Depending upon the country, between 20 and 25 percent of the women in their 40s do not have children, mostly on account of being single or out of choice. The numbers on men are a little higher and the reasons for not reproducing are similar.
The way some women and men feel “up” is by putting another person “down” and one of the ways that have been found is to put down a childfree woman and be judgemental about her.
No sooner a woman reaches her mid-twenties, social pressures begin. Relatives and friends first begin by talking about having children leading to some being persistent and can also eventually result in a few of the near and dear ones badgering her, in some societies including in the “developed” world.
On the other hand, men are generally free of stigma if they decide not to have children and are perceived as free-spirited and even envied.
There are many great parents who bring up their children in a happy and balanced atmosphere. The offspring of such parents, more often than not, go on to become content and productive adults.
But what about those millions of cases where children suffer. Let’s have a look at live examples of poor parenting.
Zsofia was in her early thirties and would often proclaim she was not gifted with maternal instincts for nurturing a child. Eventually, her motivation to make a baby came from the government incentives of her country for mothers (after all governments need more potential tax payers and the population in most countries is ageing) and to try and escape the strain she was feeling from the family. It’s a different matter she and her husband divorced soon after their daughter was born. Now the kid of 2 shuttles between the father and the mother and is confused about the mother’s boyfriends and the father’s girlfriend whom she inevitably meets.
Stanislav and Petra were a loving couple who first had a son. Soon cracks began to appear in the relationship and the solution they thought about to heal their marriage was to have a second child. A beautiful daughter was born. Lo and behold, the magic of having one more child did not work towards mending holy matrimony and they are now separated. The children are treated as a burden by both and also the grandparents since they must spend the court specified number of days with each of the parents. They look undernourished and unkempt.
This one is not known to us. Just last summer while walking by the river in Prague we saw a hysterical mother spanking and then carrying her toddler away, upside down, holding him by the leg.
How do such parents get away with it all when we live in a society where entirely justifiably even to drive a car one needs a licence. Social services sometimes get involved and take the child away for “better” upbringing in children’s homes and foster homes. However, this happens in extreme cases. Otherwise, day to day neglect or even mental and physical abuse appears to be acceptable.
And then there is the case of Ingunn and Thor who have been together since their early teens, first as friends and then as a couple. They are now in their early 40s and the bond between them is pretty strong. They view procreation as being unethical and lacking integrity. They are both anti-natalists and their rationale holds merit. They talk about the nearly 1 million people who commit suicide each year because they are not able to face the problems life brings. According to them, life expectancy has gone up and the quality of life is on the decline. They also are confused about why scientists are working on extending life to 150 years over the next two decades when there are already urgent problems related to the environment, production of food and crumbling standards of living. They also talk about 20,000 people dying each day of hunger, nearly a billion people suffering from malnutrition, well over a 100 million people being killed in mass murders in the 20th century alone due to wars and conflict, billions of animals being killed to feed humans – they are both vegetarians by the way and the hysteria and irresponsibility of creating AI due to which millions of jobs have already been lost and many millions more will go.
They both give many more reasons, all very valid but those are too many to go into.
You be the judge.
On one hand it’s reassuring to see how advanced and accomplished the present day youth is and on the other one honestly feels for all the decisions they and future generations must make, including parenthood, given what we have brought our planet to.
Note – For the sake of legal stuff I must claim that the names and incidents are fictitious though they are similar to or milder than what millions of children endure.
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