Lately, when I open up Facebook – one of the few things left to connect me to friends – my feed is full of pictures of pregnant friends, friends who just gave birth, friends and their babies, friends and their toddlers… you get the idea.
Not that I give a crap about peer pressure, but I starting thinking about whether we should have one soon, because of the health risks associated with late pregnancies. Well. Not that I’m that old =_= I just like to think ahead!
But I realize I am not in the least bit inclined to have a baby. Every single atom in me screams a definitive no.
I’m hard-pressed to come up with a reason as to why I would want to have one.
I can, however, easily dish out reasons for the counter argument.
I admit, all are purely selfish reasons.
I love the freedom I enjoy now and have absolutely no wish to give it up. The emotional freedom. The financial freedom. All of it.
I love our current lifestyle and to me, right now, having a baby is a burden more than a joy. Right now, we can do anything we want – Move to the other end of the globe if we so desired, go on an impromptu trip, anything! – without any concern for anyone else.
Yes, perhaps having a child will bring us joy like we’ve never known before, but to be honest, I haven’t even had enough of basking in our current happiness. I’m not that greedy.
I already have a big baby in my life to take care of (read: Fu) and I don’t want to deal with an additional one.
I am not looking forward to morning sickness, stretch marks, gaining weight, going out of shape, labor pains, going through an emotional roller coaster due to hormones and stress… basically wrecking my health and appearance.
I’m not particularly optimistic of where mankind is headed. Why bring a child to this world that is going to dumps anyway?
I could go on, but I’m sure you know what I’m getting at.
However, it prompted me into thinking about the opposite.
Why DO people want children anyway?
I thought about it and could only conclude that in the end, it’s actually no different from me. They have children to serve their own selfish needs.
First, let’s define what selfish means so that we’re clear on the meaning, since it’s going to be used a lot.
(of a person, action, or motive) lacking consideration for others; concerned chiefly with one’s own personal profit or pleasure.
Some reasons for having a baby?
“Having the feel of a “complete” family.”
Simply to satisfy their own ideals and wants. Selfish.
“I want to have a “product of love” with my wife/husband.”
Again, nothing more than to satisfy their own wants. Selfish.
“My parents really want grandchildren and I cannot be unfilial.”
Because they cannot bear the cross of being thought of as unfilial. Selfish.
“I want to pass on my genes and leave a legacy.”
What makes them think your genes worthy of being passed on? What if other people don’t actually want those genes in future generations? Selfish.
“It’s normal to have children, and a part of life.”
Conforming to social expectations. Selfish.
“Humans are meant to procreate.”
Like the above, it’s just to keep in line with social expectations. Also, refer to point about worthy genes. Selfish.
“I want to nurture a human being with love and care, who will become a wonderful and useful person to society in future.”
If that’s the case, why don’t you adopt one of the many poor abandoned children in the world? In the end, you only want to do it if it’s yours. Selfish.
I racked my brains but can’t come up with anything that is un-selfish. Perhaps that whoever said that 人是自私的 (humans are selfish) was on to something.
Actually, I don’t know where I’m going with this. But all these have been brewing in my head and I just need a space to unload them so that I can move on.
Maybe it’s because I feel I’ll be judged for not wanting children? Thus I try to prove that people who do have children are actually no different from me?
Or maybe I thought that the idea of innocent children should not be associated with ugly things like selfishness, and realizing otherwise has now ruined the beautiful picture for me and I’m venting my frustrations?
Well, whatever it is, I think I’ve had my run with this issue. I’m done. Heh.
In summary, of course I’m not saying I never ever want children. Never ever is too strong. It’s just that at this point in time, I don’t see a place for children in our lives.
Fu is actually very understanding and he also shares and respects my views on this matter. It’s especially in times like this that makes me appreciate and love him more than ever! ♥︎
On to the next point… why I’d rather have a pet dog instead.
In many ways, a puppy is actually very much like a newborn baby.
Both would depend on the caregiver to feed them, watch over their health, potty train them, take care of their emotional well-being, develop and sharpen their mental skills, teach them about the world, help them learn rules and how to survive in the human world, and so much more.
Yet despite their similarities and the fact that I feel so strongly about not having a child, I feel equally strongly, if not more, about having a pet dog!
Why? I can’t explain it. It’s a decision of the heart, not the head.
I’m so interested in having a pet dog that even I think it borders on obsession. Fu is also a little surprised at how fired up I am about getting a pet dog.
I bought around 7 books on dogs, from choosing a dog, how to train and discipline it, how to care for it, often reading into the wee hours of the morning…
I’ve spent hours upon hours reading extensively online about the breeds I’m interested in so as to get a suitable breed that will be spending the next decade and a bit with us…
I pondered deeply as to what to name my dog…
I even went to research on whether dogs can be brought on to trains in Japan, where dog run parks are, if there are any grooming shops nearby, if training schools are expensive, how much dog hotels cost, if there are any dog shelters to adopt from in Japan…
Yes, slightly crazy when you consider the fact that I can’t even own a pet if I wanted to at the moment because my current apartment does not allow for tenants to keep pets.
… Which is why I’m looking at houses online to move to a house that CAN! :D
But ahhhhhh!!! I cannot decide which breed to get! (I’m totally sounding like I’m gonna get one, don’t I?)
and then there’s the…
Initially there was also the Siberian Husky, but it has been eliminated due to its size and energy level.
The toy poodle and shiba inu are very different dogs, but I like them both equally! Their pros and cons are tied pretty equally too! HOWWWW?!
Excuse me why I go deliberate and exhaust myself over this imaginary problem.