Friday, March 23, 2012

Pats on the back are unnecessary - Parenting is the reward

Being a parent can be thankless in the "oh thank you for being my parent, i am ever-so-grateful!" sort of way... but it doesn't mean parents need or deserve a pat on the back. I have many friends who do not have children, choose not to have children and that is great! I know these blogs link to my facebook page and they ended up in a group I had created for my college friends... most of whom do not have kids. Perhaps some of my posts have nothing to do with what they deal with on a daily life. In fact, most of my posts probably have a lot to do with why they are choosing to not have kids now or at least not at this point in their lives.

Yes, we've hit our thirties. Yes, biological clocks may be ticking. Yes, if they decide to have children later, they may be more tired, but heck, I'm tired enough now and in the view of my hometown average first child age.. I waited. After all, I was ALMOST 28 when my daughter was born. Can you imagine!?! :)

But the fact is, if someone doesn't want to be a parent, that is fine! Whether or not someone shares with me the fact they do not want to have kids is up to them. I don't ask my un-kidded friends (or would that be "kidless" friends?) if they plan to have kids because unless I'm close enough to them for them to tell me that they're struggling with infertility or just not want to have kids, it really is not my business.

I was reading a "STFU" type page and it just amazes me how we can make everything about "woe is me, I'm a parent." If I write a struggle on my page or my blog, that is fine. But from that un-named page, I will definitely say I will try my best to not write something like:

Me: You know nothing, Try having kids!

That's just wrong. Plain and simple. I chose to have my kids, so it is not about me! Just as much as me choosing to co-sleep is not about you. Yes, my kids wake me up more, but I want to know they're okay and I believe that (and research confirms) that babies and toddlers are best with mom, especially a mom who breastfeeds. But... I digress... I enjoy being a parent. Yes there are struggles. Yes, my identity has changed. No, I don't want a pat on the back from my kidless friends.

Disclaimer: Delaying having a child delays breastfeeding which may increase your risk of breast cancer. Or is it that you've increased your risk of breast cancer by not breastfeeding at least 18-24 months before age 25? Not sure... But I had to put a little bit of guilt trip in there :)

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