Not for me

12:01:00 PM

At this point in my life, I'm certain that I do not want children. Let me just state for the record that (1) I love kids but I just don't want my own - I'm okay with being the cool aunt, and (2) if I do get pregnant by accident, I will not get an abortion. But if I could help it, I don't want to have children, and no, this is not because I'm single right now, and it's also not because of vanity.

My mother is probably the most awesome woman who ever lived. She juggled a successful career with family life. She didn't miss a single PTA meeting or recognition day despite her work. She did what she could to send me to good schools, and she found time to check on my homework every night.

Her approach to parenting is anything but conventional. She's actually quite cool, even though she tends to intimidate my friends when they come over our house. She's quite short, and I think she's trying to compensate the lack of height with the strength of her personality, and that scares the hell out of some people.

She's not the type who would tell me that I'm the prettiest girl on earth. She actually told me on more than one occasion that I'm not exactly beautiful, but since I had brains, I had something going for me. In a way, yes, that's harsh. But if you think about it, it's much harsher if you get your reality check from a bunch of people telling you you're not as pretty as your mother says.

We talked openly about a lot of things, including sex. She was very particular about using protection. She actually got pregnant with my older brother before she married my father, and I think that's why she wanted me to be very careful. She knows the fine line between being a parent and a friend. And as much as she is loving, she's also very pragmatic.

What I really appreciate about her is she never pushed me to be something I don't want to become. She gave advice, and she told me upfront that she wanted me to become a doctor. But I got to make the final decision, and she accepted it even if it's not what she wanted (I majored in Communications).

I don't know how she did it - working and raising two kids, going to the office and keeping the house in order, rendering mandatory overtime and checking on our homework. She is nothing short of a superwoman, and to me, she is simply the greatest parent on earth.

And perhaps that is exactly why I don't want children - my mother did such an amazing job that I don't know if I can do it as well as she did. Someone once told me that you raise your children the way you were raised, but I'm not sure if I can do it like she did. I don't know if I could ever measure up.

The responsibility of raising another human being is overwhelming. Babies will require 24-hour care. And when they start to go to school, the job gets harder because there are so many influences around them that I won't be able to control. As a parent, you need to provide guidance, but at the same time, you should also let them live their own lives, and balancing the two could be tricky.

Another reason why I don't want kids is karma - your child will be twice the child you are to your parents. I was young once, and I'm not exactly the most well-behaved or obedient or respectful one. I was a rebel without a cause, and I know that I caused my mother so many headaches. I'm afraid that my future kid will make my life as hard as I made my mother's.

A number of my friends already have kids, and I really, really, admire them. A part of me envies them, even, because they were brave enough to take the leap. I'm not there yet, and I'm actually not sure if I'll ever get there. And I think there's nothing wrong with my choice.

Rotten e-Card, indeed
(image from the internet)
Having kids is not for everybody. I don't want to have kids for the sake of giving my father grandchildren. I don't want to have kids as an insurance that I'll be taken care of when I grow old. I don't want kids because I'm not certain if I will be a good mother, and I don't want to try because I'd be experimenting with real human lives.

Maybe I'm saying these things now because I'm still young and I still have a lot to figure out. I might even have to eat my words here in the future - maybe something will happen in my life that will change my mind. But all I'm saying is, for now, it's not for me.


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