Why are those who elect to be childfree are DEMONIZED as selfish, narcissistic, and
even indulgent while those who have lots of children are IDOLIZED as giving, loving, selfless, and even exemplary parents of the year?
Probably because not having children is simply outside the norm, and people are afraid of anyone who makes life choices that aren't traditional.
As a woman without children, who never wanted to have any, I've heard the whole selfish thing, and I don't get it. Wouldn't it be more selfish to have children, knowing I'm not emotionally or financially capable of caring for them? I've always thought the best thing I could do for any potential children I might produce is not have them!
They con themselves into believing having children is a "sacrifice" instead of admitting they (wanted) children!
Everything we get out of life comes with a price.
Nurturing and maintaining whatever we obtain in life is the mature and responsible thing to do. Choosing to have children doesn't make anyone a "saint" and choosing not to doesn't make one "selfish".
It's the equivalent of buying a home and expecting a "whoopie cookie" because you pay your mortgage on time.
Two people get what (they want) and only one of them is considered selfish. It makes no sense! People who (don't want) children shouldn't have them. Now that makes a lot of sense!
I suspect there are more people who secretly wish they'd never had children than there are people who wish they had. After all a childless person can always adopt or become a foster parent.
Truth be told there are people who are married that wish they weren't and vice versa.
Having children tends to make someone think about the future instead of one's self. It decreases the natural tendency to be self centered, because there's a self-centered little creature that screams bloody murder when hungry, cold, wet, sick, scared, etc.
Many who have children tend to assume that those who don't have them are doing so for selfish reasons, which it may be (not wanting to spend the money, don't want to lose freedom), but don't respect that decision.
I recognize that some people just don't have the impulse to have children, and some are afraid that they'll mess up or have a screwed up family life like they may have suffered from a parents' divorce.
Those decisions are personal, and calling someone selfish is rude, especially since the decision made by motivated by "I don't have kids because I don't want to ruin their lives".
In short, too many parents assume they have become saints and those who don't have kids are sinners. But there are some childless who do so for selfless reasons and some selfish parents that having kids made things worse.
In this pronatalist culture, there are still remnants of prejudice against the childfree. It is assumed by many that everyone SHOULD have children & if they DON'T, they are "selfish, irresponsible, & missing so much from life" which is preposterous logic at its utmost. Not everyone wants children & many elect to have that lifestyle. Many people w/children have an UNDERLYING, SUBCONSCIOUS envy of people who are childfree. The former see the unencumbered lifestyle that the latter are having while they are saddled w/children & having a more restricted lifestyle. They also see the childfree having myriad avenue & opportunities that they don't have at the present time. They secretly wish it was them but instead of being accepting of the childfree lifestyle for others, they denigrate the childfree lifestyle, making pejorative remarks about childfree people.
People w/children even demonize childfree people as not being fulfilled as a result of not having children. Jealous, people w/children? People w/children oftentimes have lifestyles that center around their children. They also don't have much discretionary income to do as they please. In most cases, they are on a tight budget. They furthermore don't have a lifestyle that doesn't include children. They feel somehow restricted, even hating their lifestyle & view the childfree life as freedom. They resent their present lifestyle & lash out at the childfree because they are UNHAPPY w/their lifestyle choice. They feel unfulfilled, not living the lifestyle they really desire.
This is prevalent in women more so than men. There are women who have children who are subconsciously envious of women who are childfree. These women oftentimes have thwarted lives in terms of opportunities. They also have NO OUTSIDE life, hobbies, activities, careers, & interests, it is just THE CHILDREN. They are in a psychological, even psychic bind & they are beginning to RESENT their lives. They see childfree women having the lifestyle that they don't have & they lash out at childfree women, saying that the latter are unfulfilled when in actuality, it is they w/children who are UNFILLED & MISERABLE. People w/children use the rationalization that childfree people are unfulfilled & shallow because they are envious of the lifestyle of childfree people, secretly wishing that IT WAS THEM.
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