On not having children. Some discussion.

Discussion in 'General Off-Topic Chat' started by FAST6191, Apr 28, 2015.

  1. FAST6191
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    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    On some forums they have a ban on talk of politics and a ban on talk of religion, for some this topic is probably worse. Fortunately for me this is not one of those forums.

    Anyway cracked had an article where one of its writers had apparently been called selfish for not having/wanting children. I have seen some people look people oddly for not wanting children (the favour is returned in kind) but that one was new to me. About the closest I ever got was my mum jokingly said I want grandchildren one day when we were in a restaurant, I retorted "you should have raised different kids then". I got the dirtiest look from the people on the table behind me.

    Anyway thoughts, opinions and elaborations upon them if you like.
     
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  2. SickPuppy

    SickPuppy New Member

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    go make some babies, now.
     
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  3. VinsCool

    VinsCool Comfortably Numb

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    Making them is the best part.
     
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  4. Blebleman

    Blebleman GBAtemp Old-Timer

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    I don't know about you, but I always wanted to leave something for the world. I'm not a great inventor, a man that will live on in history books or anything special -- but this is something I can do. This is the meaning of my life.

    If I didn't have kids, I would have grown old, worked all those years for what, exactly?

    To me, life has no meaning but one thing -- reproduce, continue the human race, and try to have fun while you're around.

    However, I do respect people who choose not to have kids because they're afraid of the type of parents they would become. But I'm also really divided about that -- I know a man who was a victim of violence when he was little, and always told me "I don't want to do the same"... but judging by the fact he realizes this -- wouldn't he be different?

    It's a sensitive topic for many, and my intention is not to offend. Just another opinion!
     
  5. SickPuppy

    SickPuppy New Member

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    Me and my wife were together for 13 years before we had our daughter. And that was the reason we got married too. Never quite gave it much thought, it just happened. I wouldn't worry too much about it, it's your life, live it as you please.
     
  6. GhostLatte

    GhostLatte Yet Another Shitposter

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    It certainly is :creep:
     
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  7. FAST6191
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    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    I will come at the "leave something" the other way.
    By not spawning my genetic line ends with me. To that end I figure I can burn down trees with flames shot from the exhaust of my 16 cylinder muscle car, all just to watch them burn, and the net impact of my existence will still be less than those with descendents.
    Of course the smart person would argue that being tainted by ginger I should not anyway.

    Being marginally more serious it seems there is no shortage of humans and I can not see me adding anything of great note to it by reproducing.

    That said "leave something for the world" is not how I want to roll. If I can be forgotten 5 minutes after I am gone and noticed enough that I am not bumped into then I am very much good with that.
     
  8. BORTZ

    BORTZ Don't pretend you aren't impressed

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    Hmmm. Interesting topic. I think its pretty easy too take the side of "selfish" when it comes to not having kids, but its more of a pointing out a speck in your neighbor's eye, while you have a log in yours.

    On the one hand, if you want to have kids, and have the means to take care of them, go for it. Obviously if we dont have children as a species, we would die out. Duh. But also, its the only way to lengthen your families linage, bloodline, and name. A lot of people, male and female, cant wait to have offspring. Its relatively easy to do, at least to get the ball rolling (so to speak). There are tons of surprise babies every year.

    On the other hand. There are a multitude of reasons to not have children as well. You might possibility be biologically unable or you partner might be. You (or your partner might have a trait, disease or something that you dont want to pass on to a child. In these cases, there is always adoption as an option for obtaining (lol) a child.

    Now that those thoughts are out of the way, on to the more personal decision forks. Personally, I am terrified of having children. My job only pays so well, and I know raising a child costs quite a hefty sum of money. Buying supplies, toys, clothes, and medication, and everything else I cant even begin to think of. And thats only the first few years. Later down the road, there is school, possibly a car, helping with college... The amount of money you pour into this child is staggering, let along have 2 or 3. Now, the buffer with this, is that love that a parent pours all over their relationship with this child. Bringing them into this world, and watching them grow, thinking "I made this". It changes you. I know my was more on the side no children fence. But my mom wanted at least one. I was the one that changed my dad forever. He said there is nothing on this earth as powerful as your own child. You have things you might love. You have your own parents you love. You love you husband/wife more than you love anyone else. But a child. Your child. When you see you child for the first time (according to my dad) you cant believe the amount of compassion and love that wells within your being. You know in that instance that you would do anything for this child, as long as it lives. Now that is the typical response, I think. I know there are parents that dont love their children, or dont express it in normal ways. That is just my experience.

