Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Your Turn

This one was submitted by a reader. Feel free to e-mail me topics.

If you had to do it all over again would you still have your kids?

92 comments:

FSP said...

Only if they came in plastic bags wearing class rings.

D Brown said...

Shouldn't the question be "If you don't have kids do you regret not having them".

The Real Dragon said...

Only if I had them with a millionaire.

I don't have kids so I have a chance

MerryB said...

This is a horrible question.

Nutty_Flavor said...

Yep. I'm a single parent, so I have my kid 100% of the time and it's screwed up my love life and my career. My daughter's still the best thing that ever happened to me, by far.

Sugar said...

I don't have any kids and it's been the best decision ever! I'm a nice person but I wouldn't call myself a nurturer. Plus I'm a selfish betch and kids are a lot of work! Sometimes I see a little cutie and I think, awww, isn't she adorable! And then they do something shitty or spaz out with a tantrum and I remember, oh yeah, kids suck. ;-)

Rach Around said...

FSP: they may have an intolerance for peanut butter - crunchy and smooth.

Rach Around said...

Nutty : that's nice!

figgy said...

It's a good question. I think more people regret having kids than will admit it.

(I've limited myself to furry babies, and am good with that, so this question doesn't apply to me. But when I look at my husband's 2 kids? Yeah, kinda glad I've just had dogs.)

Rach Around said...

I've started dressing our pets in clothes, so my husband thinks it's time we start a family before I start trying to breast feed the pug.

WareCat said...

damn. someone's a bitter parent.

Alice Tate said...

Definitely. That said, I can see why someone would say no and I don't think it makes them a bad parent. It's an all-encompassing commitment.

D Lo said...

Yep, I waited till my 30's to have my son so I had definitely had my fun, gotten my career in place, etc... before having my son. My son is 2 and, it has been an adjustment but, he is the light of my life and, I am better for having him. So yes, I would have him again even if asked a million times.

Mary Ann said...

Yes. I waited a long time to have mine. I was 36 when I had my first, 37 when I had my second. Then when my sons were in their mid-teens, we unofficially adopted a friend of theirs (bad home situation -- he just sort of started living here). One of my sons works in the restaurant industry, another one is a Captain in the US Army, and the third did a tour with the US Air Force and is now in college. I'm very proud of all of them. Sometimes, it's been hard. I've cried a lot. But I wouldn't trade these three young men for anything.

FSP said...

RA: as long as it's not that PB&J in a jar swirl crap.

JisforMe said...

I don't have skin kids. I have fur kids. A lot of my friends have kids and the way they talk, I think they regret it, but it's not PC to say they regret it so they don't. I'm happy I don't have any and plan on staying that way. I have a step-daughter...and that sucks enough, I couldn't imagine having a real kid.

NapAssasin said...

I would. For all you give up, it is a love & devotion unlike any other you will ever experience.

Rach Around said...

FSP: we had American friends who introduced us to this peanut and jam mess in a jar called Goobers. It looked like diarrhoea mixed with menstral blood. I'm glad in Australia we only have PB and jam sold as god intended.

Karen said...

Trick question because anyone who wishes his/her kids had never been born is going to get SUPER judged by others on here.

Methinks this Enty is pissed about all the backlash she's getting and is trying to turn the posters against each other.

Rach Around said...

D: that's truly beautiful! Nice to have kids who are wanted and not just an accident. A resented and neglected "accident".

ethorne said...

Yes, but I would rename the twins Enty & Jax.

Renoblondee said...

No way. Kids make life hard, but interesting!

Rach Around said...

BTW FSP: I am straight, but your profile pic is giving me the horn.

Rach Around said...

ethorn: those are classy names, but I think you'd need statement middle names like Lafawndah and shemayanah.

Rach Around said...

Can't wait to have kids. See too many neglected unloved and abused kids. No one asks to be born. If Australia didn't have such fucked up adoption laws, we'd adopt as well.

FSP said...

I'm glad you like it RA.

ethorne said...

@Rach, I was leaning toward C'Daniel & C'Danielle.

BTW, I <3 Lafawnduh.

lc said...

Hell to the yeah. My daughter was a surprise..the story behind it is a Dr. Phil, Maury and a little bit of Springer mixed in so I won't go into it here. But yes, whole heartedly and completely YES.

NapAssasin said...

