds to have a baby and breast feed. That sealed it for me, that is if I have to go off of my medication to have a normal pregnancy, that I will not be having a pregnancy at all. (one of the many reasons why)

I do not want to put my mental health in jeopardy to procreate. I also do not want a child to suffer with intense anxiety, agoraphobia and panic disorder, and have a nervous breakdown at 27 either. My mom gave it to me, so I know I can pass it on.
maddy29
oooh good luck on your mirena insertion-i just bumped up the iud review thread in "our bodies our hells" if you want to check it out. definitely take some big ole pain killers cause it hurtzzzz. do you have someone to go with you? i almost passed out afterwards and couldn't stand up straight at all. not to scare you, but i was sooo glad my roommate was with me. i also barfed and stuff afterwards.....
turbojenn
childfree is hoppin' today!

(((((magical mirena vibes for ocean))))) That is so exciting! I'm so tempted by an IUD, but I'd hate to see my complexion get bad if I went off the pill...

I don't have any huge medical issues that would really cause me to not want to procreate, though there's quite a lot of serious cancer in my family....I just tend to think a lot of that is lifestyle/choice driven. I do think that with my dairy/wheat/egg/sugar allergies that it's hard enough to stay healthy for myself, I'd hate to have to do the allergy thing for a kid, who will want to eat those sweets and pizza and things with friends. I see my nephie having to do that, and its rough.
pollystyrene
I read Dooce, GGG! It's a good thing she only posts a couple times a day, or I'd be as addicted to her as I am to Bust. I love her stuff about Leta, and when she talked about the legal troubles a couple months ago, I posted that her stories about he kid sometimes make me re-think this whole childfree by choice thing. Well, usually, unless it's stories about trying to get her to eat or having to put aluminum foil on her bedroom windows so get her to sleep past 6am. If I had kids, I'd totally do that. Plus a little bourbon on the gums...oh yeah, sleeping till noon!

I was shocked when I found out that Le Boy's cousin & his wife actually do that! They are the most by-the-book, cautious parents, but when the kids are whiny because of teething or something, they put whiskey on their gums! ohmy.gif I don't think it happens too often, though.
moxiegirl
i'm one week away and one seriously whiny night away from whisky on gums. so sue me.

+lurker- OUT+
maddy29
ya know, i read/heard that if adults had to go through teething, we'd all be in horrible pain and we'd be on heavy prescription drugs. so, i don't really think it's a big deal to give them some motrin or whiskey or whatever. it hurts! they are truly in a LOT of pain.

moxie your avatar is sooo cute-what a little sweetcheeks! i wanna smush her little cheeky fat face and double chin!@!!!!
pollystyrene
I second the cheek squeezing, moxie! tongue.gif

I know how much it hurts when my wisdom teeth act up (yeah, I'll get them removed someday when I have dental insurance again!) so I can only imagine how bad it is for a little one cutting them from nothing.
oceandessa
Update: I am officially sterile! Yes!

Thank you for all the vibes ladies. I actually went under general anesthetic to get it done, because a first attempt at the gyno's office did not go well. I feel wonderful, and fully awake. There are cramps, and sometimes they are quite horrible, but I do have a few painkillers, a hot water bottle and a couple of days off work so I am not too worried.

Best decision I ever made in my life. I am just so proud of me!
faerietails
congrats oceandessa! glad it went well!
girlygirlgag
QUOTE(pollystyrene @ Dec 6 2006, 08:57 PM) *

I read Dooce, GGG! It's a good thing she only posts a couple times a day, or I'd be as addicted to her as I am to Bust. I love her stuff about Leta, and when she talked about the legal troubles a couple months ago, I posted that her stories about he kid sometimes make me re-think this whole childfree by choice thing. Well, usually, unless it's stories about trying to get her to eat or having to put aluminum foil on her bedroom windows so get her to sleep past 6am. If I had kids, I'd totally do that. Plus a little bourbon on the gums...oh yeah, sleeping till noon!

I was shocked when I found out that Le Boy's cousin & his wife actually do that! They are the most by-the-book, cautious parents, but when the kids are whiny because of teething or something, they put whiskey on their gums! ohmy.gif I don't think it happens too often, though.



My mom put whiskey on my gums
ms.gb
congrats oceandessa!!

i could use some whiskey....in general.

i'm thisclose to being a super cranky bitch(lack of sleep)....and i don't have kids....good thing....
treehugger
Congratulations, Oceandessa!!! Yay!!! smile.gif
missladyj
congrats to Oceandessa!

hubby and I high five each other about me being on the pill all the time. It is such a relief.


