Monday, February 13, 2012

Piece of Advice #101: Pencil "Have kids" into your life schedule

[I had so much positive feedback, including a number of truly touching comments, on my last post that I thought I'd continue posting Pieces of Advice when and if I truly had something of substance to say.  Again, thank you, dear readers, for your kind comments.  I feel humbled to think that I've actually been of real help to some of you.]

Recently in the news there has been a hysterical emotional outpouring of support for Planned Parenthood, that lofty, lefty, government-subsidized purveyor of baby death, and some have even suggested that free birth control is a core American value.  Which is a bit odd, given that the United States has a nonexistent population problem.  At the time of the 2010 census there were 87.4 people per square mile, and we grow in numbers only via immigration.  All of the screeching over nothing hints at a strange underlying agenda: keeping women from having children.  (And not just too many children, but any children at all.)  Again, this is odd, given that women were made to have children - biologically, it's kind of the point of women - and historically they've wanted to have them; were, in fact, proud of having and raising them.  But as so much of modern life is illogical and counter to nature, we'll just let that conundrum sit there for now.

Recently I watched three movies.  The first was The Pregnancy Pact, a film based on the events surrounding an explosion of pregnancies in a Gloucester, Massachusetts high school.  In this movie Thora Birch plays a late-twenties single woman who has a video blog devoted to teen issues.  She hears about what is happening at Gloucester, her old high school, and decides to travel there to interview the girls and the community about what is going on and why so many girls are getting pregnant.  The film makes a vague stab at being neutral about abstinence programs and school-dispensed birth control, but its whole point is to illustrate 1) that getting pregnant in high school can ruin your life and 2) that motherhood is a lesser choice than, say, having an exciting video blog career.  The lead pregnant teen makes a point of saying explicitly that she doesn't want a career, that she doesn't want to go to college, that she wants to get married and have children and stay in her home town, and that that's what will make her happy.  And the Thora Birch character looks incredulous and sputters out a number of better alternatives to marriage and motherhood including "start a rock band" and "plant trees."

The second movie was He's Just Not That Into You, based on the book of the same title which offered women key advice about how to tell if a guy is...not into you.  The movie has an ensemble cast composed of mostly childless actresses in their thirties and forties playing childless women with cube farm jobs.  None of them are happy.  One of them, played by Jennifer Aniston, has a boyfriend of seven years and wants to get married.  She offers him an ultimatum of marriage or breaking up, and they break up.  Jennifer Connelly's character is married to a man of significantly higher SMV (Bradley Cooper).  She kind of wants to try to get pregnant.  He cheats on her with Scarlett Johanssen.  The main character, Gigi, played by Ginnifer Goodwin, keeps getting the runaround from men until Justin Long takes her under his wing and tells her what's what.  Astoundingly, after giving her really solid advice and exhibiting no attraction to her whatsoever, he does a full 180 when she scolds him for never committing, tells her, "You're my exception," and renounces his poon hound lifestyle.  The fact that none of these women - NONE of them - has children and most of them aren't married is not remarked upon.  It doesn't seem worth mentioning.

The same is true in Bridesmaids.  Kristen Wiig was born in 1973, but has never been married, doesn't have kids, has failed in her career and now works a dead-end job, and lives with weirdos (and then her mother).  This movie was lauded as "powerfully authentic" and "refreshing."  The women in it are awful - crass, stupid, selfish, self-involved, catty, promiscuous, physically gross, and highly competitive.  Only one of them has children, and she hates them.

When I'd finished watching them, I couldn't help juxtaposing The Pregnancy Pact with Bridesmaids and He's Just Not That Into You in my head.  The message of the first was that fifteen is too young to have a baby, and at least one message of the second and third seemed to be..that children are superfluous to women's lives?  None of these women has children, and it's not even commented on.