@ethore I KNOW you would take the time to have them learn spelling & punctuation, basic grammar, comma use & sentance structure.

SophiaB said...

My mom finals admitted she should not have had kids. I really appreciate her honesty, though it was late in the game. We get along much better now.

It was really really tough, and I moved 3000 miles to get away from the psychic battery. I wanted to disappear many many times, and still might.

But I now feel at peace. I did my best. They did their best. There is nothing wrong and nothing to forgive. That is a good place to be.

Onward.

Oh, and I did not manage to meet anyone early enough to have kids. With my severe health issues, it is a good thing. Now I just want to live alone in a forest. My husband doesn't want that life. Oh well. I think he will have to find another wife.

Hermits R Us.

ethorne said...

@Nap, I would go back in time & put Speak N Spells on my baby registry.

Rach Around said...

Mary Ann: beautiful!

Rach Around said...

A better question : baby tattoos. Tattoos on babies. Yay or nay? They'd be the most fearsome kid in the playground. I want to dress my kids in Ed Hardy top to bottom and teach em to chew tobacco and cage fight.

lc said...

Nutty- me too. I call our group "only parent" just like only kids. I feel you 100%. I luva luva luva my little diva monkey child.

ethorne said...

If your baby is not waxed, plucked, tatted, tanned, & able to fuck someone up, you're doing it all wrong. No one likes looking at ugly babies :(
And if you have a girl, she should be able to rock 3" heels by the age of 3, no excuse.

Rach Around said...

Ethorne, that's why Suri(dge) is a GOD.

ethorne said...

@Rach, Suri got all the style that passed right by Katie. Her dad must have taught her to walk in heels.

Wendy Wilshire said...

I don't regret having my daughters, but I regret some of the choices/decisions I've made. Would I do things differently? You bet! But, as they say, hindsight is 20/20!

Susan said...

What the what? Fuck yeah. My son is my heart and soul. I would die without him.

No Agenda Groupie said...

Aw, parents won't answer that question honestly.
Most parents I've spoken with (I'm a child free woman), admit that even though they love their kids, they would have been just as happy, if not happier without them.
The money, the free time, the chances to travel whenever.

Rach Around said...

*hands Ethorne the much deserved comment of the day trophy*

jw11 said...

yes

MrsPMFU said...

My daughter is the absolute best thing that ever happened to me. She was a birth control buster...I was on the pill and had no idea I was pregnant until I was 2 months along. Even then, I had mixed feelings and thought about all of my options (boyfriend was in grad school, our relationship was over as far as I was concerned, I was working part time and going to school). But every day, I look at this amazing and brilliant little kid, and I can't believe that in all the ways I have f'd up in life, that I got so incredibly lucky and the universe gifted this perfect little creature to me. She is the type of kid that strangers compliment all the time, and the other parents I know adore her. I'm about to have another kid in a few weeks, and I figure if this one is even half as awesome as the first, my life will have been worth living.

With that said, parenting is freaking exhausting and there are definitely days when I think about how I never wanted to have kids because of all the hard work it takes to raise a decent human being.

I could never regret it, because I'm pretty sure my only real purpose in this life was to bring about this other little person who teaches me what life is really about.

msgirl said...

I waited til past my mid-30s, didn't really want kids before. Suddenly my values changed, I had achieveed all that professional success, and was totally ready for things not to be about me anymore. Am I looking forward to him getting out of the house for college and peace and quiet to descend? HELL YEAH! But wouldn't change a thing.

D Lo said...

@noagendagroupie...yep, some parents do answer honestly and, the answer is yes. I lived a single fun life for quite some time and, was ready for my son when he came. Even with the sleepless nights, the middle of the night vomit clean ups and, the crying for the silliest of reasons, he is my heart and soul. I am proud of everything he is, love his individuality and, am excited to watch him grow. I did the late nights, the partying, the dating numerous men at once and, my happy little home life is just what I want at this point in my life.

So...not to be a dick but, I DID answer the question honestly and, the answer is yes.

urban chaos said...

What a cunty question, Jaxx.. Err..Enty

auntliddy said...

Its a tough question cause if you have kids you have had some stellar moments. But if you didnt have kuds you cld have more money for yourself. Its like saying could you live without chocolate? Hard to say because you have already tasted it, cant pretend you never had it. So, yes i wld but i wld do things alot differently, esp education wise.

