10 Most Common Reasons Why People Want Children

Updated on August 7, 2018
Astralrose profile image

She is a vegan, married and childfree; a lover of nature and wildlife; has two dogs and six, sometimes seven, other four-legged boarders.

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Why Do People Want Kids?

This is a question many couples ask themselves, and there are many reasons for and against having children. In this article, I will go over some of the ways that having children can positively impact your life, and I will also go over some of the ways that having children can negatively impact your life.

Reasons for and Against Having Kids

Reasons to Have Children
Reasons to Not Have Children
They Want to Create a Family
Environmental Impact
To Carry on the Family Name and Values
Economic Impact
You Love Babies and Small Children
Stress Levels
Human Biology
Unhappiness
To Give and Receive Unconditional Love
Sleep
To Give Your Children the Chance to Enjoy Existence
Poor Eating and Lifestyle Habits
To Give Meaning to Their Life
Overpopulation
To Create and Mold a Life
Logistics
To Fix the Mistakes of Their Parents
Passing Down Physical and Mental Health Issues
Social Pressure and Expectations
Marital Issues

Ten Common Reasons to Have Children

Here are ten common reasons my friends and other people I know tell me when I ask them why they want to have kids.

  1. They Want to Create a Family
  2. To Carry on the Family Name and Values

  3. They Love Babies and Small Children
  4. Human Biology
  5. To Give and Receive Unconditional Love
  6. To Give Their Children the Chance to Enjoy Existence
  7. To Give Meaning to Their Life
  8. To Create and Mold a Life
  9. To Fix the Mistakes of Their Parents
  10. Social Pressure and Expectations

Source

1. They Want to Create a Family

People who were raised in a positive home environment with a stable family want to create that life with their significant other. They want to create a family that is full of joy and love where they can be affectionate towards their children. Essentially, they have placed a high priority on creating a family of their own like their parents before them.

2. To Carry on the Family Name and Values

There are plenty of people out there who want to carry on the family name and the family values. Of course, this tends to apply to the father's family name, but the point is that many prospective parents want to continue the historic family lineage. They find joy in knowing that their child will bear their last name and keep the family going. Again, this is all based around societal customs.

3. They Love Babies and Small Children

The idea of being around babies and young children might disgust some people but others love the notion of raising a little one from birth into adulthood. These people may want to relive the silly and fun parts of their childhood with their child.

4. It's Human Nature

The simple fact of biology is that we are hardwired to procreate and pass on our genes to the next generation. This biological imperative and drive are strong in many people, who feel the need to have and raise children.

5. To Give and Receive Unconditional Love

There is a certain type of bond between parent and child that is incredibly powerful. The unconditional love that a parent has for their offspring and vice versa is a motivator for some. They want to feel those strong emotions and share those emotions with their significant other and their children.

6. To Let Their Children (Who Don't Exist Yet) Experience the Joy of Existence

The idea of bringing another human into the world and the joy of seeing that person go through life is another powerful reason why couples want to have a child. Parents want to see their child grow up and become a productive member of society.

7. To Give Meaning to Their Life

While it may seem obvious to some, having a child completely changes your life, and it gives new meaning to your life. After having a child you become responsible for their life and because of that, your existence takes on a whole new meaning.

8. To Create and Mold a Life

Many people love the idea of getting to create and raise a child, one that they can share their love with. This concept is appealing because you get to determine how your child will turn out and what values they will have. Couples can find that type of experience exciting and gratifying.

9. To Fix the Mistakes of Their Parents

Not everyone gets to grow up in a stable home environment with good parents. Many people grow up with parents who have serious flaws and so they decide that when they become parents they will not make the same mistakes.

10. Social Pressure and Expectations

There is a lot of pressure on couples to have children, and this has been ingrained in society since the very beginning of time. Their mentality is that they have to have kids just like everyone else and be just like their parents. It has become an expectation that couples have children and start families.

Source

Ten Common Reasons Why You Should Not Have Children

There are a lot of environmental, economic, and personal reasons that suggest having multiple children (or even one child) is not worth it in the long run. Here are ten of the most prominent reasons:

  1. Environmental Impact
  2. Economic Impact
  3. Stress Levels
  4. Unhappiness
  5. Sleep
  6. Poor Eating and Lifestyle Habits
  7. Overpopulation
  8. Logistics
  9. Passing Down Physical and Mental Health Issues
  10. Marital Issues

1. Environmental Impact

With the current state of the environment, having a child is one of the most environmentally destructive things you can do. According to a study done by Lund University in Sweden, not having a kid can save “an average of 58.6 tonnes of CO2-equivalent emissions per year”. That is a massive amount of CO2, and it easily outpaces other individual efforts to cut down on personal CO2 emissions.

2. Economic Impact

According to the USDA, the cost of raising a child amounts to around $233,610 from birth until age 17. For many couples, this type of economic commitment is not feasible and having a child would put a lot of stress on the parents to provide economically for the child. This number goes up the more kids you have as well.

3. Stress Levels

The amount of stress placed on the parents while raising a child are enormous, particularly on the mother as she tends to wind up having the biggest burden. According to a study conducted by the University of Texas at Austin, a mother's self-reported stress levels increased by 20 to 22 percent after having a child. This level of stress continued for years after having the child, and the impact of such high stress levels is poor health for both parents.

4. Unhappiness

While many people claim that having kids has made them happier, there is a growing mound of evidence that suggests that is not actually the case. According to work done by the British Psychological Association, having children dramatically increases unhappiness. People delude themselves into thinking that feelings of unhappiness will not crop up when they have kids but that is simply not the case. Having a child is a stressful event that places parents in a tough position and it leads to feelings of unhappiness.

5. Sleep

As one could imagine, parents do not get a lot of sleep, and this is not healthy for the body or the mind. There are a wide range of issues caused by sleep deprivation such as mood disorders, increased risk of heart disease, increased risk of diabetes, memory issues, high blood pressure, weight gain, and many others. The early years of raising a child are when this is the worst and having more than one child can make even more years of disordered sleeping pile up, which is terrible for one's health.

6. Poor Eating and Lifestyle Habits

Much like poor sleep quality, poor eating habits and poor health increase when raising a child. It is all too easy to fall into the trap of eating processed food that damages one's health and not getting enough exercise and outdoor time. Seeing as your free time is severely restricted when you are raising a child, it can be difficult to live a healthy lifestyle. In fact, many non-parents report they live healthier lifestyles than parents.

7. Overpopulation

With the world's population now over 7 billion people, the competition for housing and resources is only becoming worse. The strain on the earth will only increase as the population does and we will get to the point where it is not sustainable for civilization to continue.

8. Logistics

The logistics of two parents raising a child can be difficult to navigate. With the costs of childcare factored in and the growing need for both parents to work full time, it puts even more stress on the parents to find a way to make everything work. This gets even more difficult if it is a single parent raising a child.

9. Passing Down Mental and Physical Issues

Many individuals have mental and physical health issues that run in the family and could be passed down to future generations. Having a child born with these issues may be something that potential parents do not want to deal with. This is particularly the case with mental health issues, which have been increasingly shown to have a genetic component that can be passed down.

10. Marital Issues

Research has shown that parenthood tends to have a negative impact on marriage due to the restrictions and stresses that come with raising a child. This negative impact can lead to other fissures in the marriage and the more children in the family correlated with lower parental satisfaction according to a meta-analysis from the Journal of Marriage and Family.

What to Do?

When you decide to bring a new life into this world, think about it many times and think as if you are your unborn child. Ask questions and answer them in your unborn child's perspective and not in yours. Think about the ramifications and consequences of having a child and the impact it will have on your life and the life of your significant other.

Questions & Answers

  • Are two children expensive for parents?

    One child itself is extremely expensive for the earth. On top of that, not only is the earth paying the debts that humanity accumulated over centuries, children will be paying for the interests accrued over generations in the form of war, riots, conflict, food supply, water shortage, unbreathable air, etc. So, think about the children who will inhabit a world trashed with plastics.

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    • profile image

      Steph 

      6 days ago

      Hi Maria, I agree, but what is the solution?!

