Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Do you want kids?


I have never been the sort of person that has the urge to have children.  I've never gotten that feeling of, 'I can't wait to have a baby!' or the like.  You know some people just have it, and some don't?  I don't.

My sister is currently pregnant and she's always been one of those women that wants to have children.  Since she was little I can remember her saying she wanted to be a young mom and to have kids.  I, however, was never sure if I wanted children...and still don't.  Sort of.

As the years have passed and I've gotten older, I kind of thought that feeling would come, that I would get the urge or something, but despite being 29, there is still none of that. 

That said, you know what they say, typically one doesn't regret having the baby even if they never had the urge, your life is forever changed and blessed and wonderful (in between those trying times with zero sleep and spit-up all over your not-so-clean clothes) and the couple ends up happy they went through with it.  I also think it would be somewhat of a lonely life, later down the line, when you're older and all your friends have aging children and you are alone with your spouse for holidays and special times throughout the year.  Yes, you can always share that with other families, but your family will be just two (assuming you spend your life with someone).

All that said, I had a conversation with my mom the other day and she and my dad had been discussing whether or not they thought I would have kids.  My mom was unsure, but my dad said he did not think I would, and in turn I felt...insulted! (?)  I'm not sure why, but I felt like jumping up and being all, 'Nooooo! I will have children!'  So funny considering how I'm distinctly perched up on that fence.

What about you; assuming you don't have kids (or pre-children), do/did you want them?



(Photo of me & old friends' baby, circa this time in 2006).

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17 comments

Anonymous said...

I never grew up wanting kids. Even when I got married, I was still definitely on the "no kids" camp. Then something happened, and now I definitely do. At first just one, but now I can see myself with two.

It's interesting how my opinion just changed over time. Not because of any event or experience, but I just think my biological clock kicked in.

sprkl80 said...

I am in the same boat, but at 32, almost 33. My husband and I have been married for 7.5 years, and neither of us have an urge for children. We are very content with the way things are, and I do wonder if I will ever have the urge. There are times when I think that it would be interesting to see what our children would look and be like, but I think of the responsibility of raising a child, and I quickly pass on the idea. It just isn't something that interests me personally.

Catherine said...

I was on the fence about having children for a long time. When I was younger, I was convinced that I absolutely wanted children, but as I grew into an adult and began to see my friends having kids, I wasn't so sure. I always felt like I would be happy either way, and a lot depends on who you end up with. I wanted someone who would be open to the idea of both having kids or not having kids; I didn't want to feel like I would never have the option to, if I wanted them, or have someone who absolutely did want them and then would be crushed if I decided that I didn't.

I am lucky to have married someone who was on the fence like I was, but we've now decided together that we absolutely DO want to have children. We have a young niece and nephew who bring us tremendous joy and I would not want to miss out on the experience of being a parent, so I definitely want kids. That being said, I definitely believe that you can have a happy, fulfilled life without having children.

A.Co said...

Loving these open and honest comments thus far. Thanks for sharing, ladies, it's really nice to read :)

Elizabeth said...

I never really wanted children until I got married 2 years ago. Actually, that's a lie. I never really wanted children until I got married and around the same time a friend of mine had a sweet little girl! I was so amazed at the huge transformation she made into a mother, it just seemed so magical and kind of contagious! Some days I feel on the fence again about children and other days I'm baby crazy, so maybe we're just still on the road to being ready to have kids.

Rebecca @ Thats So Pearl said...

I was like you and thought I'd get the urge to have children as I got older. Never happened! My husband and I were married at 20 years old and I just assumed we'd have them...one day. When I was 29, we were talking about it and just decided it was time. I got pregnant after a month of "trying", which freaked me out and the entire time I was pregnant I was so worried I didn't have the mom gene and would be a terrible mother.

As you know, that all changed when I had my little girl. :) She's the best thing in the world and as good as life was before, it is so much BETTER with her. I will totally have more. It's funny how that happens. <3

Jamie said...

This is a great question. I always said, hands down, no doubt, I did NOT EVER want children. I always said "I'm too selfish for that." Until I met my husband. When I met him, I started to come around to the idea. I'll be honest - it wasn't quick, and I never was 100% sure, but seeing him interact and knowing what an amazing father he'd be made me really think I could picture our life with children.