Pip said...

Lol, FSP!

Rach Around said...

I want to hear from Stalin's, Hitlers and the parents of Nickleback all think of this question.

Pogue Mahone said...

If I knew ahead of time that having kids would have caused so much worry, fear, stress, and trauma in my life I would have changed my mind.

JoElla said...

Yes. Without a doubt.

mistang said...

As a parent, you get to a point where it is difficult to imagine what is was like before kids. I can't imagine what I did with all the time I had available before they came along. That's not to say that there aren't times where I want to be alone and get away for a short time. I love boys dearly, but good god, sometimes you just want a break. Then when they are not around, you so desperately want to be with them again.

My husband and I very lucky because every year for one week after Christmas, his mom comes out to visit and takes the boys. My husband and I have no kids and it's fun to do some things together, but by the end of the week we are ready for the boys to come home.

I would definitely do it all over again, but it's easy for me to say that because we did not have to struggle financially or mentally when we had them. We planned the pregnancies when we were ready.

Mama T said...

i had my two at 38. If I knew how much I was going to love it, I would have started earlier. That said, I'm glad I partied hard in my 20s, traveled a ton in my 30s, hit career goals and waited for a great partner to start a family.

Anothergrayhare said...

@Mary Ann, you made me cry. I never wanted kids, then met my 2nd husband in my 30s and had one child at 36 another at 37. They are a lot of work, and he's a much better Dad than I am, but I wouldn't give mine back for anything. They do bring such unimaginable joy, and the sense of love I feel for each of them is unequalled. But I guess if I'd never had them, I'd never know.

Anothergrayhare said...

"thank I am a mother", obviously.

Anothergrayhare said...

damn iPad. THAN.

Joy Dragland said...

ABSOLUTELY! They are the only truly positive contribution I have made to this world and to my own life. Everything else seems like so much BS compared to my kids. They are my light and my life. Without them I would be nothing. They give my life a meaning and depth I never had when I was single and childless. I see things so differently now than I did before them. Watching them grow and make the decisions and steps that will help decide who they are as adults is such an exciting and humbling process, and that I am there to advise them along the way so they don't make the same mistakes I did is the most fulfilling part.

FlirtyChick74 said...

Out of curiosity (and not trying to be snarky/negative) but why do parents list all the negatives about having children but then end it with "they are the best thing that ever happened to me", " I can't imagine my life without them", or some other variant of that? It's almost like starting an apology with "if I offended you".

Parents: do you ever feel pressured to conform to ideas/ideals of parenthood that you don't accept? I've seen this at various workplaces and often wonder about that.

Unknown said...

My mom admitted that if she could do it all over again, she wouldn't have kids. Deep in my heart, though, I already knew that. I've had parents admit they wouldn't have kids if they could do it over. I just wish people would think about it more before having them. The most difficult job in the world is raising kids and I know I'm not cut out for it. Certainly enjoy spoiling my friends' kids though :-)

NapAssasin said...

I think it's hard to explain to childless people just how fucking hard raising kids is. It has a lot of negatives, sacrafices and takes all you've got. But for those of us who wanted kids, we are happy to put up with the bad as the good outshines any negatives.


There are a lot of social pressures & it's hard not to wonder about keeping up with the Jonses, but I do what's best for my family & let the others live their lives without my caring. Every kid, parent & family dynamic is different but I like what works best for me, not everyone else. Example: I'm sure I'm in the minority on kids gift bags at parties, but fuck it, you came to give my kid a gift for his birthday, why should you get one back!?

Seven of Eleven said...

Every parent thinks it at some point (colicky nights, tantrumy days, teenage hormone rebellion) but to say it to your child is cruel, even your adult child. It's one thing to say, "I wasn't a very good parent" or "I wasn't cut out to be a parent" and quite another to say, "I regret having you."

FlirtyChick74 said...

@ mistang: I like your comment. I think that the level of struggle and preparedness makes a difference as to how you feel about parenting.

Molly Barrow said...

@Unknown

I could have written the exact same comment. I had that conversation with my mom and her honesty made me respect her a bit more.

rajahcat said...

good question

Lissa said...

Having my son was the best decision I ever made. Unless you are a parent you will never understand. It really is like wearing your heart on the outside of your body.

Worstcompanytoworkfor said...