    • profile image

      William 

      8 days ago

      The thing that always struck me as weird about this is that 9 out of 10 of these reasons are all ego based. ie. The adult wants the kid for their own reasons.

    • profile image

      María Guadalupe 

      12 days ago

      While I really apreciate that not everyone wants kids and that's fine, tehre is small thing that bothers me: everyone talk about having keds sucking all your money and having to work a lot to support a family. THIS IS NOT NORMAL. This is the result of a terrible set of economic decisions. Working class families shouldnt need to have both parents working full time and having no time to themselves. And actually, the economy allowed families to subsist, own houses and a car, and take holidays on ONE source of income alone.

      Of couse people need to make sure they want kids and that they want kids for the right reason. But to have built a society in wich only the people who decide to not have kids get to purse their interests, have valuable experiences and etc, is BONKERS.

      It's BONKERS. It's an economical setting that makes sure that families are impoverished, children are raised by the tv, parents are stressed and alienated, and that the people who actually have free time to make questions and be critical and politically active are the ones that leave no children behind.

      Let's make sure to point out that having to opt-out of parenthood to have the possibility of having free time and savings is a dilemma that capitalism invented.

    • profile image

      Charles Wansings 

      2 weeks ago

      My wife and I are 42 yrs old, married for 11 years with no kids. Guess what we get to do Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, for the rest of our lives? Whatever the heck we like!!!

      And as a bonus, we’ve amassed so much savings from not having kids, we will retire early.

      Sure I see people with kids and feel bad sometimes since they look so cute, but then again, I feel the same way with someone who has a dog (and we don’t want that responsibility either).

      My theory is, we are both the youngest in our families and we still want all the attention on ourselves. Call it selfish, but thats the way it is....

    • profile image

      Connor 

      4 weeks ago

      I definitely don't want to have children. Not now. Not ever. However the author comes off as very angry at her own parents/family and lots of others she's never met.

      I spent most of my life raising my parents. I literally had to give up on a pursuit of my own life to make sure they survived. Now that I am nearly 30, I want to create a life for myself. If I had children, I would dedicate nearly 100% of my time to them and be eternally upset for never pursuing my desires.

      It's possible to explain to people why I don't want to have children without being rude or trying to invalidate his/her joy in having children. What I tell them is a lot like the paragraph above. Folks are generally pretty understanding.

      Do I think there are a lot of terrible parents out there? Oh yes! I wish my own parents were not allowed to have children. That being said I won't resort to blasting off on anonymous others with different viewpoints than my own.

      Didn't this article begin with the author being upset about people criticizing her for not having children? Treat others the way you want to be treated.

    • profile image

      Cat 

      4 weeks ago

      Preach girl! Everyone thinks you NEED to have a child but really? Its optional. People eally don't think about how much you have to give up when aving a child. Money, personal hapiness... Sometimes you have to cut connections with some people or even get over an addiction fore having kids. You have to be selfless when having kids. That's what makes these reasons invalid and the people saying them unprepared for having children.

    • profile image

      J.ca 

      5 weeks ago

      It's good to promote thought on the matter rather than just everyone filling up the already overpopulated planet for the wrong reasons.

      I personally feel that not enough people put time or energy into improving -- themselves ---, saying they don't have time etc because they have kids.

      Truth seems to be that it's not your potential kids' job to make the world a better place, to contribute, and study - it's Yours! Don't be lazy & have kids saying 'they'll make the world a better place', it's everyone's responsibility to do this regardless of whether you have kids or not.

    • profile image

      Irony 

      6 weeks ago

      Good thing your parents decided to have children... ;)

    • profile image

      Brent 

      6 weeks ago

      This article reads like the author has a chip on her shoulder. Anger management might help you let go of the feeling that people are judging you when they ask you why you don't have kids.

      Aside from that... People have children because it's the experience they want to have. Very simple. There are a million specific reasons to have kids just as there are a million reasons not too. Why do we have to boil it down to one... Or a list of 10? There's personal growth to be had, the same as starting a business, or a Ying a sport, or.... choosing not to have kids.

      For people who don't want kids, they choose not to because that's the experience they want for themselves.

      Pretty simple.

    • profile image

      Thinking 

      7 weeks ago

      I suppose if this was the popular opinion we wont be here to read this article...but looking at every listed reason here to have a child they are all very selfish and egotistic..t.o be happy, reason for living , to experience the laughter.... we create life for our amusement? The more likely truth is that we are parasites driven to multiply until this planet and its beauty is totally void of everything. Yes, that's a sombre thought and sounds really pessimistic ...but think about it ...

    • profile image

      Sociable 

      7 weeks ago

      Its only point number ten I consider reasonable not to just have children just because they want children. Please think of what your generation want to inherit from you not that you will invite people to come and suffer in this world

    • profile image

      Butterwutter 

      7 weeks ago

      Cool

    • profile image

      Tbs 

      8 weeks ago

      Wow why do people need to have kids not need want

    • profile image

      DJ Hurst 

      2 months ago

      It stops you getting old and bitter like all the childless people I know.

    • profile image

      Nimster 

      2 months ago

      AWESOME. I INTERVIEWED 100 PAREMTS AND ASKED WHY THEY HAD KIDS? AND 90 % WERE MAD,SAID WELL ITS TIME, EVERYONE HAS KIDS, ITS FUN. THEN I ASKED WHY WHEN KIDS GET TO 15 ,WE CANT WAIT TO GET RID OF THEM AND HOPE THEY PAY THEIR COLLGE AND GET A JOB?? THEY WERE SPEECHLESS. IT COSTS 300,000 TO RAISE A KID... PEOPLE DI IT CAUSE THEY ARE AFRAID OF CRITICSM AND WILL LOOK BAD AMONG FRIENDS AND FAMILY. ENJOY LIFE.. YOU HAVE KIDS TO GIVE THEM A GEAT LIFE AND TEACH THEM WHAT YOU LEARNT IN LIFE AND MAKE THEM SUCCESFUL IN THE COMMUNITY AND MAKE THE WORLD BETTER

    • profile image

      LaLa 

      2 months ago

      So it seems you need a license or degree to practice anything except parenthood. It is a very serious responsibility and yet so many people don't think before bringing children into this world. The average person thinks that love is enough to sustain the life of child but let's face it, some people's idea of love is debatable. I believe that if you live a life that is less than anything that is fulfilling, then what makes you think that you have what it takes to enhance and support new life. People in general are selfish and don't put much thought into the quality of life they can afford an innocent child who didn't ask to be here. I believe in God and procreation. I also believe that it is sinful the amount of inconsideration that people have when it comes to it. If one in fact decides to procreate, it is no longer about you but instead putting all of your efforts and ability into nurturing that life that you are ultimately responsible for. Don't have kids for the sake of having kids. It is not a rite of passage. Kids life matter.

    • profile image

      nobody 

      2 months ago

      The only and true reason to have children is written in the blible: "Be fruitful and multiply"

    • profile image

      GoneCrazy 

      2 months ago

      Found this post trying to wrack my brain for an answer as to why people choose to have kids. To me it makes perfect sense that your life is basically over once you have a kid, I just don't understand what people don't understand about this. Kids are the ultimate money and time suck. Take any goal or value you have for yourself in life, and almost certainly, having a child in the mix will make it difficult if not impossible. I can't understand if the world's gone crazy, or I have.

    • profile image

      wizard 

      2 months ago

      I have been with my partner for 7 years, and some of our friends are asking us about marriage and children. When I ask people of why they are interested I get the same answers as this article. I am not some one who is keen on becoming a mother. Recently I have thought of perhaps bringing a child or adopting one but for different reasons. I usually meet people who I feel should not have kids because they are either very unintelligent or narrow minded. It feels like the wrong people give birth to children and pass on very shallow views to them. It doesn't matter how educated some one may be, they can still see the world only from their point of view (the judgemntal view). I would like to see more feminists, environmentalists, and activists have children. I would like to bring a child and teach them about acceptance. I don't have to give birth to them. I live in a developed country and I want to help a child in a developing country. After all, the deveolped countries expoit the developing countries. Also, I feel that may be this child could contribute to the society and make it a better place because no matter how hard I tried, I feel that I failed at it. Of course, there is no guarantee that my child will turn out to be a non-judgemental human being or even become this very selfish human being. So, this reason could also be a silly one that coud be added to the list.

