I’ve said it before here on the blog… I’ve never wanted children. I don’t have children. I am honestly not all that interested in other people’s children until those children are able to speak for themselves. This means that I don’t hold babies, I generally don’t coo over babies, and I don’t particularly get into talking about the everyday stuff that happens with babies. Once a child can interact in a language I can understand, then I can manage interest… this usually happens around the age of two or three. Even then, there is only so much interest I can hold in a small child. I don’t babysit, and I find it difficult when people’s lives revolve almost completely around their children.
I have said on here before the things that have been levelled at me for not being a parent – selfishness, not being a ‘real’ person, not understanding the meaning of life… However, I have a number of reasons why I should not be compelled to bring children into my world. The top one is that I don’t have a maternal instinct. I’ve covered this before in another posting so I won’t go over it again. There is a variety of aspects attached to not having a maternal instinct: I don’t feel a ‘pull’ (as it is described to me by maternal women) towards interacting with other people’s children; I don’t feel that I need to help other parents (I think I’d only make the problem worse); I don’t particularly want to see photos of babies… to me they are not cute. I was about to apologise for that one, but I won’t – I don’t see why I should. What I see when I look at photos of babies is a round, red pooping and spewing machine. I don’t find that cute, and that is a product of no maternal instinct. I do understand why people like photos of babies, especially if they are photos of friends’ babies. I don’t.
Beside the lack of maternal instinct, I don’t think that bringing a child into my world is a good move, for me or the child. I’ve lived an … interesting… life, and bringing a child into that would have been downright irresponsible. I told my mother once that if I had children, it wouldn’t be long before Child Services took them away and they ended up in the foster system. She told me that would never happen, but only because she would take on the responsibility for my children. It was clear to me that both my mother and I understood that I was not the kind of person who should have children. And I can now hear parents all over the world saying things like ‘oh, it’s different once you’ve had them, you settle down, you become more responsible’… True, many people do. I do not believe that would have happened for me. My life was far too out of control.
So why else would it have been bad for me and the child? Well, to be blunt, I have not always made good choices when it came to men. I’ve had some brilliant boyfriends, and some absolute shockers. Knowing me, if I had wanted children, I would have made the mistake of having them with the worst men… and then those men would have had to be part of my life and the child’s life forever. No. Just one example: one of my boyfriends was so abusive he chased me clear across the country and I ended up having to flee to Europe just to get away from him. This guy was one of the reasons I ended up changing my name. Last year, I was told by an old friend that this ex of mine was asking about me (after 21 years of no contact), where I was, what I was doing… luckily for me this old friend is a smart bugger and told the ex that they’d had no contact with me for years. When I was told all of this, I went through weeks of hyper-vigilance and fright. I could not imagine how bad it would be if he were the father of my child.
There are other reasons, but I think those are the two biggest ones.
I think I’ll stick with dogs – it’s much more simple.