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turbojenn
Hmmm....the 1-2 trimester father opt-out is an interesting idea...currently, states have a "Putative Father Registry" which means that any man can put his name and contact info into the registry and be notified if a woman names him as the putative father of any child...of course this only comes into play for women needing social service support either from Child Welfare or an Adoption agency. In practice, no one really registers, as its not even remotely well-publicized. The opt out thing would need a LOT of money behind it to get the word to trickle down to the men who might want to take advantage of this. I like the idea, paired with a legal statement that if he does choose to be involved in his child's life, child support will be implemented. I have *no* faith that the current child welfare and family court system could implement such a thing, but I like the thought.
katiebelle2882
I definitly agree with the opt-out idea. This is something I always get lampooned about here I feel like. I refuse to admit, even as a feminist, that women are never at fault, and would never, ever do anything manipulative etc. I have personally seen many women consider getting pregnant "by accident" in order to keep the guy around. this is enough (in combination with the fact that a man cant make a woman get an abortion-nor should he, but he has no choice in any of it). most of these women have had conversations with the guy where they tell him they are using BC so its in good faith that hes protected. i have seen feminists be like "well he should have kept his dick in his pants". well doodle, you are right, its the same as telling a woman that she should have kept her legs closed so now that shes a whore and she didnt she must have the child. we cant have it both ways.


of course, like moxie said, its also a fact that there are asshole dudes as well who just wont use a condom cause it "doesnt feel good".

i think anyone and everyone should be protected against the wrath-stupidity-vengeance-moronicness of another no matter what the gender. we all know all of the above are not gender specific, but the fact that its a child makes things far more complicated.
moxiegirl
well, i guess that's kind of the point behind an EARLY opt-out...you opt out before the child is a child. If I can't make the descision to not carry to term, then neither can the man. But, I also don't think that a 4-5 month fetus is a child...its just a comforting way of thinking through the parasitic relationship of fetus and host. Oh...wait...i'm a breeder...i was supposed to love pregnancy, right? whoops. (wry smart-assness here)
katiebelle2882
what moxie you arent going to get pregnant 3 bazillion more times bc you loved looking like you came off the set of alien?

just kidding, i happen to know many many people with children who would rather cut off a toe then be pregnant bc it was so miserable for them. i think admitting you hated being pregnant is almost as taboo as saying you really wish you didnt have your children, even though you love them now. or saying how sometimes you really dont like your kids. stuff like that, honesty like that, as we have discussed so many times, is just a part of ourr mother glorifying culture that doesnt do service to anyone. mothers, non mothers, or children.


just as an aside, adrienne rich had that great book "of women born" that addressed many of these issues. has anyone read that?
girlygirlgag
My mom always talks about loving pregnancy and giving birth blink.gif

She is a weird nature person sometimes! laugh.gif

I went out with a douche (who I didn't have sexwith, thank god) told me condoms did not feel good
during a bc discussion. I told him I bet they felt better than giving birth, or having the clap.
oceandessa
QUOTE(girlygirlgag @ Aug 2 2006, 07:17 PM) *

I went out with a douche (who I didn't have sexwith, thank god) told me condoms did not feel good
during a bc discussion. I told him I bet they felt better than giving birth, or having the clap.



I just spurted blueberries all over the computer screen. This is the best comeback line ever.
GGG you are so my hero today.
katiebelle2882
yeah some women love it. others hate it


and that was the best thing ever GGG


and i am still laughing at your icon. every.damn.time.i.see.it
ms.gb
bwahahahaahaha....good one...
ginger_kitty
LOL, ggg!!!

Moxie, you mean pregnancy isn't all rainbows and fluffy bunnies like we have been told? (joking)

And I agree w/ early opt out. The only time I agree w/ late term abortions is health related issues concerning either the mother or the fetus.
treehugger
Well, I'm going to buck the trend here...I work with 99% men. And I might sound jaded....but of all the men I know (and I know a LOT and I hear their "intimate" conversations).

I think 85 percent would choose the "opt out" option. At some point within the first trimester.

Not sure where I'm going with this...but I'm more in agreement of a "presexual agreement" than an "opt out". Maybe that's entrapment, I don't know.