    • profile image

      キャット 

      2 months ago

      I totally agree with this

    • profile image

      Jasmine 

      2 months ago

      Really not a fan of children, I'm sick of seeing them on every bus and ever train.

      I'd like to go out and NOT see kids everywhere I go.

      That'd be nice.

      There's over 7 billion of us, so eventually people need to calm down on the childbirth a bit.

    • Vikram Gamadia profile image

      Vik 

      3 months ago from Pune, Maharashtra

      great article, I would love to have a kid with my wife

      but I cannot find a decent reason why I would want to - except that I would love to have a kid with my wife and that it would make her happy.

      but i cannot stop thinking about the crazy financial and emotional factor involved, I dont want to dive in and think later. I want to count the cost before building my tower, even before laying the foundation

      Why should I want a kid?

      I just dont have a decent logical answer and maybe there isn't one anyway

      Still thinking...

    • profile image

      Jus sayin 

      3 months ago

      I'm glad i came across the read. Very easy to understand, and as a person who is choosing to live the rest of her life childless, a supportive branch to climb up on. The more articles, blogs, opinions shedding light on lifestyles sans children and the potential joys to be experienced from doing so, just creates more of a safe place for people like myself to exist online.

    • profile image

      Random dude 

      3 months ago

      this honestly feels like a sarcastic article bashing everyone that has decided to have kids. Good read.

    • profile image

      Child-free 

      4 months ago

      1. New social life

      By the time you reach the age of thinking about prospective parenthood, which, on average, is slightly over the hump of 30, you are tiring of a lot of your friends. Many you will have known since school or university and been heartily sick of them for years. I met most of the friends I have now at the school gates, or when accompanying one of my children to sleepovers. Gradually, you can edge out the old friends who have begun to bore you because now you’re boring them back about the difficulty of finding nursery places and they are going to run a mile.

      2. Something to talk about with your partner

      As with friends, so with partners. Those first few years giggling in bed, and sometimes even having sex there, are losing their allure. Puzzling over the meaning of life and the proper reaction to a piece of contemporary art is less of a rush than it once was. You start to realise that you are average and dull like everyone else. Having children means you can stop trying to be Simone de Beauvoir and Jean Paul Sartre and get on with the real meaning of life – wiping excrement from children’s bottoms. As the immortal PJ O’Rourke put it: “Don’t try and come on like Jean-Paul Belmondo/Aspire instead to two kids and a condo.”

      3. Laughter

      A lot is talked about how children give you someone to love and how they offer a sense of purpose. What isn’t so often mentioned is that they are very funny. If I tried to explain how they are funny and the countless ways they have made me laugh over the years, the stories would sound lame. OK, I can’t resist it anyway. Here’s one off the top of my head. I was walking in the park and saw a rabbit. I said to my then seven-year-old, in an admittedly patronising fashion: “Look, darling, there’s a bunny rabbit.”

      She shook her head despairingly and replied: “Daddy, I’m not a baby. Don’t call it a bunny rabbit.”

      She glared disapprovingly, then snapped: “It’s a bunny.”

      You had to be there. But believe me, I multiplied my laugh rate 10 times more than when I was childless.

      4. You stop thinking about throwing yourself under a bus

      Before you have children, you are quite likely to have a number of philosophical crises about life, death and meaninglessness. Is it all worth it? “There is only one really serious philosophical question, and that is suicide” said Camus. However, after children you realise there are other questions, after all – whether Beany Babies have souls and if there are fairies at the bottom of the garden, how can they stand the smell of the composter? These kinds of inquiries, which will be incessant, usually leave no room for thoughts of self-annihilation.

      5. Beauty

      Children are not only funny, they are beautiful. Even ugly ones are thought beautiful by their parents. Simply surrounding yourself with creatures so visually pleasing makes every day an aesthetic delight.

      So go ahead – do it. Have some kids. I won’t say you’ll never regret it. In fact, you’ll probably frequently regret it. But it’s a hell of an experience, and if you consider that you want to be brave and adventurous, don’t go on a canoe down the Orinoco, bin the condoms and starting stencilling the spare room with unicorns instead.

    • profile image

      Dr. Mitsaras 

      4 months ago

      In the last 20 years of our existence we are trying to contradict the 'by experience' evolution of the DNA for the last 250000 years at least. My arguments:

      1. Overpopulation: the real fact is that earth is not overpopulated as they describe. China is, India is, Bangladesh is etc. Germany is not, Russia is not, USA is not. So create a anti child propaganda to the overpopulating countries and not to the whole planet.

      2. Meaning of Life: Earth is a life giver and a life taker. We are not here just to have fun, neither to be only For ourselves. A person without kids will just consume the resources of the planet ending up completely forgotten by history. Even the big career, the big success it's temporary. Even the company that works for or he owns will also be forgotten by history. Exceptions are people that really contribute to the real thing. See Einstein, Hawkings and other. By the way most of them they had children.

      3. DNA: Nature mates the best possible genes. There is a reason for that. It's the reason of the quality of.the evolution.

      My battery ends. I cannot write more.

    • profile image

      Anonymous 

      4 months ago

      Never have I seen such a bizarre dichotomy in these comments where they're either an intelligently written introspection or where someone typed non-sequitur like a five year old. Seriously, spell check your posts before you make them. Backwater sites like this don't have an edit option in the comments. This isn't Youtube country.

      I have been desperately looking for a good reason why someone would have kids because "hurr durr ima writer" and so far the only sound reasoning I can find is "I want to raise and take care of children, but for whatever reason I am unable to work in a field where I'm around kids." Maybe you get attached to baby Jake but one day he's adopted and you never see him again? As flawed an argument as this is, having your own kid lets you get attached to them without worrying about them leaving you (except for untimely death or running away from you for being bad parents). And anyone who's gone through the adoption process will tell you it is a nightmare. Orphanages are not "The Baby Store." They spot check the adoption process and stretch it out for so long because unlike most parents adoption centers actually have the child's future and best interest in mind and want to be ABSOLUTELY SURE you're serious about becoming a parent. It can take years to fully adopt someone. Having your own takes between 9 to 10 months. You also don't get to watch them grow up. I don't see the appeal of the messy infant stage, but to some people not having a veiny, 7lb wrinkly grandpa for a year or two is a deal breaker. Go figure.

      I honestly believe you can't have children and be selfless in doing so. Choosing not to have children is technically selfish since you're focusing on your own needs, but to call it selfish invalidates the consideration put into the decision. Besides, taking care of your own well being is important in any adult, and condemning all selfish behavior as evil is not only misguided but unhealthy.

      Having children is the same way. You may have an ulterior motive, but to argue against having kids because of said motive invalidates the commitment that parents make to give their kid the best life they could possibly ask for (that is assuming there was a commitment to begin with and the child is not a future "get out of an elderly home free card"). There is no 100% noble reason to have kids, and to think you're some paragon of nobleness for procreating is ego, pure and simple. You don't get a trophy for not being a terrible parent. That only happens when you're not just a good parent, but a great one, and even then you don't get a trophy for that; you get a great kid who genuinely loves you back. Using your position as parent to force a kid into loving you is not love no matter how you dress it up.

      Also, all the comments about people getting offended by this article/other comments are HILARIOUS because you know they're by some middle-aged mom/dad feeling attacked because they're confronted about the possibility that maybe they might not be as great a parent as they think they are, can't stand the thought of it, and use passive aggressive vitriol and denial to protect their bruised ego rather than self-reflect and improve themselves like mature adults. The ad-hominen arguments they hide their hurt pride behind are as vapid as the supposed moral high ground they stand on.

      My name is Anonymous. Welcome to the Internet. Enjoy your stay.

