Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Having children seems to be a bit of a bother.

There was an article in the Daily Mail to day that made both my eyebrows engage in St Vitus Dance.
Corinne Maier, mother of two children aged 13 and 10 has just published a book called, No Kid, 40 Reasons Not To Have Children, and naturally it has caused considerable outrage in France where it was first published.
Her arguments against having children most boil down to how inconvenient they are. Well yes, I imagine they are, so if you don't want to be inconvenienced perhaps you should not have them. Certainly writing a book about how distasteful is is to have children while you have two of your own is just down right cruel.

"I found the hardest thing to give up when I had my children was my personal freedom.
There is no time left to be you any more. If I hadn't had them, I would have spent my money travelling the world. I could enjoy my money, rather than being stuck at home waking them up every day in time for school.

Once you have children, there is no space for spontaneity any more. We tried to go to an art exhibition last weekend which we'd been looking forward to for ages, but we had to take the kids along and they hate art.
They whined so much that we gave up and left without seeing anything.'

Whinge moan, aren't they little bastards for not liking art. Poor kids. I feel very sorry for them. But this one nailed it for me.

"People often ask me what my children think of the book, but they don't give a damn.
They live in their own world and I live in mine. I would never give my daughter advice on whether she should have children. I don't care if I have grandchildren or not, but I know that if I do, I don't want to look after them too often."


I also feel sorry for the kids of the rebuttal woman. Her name is Ursula Hirschkorm and she has two children aged 3 and 1. Her reasons to have children seem to center on the fact that she can now let her body go and ease into middle age guilt free. Although she claims becoming a parent makes you be less selfish most of her points seem to be centered on her and how she feels.

"My husband would come home from work and our entire dinner conversation would be about the milestones Jacob had reached, no matter how infinitesimal."
"Now I know that not all pregnancies are as rosy as mine, which were a round of cat naps and guilt-free chocolate scoffing, but the end result makes it all worthwhile even if you've spent nine months fighting morning sickness."
"When I was a new mum to Jacob, I remember saying to my husband that if I were to die then that it wouldn't matter so much because I had done the best thing I ever could in having my son."

Sweet Jebus on a moped. She's frightening. What is she going to do when her kids grow up and she's not the center of their world any longer? Will she call them up every night to make sure they say 'I love you Mommy'?

In an ideal world having children should boil down to this. Have them if you want, don't have them if you don't want them. But if you do have them you shouldn't lay all your anger and guilt and emotional well being on them. They are people too. Maybe adults should just consider that.



Blogger MairĂ©ad said...

I can see both sides. I love my kids, I am devoted to them, we get on well mostly, and I have a life outside of them. Teenagers though....Jee-sus! They'd break your melt, heart, head, patience, house, bank balance, eardrums...... and make you mutter to yourself, and ask yourself what the hell you had kids for! Now we have them for so long (school + college = 22ish per child minimum) that I'm wondering will I ever again have time (or cash!) for me? So think on would-be- mamas! Kids are super, but you will be giving yourself up for a long, long time, so realise that and be up for it.

11:40 a.m.  
Blogger Conan Drumm said...

Following on from Mairead's comment... that's why it's best to have kids early. Waiting 'til you're in your 30s doesn't make it any easier, quite the opposite. Methinks.

1:20 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

I'm under no illusion about kids, but jesus, if you do have them, don't make them feel bad about it, they had no say in being born. That first woman sounds very harsh to me. Rather like my mother who resented having children right up to the point when we all left home. Then she was sorry about it.

1:41 p.m.  
Blogger Andraste said...

Well...if they'd show that list of why nots to idiots like Britney Spears, it might make them think twice about spawning and saddling the world with another therapy-bound soul, damaged by his moron parents who didn't realize a kid's not a pet hamster to give a silly name to and then fight over when the ten second marriage goes to shite.

The list of reasons to have children is just idiocy. It's all about getting fat, letting yourself go, and looking like hell. Not one mention about having someone to teach the values of honesty, tolerance, love, patience, doing some goddamn good in the world, the hope that your kid could help make the world a better place, blah, blah, blah.

If I spawn, it'll be an experiment to see just what kind of recipe for hell monkeys the SPOUSE and my DNA really is...and that's pretty much it.

2:27 p.m.  
Blogger grimsaburger said...