But of the men I know, most of them don't react to the thought of children with joy. Oh, they act joyous to their wives...because they know their wives want the kids (if that's the case)...but I've heard SO MANY of them confide in me that they never wanted the kids. That it was the decision of the wife.

If I were fertile (THANK GOD FOR TUBALS)...but if I were fertile and having sex with some unknown or known man, I'd sort of want some kind of "prenuptual" or "prepregnancy" agreement, myself.

Because I've seen and heard too much. There's some weird gut feeling that if there were an "opt out" for men, that there'd be a lot more kids in poverty. I seriously hope I'm not correct.

And I disagree with the whole idea of "trapping" men too. In terms of deceptive women. I guess I don't know what to think about the issue. Nobody should be forced to bear or support a child they don't want.

But, from what I've seen, I don't know that, that many men truly want children. Until after they're born. That's most likely the turning point.

I just don't know.

But maybe I'm just jaded and overgeneralizing based on the men I personally know.
cloverbee
treehugger, believe it or not, that actually gives me some hope. but why oh why are these men such automatons? you would think they would get w/ someone who shares their lack of desire for kids.
moxiegirl
QUOTE
But, from what I've seen, I don't know that, that many men truly want children. Until after they're born. That's most likely the turning point.


You know, treehugger, I think you're absolutly right. Even when we were trying to have a baby, and when I was pregnant, moxieman was somewhat ambivilant. He said its the "surreal" factor for a wanted pregnancy. I can't even imagine the shock and terror of an unwanted one. For either party. We were even talking about that this week...what we'd do if I accidentially got pregnant again. We both agree- abort early- we can't even fathom having another kid. Maybe in a few YEARS, maybe not. But, like he said "we like to plan our family."

So, here's a different topic...over on the hipmama board, there's discussion about some sort of bustie-mama-parenting book or set of stories or something...granted, we'd have to get all sorts of approvals, etc. But for the sake of arguement, go with me. I thought that you all have such clear and really well thought out approaches to not parenting, that a chapter about "chosing to parent" with regard, in fact, to the choice not to parent would be a valuable addition. Is that presumptious of me? Would anyone be intersted in that?

(and, can we get spellcheck??- i love big words, but can't spell worth shit)
turbojenn
Turboman went up to the hospital to visit with our friends who just had their baby yesterday, and comes home all glowy, and saying things like "when we have kids....." I decided just to zip it, and let him be all gushy yesterday...raining on his parade all the time is really a drag, and it makes us both feel bad. And then when I see him all excited about kids, I'll catch myself thinking about it, but its more a thought of "he'll be such a great dad," not..."Oh, maybe I *would* like to be a mom someday." And I don't want to get into the parenting gig because my partner wants it...we're going to have to hash this one out soon, me thinks.

I can't think clearly about parenting books at the moment, mox, but I would say that the inclusion of material covering the conscious choice *to* parent would be appropriate, and validating...but if the book is a *parenting* book, I'm not sure the childfree discussion fits there, unless it is a book of personal essays, in which case that's a whole other thing, and Salon.com just put one of those out, which is a very fine read, indeed.
maddy29
re: men not wanting kids but pretending they do for their wives.

this is ALL of my dude's friends. they are all married, married off one by one. then they start with the babies. it's like, they all have to have some. i doubt any of them has ever even THOUGHT about having kids-it's just what people do.

i was at a bbq the other day with all of them-and i love babies, they just are so cute and cuddly, and NOT MINE! and one of the hubbies was all oh no, watch out maddydude, she's got baby fever (something along those lines) i was like uh, no actually, i dont' want a baby. but it's just assumed that all the womenfolk want kids. i think some of the dads really wanted kids, but the rest don't seem like they did. grrr, so annoying.

i told them "yeah, every now and then maddydude likes to scare me by telling me that he wants kids, and it makes me freak out!" They were like huh? like they couldn't even comprehend what that meant.
sybarite
Moxie, maybe if you have a section describing alternatives to biological parenting, or parenting from birth. I suggest this because I have (or will have when I'm married next year) a step-daughter. I am not her parent but I assist in her childcare (if that's the right way to put it). I'd be happy to contribute my experience of this and of having a step-mum myself as a kid, if anyone thinks it is relevant or of interest.