    • profile image

      Erzbet 

      4 months ago

      I am currently thinking about this. I am the invalid 'child' mentioned earlier- I had to go back home at 29 due to debilitating fatigue and pain (I'm 32). I also have problems with depression. I am starting to wish I could start a family. I want to nurture someone, help them grow up, help them learn to think for themselves. Besides my inability to care for them properly, I would never want to pass down my illnesses and watch my child suffer. If it was just depression, bad as it is, at least it's identifiable and treatable. But depression AND a mystery illness? That's too much. My parents don't know how much I suffer, but I would know perfectly well.

      I am fortunate that I never had baby fever or an intense desire or plan to have a family. But seeing children play and learn- I want to be part of that and it hurts that I have no choice. I do hope i get better. One of my dreams is to have a summer camp for disadvantaged urban children in Upstate New York. Maybe foster to adopt, but i will always fear my illness returning, and I know foster children need extra attention and love.

    • profile image

      Gorre.ramesh 

      4 months ago

      I want one child

    • profile image

      Rolo Cherveg 

      4 months ago

      This is a really resonating list. Probably the most delusional reason I've heard some parents give are along the lines of: "A child is the greatest gift you can give to the world, they're the future after all!"

      As if these people never thought of adding something great to the world themselves. We live in a parental society where it's normalcy to 'pass down the torch' without having run the race at all.

      Afterwards, I've seen parents attach words to their young children like "ungrateful" and refer constantly their own 'sacrifices.'

      How is it a sacrifice if you brought a child into this world for your own pleasure? That's like purchasing a plant seed and calling yourself a hero for not letting it die. It is your responsibility to take care of the plant; you wanted it in the first place.

      And then there's the ultimate fallacy of 'imparting wisdom.' Unless you are renowned throughout the world as a creative genius or hero, I doubt you have any more wisdom than the next guy, and probably shouldn't be spoon-feeding it to the next generation.

      Sigh...

    • profile image

      Gotta 

      5 months ago

      Having children is not my cup of tea. I don't understand why they make a big deal over my choice not to have any children. It's a very personal decision and is not for everyone. Wake up!

    • profile image

      Oky 

      5 months ago

      Thank you. Great article. It makes me wonder, though, what *is* a good reason to have a child? To allow them a chance to experience life seems like the only decent one. Otherwise, I frankly can't think of anything?

    • profile image

      Risa 

      5 months ago

      Some of these are awful reasons, mostly in the interest of the parent.

    • profile image

      samantha 

      5 months ago

      At 32 I'm asking myself why do I want kids? And after reading this it made me realize I want a child for the wrong reasons. A person that will love me unconditionally

    • profile image

      Jay 

      5 months ago

      When I got my hysterectomy and was depressed I listed all the reasons I wanted children... I couldn't find a single one that wasn't selfish. I wanted the permanent love and to add joy to my family. I realized that was a huge burden to put on such a little thing. And after problems with my own parent I found that it was highly unlikely that a child would want (or have the ability) to be the sole-source of my joy forever.

    • profile image

      Diesel 

      6 months ago

      Every single answer to having children is " Selfish" plain and simple!

    • profile image

      MIke 

      6 months ago

      Why spend your life raising another, you only get one life.

    • profile image

      Elise Taylor 

      6 months ago

      @Ellie Paraham and Richards

      It is an awful statements to say such a thing! This isn’t why there are so many single mothers.

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      chewgold 

      6 months ago

      To release the contempt and disdain for your mate/significant other. As in "you disgust me now get in there and let's try to make a baby and improve upon ourselves...we're presently screwed up.

    • profile image

      Tom Chua 

      6 months ago

      I have no children and it has been the best decision ever.

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      SMG123 

      6 months ago

      No mention of wanting to build family-others who are so close to you who you can share home and experiences with. Friends are great but there is a difference in my experience.

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      Rebecca 

      6 months ago

      I agree, to a point. I do not understand the desire to have children, other than its just what people do. As a group mentality, we follow society rules. But I see parents are always sleep deprived, cranky, have no freedoms. Everything becomes about the children. I actually read a study about couples with children were unhappier compared to couples without children. It's simply not something I think is a good investment of my time or resources. There are so many ways to contribute to society, getting fat and having no life is definitely not on my list.

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      Dw cuz 

      7 months ago

      Tanya, i don't understand how it's selfish to not want or have children??

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      SpiderMan 

      7 months ago

      I didn't want children - but I had them eventually and they have taught me more about life than anything else I've ever done. It's something that can't be fully explained until you have your own.

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      Jake 

      7 months ago

      Hi,

      Just been reading all the comments. Phew!

      I am Glad so many shared their minds on the topics of not wanting, wanting, having, and giving. I believe life is a very, very serious matter since it is why we are all here(Obviously). I cannot judge what the author thinks or believes but I can say that I am glad that they said Something. How else would all this talk about life happen? It's great to see people communicate about it.

      Some posts here were insightful and some were just opinion s. Just how discussion goes.

      I WILL TELL YOU HOW I HAVE COME TO UNDERSTAND LIFE MORE TRUTHFULLY AND THE QUESTIONS THAT COME WITH IT. FIRST LOOK AT THESE WORDS.

      LOGIC!

      FREE WILL!

      LOVE!

      HATE!

      PEOPLE EXPERIENCE THESE ACTIONS.

      What does all this mean?

      Not much right?

      ...

      ACTUALLY.. This means a lot.

      Soooo... How do I know this and how did I learn more about LIFE?

      I have read bits and pieces of a book that has been around for a LONG time. THE BIBLE. DON'T BE AFRAID. No matter who you are or what you believe, this book has a lot of life lessons and life facts for anyone willing to read it.

      Unfortunately I cannot explain all this at the moment.

      But, if you know someone who owns a Bible or knows about it you should really look into it by asking them about it. You don't need to be Christian to do this. I think it could really help.

      I hope the BEST FOR each and every one of YOU.

      Peace.

      *Gets into car; drives off into the sunset*

      ((((BE WARNED))))

      If you don't know anything about the Bible, you should research it a bit before reading. And really, talk to someone who knows about it. I would not want anyone to get confused or misinterpret something.

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      Paige 

      7 months ago

      Jesus. Warn readers before dropping your highly subjective anti-child rearing rhetoric..

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      Bubble 

      7 months ago

      I totally agree and relate with Amber N. I know that any child I would have had I would have loved too much to bring them into this cruel world.

      I feel that I am blessed to have never had children.

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      Nonjabulo 

      7 months ago

      I like baby

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      Spirit 

      8 months ago

      Okay, so, I'm 15 years old, and I want to have a child someday. Of course, I have a lot to live before that. College, travels ... I do not know if I will ever marry, 'cause I will only do it if I fall in love, but I already decided that if I reach the age of 30 without marrying, then I would be a single mother. The reason I want a baby is because of the bond that exists between most mothers and their children.

      My mother and I used to have a terrible relationship, which changed into my most precious bond thanks to lots of talks and understanding of both parts. Sometimes, I feel that she and I have met each other before, in another life. Because the connection I feel with her, the pure love that we have for each other ...

      I'm not good with feelings. I do not care easily for people. So, my bond with my mom, the mutual love, it's very important to me. And, you know, I'm quite blessed, because no matter how much I mess up sometimes, she is always there for me. No judgments, just acceptance. So, I think about how much she does for me, and how much she loves me. And then I think about doing that for somebody. To care and die for someone if need be. To just put your whole soul in the hands of another. I think about being there for them, giving them what they need, creating them, seeing them grow brilliantly. I do not know if this is a selfish wish of mine, I want to have this little life to fully love and give myself entirely for, but I can not really care. Because I will do my best, he / she will receive everything they could ever wish for. 

      It will be difficult. Humans are complex things, and they will pass for difficult moments where tears will drop. Life has its bad moments, and I will suffer along with them, for I love them more then enough to do so. But I know, deep down my soul, that it will be worth it. Just knowing them, to hold them, seeing their smiles .. it's more than worth it.    

      And, detail: I still have to wait for at least 10 years before I met them. Because they deserve to have a proper home and a stable life, so I need to work for it.   For those who are reading this: do not worry about me. I want to see the world, make use of my youth, and have lots of crazy but oh so good experiences to share with them. I also love myself, and will take care of myself, for I know my worth.

