So I’ve been thinking a lot about whether or not I want kids, and if you looked around my house, there isn’t a human on the plane who would allow me to have a child without severe supervision. I am NOT ready to raise a child, and I certainly do not to go through the process of giving birth, so that I can raise a kid who will learn how to take care of me.
That’s a question that a lot of people need to ask themselves, and it’s also a question too many people I know didn’t really take into consideration before having children, and because of that, a lot of the people I know who’ve had kids in their 20s, now have kids in foster care, and other institutions.
I don’t want kids, because I spent my 20s diapering the asses of other people’s children, and I had to walk away from too many relationships where kids were involved for my own sanity and health. Leaving the kids sucked the hardest because I know many of them felt like THEY had done something wrong when in reality it was parents who were all too pleased to take care of free labor because of “friendship.”
In my 30s, closer to my 40s than I would like to be, I am starting to realize that if I am ever going to have a family, I want to do it differently than I saw when I was growing up.
Too many girls I knew growing up thought having babies were going to make their lives better. They figured if they had babies the guys would stick around, protect them, take care of the children and their new family, but too many times the men – and sometimes many of the women – would walk away for their own mental health and sanity.
Often times the men I know who left their families got further and further into addiction, guilt, and shame destroying their lives, or what could have been their lives because fear was too big a demon to fight.
“What if I can’t do it?” became “I should just leave and go be homeless,” all too often in Surrey, British Columbia, and I am sure many other areas around the globe as well.
Children are not anchors to a better life, they are responsibilities. They are not pets, they are full-time jobs that require food, housing, clothing, protection from all walks of life, as well as severe mental health help that comes with being traumatized by parents who aren’t ready to be parents, and communities that will too easily let them fall through the cracks.
When I was sixteen all I wanted was to find the right guy and have a baby, I spent more than fifteen years trying to find a guy to save me, to give me babies and let me just “rest”, and all I learned from the girls I knew that had babies, was that rest was not something young mothers – or mothers of any age – get often, if at all.
Motherhood, fatherhood, and parenting is a gift that only a handful of people can do well. The kids who have it really good don’t often understand how good they have it because they’ve never known anything else, and those who don’t have it good, end up being on the shit end of the stick, falling through or being thrown through the cracks, because it’s easier to let a kid fall then it is to pick it up.
I’m not saying people shouldn’t have children, but your answer to “why are you pregnant again when you’re living in poverty?” should not be something that revolves around you being paid to be a mother. It should revolve around the idea that you genuinely, and truly, think you are prepared to bring a life into this world, and that you’re ready to do everything you can to educate, provide for, and protect that new life.
If we’re going to keep telling every single generation that THIS generation is going to be the one that changes the future, then we as children ourselves, have to decide if being parents is something that we’re even capable of doing. I know that I COULD be a mother, any idiot can mother or father a child, but can you ensure that that child has an experience that isn’t filled with shit? That’s the question.
Before you decide to get pregnant, do the work, ask the questions, and find out if it’s what you really want to be doing with the next phase of your life, because if you aren’t 100% devoted to being a parent, then why the hell would you bother?
Sending all my love,
Devon J Hall