Recently there was an article in the Daily Mail about where all the girls who had been in Kate Middleton’s Brownie troop were now. Of the twenty-four girls, now all women in their late twenties or early thirties, eight (8) are now married (1 separated), four (4) of those with children. Additionally there are two (2) unwed mothers, and four (4) engaged women (including one of those unwed mothers who is “saving to get married”). This means only a quarter of these middle or lower-middle class, at least somewhat educated women have produced children, and only half of them are even close to providing the kind of suitable environment for children their great-grandmothers slid into by default. And all of them, including the future queen, are past the age of easy fecundity. The rest of them have exciting careers in HR, office management, the postal service, and dental hygiene.

I've touched on this before, but the fact is that there is a limited window to a woman's fertility.  I know that the media says that singleness is great and that not all women want to be mothers, and I've heard a number of people say that they love having all their time to themselves and they can travel all they want and wallow in their Netflix queue and sleep in on Saturday mornings.  This may be true, but there are also quite a lot of women my age trying to squeeze out a baby at the last moment, desperate to be mothers before it's too late.
And who do all those childless people think will take care of them when they are old?  There aren't going to be pensions, and I'm not holding my breath for Social Security either.   The money is running out, and the youth have not been trained to share.  People only give sacrificially to those that they know personally and love.

Children are a lot of work and can be a lot of worry, but they are a great blessing.  A society that sees children as a curse or an encumbrance to be avoided at all costs is very sick.  People are meant to have families, to be a part of families.  Look past the Cosmo propaganda and pencil having children into your life calendar.  You may need to erase some of space set aside for partying, getting another degree, and traveling but those, while enjoyable, are of limited life value.  Look at the female characters in Bridesmaids or He's Just Not That Into You.  They were written by women screenwriters for women audiences, and not one of them seems happy.

(It goes without saying that the above will require looking for a suitable husband sooner rather than later.  Don't sign up for single motherhood.)

41 comments:

  1. Agree. But you have to be able to be a wife , which means that you are somewhat more serious, prepared to put others needs ahead of yours -- and have a series of skills that make being a mother and home maker do-able and affordable.

    You have to choose to be a wife and select a husband, not a boyfriend. They are different, you know.

    The only good news is that the boomer propagandists no longer can have kids. Expect a pile of movies about Aunts with cats soon... and the women will look even more unhappy.

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  2. Yes, that is a critical component of the planning process. I've discussed that in a number of places on this blog. (I also clarified my wording above.)

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  3. Excellent point! Having children is a blessing...even when they are hormone-crazed 13 year old girls who are truly "crazy" and irrational.

    I love my wife and daughter and would not give them up for anything in the world. Although, I would not mind shipping my kid off to a monestary or somewhere until she turns 20 or so...

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    1. I concur wholeheartedly. My beautiful 13-year old son is low-functioning autistic, and resists all our efforts to toilet-train him. I spend a good chunk of my time cleaning up after him, and a good chunk of our income on detergent and bleach surface cleaners.

      But still I too love my wife and son and would not give them up for anything in the world either

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  4. +1 million, grerp. Thanks for this.

    deti

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  5. Thank you for sticking around. I've just sent a link to your first post to my sister, who has three daughters, the first of which is just coming of an age to be ruled by her hormones.

    Your posts have meant a lot to me, explaining many of my conflicting feelings (what I've been told to want/feel versus what I actually want/feel) on motherhood and being a wife. I am so glad to have your advice still available as a reminder for myself and hopefully a tool for my nieces (and daughters, assuming I have any).

    As other commenters stated in your last post, I would love to purchase a book with all the advice you've given thus far. Your words have great meaning and worth.

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  6. Mahoney (the keyboard warrior)February 14, 2012 at 10:00 AM

    Grerp I have a quick comment. I'm concerned about the sheer amount of puerile, inane, disgustingly vapid chick flicks you've managed to shovel into your sensitive mind. I mean how does an intelligent woman like yourself stand to see the viewing of these fims as "recreation"? If you are not viewing these films strictly for the purposes of critique, then I am worried your are not exposing yourself to the truly great works of cinematic art. Life is to damn short to gulp down the dregs of popular culture, please don't feel oblidged to suffer through films like the above mentioned just for your audience, news and commnetary will do fine. Please view some true art to rinse the disgusting filth these shitty movies have left upon you.