      So, basically: I'm going to have a baby because I love them. And love is both a selfish and generous thing. It can make us do the unthinkable. So, yeah. Thanks for reading.

      P.s.: I'm sorry if there are too many grammar errors. My first language is Portuguese, so .. yeah. Thanks again: Dp

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      Wondering it 

      8 months ago

      "Ask yourself whether you want children for their own sake or because you just want to experience pregnancy and childbirth."

      How do you want someone unborn "for their own sake"? If you aren't allowed to want children for your own sake and aren't allowed to want them for their sake, are you allowed to want them at all and if yes then what's a good reason in your opinion?

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      Spy 

      8 months ago

      I think this article is not really well written... I am not a person who wants to have children and i am 35. i had this feeling since i was a little kid, i kind of knew i wont have children, but justifying or reasoning against that?

      And your arguments against are (no personal offense, really) not rally convincing at all. What is bad about being selfish and therefore having children? why does it need to be so glorified, i mean if someone really believes in not having cancer because of his kids, what is wrong about it? Nobody wants cancer that is for sure.... if you think the reason is stupid, yea that is fine, they probably think the same of your reasons. And what is so bad about having children to they can take care of you when you become old?

      I think your worst argument is the it's life thing, sorry this one sounds really stupid, just like those who want to force a child or marrige on you. What the hell? Of course you stick to a limited amount because you also have to take care of them and the woman is not just a baby machin... this is one of the most valid arguments because of the survival of the human race. Some peopel really think that with a baby they contribute to the society which is understandable, but i do not share it.

      This article shows me that there actually no reasons at all, either for or agains havin kids..

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      Aj 

      8 months ago

      Very good

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      foley c kiatambe 

      8 months ago

      People love having children because of community advantage .

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      Khushi 

      8 months ago

      Nice article. Actually I am recently married around 8 months back and people have already started asking about my baby plan.

      I don't understand this mindset of forcing someone to have babies either they are family relatives or friends, I am not against having baby but it should be a choice not a task. A person should have this freedom to choose if he/she want to have baby or not. My few female friends who are 2-3 years married they say that having baby is a task , as soon as you finish you are free and you can focus on other things in your life, because the in laws and relatives will keep on asking about the grand children , they want someone to play with. I was shocked to hear that.

      I searched reason for people having baby and got this article, I asked the same to few people and actually people have these reasons, like to carry the family name or when you get older there will be no one to take care etc etc.

      Nobody is against having kids(not even this article writer, I think...) BUT a person should have the choice to be child-free if he/she want.

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      Amanda 

      8 months ago

      Very well said!

      Forcing life onto another living being (i.e., a child) *should* be the hardest decision a person can make. It *should* be one of those decisions that few can even bring herself/himself to do because it is literally the most important, life-altering decision you will ever make -- not only for yourself but also for the child you are forcing into this world.

      Living a childfree life is *never* selfish, no matter what you choose to do, no matter why you've chosen to be childfree. You are just living the life you were given (or rather forced into, however you choose to look at it.) Life is just life. You didn't choose to be alive but your life is yours. Do with it what YOU want.

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      AmberN 

      8 months ago

      While I cannot speak to the issue of over population because I have enough research other than what is said in the media. What I would say is to help who is already here. I am in my late 20s, and since age 14, I knew that having children was neither here nor there for me. When asked, I would say I would only want one, and adopt the others because they are enough children who just needs assistance, and some to genuinely care about them. However, I would only have children if I had a certain amount if resources, which I don't. I say it is a choice but often time the people that have the most kids tend to be those who can't feed them. Surprisingly or not, I do not feel left out of the children mix. I can touch lives in other ways without procreating. On the point of the world not being the nicest place, the Earth is beautiful but humans aren't so beautiful, and that's the truth. Depending on where you are coming from in life, and your life experiences will determine your perception of this world. I have met both the vile and the good, and I will conclude that the world is not the easiest place to be in, and this has always been the case since we advance. I say it is up to us who is already here to make a collective effort to making this world a better place. Like for me, I am a woman, and I am black, and many humans of the world basking in their myopia hate me because of my hue, which was unsettling but now to my amusement since I rent space in their my minds. Having children is a choice but many are unplanned, and are brought forth for selfish reasons. I personally don't have this need to leave my DNA never mind I see myself as one of the better humans but whilst I am here, I will try to be as cool as I can be, and do something meaningful.. Mentally screwed up people create mentally screwed up adults often time. They may see themselves as good, and normal etc.but when you really look at it, they aren't all that nice. As I age, I am seeing less of a need to procreate, which will allow me to do other things in my some hard but interesting life experience. I would say I am a practising stoic so while I can handle the world, I don't need to prove that my offspring can because they might be unlike me, and truthfully I couldn't always handle the way the world was but not suicidal so I am purposeful until it is my time to leave.

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      Hadi 

      9 months ago

      I'm happy to see people who think like me, I thought I'm all alone in this , I'm a 30 years old man but not married cause I don't want to have children , I think I suffered a lot in this world and I can't do it to another person , Maybe I should do vazectomy to make sure, but I really don't want to bring any other innocent soul to this world and watch him suffering , nobody can say he/she totally enjoying the life, suffering comes to you one way or another , even if you live a happy life at the end you will die with pain, no I can't do that to another human being , I don't want to bring him/her to this cruel world.

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      Thomas Sullivan 

      9 months ago

      11. To know what it feels like to love unconditionally

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      Reposting A.M.A's interesting point of view 

      9 months ago

      "Well, selfish reasons are the only ones that exist, for better or worse. Selfishness is dominant and absolute in nature, it's observable, it's inevitable, it's a Darwinian fact.

      Sadly (or not), humans, even with our super brains, our complex social structure and all cultural evolution, are not shielded from this, we too are absolutely selfish by nature.

      That's not to say that acts perceived as "selfless" are not admirable. I mean, a firefighter that sacrifices himself to save a group of kids in a fire, a woman who takes care of abandoned animals, or a group of people who donate goods after a natural disaster... well that's all very praiseworthy, but not really selfless nonetheless.

      Everything people decide to do in favor of others has a selfish origin, even the maximum sacrifice of giving your life in order to save other's. Why? Simply because there's always something you get in return, even if it is just a slight gratification or satisfaction of doing what you perceive to be "the right thing to do" (more on that later).

      When people have children, whatever reasons they had for doing it are selfish, yes, but so are the reasons of those who prefer not to have children. If a couple wants to have a kid just for the sake of it, they are being just as selfish a a couple that don't want to bring another person to this world because of the risks of overpopulation, and they are being as selfish as this other couple that wants to adopt a baby girl to give her a better life than the one (they think) she was going to have otherwise.

      They are all doing it based on their own perspective of what is right or what is wrong. There could be people, for example, that don't really care if mankind lasts 200 or 200,000 years more, as long as they don't break any laws and behave according to their society's moral code, their version of "what is right" is as valid (and selfish) as anyone else's.

      So, what I really wanted to say with all this, just in case it isn't implied by now, is that whatever reasons you have are as valid and selfish as the ones you have so harshly criticized. You can obviously criticize whatever you want, in the end everyone is entitled to have an opinion on everything right? This is just mine, for example haha, I mean no offense, I just thought it would be an enriching take on this topic.

      And yes, I just turned 30 years old, and my wife and I do want to have a couple of kids in the near future, we want them to be ours, look like us, to preserve our family names, to spend time with their grandparents, to dress them with cute clothes, to provide them stuff that we didn't have, to help them grow up in a better way than we did, to travel to places, to watch them make a family of their own (if they want to) and many other known and unknown selfish reasons that we consider to be "right". :)"

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      Answering for can 

      9 months ago

      Can, I actually searched in Google the question "why people having kids?", because I think it's really selfish of them to bring kids just to be able to love someone. Just for have a reason to keep living in this meaningless world. If you want to add some meaning to your life a child is not the solution. It's just selfish. Here you're saying that you never wanted children but when suddenly you got your child *you* love her so much. It's not about you. Its about the child. I think the only good reason to bring kids to the world is by mistake, if you didn't realise that your pregnant and then you can say to your child the truth that you bring him to the world by a mistake and there's nothing to do and it's life. I am 22 and I know that I'm not going to create any life on this pointless earth. I mean there too many people here why to keep bringing more and more and more humans to this dying world? If you want children, you should stop thinking about yourself and adopt some African or whatever kids that are already exists in this world but they're going to die in suffering. Just deal with what you already have on this doomed planet. It's make me sick to see a people who bringing kids for their "family lives" this is retard.

