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Going childless in the U.S. - Page 7

post #91 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by redcaimen View Post
I see your point, but in societies such as ours with ponzi scheme entitlement structures need to encourage a broad base to the pyramid. You can pay now or you can pay later.

If they're parents are net drains on the system, odds are good they're going to be net drains on the system too. Their parents are de facto net drains, as they have their kids/themselves on various government programs. I am paying now, and I will be paying more later. Our ponzi scheme only drains the top of the pyramid.
post #92 of 175
and BTW - our lives do NOT revolve around the little one. I'm raising him like my grandfather raised me.
post #93 of 175
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas View Post
and BTW - our lives do NOT revolve around the little one. I'm raising him like my grandfather raised me.
"Hey Johnny...err, uh...Paul." "It's Thomas, grandpa." "Yeah, whatever. Get me another Budweiser."
post #94 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by dkzzzz View Post
I'd love to have kids but not at a cost of my own short life.

My suspicion that you just might be a particularly articulate praying mantis deepens.
post #95 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by Piobaire View Post
If they're parents are net drains on the system, odds are good they're going to be net drains on the system too. Their parents are de facto net drains, as they have their kids/themselves on various government programs. I am paying now, and I will be paying more later. Our ponzi scheme only drains the top of the pyramid.

I can think of no examples where a dwindling, ageing population was a net benefit to society. Unless we can develope effective caretaker robot whores, old people will require young people to take care of them.
post #96 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by grimslade View Post
It's the parts that you can't calculate that you can't know without being one. That's all.

But can I not speculate or estimate? Even more so, can I not draw the conclusion that I did: that the expected costs outweigh the expected benefits? It's a rhetorical question; of course I can, because it's my own calculation.

My issue is with the attitude that if I had only had children (or do have children) that I would be proved wrong. It's very much as if the parents arguing this are the ones with doubts, who need to defend their decision by disparaging mine.

I would never tell a parent that their life would be better had they only not had children.

Quote:
Originally Posted by grimslade View Post
I didn't start this discussion. But it sounds like you have a lot of subconscious regret about this subject. Or at least pent up frustration. Sorry.

But I don't have any regret over not having children. I have much pent up (or not so much pent up after this) anger with people telling me I do. Or telling me some other failing in my life or my person since I have no kids. Such arrogance!


Quote:
Originally Posted by grimslade View Post
Because EL72's post wasn't my post, and you weren't speaking to me, because I'm not the person you so angrily describe. So I have no reason to take umbrage at it.

Fair enough.

I'll bow out of this discussion now because it simply makes me too angry. I should not have gotten involved in the first place.
post #97 of 175
off topic -

my wife knows some women through a parenting forum of women who gave birth the same month she had my son. all classes, races, from all over.

anyway, there is this one woman, single mom, used to strip, now works in walmart or some such. 3 or 4 boyfriends in the past 7 years (since son is born). just moved 500 miles to move in with her newest boyfriend, who she met on the web.

the 7 year old son is having huge problems in the new school, and she can't understand why. every day the kid is down at the principals office, they are now talking of getting him into special ed. but she is mostly concerned with her new relationship with boyfriend.


this falls into "some people should't breed"
post #98 of 175
Interesting responses. This thread is painfully topical for me - 41, no children and in a relationship of 8 years with a woman (older) who is great, but just happens not to be able to have kids. We're both too old for adoption where we live, and I am desperate to have kids. We are the only childless couple we know. (This isn't the reason why I want them)

I'm trying to work out if over the coming years I can deal with not having them (hence my interest in the responses from Bob, Matt, Piobaire et al), or if I need to break a functional relationship based on the gamble of finding a suitable partner in the next couple of years.
post #99 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by Connemara View Post
I have an aversion to messy people and messy things. Thus, I wouldn't do well with kids.
This coming from someone who has, on occasion, created a few messes in his own life.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dkzzzz View Post
I'd love to have kids but not at a cost of my own short life.
I respect your choice, but your rationale is just, sad.