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    1. Well, you have to keep track of the other side to see what and how they think.

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  7. My ex (whom I might have married - a 21yo [ex] virgin, who wound up dumping me for the carousel at Burning Man) was utterly convinced that she didn't want children.

    In retrospect, I probably dodged a bullet - given how much BS her mother put her father through - but I worry she's going to turn 35 and feel a great emptiness in her life.

    She's smart, a biologist, but she's not *that* smart. Better at memorizing books than thinking for herself.

    It's a tragedy what's become of women.

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  8. Another problem, is finding men who even want children- I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of those women wanted children but their partners did not.

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    1. I can't tell whether I'm in the main thread or replying to an individual comment, so sorry if this comes in incorrectly.

      I agree with your points about making children a priority if you want them, but I question the beginning.
      In an ideal world, perhaps no-one would have sex until they are married, and children would only be born to people who really want them. But we don't live in that world.
      Given the number of young people who do have sex, and the number of children born each year to unwed parents, and unprepared parents, I'm in favour of the government working against pregnancy. People who want children and are ready for them aren't inhibited by any of these programs, but for the betterment of society, I'm very much willing to pay for free contraception.
      I might rather that girls took responsibility for themselves, but since they don't, I want to take responsibility for their potential children, and try to help them avoid birthing children who are going to have rough lives.
      I do not agree with abortion - and for that reason, I strongly support anti-conception methods. I think it is strongly to the benefit of society to avoid children being born to parents who aren't going to give them a great home, and if we can do it by spending some money to avoid the pregnancies at all, that seems like the best way.
      children may well be a blessing, but it's sure not a blessing to a child to be born to people who aren't ready to be parents. Becoming a parent unexpectedly might help turn around some people's lives, but a lot of the time it just ends up meaning screwed-up kids to then continue the cycle.
      I don't agree that we need a bigger population, but I definitely think that growing the population by having more poor, unparented children is no help.

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    2. That's not really surprising. Divorce is not a good deal for men. There are currently many incentives given to females who divorce. For a male there is no guarantee (outside of marrying a genuinely 'low mileage' female, exceedingly hard to find) that any marriage will not lead to divorce.
      Without this precondition, marriage cannot recover.

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  9. Just to say, the important point is not only who is not having children but also who does and when. Yes, few of them are conservative parents (traditional families) but the rest...

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  10. Agreed. I am in my late forties now, and I am amazed that my friends in their thirties think they still have plenty of time for childbearing. I had my kids late--at 35 and 39--but was fortunate enough to get pregnant quickly both times. Some of my friends were not so fortunate and ended up doing expensive fertility treatments or adopting to get the children they craved. I love being a mom, but I would have been wiser to get an earlier start. My nieces are having babies in their early twenties--easy pregnancies and healthy babies. The downside is that our culture has created an environment where men in that age group are still acting like teenage boys. Only one of my neices was married before getting pregnant, and the others have had multiple out-of-wedlock pregnancies with different fathers for each child. A very sad situation for everyone involved, especially the kids. We need to shift our values back to the old days and quickly.

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    1. Anonymous you make the great point about the culture keeping men acting like teenage boys usually up into their 40s. What I haven't heard advice on is what we 30 something "old-fashioned" women are supposed to do when we can't find men at our maturity level that desire us instead of the younger less mature, but seemingly hotter women they feel they can still pull at any age? =Frustration

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    2. The traditional and correct answer has been to commit to a man 10 years or more older.

      Younger men are wary of commitment until later simply because as remarked by others it is one-way commitment: marriage gives a man in practice zero rights (including no reproductive or sexual rights) and huge duties. Older men are simply more desperate to have children.

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    3. My older cousin - who is 35 and the typical DWL/SWPL type etc. - has, as long as I have known her, been anti-orthodox everything her whole life. She's a vegetarian, lives with her "partner" (male), and has always ALWAYS swore up and down that she would never have children...that was until last month when my mother confided in me (and this is very very on the "down-low" in our family) that my cousin has been trying to get pregnant via pregnancy-treatments for the last 12-months...I could not believe it. I nearly dropped the phone. To me it was nothing but proof of the innate and primitive desire rooted in women to reproduce. Needless to say, I felt terrible for her. Can you imagine vehemently swearing off having children your whole life only to have your biological clock come crashing down on you like that?