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      Can 

      9 months ago

      I never wanted children. Then my daughter came and changed my mind. I love her so much, I can't explain it. I think love for children is the strongest love you'll ever be feeling in your whole life. But if someone doesn't want children, it's their business. I'm entirely happy with my little princess and I would never ever want it to be different.

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      Dianna 

      9 months ago

      Excellent!! Now i need an exactly opposite article of this, i really do don't understand why people need to have their own biological child.

      Someone with strong opposition of this mindset, please give your thoughts. With logical explanation pleasee. I really want to understand.

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      daddad 

      9 months ago

      maybe we become parents because it's in our nature. it's an instict! otherwise no one of us would exist today!!! probably,you don't believe in humans!

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      Marcus 

      9 months ago

      I agree with everything you have to say, and if you'd know me, that's not something that happens often!

      Not only did you offer 10 "valid" reasons people give as to why they want to reproduce, but you also argued against each and every one of them in a concise, elegant and convincing way. And I like that!

      Personally, however, I'm perhaps far more extreme in my decision to remain child-free.

      I don't even have a sex-life because I don't want to take any unnecessary risks and "accidentally" impregnate someone, and I definitely don't trust in the safety of contraceptives.

      So while it's not a happy life at night, I still think it's better to be safe than sorry for a lifetime. But that's just me, and I don't expect anyone else to share my view.

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      Sheler 

      9 months ago

      Also in my country elders say if you don't have kids you might end up getting cancers and also various biological issues. Even then I'm like seriously just because you don't to have diseases you want to have kids.

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      Allison 

      10 months ago

      Apparently some people are not understanding what this author is saying. They think she is hating on people having kids and that her outlook is bleak. She knows what she wants to do with her life, and having kids is evidently not a part of her plan. Many people have lame and selfish reasons for having kids. I am young, and not married, yet people ask me frequently if I want kids. I tell them no and they always ask "Why not??? Babies are so cute!"

      Ummmm, no. That is a dumb reason to have kids. I have a niece and nephew. I get all the enjoyment of being around kids without the responsibility. And here's a little anecdote for you, I recently watched them and they had a complete meltdown. I was so glad their mom came home to handle them. Here you go mom, you can have your kids back now.

      Also, western civilizations are extremely wasteful and having kids puts a huge stress on the Earth's resources.

      Personally I have yet to find a solid reason for having kids besides "because you have a ueterus and they are cute."

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      behnam 

      10 months ago

      I think human soul or spirit or personality whatever you name it isnt separate from humans body.our child has created from our body.they carry our DNA (50% of DNA from each dad and mom)they are us but younger.I do believe in reincarnation.we are born more that once.and we may come back to this world after centuries as a descendant of our childs.our childs are our descendants but I do believe they are our ancestors as well.if you decide to live childless you kill your chance of coming back to existence after your death.we are same people that was living one thousand years ago.childs dont keep your name alive they keep you alive.on other hand they are outcome of our life without child we would see our life pointless as we look back at it in our old ages.yes being like Einstein or newton or Jesus can make ones life meaningful but having child is creating new life not one new life but all new lifes that will be created as a generation:our childs our grandchilds and ... that is far more precious(just think one of our descendants could be a prominent scientist).and after all of this things our childs love us as we love them.we can experience this strong love(a love immune of divorce diminish or sudden vanishing like we see in other typs of love between human beings) even after we get old and not very attractive in our appearance(and especially in this age our childs love us more).its not just about having somebody to take care of us its about having somebody care about us somebody that love us.its about love .real love.

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      Tina 

      10 months ago

      I am a professional- career chick. Never thought I would have children. But never "hated" on persons that had kids. Its feels like your article shades a "negative" light on having children. If your mother made the choice not to have children- you wldve been able to explore the world, write this article etc...etc.... I consider myself a well traveled- highly educated women. Our children are our circle of life. They are part of keeping us grounded and focused- If you made the decision not to have kids- that is great- but dont damper everyone elses parade-

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      Shivs 

      10 months ago

      Brilliant article, just what I needed to read :)

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      Sushil Kothawade 

      10 months ago

      ​My wife always used to wonder - why couples have / want to have kid(s)? Does the desire / need comes from within or is it some external force? She kept guessing the reasons and when Googled, the very first result led her here. Having read complete article, and found it to be very much matching to her thought process, she forwarded the same to me.

      It feels very nice to know that there are many more, than we imagined, who think it the same way.

      ​Thank you. :)​

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      Nana 

      10 months ago

      I have a good life after years of fighting for my right in this life! I studied sooo hard, I didnt have any entertainment during school time. I just had a goal of educating myself and finding a good job at the end, and I did. Now I am living in a rich country, have a good job and married to an amazing man. I got what I worked so hard for, but when I think about having a baby I fill like life is not fair, world is not a nice place to be, and if I had a choice before my birth I would say NO! To be honest I do not understand those people who want babies! To me this life is threathening and full of risk. I am not sure if my mindset changes in future or not, but after years of education I feel like all of the reasons people express for having a baby is just a bullshit!

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      Childfree Ana 

      10 months ago

      Having researched this subject for over two decades I would agree with the writer and many in the comments that the primary reasons for reproducing are largely ego based. Child abuse and foster are two of the largest most costly examples of the result of selfish expectations and the general lack of respect for living beings, particularly in the United States where emotional intelligence and maturity are significantly lower than other enveloped countries. Children are still treated like accessories, pawns and bargaining chips in foreign nations, however, though my research points to this being the result of media influence or long standing and unquestioned 'traditions'.

      To value living beings above and beyond the whims or unmet needs of 'self' is an extension of mindfulness. To bring a living being or many living beings into the world based on incomplete or ego assumptions begs the question: where is your mind?

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      gutbuket 

      10 months ago

      Well why marry?

      That's the logical next question.

      Your outlook is rather sad and selfish and simplistic. It's probably a good think for society you are not going to procreate.

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      Jimborge Whrighton 

      11 months ago

      This article really helps me on finding these answers greatly advice many big thanks again!

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      ABIGAIL ADEKUNLE OWADOKUN 

      11 months ago

      I WANT TO MAKE A GAME FOR KIDS

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      Stephanie 

      11 months ago

      I've had quite a few people ask me recently if I regretted not having kids. I'm 40, so not completely out of the question for me so have been caught off guard by it.

      I like kids and thought I would have one at some point, but whenever I think about it and the reasons why I would have one I've come up with similar rebuttals as in your article ... none of them are actually good reasons to have a child. Because they are fun and bring joy, especially at Christmas. Not all the time, especially teenagers, and why is that their responsibility? Because naming a little girl adter a male family member no longer with us (their nickname, which I think is an adorable girls name) who I adored, makes me all gooey inside? Maybe she would inherit some of his ornery personality and be adorably precarious? Puppies can give me that... Because I think I was adorable (and didn't grow up to look all that bad) and maybe she would look like me? Because I want a little mini me raised with some differences in parenting decisions I wish my parents had made? Clearly wanting to relive my life again vicariously through my child. Because I fear that the cray cray people in the world are the ones having infinitely more children and I think possibly some of us educated liberals are depriving humanity by not procreating? Whose to say what my child would grow up believing what I want them too or wouldn't have a personality disorder making them an asshole (or worse)?

      When it comes down to it, it always feels selfish and I come to the conclusion to be an auntie, even if an honorary one) can give me enough of those without contributing to over population and I can help to raise someone else's kid to be a contributing member of society. I work a ton, most families are 2 income these days so it really does take a village...