A Bustie childcare book would be awesome! An alternative to all that prescriptive mommy dogma that seems to be out there...
moxiegirl
so a funny (not so much so, maybe) story, maddie. Last year, we'd been TTC for about 5 months. One day, right near ovulation time, we were attending a wedding that moxieman was standing up in. The other groomsmen, all had kids or were very pregnant. In "guy talk" during the man-times of the waiting around time, all the guys were BITCHING about how kids "ruin" the marriage, and "forget about ever having fun again" etc. Now, moxieman loves kids, he's like turboman..., but still, this freaks his shit out. That night, he tells me that based on these guys experiences, he's seriously reconsidering the benefit of having kids. Sensing his fear, I say "Ok, once I'm through this cycle, I'll go back on the pill until we're both ready." Yeah, that night (or rather, that morning), I got pregnant.

Moral of the story: 1. Use BC every time. 2. Guys overreact when in man-land.
ms.gb
bustie childcare book? i love it!!!

maddy, you are funny. i would've done the same thing, even knowing that crickets would be the only response i got.

on the other end of children and adding to the population spectrum, my cousin is getting hitched to a woman, who seems nice and all. but now i have to go to the wedding, meet her and my cousin, my aunt and uncle (his parents) and their five progeny(my cousins) and then her side, which means 2 parents and 7 siblings and possible spouse and progeny and hope i remember any of them. and then there's grandparents and whomever else is gonna show. bah. if there is one thing you can pull out of this...i can sum it up in 4 words.

it all adds up.

or

it sucks big time.
katiebelle2882
you know, i agree that i have seen kids ruin and marriage. i think it works out that way. but its BOTH parties fault, and mostly, societies.

now bear with me guys while i try to get all that i am thinking down.

basically, and we all have talked about this so much, that society has this view of babies and pregnancy as if its the end all be all. well, bc of this, in so many womens minds it IS. meaning that, once they have the kid, they completely forget about the fact that they have a husband who doesnt want the entire focus of their lives to be the children. and it shouldnt be! i mean, i think women feel they need to be this way and dont necessarily enjoy it. anyone understand what i am saying or does it not make sense at all? a family is a family and you dont need kids to be a family, thats adding on, the basis is the husband and wife or wife and wife etc etc. for a woman to forget about the man and completely be overtaken by the children is hnorrible for everyone. clearly moxie, this is not you, so he has nothingt o worry about, but i do think its true for SO many relationships i see

along those same lines is the fact that the happiest couples i know who do the most fun things and see the most in the world dont have children. i would love to hope it doesnt have to be this way, but it certainly will take a strong person to swim against the current of society and forge these happy marriages with children where no one feels neglected.

heres another idea-if it wasnt like this, perhaps more men WOULD want children?

this also goes back to the idea that you cant admit you didnt want children until after you have them, and you may love your children to DEATH, but it doesnt mean it changes your opinion on the fact that life was better before them and that maybe it wasnt the best idea.


i think both men and women are pressured into having kids, women far more so. so these men dont have many women like us, dont see many women like us i should say, so they think all women want kids. meanwhile, half the time, the woman they are marrying may SAY she wants kids, but is just doing it bc of pressure. i mean, what kind of "woman" doesnt want children!?. i dont think anyone is being honest with themselves ya know.


not sure if any of this made sense AT ALL, but i tried.

maddy29
yeah- my boyfriend actually DOES do that just to freak me out. He'll rub my belly and say, oh, it's going to be sooo great when my baby is in there. I'll jump up and yell WHAT??!! and then he's cracking up. He gets me almost every time.

can ya tell i REALLY don't want kids?

turbojenn
katie, you are making absolute sense...and the american culture certainly does press upon you the idea that everyone should procreate. My good friend who moved to Ireland a year ago says its so different over there - she has many more friends without kids, and the culture is not so baby-centric. She says its *so* different that she is actually considering having a child someday now, but only if they continue to live abroad. Very interesting...that and a minimum of 7 weeks vacation a year makes it a very alluring lifestyle, and has allowed her to think a little differently about what the future might look like.

Now, consider the american lifestyle of working full-time, and getting 3 weeks of vacation a year, and working the second shift doing childcare at home....I think I would most certainly crack. And after that, the marriage would be the next to crack. Maybe that's pessimistic, but I know how much down time and solitude I need, and a kid doesn't really understand "mommy needs you all to leave now, for about 1.5 days, so she can have the house totally to herself."

