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Thread: A life without children

  1. #31

    Re: A life without children

    One of the things I've found most interesting about kids, wanting kids, the numbers of kids we have - is that people tend to have exactly as many kids as they want. You'd think that life would intervene, peoples minds would change, that there would be a vast reported dissatisfaction with the number of children had vs the number of children wanted. That they didn't get to have as many or had too many....

    .....but there isn't.

  2. #32
    bibliophibian volcaniclastic's Avatar
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    Re: A life without children

    Quote Originally Posted by Rhythm View Post
    One of the things I've found most interesting about kids, wanting kids, the numbers of kids we have - is that people tend to have exactly as many kids as they want. You'd think that life would intervene, peoples minds would change, that there would be a vast reported dissatisfaction with the number of children had vs the number of children wanted. That they didn't get to have as many or had too many....

    .....but there isn't.
    I disagree wholeheartedly with this. My mother regrets the number of children she had.

    There is a book called "Regretting Motherhood" that I read while I was trying to decide if I wanted children or not, and it is a series of essays written by mothers who lament ever having children in the first place (despite loving them).

    A coworker of mine wanted a child desperately, but his wife is sterile. It's a huge source of loss for them.

    There are people on this forum with PCOS who have wanted children in the past, and have been unable to have them.

    There have been miscarriages.

    And then what about non-consensual births? A raped woman doesn't always want the child she chooses (or is forced) to bear.

    I'm sorry, but there's so many things wrong with what you've said. I'm glad you feel that way about your own children, but not everyone feels this way.
    “The world is big and I want to have a good look at it before it gets dark.” – John Muir

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  3. #33
    Silver Member iris's Avatar
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    Re: A life without children

    Quote Originally Posted by Rhythm View Post
    One of the things I've found most interesting about kids, wanting kids, the numbers of kids we have - is that people tend to have exactly as many kids as they want. You'd think that life would intervene, peoples minds would change, that there would be a vast reported dissatisfaction with the number of children had vs the number of children wanted. That they didn't get to have as many or had too many....

    .....but there isn't.
    i came across a rather extensive study a while back, sampling, if I recall correctly, a group of some 30 k people with children. When asked anonymously, more than half said they would not have had children, or would have had fewer, if they could go back. So that's absolutely not true.
    I think it's more a case of people accepting what is and not being vocal about their dissatisfaction (and for good reason, imagine as a child knowing that your parents regretted having you).

    Also everything V said.
    You remind me of the babe
    What babe?
    The babe with the power
    What power?
    The Power of voodoo
    Who do?
    You do!
    Do what?
    Remind me of the babe!

    Army of Darkness: Guardians of the Chat

  4. #34
    bibliophibian volcaniclastic's Avatar
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    Re: A life without children

    Quote Originally Posted by iris View Post
    imagine as a child knowing that your parents regretted having you
    When asked directly, my mother will say she wanted all four of us. I was a teenage mishap, and all three of my siblings were had in the attempt to save whatever relationship she was in at the time. Now that we are all grown up, my mother lives alone, is single, and doesn't know how to exist in any role other than "Mother". We've chatted about it, and she deeply regrets having us. She's 52, and she has no idea who she is.
    “The world is big and I want to have a good look at it before it gets dark.” – John Muir

    Mostly art.

  5. #35

    Re: A life without children

    Quote Originally Posted by iris View Post
    i came across a rather extensive study a while back, sampling, if I recall correctly, a group of some 30 k people with children. When asked anonymously, more than half said they would not have had children, or would have had fewer, if they could go back. So that's absolutely not true.
    I think it's more a case of people accepting what is and not being vocal about their dissatisfaction (and for good reason, imagine as a child knowing that your parents regretted having you).

    Also everything V said.
    That could definitely be the case - however they arrive at their satisfied (or in this case accepting) state..there they are. Nothing about it is specifically rational or should be expected to proceed in a chain of coherent and non contradictory claims or behaviors. It's human. Just like some peoples inability to conceive of a happy or fulfilled life without them.

    It's not true, any way we look at it, that people aren't or can't be happy without kids, or a with or without a specific number of kids..too many or too few. That doesn't change the state of that persons mind or how they feel - what they can or cannot imagine feeling. V's mother, and I hope she finds her happiness, isn't unhappy on account of having had kids or too many kids, but on account of being unable to find meaning outside of them - a mirror image to a persons claim that they themselves can't imagine happiness outside of children.

    The things we think will make us happy (for whatever reason we think so) tend to trap us into building them up, day by exhausting day...which is rewarding if it does in fact produce happiness - but just as people can fail to be capable of imagining happiness where happiness can be found, people can fail to find happiness where happiness can be found, even where they believed it would be.

    *I also think it's interesting that there may be things about our societies and about our state in life that challenge the traditional role of caregivers - particularly the meaning of their life outside of that. For a long time, we weren't living long enough to have to consider it. We didn't have to seek that meaning and no normative content was described about it because we didn't experience it. We were dead before our kids and grandkids grew up, alot of times dead before our kids grew up. Any time past that time was basically extra time with no specific purpose and the only context was being "greater" at what you had been doing. A Great Mother, a Great Father. Defined chiefly with respect to having accomplished that one task more than once over a long period of time and...now...in veneration and respect, waiting to die.
    Last edited by Rhythm; 18 Nov 2020 at 08:02. Reason: edited to add comments on the role of parents after parenting in general)

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