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      Mark 

      12 months ago

      We actually have children because we are essentially selfish! All of the reasons above point to selfishness.

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      A.M.A. 

      12 months ago

      Well, selfish reasons are the only ones that exist, for better or worse. Selfishness is dominant and absolute in nature, it's observable, it's inevitable, it's a Darwinian fact.

      Sadly (or not), humans, even with our super brains, our complex social structure and all cultural evolution, are not shielded from this, we too are absolutely selfish by nature.

      That's not to say that acts perceived as "selfless" are not admirable. I mean, a firefighter that sacrifices himself to save a group of kids in a fire, a woman who takes care of abandoned animals, or a group of people who donate goods after a natural disaster... well that's all very praiseworthy, but not really selfless nonetheless.

      Everything people decide to do in favor of others has a selfish origin, even the maximum sacrifice of giving your life in order to save other's. Why? Simply because there's always something you get in return, even if it is just a slight gratification or satisfaction of doing what you perceive to be "the right thing to do" (more on that later).

      When people have children, whatever reasons they had for doing it are selfish, yes, but so are the reasons of those who prefer not to have children. If a couple wants to have a kid just for the sake of it, they are being just as selfish a a couple that don't want to bring another person to this world because of the risks of overpopulation, and they are being as selfish as this other couple that wants to adopt a baby girl to give her a better life than the one (they think) she was going to have otherwise.

      They are all doing it based on their own perspective of what is right or what is wrong. There could be people, for example, that don't really care if mankind lasts 200 or 200,000 years more, as long as they don't break any laws and behave according to their society's moral code, their version of "what is right" is as valid (and selfish) as anyone else's.

      So, what I really wanted to say with all this, just in case it isn't implied by now, is that whatever reasons you have are as valid and selfish as the ones you have so harshly criticized. You can obviously criticize whatever you want, in the end everyone is entitled to have an opinion on everything right? This is just mine, for example haha, I mean no offense, I just thought it would be an enriching take on this topic.

      And yes, I just turned 30 years old, and my wife and I do want to have a couple of kids in the near future, we want them to be ours, look like us, to preserve our family names, to spend time with their grandparents, to dress them with cute clothes, to provide them stuff that we didn't have, to help them grow up in a better way than we did, to travel to places, to watch them make a family of their own (if they want to) and many other known and unknown selfish reasons that we consider to be "right". :)

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      SFV 

      12 months ago

      To the Last comment... I think they say that so that single men without kids will be attracted to them.

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      Tom M. 

      12 months ago

      I am a divorced man. I have one child from my marriage. She is 21 now. When my marriage ended, I thought about having another wife and more kids. I was 35 at the time. Then I thought again. My first marriage was supposed to be : "'til death do us part". That's what I expected. That did not happen. If my marriage did not disintegrate, perhaps I would've had more kids but I felt that having another wife and more kids would dilute the finances, time and attention that I devoted to my daughter who I am completely attached to and love very much. So I made my decision not to have more children and got a vasectomy to insure that that would be the case. What frustrates me now is that, as a single man, when I see a 40-something year old woman on a dating site who already has children stating that she wants more or may want more, I shake my head. I put so much work and devotion into raising ONE child that I can't fathom WHY , after having a couple of children , a person would want to start that cycle AGAIN. They're not PUPPIES for goodness sake! They are human beings! Considering the fact that a person has children from a relationship that was unsuccessful ( and it takes two people to make it happen that way) and that 50% of all relationships fail these days, WHY would a person want to create MORE human beings who are going to potentially be hurt when the relationship that created them fails? I know it seems a bit pessimistic but look at the raw probabilities. I feel like telling these women: "Can't you just be thankful for the children you have and let go of the "baby-maker" mentality?

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      stolenunder 

      13 months ago

      Agree entirely on basically all points.

      I just find it funny that a lot of people think you hate life, even though it's clear you just enjoy other things besides personal child rearing.

      And to those who wish to "share" the magic and wonder of life, why not adopt and provide a magnificent home to a child who actually needs it here and now? Honestly, to say otherwise just proves how selfish the reasons for childbirth are.

      Most just want their own personal plaything, and like a selfish child it has to be their own, not someone else's, not used. Which is even more sad.

      IMO the reasons for not having a child of your own are staggering. But, I do feel it's much much better to adopt a child, so my issue isn't necessarily "not having kids" but more "not having your OWN kids".

      If you want to be a parent so bad why can't you "make the sacrifice" of your own selfish reasons and adopt a child instead?

      Maybe one day, when there are no more children to adopt (if only), then sure, having a child of your own wouldn't be considered selfish (at least in that sense), but for now I don't see that day approaching anytime soon.

      It's hard having an opinion so far against the grain of society and human nature. But, sometimes we need that especially since in some ways our ability to adapt has made our natural tendencies very dangerous to ourselves. Living longer and having more easily accessible food is great, for example, but it's allowed for new problems like overpopulation and resource wars.

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      RunnyLegs 

      13 months ago

      I wasn't willing to share my eggs with men who were not marriage material or terrible role models. The men I saw were no future father material. I was very picky.

      I'm happily married, now. We tried to have children. No luck. But, we're fine with not having children. Sure, we think about who will take care of us. We both have noticed many children don't have the motivation to take care of their parents and also how much the government is involved with child rearing.

      In my opinion, people who have children and then the kids fail to stay in contact (or not help them out in their elderly years) would be more lonely and sad.

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      Ryad 

      16 months ago

      I understand the aspect of not wanting to have a baby, but what makes you think that the world we live in is not a nice one. The more i go over what is said the more i see a view that is not liking life. I (no offence, please explain this to me) see you as someone with a troubled life or childhood, because of the fact that you assume that children won't enjoy their life. Please explain if i am right or wrong, and further explain on your views. because from this what i am seeing is a sadistic view of life.

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      Nicole 

      16 months ago

      I'll admit that I haven't read all of the comments and responses, but I felt it necessary to throw in my two cents (as if it really means anything).

      It seems as though you haven't spent much time around children. Children are born with an innate sense of wonder and joy. Perhaps not all children, perhaps still it may be crushed out of them as they grow and witness the true evils of this world. This could be even more relevant still given our current president and the current state of social justice.

      But I found that the more pessimistic I become as I advance in my historical career, and the more I find myself hating humanity and the ignorance that is so deeply ingrained in society through thousands of years of misinformation, the more reason there is to hope, and to dream. Having children is not for everyone. Some people fall into it accidentally and are horrible parents. Yet despite the horrible upbringing of the child and the injustices they suffer they go on to be incredible people and do incredible things for this world. Having children is life in its most pervasive form. You do not get to choose what life the child will have, nor their disposition. But I find your lack of faith in the human race disturbing and pessimistic. Of course, you'd probably call it realistic and perhaps it is for some. But, just like you don't get to choose the exact life path of the child, you don't have any idea if the child could have an amazing life. You have no way of knowing one way or the other. And if you say that that is a good reason not to have a child then you must also say that giving a gift to someone that you truly think the person will need or love, is stupid as well.

      For a child to be brought into this world with love and to be nurtured into adulthood by sound humanist ideals is one of the greatest gives one can give to humanity. But it's humanity's responsibility to decide how to accept that gift and how they use it. Could be for bad, or great things. You simply can not know. Just like giving a human being the gift of life, just because so many decide to waste it, doesn't mean that that will happen every time. The next child born to loving parents could cure a neighborhood of hatred and provide perspective. Humanity has fought against the odds to continue. If you want humanity wiped out, ok then, your way of thinking is super. But if hope and love are to be spread we need people who are full of it to spread it. The child in question may find their exact fulfilment in spreading joy. So why condemn the act of having a child simply because YOU can not find any good reason to have one. Personally, you may not want children. That's wonderful. Don't have them. But this piece seemed very judgemental and sad to me. It seems like you're so fed up with your own existence that you wouldn't want to place anyone else in your shoes for a lifetime. Which is also fine. But, by your own theory, if the child did not indeed ever want to be born, there is suicide. It sounds abrasive, but that's the only way to validate your point of view.