Can you tell how much turboman throws me into a tailspin when he starts in with all the baby lovin'? blink.gif

moxiegirl
katie- its sad, but you're right. We decided to expand our family, but that doesn't mean for US that our relationship is second-fiddle in any way. If anything, having the kid made us more conscious about spending good time together. As for adventures- i think if yoiu're a world-traveller, action adventure type, perhaps kids aren't the best bet. We're homebodies anyway.

I'm really similar to turbo- i need tons of downtime. we're very lucky that our folks are very nearby, and they all love to have the bebe w/o us hovering. Without knowing that net was there, we never would have had kids. Never. And, you know, turbo is my best friend in the world, i love her and turbo man alot, and they'd be great parents. But, I am so grateful that she know's what's what in the world, y'a know? Cause a sad turbo ain't fun!
turbojenn
Yeah, you've definitely got a good gig there with both sets of GPs so close by - who are loving the chance to babysit...and the fact that you enjoy your parents more than I do...having my parents nearby would do nothing to convince me to have kiddos! tongue.gif

And you got that right - a bummed out, frustrated turbo is no fun at all!

I have thought from time to time, that the situation of divorced parents (setting aside the emotional anguish part of the equation) each taking their turn with child rearing, can be a very good thing for both kids and parents...parents can get mandated time off from parenting. Of course, you have to work extra hard in communication with the other parents involved in those cases, and that can certainly be challenging...but weekly mandated time off from parenting is about what I need (I'd like to skip the divorce though) to keep my sanity and appreciation of my family. So....for now, I'll just skip that child-rearing thing.
katiebelle2882
this is such happy news to see that turbo and moxie are bestest friends!!! i had NO idea. good for you guys!


its funny what you said about Ireland Jenn. I studied there for 4 months, but not with people who had kids clearly so i dont know much about that aspect. i do however find it amusing bc its a VERY catholic country (abortion is still outlawed) and BC only became legal in 86. i mean IRish Catholics (and i can say this cause i AM one:)) are known for not being able to stop procreating. i mean, if and when i get married my family alone with be (1st cousins, aunts and uncles on both my mom and dads side) well over 100. i think its what you talked about though jenn, that its just alot more conducive for alone time and vacation time and whatnot. i mean family is VERY much valued there, i do know that, but there is always so much of it around, that its not just two people raising a child (just like you said moxie). couples have time for themselves.

i also think that maybe having a child there is something so a part of their culture, its not glorified like it is here, its a natural part of the process. in a sense, people may not be thinking about it like here, but there is nothing you have to "live up to" as is the case with america.

ms.gb
i am loving what is being talked about now...fab.

now if i could only get any of this into my mom's head. currently, she's trying to blame mr.gb for my lack of wanting kids, i.e. his hobbies will get in the way of us saving for a home, thus bringing progeny into the world. she has even gone as far to say, 'if you had married someone else, maybe then you would want kids.' the gall of her. to think that i could be easily swayed by some other man who wants progeny, (which according to treehugger, rarely occurs). ugh.
sybarite
Turbo, I totally agree. My parents had joint custody of us and my mum freely admitted to me that she really enjoyed having the time off. I think the arrangement worked really well for everyone (leaving aside, as you say, the pain of divorce in the first place). I also saw both my parents on an equal basis, which I think sometimes doesn't happen in homes where one parent (through circumstance or otherwise) takes on the lion's share of parenting.

The lack of mandated time off from parenting is what keeps me from sprogging. One of the things anyway.
turbojenn
((((ms gb)))) I'm so sorry your mum is being a meddler again...I'm sure I'll get my turn next weekend when my parents invade for the weekend.