Worst decision I ever made was having kids.

It's my fault I was too young.

They break the bank and the teenage years are almost unbearable.

Unless you are a stay at home mom I recommend only having one of those suckers!

cece said...

It's an interesting question, because you're really not able to answer it until you HAVE had kids, and then it's too late to decide that no you don't want them. If my first had not been an accident, I really don't know if I would have decided to have kids. But now that I have put blood, sweat and tears into raising mine, I'm happy I did it, and I feel a deep sense of accomplishment.

JSierra said...

Wow, I appreciate the honesty in this post, especially as someone who doesn't have kids. All I ever hear about is how perfect and loving and wonderful kids are. I know all these things and I know all of the struggles, but what I don't know is if all of that is worth it for everyone. For some people it is and for some people it isn't. Some women were born to be mothers and some women were born to never have a child. I'm only 24 and am nowhere near having children and the more I think about it, the more people I see have kids, the more I think that I may never have kids. I can't wait to love my future nieces and nephews, but I don't think that loving my own child was what I was meant to do, or am even capable of doing. Not that I am not capable of loving my child, but I'm not sure that I will be capable of giving a child what they need and deserve. If I can't love myself enough sometimes, I don't want to risk letting my children down too. I also don't think I want to have kids because of my mother, she was wonderful and supportive and loving, but what I see in her, and what I see in myself is something that I do not want a child to ever carry. I don't want to parent a child because I know what I will not like how it all turns out because of my actions and because of my decisions.

Whew, this is like my online journal. Sorry for the random spewing of thoughts.

Humor Me said...

YES.

My children are the best of my Life.

Sadly, I asked my own mother this question once and learned that she would rather have remained childless, and that was her aim. I was an "accident".

i had a good childhood, and I felt taken care of and "loved" but I always knew it was different in our home. Once that statement was out, I knew why it was different.

My advice to parents - want your kids! They will know when they are wanted!!

Cee Kay said...

Your comment made me smile, JSierra. I didn't want kids for a long, long time. Then when I did, I couldn't get pregnant! Well, we live in a technologically-advanced world so now I have two. I love them with every fibre of my being, but I don't like them at least half the time. Louis C.K. nailed it - kids ARE assholes! And the only way they won't be asshole adults is if I do all the heavy lifting now. I would never be a single parent, and part of the reason we even have kids is because I knew for sure that my husband would do his part. I wouldn't trade them for anything, but yeah, you have to really commit. There is NOTHING worse in my opinion than a child who is unwanted. Just don't. There are lots of ways to avoid it, and good on you if you know now that you don't want to do it.

Cee Kay said...

Hey, Humor Me, looks like we're sharing a thought wave!

The Real Dragon said...

@Ethrone *dead*

Reese said...

Don't have any, have never wanted any. Love my life as it is.

SophiaB said...

I also feel that there is very little support for parents on so many levels. For that matter, support for kids, disabled people, and aging folks. Incomes are squeezed, social support systems are being cut, and if just one thing goes wrong it has catastrophic effects on one's ability to function let alone survive.

Bureaucracy ensures decent paying jobs for those in the system but very little REAL HELP for those who need it and are paying for that help with excessive tax dollars.

Thanks for being honest. I would imagine that better support and a more compassionate world would alleviate some of that trauma.

My heart is with you.

babo said...

There was a study made that got mentioned by the Economist. In a few words: parents tend to be less happy on a daily basis (less money, less time, worries, ...) but tend feel more contented when asked about their life and fulfilment in general.

BotoncitoRosa said...

It took me 1 sec to answer this question: YES!!
The happiness, just the happiness that I feel when kissing him, hugging him, when I see him smile. I have never ever felt that level of happiness and love before.

audrey said...

Absolutely! They are the two best things that ever happened in my life, and I am proud to say they are my kids. I love them both with my whole heart and soul.

ethorne said...

@dragon! <3!

Squeezebox said...

My folks had eight kids and my dad died in his forties, leaving my mom and us in poverty. She told all of us, "Use birth control, and either don't have any kids, or only have one or two - or you'll be poor all your life."

Half of us chose to have no kids at all, the rest only had one or two. We know it is true: kids = economic insecurity. We learned that at an early age. No, thanks. And no regrets, either.


They fuck you up, your Mum and Dad
They may not mean to, but they do.
They fill you with the faults they had,
And add some extras - JUST for you!