    Other reasons I have heard or possibly more selfish, maybe. One is that having a child wrecks the woman's body for a good while, or for good. (C section, stretch marks, irreversible weight gain). And that can be hard to deal with. Never being that same pre birth mother again. Selfish? Maybe? Just because you want to keep you body? I dont know. Thats a personal choice. Another, probably a smaller percentage of individuals, might have come from large families. One older fellow I work with is married to a woman who came from a family of 10 bothers and sisters. She was one of the older ones, who spent most of her early years taking care of all the children that came after. Even though Billy ( my coworker ) wanted kids, he respects the opinion of his wife and settles for a few dogs instead. I know its not the same, but they both have had quite the adventuresome lives despite no children.

    There's a third side of this coin (the observed super position if you will) where there are couples that have kids that certainly shouldnt, at all. Unfit parents who have children, raising them in broken, abusive homes. Something else to consider, maybe would be parents with no kids is actually an unseen blessing.

    Thats most of what I have now. I think its situational whether its selfish or not to not have kids. At the end of the day, is it really anyone's business than your own?
     
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  9. RolfXCIV

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    Before thinking whether or not you wish to be a parent, you should think whether or not you could be a good one. Consider your own upbringing, understand where your parents failed and you could do better and vice-versa. Consider your personal characteristics, and your health concerns. Do the same with the other parent. I think you should evaluate not only the couple's capacity to raise a kid, but if any of you individually would be capable of it. Analyze if you can financially maintain a family, or provide to your child what he/she might need (don't exclude the possibility of disease). Observe your surroundings to see if it's a good place to have a childhood, and try to comprehend what could be the best place you could be to raise someone without jeopardizing your work and personal relationships. Many people don't do this exercise before having a child, even when they're in a stable marriage. You could do well in all these aspects, be a remarkable parent and still bring a bad person into the world. You could fail in all these aspects and still raise a respectable and hard-working citizen. I guess we're far too many in this world, but there are also those who defend we could bring a couple more billion into the world and still allow a self-sustainable planet, even without poverty.

    You should also consider if it would bring you happiness. Some people feel better not raising children. What you do with your life is your choice only; if you're married, it becomes the choice for two.
     
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  10. 2Hack

    2Hack HYPiavelli

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    Towards people who don't want kids, I really don't blame them. It is a massive thing to choose the do, and props for knowing whether you actually want one, rather than not wanting one.

    I mean, you can always get kids further down the line, but canceling I kid is a lot harder. Especially when it has already slipped out.

    I might adopt though. That is something you can't really go wrong with. I know for sure I would be able to give the kid a better life than what he has at the adoption center.
     
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  11. sarkwalvein

    sarkwalvein Professional asshole at GBATemp

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    Just passing on your genes to a new generation is nothing to be proud of (key word here: just), in this world and time where medicine can make anything survive for several years and reproduce it doesn't even have a value (genetically) in the "survival of the fittest" Darwinian evolution meaning to it.
    I only say that nobody should be satisfied just with having kids.
    The decision not to have kids may have many different ground reasons, but let's be honest, society today is near to a capitalist dystopia, where we just live to produce and consume and repeat that cycle, almost no spirituality, just be a gear of the system (produce, consume, repeat). And people, caught in this cycle and addicted to consumerism, seek for more time for themselves to consume, hence no children (this is the selfish way to look at it, but not the only possible one).
     
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  12. yuyuyup

    yuyuyup GBAtemp Psycho!

