“You ever gonna have kids?”
“Someday but not now.”
I remember it like yesterday. My buddy I’ve known since I was six, to whom I helped introduce his now wife, told me he was having a kid. This came to a surprise as both he and his wife were always against having kids. They travelled a lot and had loads of fun and to me, that seems like giving up a good time. After expressing this to him, his response to me was something I’ll never, ever forget.
“What else am I going to do?”
I never had this feeling. As I got older and this conversation was less hypothetical and more a reality, it made me wonder: am I missing out? We have a bunch of animals, an active social life and I can do whatever I want, when I want. I’m the person people go to when they want to go out and bullshit, let off steam, catch up or need someone to commiserate.
Me and Mrs. Madoff have been engaged for over three years. Generally, one gets engaged and is married in the next two or so years. In my anecdotal experience of being a groomsman four times and best man once, this is pretty much the part in the movie where the bomb starts ticking down, except instead of 60 seconds it’s two years. That’s right, 5/6 people’s weddings I’ve been in have either had kids or are in the process of making one within two years of being married. That’s not including the ~10 other weddings I’ve been to with similar results.
People have asked less and less when we’re having kids, although with many of my friends having kids, there’s pictures popping up of me awkwardly holding their children. I hold them high and tight like Barry Sanders, you couldn’t knock them out of my arms if you tried. I’ve never felt any paternal feelings, mostly “don’t drop this thing so it ends up messed up.”
My aunt recently remarked on a Facebook photo of me holding my friend’s baby: “Ok *name redacted even though half of you know who I am* this is picture #2 in a few short months og you and an infant in arms. And you’re a natural at that.” Like, fuck off.
I don’t hate kids, not in the least. I can’t really be picky if I want to see my friends with kids so I often oblige hanging out with their kids. Honestly, they tire me out to the point of withdrawing. The Mrs. has nephews and they are at the point now where you can be real with them but growing up, they were little fuckers.
I’ve often thought about this aversion. It’s biological, or so I’m told, to want kids. Something about the continuation of the human race. I don’t feel that at all. I know in some capacity, the world has always been going to shit but I don’t want that kind of blood on my hands, to bring something into this world against its own volition that eventually will die.
There’s really only one good outcome from having kids and that they end up reasonably well adjusted. The could become a school shooter, come out with a disability (which in itself isn’t terrible but I’d feel guilty the rest of my life), have a bunch of shitty shit happen to them, the list goes on.
Maybe I’m just super lazy. I’ve always been one to take the path of least resistance. That would mean I am so lazy, that I conquered human nature, which doesn’t seem plausible.
I’m 30. If all goes according to plan, I’ll be student loan free by 37 (lol). I had great parents that gave me a wonderful childhood but I have zero desire to repeat what they did. Within the past year or so, I’ve chatted with my mom and found out she often thinks about life without kids. I guess it’s easier to wonder after the fact.
As I see my buddies, some I’ve known since high school, taking the plunge and sowing the seed, it makes me wonder if I’m missing out.
“Who will take care of you when you’re old?”
“Don’t you feel like you’ll miss out?” or the famous “You’ll change your mind, I used to think like that.”
I enjoy being able to do what I want when I want. I play in three hockey leagues and a travel adult team, tailgate every weekend, go to the bar if I want, stay out late if I want, go camping, etc. I’m going to be 31 in a few months and man, I’ve never been more committed to being childfree. As more and more people have kids, this chapter of all my friends being in the same mindset seems to be closing. Smile because it happened, I guess.