You can tell her that your childfree friend works in an adoption agency, with newborn infants right down the hall, ready to be cuddled anytime, and I *still* do not want kids! And if this place can keep me from sprogging, I feel pretty good about my decision! tongue.gif

Yeah katie, that's pretty much what my friend said there - family is close and involved, and that's a help in child rearing, but kids aren't the "big deal" that they are here, and she lives in Dublin, and like in many other cities, there are lots of professionals living there, sans kids. My friend is a speech pathologist, and she just said that the family involvement in treatment programs is a lot better than in the US, and parents are less stressed.

syb - I'm glad to hear about your experience with divorced parents, and that your mom feels ok in talking about how the time off was helpful for her. Thanks for sharing that!
cloverbee
hmmmm...I wonder if our child-obsessed society has any correlation w/ the divorce rate here? I wonder what the d.r. is in other countries? someone should do a study. i like hearing about all these cool non-child obsessed places b/c it gives me hope. i hate it here in the sense that women AND MEN think that there is something fundamentally wrong w/ a woman who doesn't like or want kids. like we aren't real women I think someone said earlier. true. that's how people make me feel.
maddy29
i'm going on vacation this weekend and will be around a bunch of family-who i like. they've never bugged me about kids or anything, mainly cause i never had a boyfriend! but now i've had one for two years, and they like him, so i'm curious if they'll bug me, or if they just accept that i dance to my own beat and they might as well not bug me tongue.gif rolleyes.gif
katiebelle2882
clover-i would not be shocked if it does in the least and i agree someone should do a study.

maddy- i hope your family stays cool about it and i dont know about anyone else but i expect an update after you visit them!:)
ginger_kitty
clover, I agree. I hate it when men act like were are miswired or something when they find out we don't want kids. I like to consider us all more evolved not defective. And that would be an interesting study. Do other countries have the shockingly high divorce rate we have?

Interesting thoughts on men not wanting children and only having them for thier wives. I think a large majority of males do that. On the contray though, I work with a ton of African Americans, and the general conscience I get from them is that all men want at least one child(preferably a male) at some point in thier life. They have ask me if(they say when) my husband wants a child when we are older if I will have one for him. It blows my mind. But they act like I am naive and my hubby will feel that drive later on and I will disappoint him if I don't give him a child.
cloverbee
ginger, what you described sounds a lot like an evolutionary drive to pass on the genes. i think that's a lot of why men want kids. i think women want them b/c they think it's their JOB to reproduce. it's funny how the women get stuck w/ all the work, though.
katiebelle2882
this is off topic, but i also think the high divorce rate (and i do believe its pretty high in all western countries-and the only reason its not in other countries is bc its taboo etc) has alot to do with the fact that when marriage was "invented" people werent living well into their 70's. they got married at 15 and often died at 30-40 so people didnt face years and years together like they do now. also, things are just alot more complicated and women work outside the homne alot more. men always cheated and women put up with it. now women are cheating in higher numbers bc we actually leave the house. all this says to me is that very often, we arent supposed to be with one person for our whole lives-we were just kind of blind to tht fact before.


sorry WAY off topic i know but i just thought i would add it.
cloverbee
wow katie, I totally agree with what you just said. I think that we are not meant to mate for life. I think that we need different people for different stages in our life and if you stay w/ the same person, it makes it harder to grow and change. granted, some are able to grow and change together but a lot just change and go in different ways or meet someone who better meets their needs at the time. anyway, this isn't a marriage forum but it does tie into child-rearing.
katiebelle2882
it is also probably the reason why people who marry later are more likely to stay together. and i agree too clover that there very often is a person for different stages in your life. in some ways, its almost selfish to expect one person to meet every need for 50 years. i mean, i wouldnt want someone to put ME on a pedastal or expect that much from me.

this definitly has to do with child rearing, but i dont want to stray too much bc we had a great discussion going there.
treehugger
QUOTE(ginger_kitty @ Aug 3 2006, 07:51 PM) *



Interesting thoughts on men not wanting children and only having them for thier wives. I think a large majority of males do that. On the contray though, I work with a ton of African Americans, and the general conscience I get from them is that all men want at least one child(preferably a male) at some point in thier life. They have ask me if(they say when) my husband wants a child when we are older if I will have one for him. It blows my mind. But they act like I am naive and my hubby will feel that drive later on and I will disappoint him if I don't give him a child.


That IS interesting. I do have to admit that my workplace is pretty lily white so I haven't heard many non-caucasion male opinions.
fina
Katie, I agree with what you said a bit ago about the happiest couples doing the most fun things and travelling are the ones without kids. This is certainly the case with my parents friends. However what really frustrates me is that it doesn't have to be this way. When I was little my folks sold everything they had and moved to Europe for a year and a half, with me in tow. They really enjoyed it although could only ever sightsee solo while the other one was with me. Although I don't remember it at all, I think it was really good for me, being fluent in Spanish at 3 has definitely helped me learn languages now for example.