Sweet Jesus, is there no room for the parents who are able to get their kids to do what parents want and need to do? My sister and I got carted around everywhere by mom and dad until we could either stay home alone or have our own car, which wasn't so terrible when (a) you've been trained up to it from a baby and (b) your parent takes the littlest bit of time to figure out the minimum of something for you to do while they're busy and (c) somehow they've figured out how to make it seem like they asked you to come along simply because they enjoy your company.
My parents were saints in that way...which probably means I'm going to have a pack of teeth-gnashing feral kids myself one of these days, and end up bitching about them like writer #1.

2:29 p.m.  
Blogger gimme a minute said...

I think kids are totally worth it. Data's only two and a half and she can already bring me a beer.

And you know, love and joy and stuff..

3:17 p.m.  
Anonymous Shebah said...

You call your kid "Data" ?? What an absolutely blissful name for the kid of a techie.

3:33 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Some people are just naturally more mammsie than others, more maternal and patient. But Jesus, that first woman was a hellion. She spoke about having childrren with such unrepressed venom.

*shakes head, wonders will Andraste's kids come out wearing baseball cas.

4:31 p.m.  
Blogger Medbh said...

Both of those women reflect badly on the rest of us. What kind of heartless bitch writes a book about not having them when she already does? Kee-rist that's cold. In the 1970s. Ann landers asked women with kids to write in and say if they had to do it all over again (having kids) would they still have them. 70% said no. Now I have to assume that the figure reflects the stagnant traditional division of labor in the home that reduced women to maid and nanny. The women who are happiest are those that do get some time for themselves, it seems to me.

5:20 p.m.  
Blogger Andraste said...

That's right, honey. Baseball caps...or hockey skates. Hockey skates, that's the ticket.

Of course, now that I've said that, they'll come out in tutus. And I shall die.

5:52 p.m.  
Blogger PI said...

Your children arr on loan and you have to let them go. It's taken me years to treat them like adults and not feel responsible for all they do and it is - eventually - a lovely liberating feeling and great to have such intimate loving friends.

6:55 p.m.  
Blogger Kim Ayres said...

My kids are fantastic, and I love being a Dad. It's everyone else's that are a pain in the arse.

6:58 p.m.  
Blogger MairĂ©ad said...

I love what PI posted, and agree. Conan is dead on also. I had mine young enough. My brother in laws (2) were fortyish when they became dads for the first time - I can't imagine having the necessary patience or energy.
FMC, you're right, No1 was very heartless especially as she has kids. It won't exactly enhance their self esteem now or ever....

9:15 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

No, I can't imagine it will dahling.

11:22 p.m.  
Anonymous Bonnie said...

Don't worry - Mother #1 who wrote the horrible article will receive her punishment when her children pick out which old-folks home they put her in.....

12:39 a.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

I hope it is under a bridge with the rest of the horrible trolls.

8:56 a.m.  
Blogger ManicMammy said...

Did that first fool not cop motherhood was not for her after her first child? Rather than compounding her "problem" by having a second?

10:36 a.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

That is a crackingly good point. And also what about the husband? I wonder how he feels about his wife's irritation with regards to the children. Or is he equally as irked with them. Poor kids.

10:52 a.m.  
Blogger Deborah said...

The first woman sounds like an ice queen and the second sounds like an idiot, making the rest of us look bad.

When taken to the extreme, both sides are ridiculous, but I can see bits of validity to either side.

I had both mine in mid twenties, which is perfectly accepted in the states, but here it makes me a freak. My fellow mammies with toddlers are mostly WELL into their thirties and often assume I'm some unmarried welfare recipient. The way I see it though is that they'll be gone when I'm just into my fifties and we'll have our life ahead of us. I simply cannot imagine being 60 with a kid in school. Ugh! But each to their own...

Of course we didn't plan on children this early. We planned on seeing the world, but apparently I'm immune to birth control.

Kids are a pain at times, especially when everyone your age is out partying and just once you'd love to join in without worrying about little people! But really, for all the joy they bring, it's a small sacrifice. I wonder will I be saying the same thing in twelve years when all three of us have our period at the same time? ;-)

8:47 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

"We planned on seeing the world, but apparently I'm immune to birth control."
I have more than one friend with that problem. One of my pals recently made her husband have the snip. He wasn't crazy about it, but when she pointed out that they already have three children with less than a year between them, he rethought his objections.

10:40 a.m.  
Blogger Orfhlaith said...

I pity the kids with the first mother. They'll be fine, though, they'll disown her. My own mother told me years ago, "never have kids, they'll break your heart". Now, she was HALF right, forgot to mention the great stuff. Then, following major pregnancy difficulties and also immunity to birth control, I had to get my tubes tied. The ex told me NO-ONE was going near his bits, so I told him to count me in that number, had my own tied, and never looked back.

6:11 p.m.  

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