My doctor mentioned and IUD and I am curious to hear about your experiences with it.


turbojenn
*passes flutes of champagne around thread to celebrate ocean's new freedom*

Congrats!! And take it easy as you rest up this weekend!
grenadine
*blowing in for a quick visit*
thought y'all might be interested in this article (and the linked article).

http://www.salon.com/mwt/broadsheet/2006/1...ommy/index.html

*waving 'bye*
lucizoe
I read the Chronicle editorial elsewhere and actually found it very touching. The reaction in Salon? Salon author seemed a bit defensive to me, actually, but that's because I identify with the Chronicle writer. Salon writer is correct about the whole Cult of the Child phenomenon being completely out of control. I don't like the judgements on either side, though. I'm tired to death of everything any woman says being taken as blanket statements from the whole gender, and I'm especially tired of labels. Married/Single. Mother/Childfree. Vegan/Carnivorous. What is with this need to label and identify?

I have a really hard time caring about anything related to parenting, though, so I'm stopping here for boredom. Not going to be me, don't much care. Wow, that sounds cold, doesn't it?

****
To mother of Small Girlchild sticking her fingers into my cat's cage while waiting in the vet's office:

Piss off! It's not a petting zoo!

****

I'm hungry and rambling and yikers, does my head hurt
turbojenn
Hey gren, thanks for posting that...I read it a bit earlier on today, and of course I, too, agree with the over-fetishization of all things glory be to motherhood...we're all so much more than that - parents and non-parents....but I think both the editorial writer and rebecca traister were writing with their own biases, and the truth is just somewhere in between.

Sure, friendships change when the babies are born, but the same is true in marriages and divorce, and moving to a new place, and getting new jobs...we all grow and change, and whether that makes us grow closer or drift apart, its just the natural life of a friendship...and when you feel low on friends, you should go seek out some more that fulfill your friendship needs, right?!
uplate6674
From the SF Chronicle article:


"Any other time seems to be taken up with convincing yourself and others that your children are somehow superior to their children."


This line had me nodding my head. The first friend out of my old high school group to marry and have kids does this ALL the time. She and her sister-in-law had sons one day apart. SIL's kid was nearly two months premature, and both of his parents hold down full-time jobs. Ex-friend works part-time, has a full-time housekeeper, and has her mother come over and babysit on the two days she works.

Still, ex-friend not only talks about her kids, which I don't mind that much, but she talks about how superior her parenting skills are to SIL's, how much tidier her house, how much more advanced her son, even though there are blaring inequalities in her favor. She prefers this line of conversation to any other.

Little wonder I talk to her maybe once a year.
humanist77
I can't read that article without registering for Salon, and I can't register for Salon without subscribing and giving them money-is there a way to get around that, or can someone copy and paste the article here? Thanks ; )
pollystyrene
Yep, Humanist- when you click on the link, click on the little "World Trade Center" icon. An ad for the DVD comes up and after a few seconds, it will say at the top "Enter Salon". Click on that and you go to the article.

I guess part of me understands what the original letter was saying- it sucks to have someone who you consider(ed) a friend drone on and on about their kids, but I agree with Turbo- friends grow apart for all sorts of reasons and for some people, having children/not having children is one of them. I could empathize with parts of the original letter, but even as a CBC'er, I was like, "get over it!" at other parts. I mean, did she think they were going to be hitting on young movie stars when they were in their 80's?!?!? (not that there's anything wrong with that, but let's be realistic.)

I think some people are able to let their relationship with their friends merely change rather than end when kids enter the picture- so far, it's never completely ended a relationship I've had before. I think it makes a difference when you can understand why some people want to have kids. I've seen friends go through fertility treatments, and seeing how difficult that is really puts into perspective that having kids is really important to some people. Also, I think my friends are able to have a "Girl's Night Out" or a "Couple's Night" and not just talk about their kids the whole time.

I, too, am tired of this divisive "mother/childfree" thing on both sides; I wish we could come together in the middle somewhere and mutually understand the value each group has in society. Yes, someone has to have kids to keep humanity going, but some of us need to (or already have done so) acknowledge that maybe that job's not our thing. It will be better for everyone if only the people who really want kids and will be capable parents have children and those of us who aren't so into it shouldn't be ostracized for our decision. Otherwise, bad for us, bad for the kids if we were to be pressured into it, bad for society, bad for the environment.
lucizoe
Damn it!

I just typed out a far more articulate post and it was swallowed. Huh. That's never happened to me before...

Shorter version of more column-analysis - It's really rude to drone on and on about something if your conversation partner's eyes are glazing over with boredom, and I don't see why diapers and breastfeeding would be excluded from that whole politeness rule.