      GR

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    4. Oh and I should add...the fertility treatments after a year-and-half have had no success. That is what made me feel especially bad for her.

      GR.

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    5. "The others have had multiple out-of-wedlock pregnancies with different fathers for each child"

      That is the "ghetto culture" route.

      In practice the problem Grerp notices will sort itself out in a a few generations, because those women who don't have a very strong builtin "baby rabies" are choosing to become extinct. Only women who seem to have a strong builtin reproductive instinct ("ghetto culture" women) are having enough descendants.

      Previously women had babies for practical reasons, mostly as a form of investment into an old age pension, but also because that was they were paid to do, and because of the pressures of matriarchy (all those moms and grandmoms).

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    6. I agree with the comment that my nieces have embraced "ghetto culture" in choosing this lifestyle. What breaks my heart is watching how our family has broken down over the past few generations. The great grandparents and grandparents had solid, traditional marriages that lasted a lifetime and provided a safe haven for their children to grow up in. In my parents generation, several of the parents divorced, dated, remarried, and divorced again and the kids grew up in chaos (but "everyone was happy" because we all knew that divorce was "better" for kids that watching their parents live a lie). In my generation, there were several divorces and two out-of-wedlock pregnancies. We were still traditional enough that the pregnancies led to hasty marriages, both of which ended in divorce. The kids in the divorced families grew up in chaos again. Now many of this generation of grandkids are having babies out-of-wedlock with multiple men and marriage is something they see as a "wistful" romantic possibility for the future, not as a necessary safety net for healthy family life.

      The real moral of the story is that the family members who continued to live out traditional family values despite the cultural shift over the past forty years raised children who carefully select their spouses and marry before having children. There have been no divorces in any of these families over the past fifty years. Healthy families with values are the best incubator for raising kids with the same moral code. My husband and I are both children of divorce and we can see the havoc his brother and sister-in-law's multiple divorces and remarriages and live-in relationships wreaked on their family. We are determined to be the generation that returns our kids lives to a safe path.

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    7. As a self-sustained and responsible 27 year old male, I find some of the comments on this forum not only misinformed but highly suspect at the same time regarding the immaturity of boys my age. Yes, the vast majority of them are directed towards a promiscious lifestyle, but an evergrowing amount of them are disengaging completely..including casual relationships. There is a limit to how much shaming, false accusations, reprehensible sub-hostility men are willing to tolerate. Contrary to popular opinion, many of us chaps are enlightened and situationally aware of our surroundings and sensitive to atmosphere around us to realize that the vast majority of women have a sense of antagonization for transgressions that neither us or even our father's committed at any point in our lives. What about those mature young men who have a full-fledged career, their own home, leaders in their own communities, and even active participants in their own family dynamics to do? If women marrying up is the right advice, it seems like the men in my age group who are responsible and already capable of supporting a full family have only two choices...1) marry petulant young children around 18-20 or 2) wait until gray hair evenly matches our brunette, blonde, or red hair. Doesn't sound like much of an option. Sounds like it is really a mark of isolation in our younger formitive years until we are "old enough" for the mature young 30-year olds deem us worthy to be marriage age. Sounds like the same rigged deck of cards, if you ask me.

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    8. Anonymous --
      "Oh and I should add...the fertility treatments after a year-and-half have had no success. That is what made me feel especially bad for her."

      As decent a sentiment as that is, you shouldn't feel bad for her at all -- she has what she said she wanted (or rather, doesn't have what she said she didn't want.)
      Women like her who eagerly bought the feminist lies about "forty is the new thirty" and "you can have children after you have your career", while they also completely ignored common sense and discounted any dissenting opinions (usually at the tops of their voices) don't really deserve your sympathy. She wanted to be childless, and she is. "Be careful what you ask for, you might get it", you know.