As I've gotten older, I noticed, over time, that I would get excited at the prospect of children-related things - spending an afternoon decorating homemade cookies with kids, kiddie baseball games on spring evenings - and realized that I had completely come around. I wanted to be around my friends' new babies, whereas before I'd be the friend who would "take them away from the madness". I found myself a wee bit jealous that they got to keep these adorable little people.

That said, we haven't had children yet, but hopefully we will soon. I'm definitely singing a different tune than I was just a few years ago.

The Blue Hour

relyss said...

I'm 29, still single - no prospect also heh. Some days I want kids, and some days I don't. I feel sometimes my ol' biological clock is ticking louder than usual (that and everyone around me being in a stable, serious relationship). I *think* I want kids, but I'm not sure if not having any would be a big deal.

No one in my family has been pushing for them, but they ARE pushing me to find someone. They are VERY vocal, especially during family gatherings, to my great GREAT pleasure.

Anonymous said...

I can't imagine having to be tied down by a bunch of jam-hand kids! I want to enjoy being able to take off for a weekend or vacation without having to deal with kids or having to make arrangements for them. The other major reason, is because, let's face it, kids are EXPENSIVE. The idea of having to spend over a million bucks raising a child scares me to death and makes me run for the hills. Of course, I'd want to give this child every possible opportunity and pay for their college education...as any parent wants to be able to do...and I just don't think I'd ever be that successful in a career to give them everything they need to succeed. I am very career-oriented and that's my priority...I'm not about to let kids hold me back from a lifetime of reaching my goals (let's face it: things in your life WILL suffer if you have kids). So no...absolutely no kids for me. Just my opinion, but I think people need to think more seriously about how much time, energy, and financial resources it takes to raise children in this competitive generation. I'm assuming you'd want them to be successful as possible, so what are you willing to give up to make that happen?

Allison said...

To the person who was the last to comment, anonymously - you're right, kids do require a lot of sacrifice, but your last couple of sentences makes it seem like anyone and everyone who chooses to have kids doesn't think it through and doesn't realize how much you have to give up, and I really don't think that's true. Sure, there are some people who jump into it without thinking and maybe don't fully realize ahead of time what is involved (i.e., complete and total life change and the kid(s) being your #1 priority for the rest of your life) but some of us are happy to do that. If you're not, that's your choice and that's fine, but you make it sound like anyone who doesn't make the decision that you've made is irresponsible for having kids. Some of us are fully aware of the sacrifices it requires and are willing to do whatever it takes to help our kids be successful - it doesn't make us irresponsible.

LandOfTheGlam said...

I've never really had that urge to have children. Although having an abundance of small kids in my family I had never thought about wanting them. However I'm at an age that I don't think I should be thinking of that right now anyway. I'm focused on my career and buying my first home, so my priorities are in a different place.
I totally agree with you about growing older and not being able to share Holidays with "your" family. It would be a lonely time and who would take care of me when I cant take care of myself (Lol kidding!)

Who knows Amanda, maybe one day you'll be writing a baby bump post!

Anonymous said...

Allison -

Then how do you explain all the families relying on government programs to pay for basic needs such as food and health care? They clearly weren't prepared financially to have kids, so I don't think they should've had kids in the first place. Either that or they unfortunately weren't responsible enough to have an emergency savings for unexpected burdens like losing a job, expensive medical bills, etc. It just makes me sad that kids often have to pay for their PARENTS mistakes. I don't know any kid that CHOSE to be born into poverty...it was clearly their PARENT'S CHOICE that they are now having to deal with! The whole thing just makes me sad.

Sarah Palisek said...

Oooohhh good topic!!

Ok, like many on this post, I was never quite sure. I grew up in a large family (7 kids) and it was always chaotic and hectic and I didn't want that in my life. I have minor OCD about certain things, stemming from childhood memories, wanting things a certain way. So, kids would never conform to that kind of thing and I didn't know if I would/could be a good mother.

