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Tuesday, March 27, 2018

To Kid or Not to Kid?

I believe the children are our future.  Teach them well and let them lead the way.

All right, all right.  I'm totally plagiarizing Whitney Houston here.  But in a way, she's right.  The children that we bring into the world are our future, and they will be the ones who will see the world into the next era. 

I can easily see why that would be one reason why people decide that they want to have a baby.  After all, the idea of creating a seed to expand the family tree is one way to keep family history alive.  But of course there are so many other reasons for having children.  Children are the symbol of the love between two people.  Children are the light of the future.  Children bring joy and happiness to people who are around them - well, okay, that's the case MOST of the time. 

I just have never really felt like one of those people.

As far back as I can remember, I don't think I've ever really felt any desire to be a parent in any way.  I mean, don't get me wrong.  I like kids.  I like being goofy around kids.  I love being an uncle.  And, frankly, I'm still considered a big kid at heart.  I mean, let's face it.  I'm nearly 37 and I STILL watch cartoons.  Well, the good ones, anyway.

I just don't ever see myself having a child of my own.

I suppose this is going to be one of my personal blog entries where I talk about my hopes and dreams of the future, so if you want to see pop culture, you probably might want to skip this one.  But if you're like me, and you're contemplating whether you want to or don't want to be a parent, you might be interested in hearing the thoughts of a guy who is currently there.

Before I get into the specific reasons why I don't think I see myself becoming a parent, I want to talk about another issue related to this that makes me see red.  I'm talking about the people of the world who choose to be childless and who consistently get attacked by either family members or pro-child people who call these people selfish for choosing not to bring children into the world.

Yeah, can I have what you're smoking so I can permanently destroy it so that nobody else can spout the tripe that you keep spreading?

First of all, it is nobody's business why a person chooses not to have a child, and it is up to them to decide whether or not they choose to share the reasons why.  I certainly don't have to make my reasons public, but I am choosing so because I want others to understand that they are not alone.  Besides, there might be medical issues that prevent some from having children biologically, and I think it's a little insensitive to call these people selfish for not having kids when in actuality they have no choice in the matter.  So, yeah.  Stop judging others on their decisions and we will, in turn, stop judging you on yours.

Capice?  Good.  Let's continue.

I've thought about why I don't seem to feel like I want to have children of my own, and when it boils down to it, I can think of four reasons why I would want to stay childless.

The most obvious one is the fact that as a male, I cannot get pregnant.  Well, unless you're Arnold Schwarzenegger, but I try to forget that movie was ever made.  Last time I checked, I'm pretty sure that I would need a partner of the opposite sex to procreate with.  Unless fifth grade sex ed class lied to me the whole time.

I am currently unattached.  And honestly, at this stage in my life I am perfectly okay with that.  I don't want to be coupled for the sake of being coupled.  For one, that mindset would only ensure that my relationship would last maybe a few months at the most.  I'm certainly not against finding love with someone, but I'm also at the point where I don't want to settle for just anybody.  I'm of the mindset where if it happens, great.  But if it doesn't, that's equally great.

I also firmly believe that one should never have a child just for the sake of having a child.  Let's face it, having babies is a full-time commitment that requires you to make many sacrifices and spend a whole lot of money. 

And that leads into reason #2 as to why I don't want kids at this time.  I don't nearly have enough income to warrant having a child.  I basically make enough money to keep up the house, pay bills, and maybe once a year I have enough left to splurge on something that I really want (like buying a new iPod to replace the one I broke four months ago that it literally took four months to save up for).  Add a child to the mix, and I simply can't do it.  Even with any government benefits that a child might be entitled to, I still wouldn't be able to provide a child with the life that they absolutely deserve, and it would not be fair to bring a child into the world that I can't afford to take care of.  Maybe in the future something might happen and things will be more stable in that regard.  Right now, there's no chance in hell. 

And, I suppose that at this time, there's an even bigger reason why I don't want to have children.  And at this point, it would be the main reason why.

I don't think I'm emotionally ready to have them.  I may never be ready.

But I'm coming to terms with the fact that right now, I'm okay with it.  I've come to terms with the fact that my brain is wired differently from most other people, and I have come to terms with the fact that I process emotions way differently from most people.  But I also have come to terms with some truths that may impact the way that I would interact with a child of my own.

Because of the way my brain is wired, I probably will never learn how to drive a car.  And for those soccer moms and dads out there, you all well know that having a license is practically a necessity for parents.  So, there's a strike against me. 

I'm also extremely socially awkward around people and it takes me a good six months to a year at times before I even work up the courage to open up to people.  When you're bonding with a child, you NEVER have that luxury.  So, I feel that's another strike against me. 

And, I suppose on a purely selfish level, there's a part of me that doesn't want to bring a child into the world with my genetic make-up because I honestly feel that the last thing the world needs is another me.  Self-esteem is something that I've always struggled with, and it would honestly break my heart if any offspring of mine had to go through the same stuff that I went through.  I didn't know how to make it stop back then, and as an adult, I'm honestly thinking that I still don't how to make it stop.  I guess in a way, having children biologically scares me to death.  And I'm not even the one who has to give birth to it!

Now, that being said, I'm not discounting the idea of ever being a parent.  Maybe in a few years from now, I'll change my mind.  But as of right now, I don't think that I will be ready to have a child of my own. 

Besides, if the cards don't fall that way and the time comes that I really want to be a parent, there are other options that are available.  Adoption, being a step-parent, joining Big Brothers.  I don't have to have any blood relation in order to be a positive influence to a child.

But still...I'm going to have to do a lot of work on myself before I can make that commitment.

And a partner.

And a job that pays a lot more than I make.

Yeah, you know something?  Let's call the whole thing off.  

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