      But she and childless women like her can serve as warnings to future generations of women about the folly of trying to live your life according to politically-based social propaganda instead of the wisdom and experience of the past.

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  11. I'm 51 and married. I always thought I would have children, but couldn't have them due to infertility. We considered adoption at one point, but that fell through as well. Still, we have had a very happy marriage in spite of being barren.

    Yes, I am sad, and yes, I realize that, statistically, I will someday be a lonely old widow with no one to care for me or even visit me. I am blessed with a strong group of friends at church, but of course in the end they will abandon me, too. To think that anyone deliberately chooses this path is mind-boggling. Barren women have historically been outcasts for a reason.

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    1. What convinces you that your strong group of friends will abandon you? Or do you mean by death?
      There are still plenty of ways to be involved in the community and develop relationships with people who will be happy to stick with you even if you can't do it by bearing children. Less than ideal doesn't have to mean nothing.

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    2. I would like to think that my friends will always be there for me, as I try to be for them. But they too will grow old and infirm, and they all have children and grandchildren to look out for them. The fact is that no matter how good of friends we are, I'm not blood kin, and in the end, blood trumps friendship. That has always been so throughout history, to my knowledge.

      As Grerp said, "Who do all those childless people think will take care of them when they are old? . . . The money is running out, and the youth have not been trained to share. People only give sacrificially to those that they know personally and love."

      On the positive side, knowing that I'll be alone one day, I've taken steps both to safeguard my health as much as possible, and to purchase long-term care insurance, to be able to afford to pay someone to take care of my physical self and pay for my funeral.

      I just don't want any young person to look at my life and think that it's all right not to have children. It may be all right for now, but it won't be all right for me in 20-30 years, as Grerp has pointed out.

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    3. Here is the trouble I see with that argument:

      Yes, it is good to have kids, be a good parent, and then have your kids help you out when you are old. But that shouldn't be a reason for having kids. If you have other reasons for being a parent, then that's just a nice aside. But to push it as a reason suggests that it is sufficient reason alone, and I disagree with that.
      If one's only reason to bear/raise children is to have a caregiver in old age, they're much better off saving all the money they would have spent, and investing it to pay others for old-age care. A person who goes into parenthood with only selfish reasons is probably not going to be the sort of parent who inspires such devotion in their children, and may find themselves without caregivers despite having blood relations.

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    4. I agree that you shouldn't have kids as a retirement plan. They are not tools to be shaped for use. But support and nurturing is the reason for families, and it wasn't too long ago that they cared for their own sick and vulnerable.

      Kids or no kids, there are no guarantees. But I think people are generally richer for having family around - young, old, etc.

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  12. Mahoney - I watched a lot of propaganda films in college for my history classes. I view this as much the same and rather enjoy it. The thing is, I don't have cable or Netflix or even antenna TV, so I'm reliant on what the library has, and the pickings have been slim of late. Sometimes I take myself down to the main library and get a few of the better selections. Thanks for your concern. :)

    Flavia - good point. I'm not sure marriage is going to be on the table for younger women the way it was for older ones. The legal climate is pretty oppressive for men and "Why buy the cow?", etc. I think you can still get married, but you have to be realistic and early.

    Kai - if the government is going to be in the birth control business, it would make more sense if it doled out birth control that would be of benefit to the government - things like sterilization, longer-term depo - so as to lower the economic burden casual sex creates for it. Passing out free condoms is just paying for people's parties, one party at a time.

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    1. I do agree with you on that.
      I strongly support government-funded sterilization. If you don't want them, please, let he help you avoid ending up with them. I think society could use a few better long-term methods that help ensure people only get pregnant when they (*both* partners) intend to.
      I'd like to live in a world without sexually irresponsible people, but it's better than a world with sexually (and otherwise) irresponsible parents.

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  13. What I haven't heard advice on is what we 30 something "old-fashioned" women are supposed to do when we can't find men at our maturity level that desire us instead of the younger less mature, but seemingly hotter women they feel they can still pull at any age?