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    Have kids when you're ready to stop contributing to the world and hope your kid can do a better job than you
     
  13. Nathan Drake

    Nathan Drake Obligations fulfilled, now I depart.

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    I personally recognize that as animals, we have a singular purpose in this life, and that's to pass on our genes to the next generation, for better or worse, nature doesn't care. For everyone hunting for some grander meaning, I can't help but chuckle a bit since science explained it unintentionally before science was even called science. That aside, this decision should go beyond science. It should stretch into the realm of personal desire and understanding, if not solely residing within it in our current world.

    I was raised in a family that was certainly started by a set of parents who shouldn't have had even one kid, much less three. Although I recognize their personal desire to have children, I feel they lacked the understanding of what it took mentally and emotionally. They did not have the means, despite their desires. They looked at one aspect, not looking towards the future, and fed that aspect disregarding all the potential failures they would experience along the way and how that would come to impact their children. With that said, I think the desire for children needs to be accompanied with some level of foresight. It is something in this day and age that should only be pursued by those who can look towards the future with an understanding of the endless possibilities. Backing up to my initial paragraph, the purpose of life on some level has been lost due to rampant overpopulation in certain areas and with there being too many children already for the parents of the world. At what point does passing on your genes transcend fulfilling a purpose and enter the realm of selfishness? Is it really so selfish to not want children if you understand your own limits? Or is it more selfish to force a living being under your care because you couldn't control your own desires and balance them with your sense of rationality?

    These questions aren't limited just to those to choose to create their own children. This involves those who choose to adopt, and even those that choose to act as temporary foster parents to child after child. What you'll find more often than not is selfishness where the choice to acquire offspring in some form is concerned. In my eyes, it is almost selfless to opt to not have children if you don't want them for one reason or another. You are choosing not to subject a child to your potential abuses, whether they be physical or emotional, intentional or not. You don't risk crushing another human with your own inadequacies as you perceive them, and even if you are incorrect in how you perceive yourself, you are still erring on the side of caution and rationality, recognizing and choosing not to pursue an ultimately unnecessary option.

    With that said, although I do agree that children are a largely personal matter to some degree or another, that is only true until the child is born. At that point, although you are purely responsible until the birth of the child, once it's born, it becomes the responsibility of many as it continues to grow and experience life. Knowing that, I don't think the opinions of others should be completely absent from the initial decision. As humans are wont to do, we may disregard those opinions and even get angry, but there comes a time when some people need some sense slapped into them. If even an ounce of that gets through and saves a life from misery and copious inadequacy, I think that's okay. Where I don't think opinions should have any sway is when somebody doesn't want to have children. At that point, they are impacting nobody but themselves, and that is their life to choose. Calling them selfish for not feeling like they should be responsible for the total care of another human, even feeling unable, is crude and lacking in any critical thought.
     
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  14. WiiUBricker

    WiiUBricker Insert Custom Title

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    I don't know how old you are but I think you would regret your decision later when you get older. You die knowing that you could have brought beautiful children to the world who loves you and call you papa. You see them grow up, go to school, get a job... Living without giving life feels incomplete.
     
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  15. HtheB

    HtheB GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    I'm going to be a father (for the first time) soon... :)
     
  16. Blebleman

    Blebleman GBAtemp Old-Timer

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    Or see them become unproductive man-children that spend all their time playing MMOs! :O

    That's a whole other issue though!
     
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  17. ProtoKun7

    ProtoKun7 GBAtemp Time Lord Regenerations: 3

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    Kids make things dirty.

    I don't like things getting dirty.
     
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  18. HtheB

    HtheB GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    You were once a kid too...

    (oh and don't come up with weird responses like "I'm from a different universe" stuff...)
     
  19. WiiUBricker

    WiiUBricker Insert Custom Title

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    Well it's your responsibility that they won't become like that! :p1ng:
     
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  20. Depravo

    Depravo KALSARIKÄNNIT

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    I don't understand how not having/wanting children could make a person selfish. Not having children is one of the most socially and environmentally responsible things a person can do. The world would be a better place if more people had less children.
     
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