Why Does Anyone Have Children?

Why Does Anyone Have Children?

She writes:

One of the largest things I have been thinking about lately is the fundamental question that is at the root of all the essays and articles and comments on your blog: Why have kids? I understand the evolutionary pull (and necessity) of procreation, I get that some women to most women have “the urge,” but the logical side of my brain can’t grasp why. (And maybe that’s the beauty of parenting, that from a logical-brain-only perspective it doesn’t make sense, but the best things in life so many times are illogical — take love, for example).

Some background on myself. I grew up in a very close family with lots of love, compassion and of course discipline when necessary. From my first memories, I knew I myself wanted children one day. I loved taking care of my little sister, I started babysitting as soon as I was old enough to take the babysitters course at the local fire station to learn infant CPR and safety measures to put on my babysitting resume, and to this day babies make me coo, caw, talk funny and feel warm inside. I am in a committed relationship with a man I love and can see us developing a life together, and that life undoubtedly includes children. But my educational background is in engineering, so the logical side of me just can’t understand why I want to raise children. They’re extremely expensive, at times frustrating, have the potential to wreck havoc on your marriage (and your body), and many times don’t even appreciate all the sacrifices parents make for them. But yet, I love being around them, I love seeing their progress, am amazed at how quickly children learn and grow, and view having a baby a very special gift.

I guess I’m simply interested in knowing and hearing about why other readers decided to (and not to) have children in the face of all of these facts, because when people ask me why I want to have children, I just say, ‘Because I do,’ and I would like to be able to say more than that.

Ah, Bailey. Good question. We touched on the subject this spring, in a post titled “Does Having Children Make You Unhappy,” but yours is a somewhat different train of thought. I am interested to see how readers will articulate their answers. READ MORE