    As Abides says, pick an older man. Men like younger women. This is a fact that is unpleasant to women and frequently denied - still true, though. One solution is for women to get serious about getting married when they are younger and have many more potential interested suitors. Young people ARE still getting married. If you missed that window, marriage can still be possible, but you have to work what you've got harder and broaden your ideas of who might make an acceptable mate.

    Another solution would be for women to examine carefully the legal code that makes marriage so attractive to women and so unattractive to men and change it. It's all about incentives. Everything in life boils down to incentives and disincentives, supply and demand.

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  14. I would also like to put out the idea of mentoring for people who did not or could not have children. Some options would be participating in a Big Sisters program, becoming a foster parent, or adopting an older child. There are hundreds of thousands of kids out there - millions, probably - who did not have responsible, caring parents and are desperate for the involvement of a good, older person in their lives.

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    1. My city has an 'adopt-a-grandparent' program that pairs elderly people with no nearby family with young people (and their family) who don't have grandparents (at all or nearby).
      It might be that nothing can replace family, but if you don't have it, there are definitely plenty of ways to find other people to know personally and love.

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    2. Thanks for your responses. This conversation has shown me that I've not been trusting God in this matter. After all, he knows that I'm childless, and he knows the people I need to have in my life, both now and when I get old. That said, I will check into both Big Brother/Sister program and adopt-a-grandparent and see if there's a place for me. I live in a rural area, but there's bound to be something, or someone, who could use a friend. Thank you for helping me see my situation more objectively. Even the act of writing out what I was feeling makes things a lot clearer.

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  15. There is another dimension or theme to some of these cultural views. The theme is that manhood is free resource for women. Young women are told they can get man whenever they want. It's just matter of choosing, or adjusting your standards and/or showing a little skin. Men are desperate so if he doesn't go gaga for you, he is gay or whimsical or whatever. When something is viewed as free, people will not strive for it or seek it out. The only thing that is sort of free is sperm. I think some women are delusional because they never in their lives sought commitment. When they do, reality will start. It's funny how so many women are whistling dixie when commitment from loving/hard working man has never been so scarce and expensive.

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  16. Excellent points. I hope that young women (and men) follow your advice. We are lucky - we are starting a family later in life than planned, but the little girl we are blessed with is amazing. Keep up the great blogging!

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  17. Grerp, this is very good advice, but I'd ask you about the best way to broach this subject, since - as you pointed out - the media and culture are doing their best to convince the general public that children can acquired as easily as a handbag.

    I'm in my early 30s and I can say that among my peers, I was one of the youngest to get married - at 26. My husband and I wanted to get married at 23, but our parents and our peers insisted that we were too young, so we acquiesced. Afterwards, my mother insisted that I pursue some sort of higher career, which meant graduate school and more time. The message I received from friends, from parents and in general was that birth control was some sort of sacrament and blaspheme, and you will be "stuck" with a baby. I can't tell you how frequently I heard that I must be on birth control at all times because women are supposedly so super fertile right up till menopause. My mother continued to insist that I could put off pregnancy until age 34 and then I would find myself miraculously pregnant within 3 months, right up to the day I told her that I'd been trying for over 4 years and was probably infertile at 31.

    And it's not just my family. All my friends had their children in their early 30s or later. Only 2 of the pregnancies went smoothly - there were several miscarriages and a few had to have operations. Despite this, I have another friend who's convinced that she can put off childbearing until she's added a 3rd degree to her resume - although her husband is already nearly 40, and another who's convinced that she can start trying now, although she's 36, medically obese, on anti-depressants and has a mild case of lupus to boot.

    I've reminded my friends several times that fertility drops with age and that nature can be coaxed, but not coerced. Every time, they make a face and some allusion that I'm bitter and/or projecting because of my situation.

    Fact remains that we're now an instant gratification society and telling somebody they can't have what they want, when they want it, is like talking to a wall.

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  18. I had fertility problems at 28! I didn't have my first child until I was 33. Five years of IF treatments and miscarriages.