      You say that maybe the child didn't want to be brought into this world, well how would you ever even know that if the child wasn't here? And if the child didn't want to be in this world, then like I said, there are ways to exit it. Not only that, but perhaps instead of suicide this is the driving force behind their existence...to make the world a place they want to live in.

      If you say there is no good reason to have a child left, then there is no good reason for anyone to be here or for anyone to ever take a chance at happiness again.

      This is a very dismal view of life, and very disrepectful towards the very idea of life itself.

      In my opinion.

      Nicole

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      Sergey Larin 

      16 months ago

      And that is why more dumb and unconscious people are going to appear in this world. The smart ones choose not to make children. The dumb procreate.

      We need a machine for making children, and a culture of adopting them. They would have flawless genes, no problems with hereditary diseases, always best health, always attractive and living up to 150 years.

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      amir 

      17 months ago

      its non sense

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      march 

      17 months ago

      I think this is a very narrow minded opinion.

      1. 'To look after you when you're old'. Never have I ever come across a parent who has had their child so that they can look after them when they're old. I have met parents who want children they can look after. A mother-daughter relationship is very special, and it's that connection that I had with my mum, which I want to experience with my own my mum. Creating child you can have this bond with like no other. A bond you don't have with a friend or even a partner.

      2. 'To carry on the family name'. Once again, I have never heard this reasoning before. Maybe to expand the family, yes. But what is so bad about that? To increase support and love and friendship. Bonds that last a lifetime.

      9. When people say 'the same blood', I think it would be more accurate to say 'the same DNA'. Your child will be 50% of you, and 50% of the person you love. Every child you have will have a different combination of DNA, and no one individual is the same. Babies are miracles. Although I do agree that adoption is incredible, and gives children safe and loving homes.

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      Bran 

      17 months ago

      This was pretty simple minded and poorly thought out. I can tell little cultural and historical research was done and you basically just went off of assumption.

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      Shariq 

      17 months ago

      11. Reason please add...

      Force from the spouse......

    • profile image

      Gg 

      17 months ago

      To be a part of society.

    • profile image

      danny 

      18 months ago

      what an excellent idea, I really love it. Respect...

    • profile image

      Jill 

      18 months ago

      Very insightful. I'm glad to be an antinatalist and childfree.

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      Prithvish Sahu 

      18 months ago

      Hi, I couldnt agree more. I kinda checked it myself. Asking all the parents in knew, the reason they had kids. Funny thing, people saying "They don't know" were the most honest ones. I could see people making up an answer on the go. A very few actually gave it a thought before having kid. Social convection are hardly questioned.

      One correction needed though in your article. Gandhi had children and so did Buddha.

    • profile image

      random stranger 

      19 months ago

      @the author, i completely agree with ur post and ur logic that there are really no good reasons to have kids. i am 38 and am happily child free and will most likely remain so for the rest of my life. however in one of your answers to someones comment u said that some people chose not to have kids for ' all the wrong reasons' like kids are filthy, make noise etc etc.

      how can u say that those reasons are wrong? if someone does not like the messiness, lack of sleep, lack of hygiene, lack of personal space etc associated with having kids, how are those reasons 'wrong'??

      personally, i dont find babies cute at all, which in my opinion is the number one reason why people have kids, so they can cuddle the 'cute' little humans. and for anyone who does not find babies and children to be cute, why on earth would they want to create babies and tolerate all the associated baggage that comes with them??

      having said that, i respect the choice of people who chose to have kids, as it is an entirely personal choice.

    • profile image

      Wow 

      19 months ago

      Wow, I can't believe people still read your post from several years ago. I googled "reasons people have babies" midnight. Just havin some random thoughts in a late night. I agree with ALL you've said in the post and I'd have to say you speak my mind. My parents gave me all they have to raise me, I appreciate them. However deep inside, I'm not. Whenever my mother said "you need to appreciate me for all I've done", I always argue with her that "raising me is your choice, not mine. Why would I be responsible for your own decision. If given a chance, I'd rather not to exist". This is my honest word. I have a constant fear of death growing up. I told my mom that some people were born positive, their focus in life is on their dreams and hopes, they live for that. People like me, born to be risk aversers, focus more on how to avoid misfortunes in life. For me, the pain of death and illness is way more unbearable than the joy of life. I still feel choked sometimes whenever I think of a day when I cannot breath any more.

      However, reading through your interactions with other people and how you described your answer to your neighbors, I felt alert that maybe something was wrong with me. You were so argumentive in the comments. It really gives me a headache, honestly. Because all of a sudden, I realized what my mistake was. I, just as you, a well-educated and independent woman, tried too hard to rationalize things in life and tried to hard to find an optimal solution. But there is no right or wrong in life. To have babies don't have to be considered that serious. You cannot imput logic on it. It's not. You may feel it's scientific, and I too have the same concern, but why on earth do any life ever need to consider the population problem before giving birth. There are even people who control purposely the time to conceive based on tax purpose, insurance purpose, and etc. Seriously? Since when we become creatures that lose the most essential nature? You can have good babies and bad babies, you can experience good life and bad. Often times, there are no reason for things happening. Science and any logic only provides an explanation. But that is not necessarily the truth. The truth is to follow our heart. Having babies or taking any action in life is just like the schrodinger cat. You'll never know any result until you opens the box. Half an hour ago, I completely agree with what you said. Now, I still think your statement is valid. However, I understand that this baby thing cannot be rationalized. We are just animals like all other kind who try to habitate on earth. Just follow your heart and take whatever life gives you. Live naturally with the flow. You can find more reasons and more refutes, however maybe one day when you decide to have a baby for no reason, and when you see the baby smiles, everything will change. Yes, world changes, everything changes, don't forget, our mind also changes. Give yourself a chance. Live simple. I'm typing in this tiny box on my cellphone. Hope this makes sense. Please don't argue with me. It gives me headache. As I said, it's not a matter of right or wrong. I'm writing as if I'm talking to myself. :)

    • profile image

      Jess208 

      19 months ago

      I found your article when I was curious, why the heck I get "Baby fever." It did not answer my question, and so, I'm still not sure why I'm driven to parenting. I have a seven year old boy and am currently 15 weeks pregnant. Between babies I had no urge for more babies. Before baby #1 until I decided I need a baby in my life, I had no urge for babies. Same thing with this 1. I have no answers for you as to why I have babies. I know I'm a fantastic mother but that's all I know. Wish I could find a biological explanation that works for me. I'll let you know if I find it.

    • profile image

      private 

      19 months ago

      amazing perspective!

    • profile image

      Azher 

      20 months ago

      It seems that we are going to generalize something 'to have' or 'not to have' children. There are countries in the world who are paying couples to have children, WHY? is it for parents' self interest, or it has something to do with the Nation's interest? A country which realized the serious issues of its overpopulation, restrict couples to have only one child (but do not force them not to have at all). And after a certain time passed on with this restriction, and the country achieved its targets; it allowed to have two children. This happened in the pronatal Chinese culture. Well, to me its all about contexts. Instead of saying not to have children is best policy to make the world happy, we should respect freedom of choice. Instead of giving arguments in the favour of having children or against it, we need to say whatever is your choice, let it be go well for the best interest of the world. If you can contribute the nation with children (as in nordic countries where government is paying to do so for a reason), then idea to not to have children will be selfish. Vice versa, in the countries where for reasons government (in the best interest of the nation) is asking to have one, two or few children; going to have many children will be selfishness and also not good for the children and their childhood. Another reason why things are not too simple to generalize are a huge load of theories on natural pro-natal behavior of human being. psychological well-being of the couple, and etc.. As there are other theories too that refute some of these theories, then .. why we should take it too generalized. To have and not to have children, is not too simple. When and how we may be selfish, i have said earlier. :-)

    • profile image

      BarrAnce 

      20 months ago

      Why do parents with three starving children have another child? That's pure torture. Unlike food there's enough torture to go around apparently.

    • profile image

      Agrees with Michelle 

      20 months ago

      Well done.

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