Quote:
Originally Posted by globetrotter View Post
this falls into "some people should't breed"
I've said this before, but it bears repeating: parenting is the most important task anyone can undertake that doesn't require a license to do so.

Fathering "” and rearing "” four daughters is the most important task I will ever undertake. Ever. And I am very proud to say that (so far at least) my work has been unbelievably successful. My kids are all very decent people who are charitable and intelligent. The "adult" RubeBabes are productive members of society; the children are quite focused on their studies and take every opportunity to be of service to their peers and those in need. I think my life would be empty without them.

Producing a child should be a conscious decision reached after much deliberation. It is very hard work, and as has been pointed out, ultimately brings with it many disappointing and bewildering times. The benefits I've enjoyed in my nearly thirty years of fatherhood have far outweighed those few moments of sadness, though.

That being said, however, I don't think everyone ought to be a parent. Some people just aren't wired to do so. If one deems children as a nuisance, then by all means remain childless. Ditto if one can't make an economic case for parenting (there isn't one, btw).

I'd much rather see people decide to be childless than watch a kid be raised by someone who doesn't want to be (or isn't qualified as) a parent.
post #100 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by Piobaire View Post
Then you can see it is also silly to invalidate the concept that those without kids have no idea what it is they are missing. Intellectual beings have the ability to concieve of things outside the realm of experience. It might be a total replacement for experience, but it certainly does not leave one in the total dearth of knowledge.


Strawman. Setting aside the obvious typo above, I did not say "total" dearth of knowledge. Nor did I say, pace Mr. Dawson, that he was incapable of speculating and drawing speculative conclusions about what it would mean to his life, his marriage, etc. I merely said what is indisputable and should be obvious to all: You cannot know what having kids will mean to your life until you have them.

I, by the same token, cannot know what my life would have been like without children. My wife and I even talk about that sometimes--regret, or doubt, over some of the choices we make is inescapable. On the other hand, I was once childless, so parents do have at least a marginal advantage in range of experience over those who have never been parents--a point worth thinking about.

I know, for myself, that children have given my life direction, they have given me motivation and they have enriched my marriage. I do not doubt that on the other side of the ledger, I've missed out on some experiences as a result. The balance of that ledger is imponderable because unless we're in an obscure Nicholas Cage movie, we never glimpse the road not taken.

I don't think everyone should have kids, or that those who don't are monsters, or any of the silliness that Mr. Dawson seems to be projecting onto us breeders. But those who are committed to remaining childless as a matter of choice might bear in mind that there are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in their visions of stinky diapers and expensive babysitting. That's all. I'm done.

EDIT: Kids, like marriage itself, connects you to something outside yourself in a way that is incommensurable with anything else we can experience in our lives.
post #101 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by grimslade View Post
Strawman. Setting aside the obvious typo above, I did not say "total" dearth of knowledge. Nor did I say, pace Mr. Dawson, that he was incapable of speculating and drawing speculative conclusions about what it would mean to his life, his marriage, etc. I merely said what is indisputable and should be obvious to all: You cannot know what having kids will mean to your life until you have them.

I, by the same token, cannot know what my life would have been like without children. My wife and I even talk about that sometimes--regret, or doubt, over some of the choices we make is inescapable. On the other hand, I was once childless, so parents do have at least a marginal advantage in range of experience over those who have never been parents--a point worth thinking about.

I know, for myself, that children have given my life direction, they have given me motivation and they have enriched my marriage. I do not doubt that on the other side of the ledger, I've missed out on some experiences as a result. The balance of that ledger is imponderable because unless we're in an obscure Nicholas Cage movie, we never glimpse the road not taken.

I don't think everyone should have kids, or that those who don't are monsters, or any of the silliness that Mr. Dawson seems to be projecting onto us breeders. But those who are committed to remaining childless as a matter of choice might bear in mind that there are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in their visions of stinky diapers and expensive babysitting. That's all. I'm done.

