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Thread: Sierra Club: To Have or Not to Have Children in the Age of Climate Change

  1. #31
    Senior Member Rogar's Avatar
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    There are a lot of elderly mothers who are big into becoming grandmothers and revisiting the child rearing experience. There were some expectations in my family along those lines.

  2. #32
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    We got married at about 19 and 20 (married between our two birthdays). Never really wanted kids and talked about it for awhile. Hubby did not want me to stay on BC so he had the issue taken care of. Never had any issues with not having kids except that we have far fewer worries. Strange thing is none of my brothers had kids either and my husband is an only child so both lines stop with our generation. Not an issue with any of us either. WE are retired now.

    Climate change and population concerns never had anything to do with our decision. I really think having kids is far to intimate and personal a decision to be determined by something so general. Note: not to start an argement since there are always the ones at the end of the spectrum that will use anything to base a decision on.

  3. #33
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    My partner and I never wanted kids in decent parts because we had painful childhoods, we didn't like BEING kids, so that tends to not make one want to inflict eh childhood on anyone else and to come to this fairly early on - all before legal adulthood. I always got the feeling my own parents lives would have been so much happier without kids, and yes, sometimes this was verbalized, and I took it seriously, they told us how kids ruin your life. There are other reasons as well. But pretty much childhood was hell, hell is for children. 100% bad? Sheesh little is 100%, I'd be a psychotic in a ward, a runnaway on the streets, in prison, if it had been 100% bad, oh I'm a pretty determined person somtimes, but 100% bad noone survives that. But no, but bad enough to more than accentuate any tendencies to be pretty dark very early on. Oh I have a sibling living with my mom on permanent drug maintenance for opiates and if not for that they'd probably be dead from addiction by now. My bf is an only child. Not a lot of kids needless to say.

    The thing about climate change is *everything* pretty much contributes to climate change. So one can decide what they can take and leave and to some extent I very well do based on what is most basic (commuting to work and other localish driving (hey I don't mean road trips, seldom do that) is that kind of basic to me, I know it's bad, but ..). But I don't always think having kids is on everyone's optional list either. And as for what the kids will experience, I think if people think about it at all, they make the bet that even if the kids just have 20, 30, 40 years before they are killed prematurely (prematurely at least by current average lifespans) by climate change say, that it's worthwhile. Noone lives forever.
    If you want something to get done, ask a busy person. If you want them to have a nervous breakdown that is.

  4. #34
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    I think there have always been reasons to believe the future will be bleaker than the present, especially for generations blessed by history with high relative levels of comfort and security. Itís probably a good thing that people so intimidated not raise children, which is a bit of a gamble and hardship even at the best of times.

  5. #35
    Senior Member JaneV2.0's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ApatheticNoMore View Post
    My partner and I never wanted kids in decent parts because we had painful childhoods, we didn't like BEING kids, so that tends to not make one want to inflict eh childhood on anyone else and to come to this fairly early on - all before legal adulthood. I always got the feeling my own parents lives would have been so much happier without kids, and yes, sometimes this was verbalized, and I took it seriously, they told us how kids ruin your life. There are other reasons as well. But pretty much childhood was hell, hell is for children. 100% bad? Sheesh little is 100%, I'd be a psychotic in a ward, a runnaway on the streets, in prison, if it had been 100% bad, oh I'm a pretty determined person somtimes, but 100% bad noone survives that. But no, but bad enough to more than accentuate any tendencies to be pretty dark very early on. Oh I have a sibling living with my mom on permanent drug maintenance for opiates and if not for that they'd probably be dead from addiction by now. My bf is an only child. Not a lot of kids needless to say...
    Your history resonated strongly with me; it was very similar to mine. I've long thought reincarnation would be fine if I could just skip the childhood part. I had far from a horrible childhood, but I, too, got the distinct impression there was little pleasurable about parenthood.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by JaneV2.0 View Post
    I, too, got the distinct impression there was little pleasurable about parenthood.
    In my experience, the pleasures of parenthood more resemble the satisfaction that comes from accomplishing a difficult task than anything else. I think you need a certain sort of character and outlook to get the most out of it.

    If comfort is the priority, parenthood doesnít offer much, except perhaps fairly late in life; but there really is no guarantee of that. If someone is after unconditional love, they would be better advised to get a dog than raise a child. You can pretty much toss certainty out the window as well.

    Itís like fly fishing in that it can be difficult and expensive and uncomfortable, but it offers certain moments unobtainable in any other way. And those moments can be so sublime as to dispel any thought that living isnít worth the trouble.

  7. #37
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    Hmmm...I seem to recall a similar mindset when I was young. It was not cool to over-populate and having one or none was best. Thus, I do get aggravated when I see so many moms at the park these days with four or more. I do think that is irresponsible in these times. I also have met quite a few couples who have decided that multiple dogs are their children. I liked the author's comment from her mom about so much "navel-gazing" as one can certainly overthink things. I don't regret having one child. It has been a life experience I am glad I experienced and I know she is very glad to be here.

  8. #38
    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LDAHL View Post
    In my experience, the pleasures of parenthood more resemble the satisfaction that comes from accomplishing a difficult task than anything else. I think you need a certain sort of character and outlook to get the most out of it.

    If comfort is the priority, parenthood doesn’t offer much, except perhaps fairly late in life; but there really is no guarantee of that. If someone is after unconditional love, they would be better advised to get a dog than raise a child. You can pretty much toss certainty out the window as well.

    It’s like fly fishing in that it can be difficult and expensive and uncomfortable, but it offers certain moments unobtainable in any other way. And those moments can be so sublime as to dispel any thought that living isn’t worth the trouble.
    This is stating the truth in a very profound manner.
    Gandhi: Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony .

  9. #39
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    I've never thought one should have kids in order to make one's life worth living, always struck me as not a good reason to have kids. Too much of a burden on the kid if nothing else.

    As for whether it's too uncomfortable or not, that's a women's decision and always will be, never have I or will I believe that men bear the ultimate responsibility for taking care of a kid when it's born (heck they don't even bear the kid and that matters), although in some non-typical cases they end up raising them alone and good for them then.
    If you want something to get done, ask a busy person. If you want them to have a nervous breakdown that is.

  10. #40
    Senior Member Teacher Terry's Avatar
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    I had a great childhood with loving parents and very involved grandparents that I adored. We were wanted and so were my kids. I loved parenting until the youngest 2 were teenagers. The first was a breeze the other 2 awful. We wanted 3 so had them. There were 2 little girls on my social work caseload that we would have adopted when the parents rights were terminated but grandma was young and a stable, loving person so she took the girls.

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