Hello everyone! There seems to be a lot of baby fever going on lately, in my own life and with fellow bloggers. It has gotten me thinking about kids. Ever since I can remember, I’ve never wanted children. Why? I think I would make a horrible mother. I don’t have that “nurturing, motherly instinct,” and I cannot stand crying, screaming babies. My instinct is to run the opposite way. However, everyone is always telling me this changes when you have your own children. Is that really true? It seems so – I was able to video chat with my cousins the other week and their newborn is absolutely adorable. I think I feel differently because she is actually family.
This post is just my ramblings on thoughts of me personally having children, and I would love to hear from those of you that have experienced similar thoughts.
Very simply put, freedom is one of my top reasons to stay child-free. I have always had dreams of traveling around the world, and I think toting a child along would make things a bit more difficult. My ideal vacation right now would be one at a child-free resort. I think living below (I live in a basement) a very active kid has jaded me a bit more on this, but they can be really noisy! Especially when with friends or large families.
I also want the financial freedom to do what I please with my money. I don’t want to have to worry about all the costs that come with having a child. While I did witness a lot of generosity at my cousin’s baby shower, over the years it can add up. I don’t even want to think about how much college will cost in another 30 years. If I were to have children, I don’t think I would pay for their entire education. There are a lot of opinions out there on this, so for the sake of keeping the post shorter, I won’t go into it too much other than to say the student loans I was left with after my parents contributed what they could isn’t crippling.
This all sounds extremely selfish and I fully admit that it is. I want the freedom to be selfish with my money! I hear a lot of people say that most everything you do after your child is born is with the child’s best interests in mind (which makes sense). I have a hard enough time trying to put myself first, and I kind of want some years to do that. Or at least put R and I first. Our biggest goals right now revolve around traveling and seeing as much as possible, even if that means moving several times. That wouldn’t be an ideal lifestyle for a kid.
I had said my instinct is to run the opposite way of a crying baby, mostly because hearing them cry kind of gives me anxiety! This sounds silly, but when my cats meow oddly, or behave out of sorts, I get worried because you can’t tell what’s going on with them. I am sure all new parents go through this, but I have to admit I am a bit worried about postpartum depression. Babies are a lot of work, and I have no idea if I can handle it. I have not had any experience with kids at all – my cousin’s baby is the first child in our family to be born in quite a while, and I don’t have any friends with children.
There are also other challenges that come along with parenting, such as having your child compared to others in their school, or other family members. I don’t think it’s a competition. I would try and distance myself from this attitude as much as possible, but being around other parents might make that hard.
My other concern is a bit extreme – I always wonder what will happen if my child just grows to dislike me for some reason. You know those rebellious teens you see on TV – where the parents try and do everything right, but the child still cuts ties with them in the end? I would be devastated to have that happen. I have a great relationship with my parents, even though things did get a little rocky during my teen years.
Staying at home
I had never thought of being a stay at home mom before, at all, as I always wanted to be the breadwinner for some reason. I am starting to see, from reading so many PF blogs, that it can be a great thing. To be able to raise your children yourself, and give them so much love and attention, must be a rewarding feeling. I do think being a stay at home mom is a full-time job, in and of itself, since kids do require quite a bit of supervision. I also don’t think 3 months for maternity leave is enough. I can’t imagine getting to know your baby for three months and then having to return to work.
This ties in with wanting financial freedom, though. If I stay at home, I would definitely consider finding sources of income online. Hopefully by then I would have some investment income as well. I’m just not completely comfortable with the idea of relying on one income in case something happens. That also puts a lot of pressure on R – if he ever wants to change careers, I’d like for us to be able to support that decision financially. So it would seem that there’s a lot of preparation involved for making the switch to being a stay at home mom.
I’m still undecided, and I think that’s okay for now. I am still young, and I don’t think my biological clock is ticking yet. My mom had me when she was 30, and similarly, my cousin is around 31 I believe, and their baby seems fine! I know there’s still an increased chance of things going wrong, but I would rather wait for the time to be right than have a child because I felt that I was short on time.
I think I’ve come a decent way, too. At 18 I was extremely adamant that I didn’t want kids, and it actually caused a rift in my last relationship (though I was honest and upfront about it from the beginning). I am thankful that R feels the same way I do. He doesn’t really care one way or the other too passionately, but that may change as it did for me. The fact that I am even considering it now is actually surprising. I think I owe it to reading blogs, as many of you out there have children and are such great parents (and have adorable kids to boot)!
So tell me, have you had these worries and still gone through with having kids? What’s the best part about having them? If you’ve decided to be child-free, tell me why!