EDIT: Kids, like marriage itself, connects you to something outside yourself in a way that is incommensurable with anything else we can experience in our lives.

To quote Kramer (after being awarded the bike for saying Elaine should have it rather than cutting it in half): "Newman, you are wise."
post #102 of 175
My wife and I have no kids either, but I think we would be happy either way.
post #103 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by redcaimen View Post
My suspicion that you just might be a particularly articulate praying mantis deepens.

I laughed hard.
post #104 of 175
^only regrets i have are financial. i had 3 by 29. my biz partner is having his first at 37. we make the same money and our lifestyles couldn't be more different.
post #105 of 175
Quote:
Originally Posted by EL72 View Post
I am 36 yo with three kids (6, 4 and 1) and wish I could have another. I love being with my kids and would rather be with them than anywhere else 99% of the time. We have the best nanny (live-in) in the world so that makes our lives much easier since both my wife and I work full-time.

I understand and respect those couples who don't want kids. I guess they don't know what they're missing. It's hard to explain how things in life take on a different meaning when you hang out with these little people that are like a part of you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rdawson808 View Post
And this is what elicits a strong FUCK YOU from me. How dare you belittle me like this? I am not an idiot. I know what comes with parenthood (the good and the bad). I'm both intelligent and adult enough to make this choice for myself. By the same logic as yours I can tell you that you don't know what you're missing by not staying childless.

How do you not see that this attitude is condescending and rude?

b

Quote:
Originally Posted by rdawson808 View Post
No I'm not a parent. But I did not say that I know how it feels. I said that I know what comes with parenting. It offers potential benefits and both guaranteed and potential costs. I won't list them; they've been discussed above. I can do the calculation in my head and heart that the costs outweigh the benefits.

That's my point. Why are so many parents unable to leave alone those of us who choose to be childless? Why not? Why not just leave people be?

Yes, this thread is specifically about this choice so it must be discussed, but I have never in my life witnessed someone question a parent's choice to have kids. Never. But I constantly see parents question my choice to not have kids. Where does this moral high ground come from?

And why ignore my anger? Is it not justified? Take the point that many many many parents are very rude people who treat the childless like they are lesser people.

b

Quote:
Originally Posted by rdawson808 View Post
But can I not speculate or estimate? Even more so, can I not draw the conclusion that I did: that the expected costs outweigh the expected benefits? It's a rhetorical question; of course I can, because it's my own calculation.

My issue is with the attitude that if I had only had children (or do have children) that I would be proved wrong. It's very much as if the parents arguing this are the ones with doubts, who need to defend their decision by disparaging mine.

I would never tell a parent that their life would be better had they only not had children.

But I don't have any regret over not having children. I have much pent up (or not so much pent up after this) anger with people telling me I do. Or telling me some other failing in my life or my person since I have no kids. Such arrogance!

I'll bow out of this discussion now because it simply makes me too angry. I should not have gotten involved in the first place.

I guess this is a pretty touchy subject for you Bob.

Setting aside your strong FUCK YOU, I am sorry you feel belittled but I assure you my post (and my attitude toward childless couples in general) is far from condescending. I prefaced my comment by specifically stating that I understand and respect your choice but given that you don't have kids, you cannot, by definition, know what being a parent feels like. This is the visceral emotion that you cannot experience by simply weighing the pros and cons of parenting that grimslade is referring to.

I can certainly appreciate that you have done the math and decided in a rational and intelligent manner that having kids was not for you. You still cannot deny that you can't experience what it feels like to be a parent. Note that I didn't say that if only you knew what it felt like, you would regret your decision. I merely pointed out the fact that you don't know how you would feel and thus don't know what you're missing. For all I know, you would hate it and are better off not reproducing.

At any rate, I have to go to my son's parent-teacher meeting so gotta run...
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