My parents were sort of shitty (not just saying that, they were) and I took care of my siblings a lot, alone, for long periods of time (I am second oldest). But as I got older I didn't think I could do it the RIGHT WAY, didn't learn how to, didn't know what to do, how to do things, etc. I also didn't want to put a single child into this world that wouldn't have an amazing life with me as their mother.

So, as I got older..I would go back and forth. I am now 31. TICK TICK TICK. I think for ME personally, it was being with the RIGHT PERSON that changed my mind and thinking on all of that. Once I met my hubby, then I knew I wanted to have them. Not tomorrow or anything, but soon enough.

Everyone always says, "you come from a big family, I bet you want like 100 kids", the answer to that is NO WAY! I want 2, max. But, I love my life right now too...so even as I sit and type this, I am thinking of the 'selfish' things I will do this weekend because I CAN. I am not totally sold, but getting there. I see my hubs and know he will make an AMAZING father one day, so it excites me to know that I will be in a team with him.

I think about long term as well, with holidays and school outings and teaching them fun stuff. It also seems that kids love me, so I must have something about me that can be parental. Maybe?! So, it will be an exciting journey to see what the next few years has in store. Not "trying" yet, but not "not trying"..if you catch my drifty drift.

Babies are fun, but they grow up...like puppies, but less furry. You have to be ready to accept ALL of the responsibilities that come along with them. Being a parent does not stop at the birth, this is where it begins. (Like a marriage STARTING at the wedding).

I just wish I had "good" parents..I see friends and coworkers and others have such great relationships with their parents and I have been on my own since 15. I will strive to be the best parent to my kid(s) and do everything so differently than my own.

Good luck to everyone on their parental journies!! It's a tough but seemingly rewarding experience, so I am told.

Sarah :)

Anonymous said...

I have always wanted to have kids ever since I became an aunt at 16. I just came out of a relationship cuz my ex already had 2 grown kids and didn't want anymore. He wanted me to go after my dreams of having them. It was a tough decision to whether I REALLY want them (I'm in my early 40's) or be with him. Now I don't know anymore. It's been a struggle and slim pickings to meet that ONE person who share the same dreams as I do. It's kind of tough no matter what you decide.

Anonymous said...

I've never had the urge for kids and at 28 turning 29 soon I still don't. I, like you, have always thought it would come with time. Well we've been married for almost 4 years and it's still not here.
I'm not sure what it is. It's not that I particularly don't "like" kids. I just feel like i'm not ready. And yes, I know everyone always says well you're never completely ready. But honestly, some days I think i'm just too selfish to have a child. Other fears include: sucking at it. what if i'm a terrible parent? Can I really handle it.
Our parents are both eagerly waiting. We'll see if things change in a few months...who knows!

A.Co said...

@Sarah: Wow!! I know what you mean about the pros and cons and weighing them out. I think you'll make an amazing parent, when you're ready, and yes, kids ARE drawn to you and you're SO good with them!

@LandoftheGlam: haha, I guess I'll be biting my tongue then, 'eh? ;) But I do think it will happen... I can't be this selfish forever, right? ;)

@Anon: What a tough decision between your man and find a man to have children with. I can understand it being tougher as we get older to find that special someone, but you have to follow your heart. What courage!

@Anon: You won't be a terrible parent, but I know the feeling of not feeling 'ready'. I think once the baby arrives (and considering you're in a solid relationship, etc.) that innate parenting skill just kicks in....somehow. lol. (I hope?!).

Allison said...

To Anon 2, who argued with me (Allison) -

You're not really getting what I'm trying to say; no one is disputing that some people definitely have kids when they're not ready, but the INITIAL comment I responded to made it seem like EVERYONE who chooses to have kids is making a mistake and that is simply not the case. Some people are ready. Some people are financially stable. Some people will give up whatever we need to in order to support our kids and support them entirely to help them become successful. If you wouldn't do that, then you're right not to have kids - but you make it sound like no one should ever have kids because every child ends up with crappy parents who have to rely on welfare. Some kids do, yes, but some don't. Some grow up in loving, stable families and have wonderful parents - but it doesn't sound like you've ever known any, so maybe this is why you don't think anyone should have kids.

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