If parents could be a bit more flexible they could go off and do crazy shit with their kids, but it seems too easy to get sucked into the comforts of having everything in one place at home etc. I think my SIL doesn't even want to come to our wedding next year because flying with her kids might be difficult.
margot
*BREEDER ALERT*

Fina, your post made me really happy. We (me, partner and 2 yr old) have moved to Spain for a year, and I think my daughter's getting something out of it, too!

When you have kids, you can still travel as much as before, it's just harder and more expensive.
But no, it don't stop me! (Just planning my trip to France next week, with just me and little 'un)
Yeah, it's an effort, but like anything worthwhile is.

Right. I'll get out your thread. Bye!
faerietails
Okay, so reading Dear Abby is a guilty pleasure of mine, even though she pisses me off half the time (*blushes*), and today I came across this letter:

DEAR ABBY: I'm 33, have a great job, a good head on my shoulders, and I am in love. My boyfriend of a year and a half, "Steve," just told me he loves me and wants me in his life -- but he does not want children.

Abby, two weeks after we met, I told Steve that within the next five years I wanted marriage and a child. He said if things went well, he saw no problem with it. Steve was unemployed for a year, but he recently found a new job and his prospects look good. He still suffers a bit from depression related to the unemployment, but he's always treated me like gold.

My birthday was two weeks ago, and I was somewhat depressed about it. A week later, he hit me with this. I realized we'd reached an impasse, and because I thought I was being rejected, I said goodbye to Steve the next day. He was dumbfounded that I left, and it's killing us both. I appreciate his honesty, but I really want a child before I am 40. Not having a child would tear me apart when I'm older.

Steve is still calling, wanting to work it out, but he isn't relenting on his stance. I refuse to see him until he changes his mind. He did offer, "Let's try it for six months and see if I change my mind," but that's just postponing the inevitable. I love Steve with all my heart. What should I do? -- LET DOWN IN SAN FRANCISCO

DEAR LET DOWN: Talk to Steve and see if he can explain the reason for his hard-line stance regarding children. It may have something to do with his long period of unemployment, which can shake the confidence of anyone, regardless of gender.

If he is afraid he can't live up to the financial responsibility of parenthood, it's possible the two of you could reach some agreement because you are not financially dependent on him. If it's something else, counseling might resolve the problem. However, if it doesn't, you and he will know you did everything you could to try to work things out, and you can go your separate ways with fewer regrets.


The dude doesn't want kids. Does there have to be some psychological problem with him to explain this? And what kind of financial agreement could they have? "Give me your sperm and I'll cover all things financial until the kid is 18"??! Uh, NO...
lucizoe
Heh, maybe her springing "marriage and child within five years" two weeks after, along with his initial acquiesence, should have raised some alarms. Who is willing to seemingly commit at the two week mark?

Seriously.

And yeah, if you're childfree you have to be either crazy or miserly - only reasons for not wanting kids. How selfish of him! *eyeroll* Advice columnists are so stupid.
cloverbee
faeritails, your post just made my freaking day!! and your picture (toaster) is so freaking cute!! yeah, I agree w/ what both of you said. it's rediculous. it MUST be the financial situation b/c who in the heck would just not want kids????
hellotampon
I don't know, I think it's kind of sad that these people have to sacrifice their relationship over kids. One of the reasons I'm glad to be childfree is that I don't have all that tremendous pressure to get my life together and meet the "right" man so I can hurry up and settle down and have kids before a certain age- I can just live my life. My only kid-worry is hoping I don't end up with someone who wants them.
thepointybird
I know what you mean Tampon. On the (increasingly rare) occasions that I meet boys, I always bring it up immediately, like first-date immediately. I'm like "I won't want children. Ever." But I'm aware that men have a tendency to change their minds about it, especially when their friends start having kids and whatnot. I dread the thought of meeting someone tomorrow, gettng serious with him, then 3 years down the line he starts getting broody. Eeeek! The horror! Luckily, my age (I'm coming 32) means that at least I could have the "it just doesn't seem to be happening for us darling! My eggs must just be past it!" excuse (because I'm still taking my pills, Educating Rita style, heh heh heh!)

girlygirlgag
Uh oh, fairie, you and I may be neck in neck for best avatars!

