... but I'm getting really tired of talking to mothers.
About a year ago one of my online friends was pregnant, and she was complaining about morning sickness, and then a few months later about her cravings and how the kid had started kicking her in the bladder and GOD wasn't it awful...
... so I had to ask: if it's so awful, why do women always talk about how amazing being pregnant is?
Immediately she and another woman, who had just moments before been talking about how AWFUL her pregnancy was, said "Oh, but it IS amazing! It's the most wonderful thing ever!"
I listen to you complain about how wretched your pregnancy makes you feel, about what wretched little brats your kids are, and then... the moment I say 'this is why I don't want kids' you flip-flop and tell me it's the best thing in the world, it's so amazing and magical and it's such a miracle! Then they go on to say that it's a pity I don't want kids, I'd be a wonderful mother.
No, I would not. If I wanted a child, perhaps I might be a good mother. But I don't. I have too many ambitious plans for my career. If I had a child, I would have to put things on hold, take time off, spend a lot of money and time taking care of the child... and there would always be a bit of resentment. No matter how much I came to love the child I would always resent it, just a little bit, for all the things I had to give up for it. A child deserves a mother who is happy to give up anything for it. My child would not have that. I would not be a "great mother" just because... what? Because I'm a good teacher, or because I always go out of my way to help my friends?
Then they tell me that the fact that I "worry" about being a good mother means I would probably be one. I'm not *worried* about it. I'm explaining. I don't think about it. It doesn't keep me up at night.
The most irritating comes from my grandmother, and other older, "wiser" women, who tell me I'll change my mind when I'm older. I'm 26. Most of my friends either have babies or want them. Maybe there are a few years left before my "biological clock" start ticking, but...
I have many, many years of school ahead of me. I took a rather circuitous route to where I'm at, and I've got four more years on my current degree at least, I don't know how many more for the PhD I plan to do, and then I'd want to get settled into my career before starting a family (if I wanted one, which I don't)... and that would put me well into my thirties. Sure, women can have children later in life. I was born when my mom was 32. So sure, maybe it would be possible. But I add up the years before I would even consider it, my ambitious plans and the time my career will likely take up, the fact that my boyfriend (who is the most likely candidate for a father) has plans at least as ambitious as mine, the amount of student loan debt we will both have, and the fact that neither of have any desire to have children (see the above comments about resentment) and I think, well, it makes sense for me to say no, I don't plan to have kids.
And then EVERY MOTHER I HAVE EVER TALKED TO ABOUT THIS smiles condescendingly and tells me "Well, you just wait and see."
I don't judge you for having children. Please don't judge me for saying I don't want them.
This is one reason why I've started avoiding talking to women with kids or guys who want kids. I really, really, really am tired of the condescending "oooh you'll change your mind" like they have some magical knowledge gained from their first pregnancy at 16 and raising a screaming, whining brat for 6 years.
There's also this idiotic idea that parents are somehow "smarter" or "wiser" when really, the only thing you have to do to become a parent is have sex. That's it. It's not very hard to do, to be honest, and I highly doubt being a parent qualifies you to tell everyone what they should do. It reminds me of the "Local Mom discovers trick that scientists can't figure out!" ads that you see on the internet. What makes her so special? Like I'm going to trust her more because she had sex with someone? Ugh. Being a parent does not make anyone more intelligent(just ask my racist, moronic parents), or more trustworthy, it just makes them able to pass on their genetics.
Really, I think they just don't want to be alone in their utter misery at being parents. And by convincing you to have a brood of your own, they're somehow winning but also having you join them in utter misery.
Also: I have had full on NIGHTMARES about being raped, then being forced to have a child(which involves me being fully alert during c-section, which I would likely have to get). Usually I can't sleep for the rest of the night afterwards because they're extremely vivid and tend to lead to me waking up wrapped in the sheets. It makes me ill just to think about these nightmares. I know they're completely made up and just a manifest of a long-standing fear in my mind but....fuckall they terrify me.
I've been mulling this over this week... parents who say
-"Having a child has made me a better person" and thought, who in their right mind would say
-"Having a child has made me a worse person"!!!
That's the kind of statement that would most likely be hurtful to the offspring and partner... And though we may all have heard this frankness from a parent:
-"If I had to do it over again I wouldn't"... It's a very rare statement indeed.
It reminds me of deceptive advertising, where a pure fruit juice is sold as having "no trans fat" or "no caffeine".
The thoughts we communicate each day as humans are not always useful! Or is this an example of a statement which is self-fulfilling? Or a white lie committed for self protection? Surely it fits into some kind of faulty epistemological category?
I don't know the answer to your question, but this conversation made me recall an old friend actually stating (after having a child), "This is the most wonderful and important thing I've done in my life. I guess those 4 years of college were a waste."