Thursday, July 2, 2009

Two point one children.

I had a semi-revolutionary thought the other day, and I just thought I'd briefly share:

We're all familiar with the image of the average family - a mom, a dad, and two adorable children. 

Granted, this image of "average" is changing drastically over time with the increasing blending of families as a result of divorce and remarriage, single parents, families with same-sex parents and Jon minus Kate Plus 8 followers that just want a corral of cute kids to take to the zoo.

Nevertheless, one or two children seems to be what many people desire. If possible, a boy and a girl.  A co-worker said to me a few weeks ago after trying to organize which parent would take who to soccer practice, "Don't have three... two is enough."

Two is definitely enough when prize packages to Disneyland or any destination are for "a family of four."  I felt this discrimination when I was 8, and my brother and I had a new little sister, ruling us out for this "family of four" prize. 

I heard on the radio the other day about how it's "time to ship the kids off to camp for a week, and take that much-needed break."

These and a few other occurrences got me thinking that maybe, just maybe, the problem with having more than two kids, and the idea of the "much needed break" for parents is that people don't like kids.

Think about it. Why is it that sit-coms no longer carry that essential "cute child" like Rudy and later Olivia on the Cosby Show, or the Olsen twins on Full House?   Why is it that there is a decrease in the yearly averages of people having children?  Why is it that a mother who has had four or five children is chastised and frequently told she is crazy, insane, or "must be very organized."

We talk about the overpopulation of the world being a problem, but in my humble opinion, this is a total farce.  You can parade starving children in Africa before my eyes, but their starvation doesn't have to do with overpopulation of the earth. It has more to do with allocation of resources.  Show me a starving child in Africa and I'll show you five overweight North American children.  

I heard someone say that it would be "selfish to bring children into our increasingly demoralized society."  To me, that's just a front for "I don't like kids."  
This is not to say that people should be having kids left and right, just for the sake of "liking children." It is a lot of work to raise a child, but often the reason kids are bad, or act out is because their parents don't know how to do their job.

Selfishness is the root of most of these problems.  Why is two kids the ideal? Because it's all most people think they can handle while maintaining their job, their home, their "me time."  It's not about the kids at all.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, thank you for writing this post. I could not agree with you more.

    I grew up in a family of 6 kids, my best friend had a family with 8, and another friend is from a family of 10. We all missed out on a lot of the fancier things in life as children, and all our mothers gave up a lot to raise us, but I wouldn't trade my crazy big family for anything, and neither would anyone else I know from big families. I thought it was greatest childhood, the greatest teenagehood, and the it's still pretty awesome as an adult.

    What really gets me is so many people look down on my mom because she chose to stay at home with us. She chose to have 6 kids and only stopped cause she was 37. In our eyes, she's Wonderwoman, but the world sees her as trodden upon, weak and anti-feminist.

    I fully intend to have a whole horde of children. I'm thinking a minimum of 5, and I fully intend to put them before my job and any fictional "me time." The way I see it, after you're gone the people in your workplace remember you for maybe 3 to 5 years, but your children remember you forever. No one lies on their deathbed wishing they'd spent more time at the office or on "me time."


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