But they've been fucked up in their turn
By fools in old-style hats and coats,
Who half the time were soppy-stern,
And half at one another's throats.

Man hands on inhumanity to Man -
It deepens like the coastal shelf.
So, get out as early as you can,
And DON'T HAVE ANY KIDS YOURSELF!
-- From "High Windows" by Philip Larkin, 1974.


Count Jerkula said...

Just dropping my answer, before I read the thread.

If I had to do it over, I absolutely would have had my kid. I just would have done it with someone different and had more than one.

Little Broken Bird said...

No doubt about it. If I held my daughter in my arms 24/7 until the day I died it wouldn't be long enough. It kills me to think that one day I will die and have to leave her, I pray every second of every day that never happens.
I dedicate my life, my resources in their entirety to her. I love her with every fibre of my being, endlessly.

NaughtyNurse said...

I couldn't imagine my life without them--I wouldn't WANT to! I would relive every miserable moment in my past as many times as it took to make sure I had them.

Susan said...

WOW. Just sat down and read through all the comments. Very interesting and honest. No judgment from moi.

JSierra - Your post really struck me just because your thoughts are identical to mine when I was in my early 20s. I wanted no parts of children. Hell, I didn't even want to be a music teacher, despite my mother and father insisting that I would make a fab music teacher. But, I was all, "Mom. Seriously. I loathe children." At that age, I associated kids with just totally cramping my style.

My baby was born when I was 34. It took me four years - with much heartache and tears - to finally get pregnant. I had given up, honestly. I was drunk off the rails the weekend before I peed on that positive stick. I thought my destiny was to be the crazy aunt to my 9 nieces and nephews.

I guess my point is: You never know where your road will take you. And your outlook today may not be your outlook tomorrow.

Me said...

Yes! But I would have started sooner and had more. I love being a mom. It's the first and only thing I ever felt naturally good at. My youngest is 12, so I don't have much time left as "mommy", and just thinking about it makes me tear up. I've been very fortunate with my children. They are good kids. Polite, loving, kind to others. Each very different. It's really incredible to see them go through the different stages and form opinions about the world, figure out where they belong. When people don't have kids I feel sorry for them. It's the most amazing journey. You create a person! Think about that. Awesome. Would love to do it all again. Miss the babies I had. Love the people they've become.

PugsterMom said...

My daughter is the best thing that ever happened to me. I'm not a great kid lover but I loved raising her--after the infant stage which totally sucked. She's 19 now and an awesome person. I'm proud of who she is.

PugsterMom said...

Puggie!! Haha! I've had two and now I have two chugs...pughuahuas... or some pug mix. My dogs have all hated clothes ... nudist exhibitionists...

Anna Katherine Nonymous said...

Awwwww...i like your comment the best. Great answer.

fancyscreenname said...

I havetwo children. Love them, but should have waited to have them. Was 22 when my son arrived. Did a pretty good job with him, but waiting until I was about 30 probably would have cut some of the struggle out of our lives

Stannis Baratheon said...

I did it right the first time... decided WAY back I wouldnt have any.

Laurenza Kyle said...

Single mother here. We are living with my parents, I'm stuck in a job I don't like, and in a town I despise. That being said, FUCK YES A MILLION TIMES... I would do it all over again! Best thing to ever happen in my life.

Kinsey Holley said...

Hell to the fucking yeah - and I (and the Diva) almost died to get her out -- long story (peri natal cardiomyopathy, emergency C section, she in NICU for 3 days, me in ICU for week, regular room for another two...)

I could've been happy w/o kids but Hub wanted them so i went off the pill and left it up to God. When I went through all the trauma, the day the doc came into my ICU cubicle and said I needed a full hysterectomy, as doped up as I was, way in the back of my mind I was thinking "Cool. I only ever wanted one kid, and that's all I'm gonna have."

And she's amazing - a perfect blend of Hub and me, in ways both good and bad. But I connect with her, and understand her, on a level my mom never reached with me b/c we are so different.

She's a reader and a writer and a word geek with a goofy sense of humor and at 11 she still tells me very day that she loves me.

So yeah. I'd do it again, but I would've been perfectly content if I hadn't done it at all. And that's life.

Diana Maras said...

Absolutely - I adore my daughter - best thing I've ever done.