    Women need to know this - even your late twenties can get dodgy!

    I'll be telling my own daughter - don't think you have forever!

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  19. Nice to see you're back.

    This is troubling for many men as well. I know many beta males who would make and want to be good fathers but cannot find women who want anything to do with them. I have a bad feeling that by the time the women rejecting them "realize" their mistake, it will be too late for them to become Dads.

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  20. Anonymous 1:13 - I can definitely relate. I got married at 27 and within a year was alternating between trying to get pregnant and not doing anything to prevent it. It just never worked out for us. I've mentioned my own experience to women, and they write me off as anecdotal. Maybe I am anecdotal, but biologically women are programmed to reproduce a lot earlier (decades earlier) than 35. I think you just have to tell the truth and figure they at least heard it from you, even if they did not listen. I'm so sorry that you've had to go through the infertility process. It's heartbreaking, and I wouldn't wish it on anyone.

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  21. This is good advice, but I think the fertility issue is currently far more complex than simply "you're getting older!" Yes, it *IS* a massive factor. It is very important to consider.

    But, younger and younger women are experiencing infertility. One of my dear friends is 21, and has been trying to get pregnant since she married at 19. She's had several miscarriages.

    "There is something in the water." Admittedly, she is not the healthiest specimen. She was raised on low quality food. She was raised in a poor environment, near a superfund site, so she likely had an environmental contamination to deal with. Dioxin, which is in nearly everything because it's in plastic wrapping, has been shown to affect fertility in males and females -- so also the chemicals in diapers that we have been using for the last 20-25 years. Sodium Laural and Laureth Sulfate (SLSs) are in nearly every cleaning product that we have been using for the last 30 years -- including toothpaste -- and this is also known to affect fertility. And of course, even soy products suppress fertility as effectively as the pill.

    Even if we encourage women who are younger to marry and have children, we also need to encourage them to clean out their houses, their skin care regimens, their toothpaste, their diets (putting in highly nutritious foods such as organ meats, eggs, veggies and fruit), and on and on.

    Part of the problem -- truly -- is that we are killing our children's fertility. Want to watch something really scary and frighteningly accurate: Children of Men.

    If we don't change how we take care of ourselves, our babies, our homes, our environment, then guess what? We will make ourselves infertile. We will be living in that world.

    And that would be tragic.

    That also being said, I started late due to deep cultural pressures from my family. I was raised that you don't have children young, and a sense that children "ruin" your life. When we decided to get pregnant, we were both very, very scared that we would be disappointing our parents because neither of us had "made it" in our careers and having a child would "side track" us.

    As it was, they were a bit disappointed. But, they also got used to the idea pretty quickly and excited about it too. My grandmother said to my mother "But isn't it what you wanted for her? For her to be a mother like you? To be married and have children?" And my mother thought about it and decided that, in fact, it was.

    I have a son. He is 3.5. He has a girlfriend. She is 4.5. They are already talking about marriage and children. I asked when they would get married, and they go "when we are twenty. that is old enough, btu also young enough." And then they are going to japan. And I ask "will you have babies?" and his girlfriend says "yes, of course. probably more than just one (both DS and his girlfriend are "only's"). One is good, but perhaps two or four is better. I think, yes."

    Also, they say that we will all live together -- both sets of parents plus this young couple and their kids "so that we can all take turns cooking." :D

    Mouths of babes, right?

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  22. Whining about Planned Parenthood is utterly infantile. Would you rather the trailer trash breed with abandon like they do in Texas? You know how annoying it is when some skanky piece of trash waddles around a grocery store with four kids from different fathers and are pregnant with a fifth bastard? When their skin tone, eye color, and hair color is radically different it's a big clue. They've never been married but milk welfare for all it's worth while yakking on an iPhone. Can't afford junior's anti-psychotics but they'll scrape money together for a stupid smart phone.

    I'd say if there were such a thing as real sex ed and actual consequences those skanks wouldn't have so many bastards because MY tax dollars shouldn't be paying for them period. Sitting there and claiming the crap spread in that article as anything near factual is stupid.

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