Chat with person I haven't seen in years including phrase: "You don't know what love is until you have a child." Which is totally why this person had to be practically forced to participate in his daughter's life the first 8 years she was here. You know. The love. Blah. This will teach me to play catch-up with anyone. smile.gif And this was a dude who was a deadbeat for years and years. You know, I think it's really nice that his daughter taught him to care about things beyond himself. I really do. But he really needed to qualify his statements more. He's also a dude who doesn't know how to deal with women beyond his own personal perceptions of what we should want and how we should act.

Back to labels and compartmentalizing - why do people do this? There must be some sort of psychological basis for it, if not cultural as well. Fear of the unknown and need to be around like-minded people or something? I know it's an easy way to identify, and I'm sure I do it too, but I don't like it. The childed/unchilded thing - yet another way to keep women divided and in competition with each other.

On a more positive note - I was thinking about the freedom aspects of not having kids, and how for me, a huge part of that is the physicality of never getting pregnant or giving birth or (in my case) having to take hormone pills or injections or use condoms or whatever to prevent conception. I don't have to have anything unwelcome intruding on my body chemistry to prevent an even less-welcome womb-intruder. So yay freedom! And here's to advances in birth control so that we may all have it as easy as possible!

And yay oceandessa! Sorry I'm so late on my congrats!



girlygirlgag
QUOTE(lucizoe @ Dec 13 2006, 01:10 AM) *


****
To mother of Small Girlchild sticking her fingers into my cat's cage while waiting in the vet's office:

Piss off! It's not a petting zoo!



Ugh, I hate that. My old neighbors, (thank MAUDE they moved) had like 20 kids, I swear it. It was the Mom/Grandma/ her Five kids, ( 3 girls who had two each) and some cousins. It was INSANE. Anyway, there were these twin girls, that lived there about 7? They had NO BOUNDARIES. I don't mind kids too much, but I mind it when you are in my driveway and on my proch, chasing MY CATS around (Cats that don't even like the kids they live with) trying to *hold* them. I am going nuts chasing the kids, trying to get them to FUCK OFF because, I frankly care more about my terrified kitties, than these little brats chasing them!

Adult cats, (in my experience) hate anyone under 5 ft tall. Last thing I need is a kids getting whacked by my cats after I have told them to leave them alone, 100 times.

Luckily, the relationship deteriated and the kids were not allowed in our yard, on our porch, or to touch the cats, then the family was thankfully evicted. Their house was a circus. You can't have that many people in a small, three bedroom house. It stank.

I know for a fact that when the kids get older and more self sufficient, parents seem to gravitate back to the persons they used to be, but with kids. When kids are babies and experiencing changes, such as potty training, the entire house has to be consumed with it, or the kid is going to be in diapers until Junior High. And when the baby takes its first dump in the potty, it's time to pop the champagne! This is one more sign that kid is not going to need you so much anymore, and more of your freedom is returning.

I can understand E's frustration, but it seems more directed and change and getting older, than people having kids. Even childfree people should not be fighting skinheads and jumping in mosh pits everynight of the week when they are approaching 40. It's just tacky. (Not that you should not do it sometimes, for old times sake) But the purpose of life is to grow and change, you cannot stay a wild child forever, or you are just as stunted or damaged as you see your friends who have changed.

Plus, Sometimes parents need childless friends to confide in where they can say "I love my kids, but...." because, you tend to feel like a rotten parent and the last thing you want is some other parent judging you.
girlygirlgag
I hate it when I kill threads.
lucizoe
We all just get mesmerized by your icon, ggg, and our minds go blank. Admit it! It's some sort of mind-control experiment, isn't it? ISN'T IT?????


girlygirlgag
Noooooooooooooooo


(gaze into the dancing picklepepperbanannacarrot and forget wth words "mind control")
ginger_kitty
This is kind of wrong, but still really amuzing:



http://www.devilducky.com/media/54933/
maddy29
heh heh, yeah. tha'ts how i feel about parenting. bleeeeh.

i actually had a conversation about not having kids at this holiday party this weekend, with my boyfriend's ex-girlfriend from high school and beyond. she's now married with a 1 year old. somehow it came up, and it was cool. she's very sweet, but ya never know. she asked my why i don't want them, and was really cool about it. i was saying how neither me or my dude want kids, and it was kinda funny-i could see this light go on-like "ohhhhh maybe THAT'S why he didn't want to marry me and have babies with me." cause she wanted to marry my boy, years ago, and he didn't want that.

it was refreshing to talk to a mom about it, and not be judged! especially since that group of people has a pregnant/mom clique-they never speak to me. but, i'm sure if i came in with a big pregnant belly, i'd be "in"

This is a "lo-fi" version of our main content. To view the full version with more information, formatting and images, please click here.
Invision Power Board © 2001-2014 Invision Power Services, Inc.