See, I think the misconception is that women will change their minds about kids.Our breasts will swell up six cup sizes and lactate at the sight of every wee babe we encounter, after we turn 30.

OPB, other people's babies. That is enough for me, and my bonus mayhem of little kid madness.
cloverbee
I already feel like I have to babysit everyone else's kids. You are never truly child-free in a child-obsessed society. I have to get up early in the mornings b/c the kids are screaming outside my window. If I visit a friend w/ kids, I have to babysit and play w/ them. If you go somewhere you are almost guaranteed at some point to have to discipline someone else's child. I have to hear screaming children in the stores. And all of this is too much for me to bear. OPB bug the shit out of me. I don't think they're cute. and when the mom passes by w/ her new baby she will search your eyes for approval. I usually give a stone cold look and ignore. I know they are used to being showered w/ attention that they almost expect it from every woman that they meet.
girlygirlgag
Yikes clover, sounds like you have more issue with parents than with kids. They are little kids, they are not schooled in decorum as of yet! laugh.gif
lucizoe
I could really do without the assumption that because I am female, then I am qualified to watch other people's kids. I know less than zero about caring for infants and toddlers, and I do not want that responsibility, yet when I worked as a receptionist if a child wandered in, somehow I was the default child-watcher.

(I never would live up to that, incidentally. Child walks in door? Ooops, Luci needs to go back to the mailroom now!)

Actually, something else about that job. The other two office women were slightly senior, but one consistently left at least an hour before work ended (she was salaried, I was an hourly wage-slave) using her kids as an excuse. Of course, she was also living with the boss, so I guess that gave her immunity too, but it pissed me right off all of the time. Especially when I would get chewed out for something that she should have done before she left.
ginger_kitty
A friend of my mine just had a baby, so I went to the hospital it visit her. You know how some women hold a new born and are like 'oh I want one', well for me it's the exact opposite. Holding her baby made me even more confident that I never want children. I ended up having to feed the thing b/c it got hungry after I started holding it. It was so tiny and frail and looking down at it made me realize I would never be able to take care of a baby nor have the desire to. I can't believe the human race is so strong considering our fragile beginings.
thepointybird
Cloverbee, you hit the nail right on the head! It's like everyone expects you to just fuss and fawn over any random infant that comes your way, because you're a woman. But I'm just so indifferent to children. I feel absolutely nothing at all when I see them. Except irritation/annoyance if they're playing up, which they normally are. Babies are actually the worst. They're either asleep, in which case they're just boring, or they're screeching their heads off in that horrible, caterwauling way that they do. Either way, um, no. You definitely have the right idea. Babies, no. Cute dog, yes!
flyingfrog
opb. that's awesome. I am not down with opb. which is tough, at my age (nearly 30) - cause so many of my friends are starting to have 'em. so, is that bundle of drool an opb? or is it mfb (my friend's baby)? shouldn't I be able to differentiate between the two? I don't know. I feel like I should be more forgiving of mfb's, because for cod's sake they are basically made out of people I adore, but oy, I see the thing and my brain just goes ACK OPB!! ACK OPB!! and my mouth goes "aw oh congratulations!" and then I wander home all confused.

and let me be really really selfish for a minute. I hate losing my friends to their babies. I am losing my friends to their babies. I KNOW. their lives have CHANGED. everything is DIFFERENT. they are trying to juggle work, creative pursuits, daily chores, AND a baby. and that's a lot to ask. I know. they are short on sleep. they have no time to themselves, much less time to give me a call, reply to my email, hang out, whatever. I realize that's how it works, but you know what? it sucks. I want to say, you guys I miss you, screw the baby and be my friend again, like normal. but you can't say that. and they can't do that.

and I hate getting an email (from someone who used to be a go-to for smart, provocative, insightful conversations) that says "all I think about is babies now! and my baby is absolutely the cutest baby ever! I've started a blog about babies!"

aw oh congratulations. give me my friend back.
hellotampon
I know what you mean about searching for approval, clover. I cannot stand it when someone acts all loud and show-offy with their baby and keeps looking over at you hoping you'll start cooing. Customers at my job do that to me all the time.
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