Is it selfish to have children today?

 Melissa (@m3lissarichardson)4 years, 5 months ago

Hey Guys! 

This question has been popping into my head lately as I see a lot of people around me having babies. Of course, passing on your genes is as far as we know one of the core fundemantals of being human.. (although that must have surpassed me) But I cant help noticing that things arent going so hot for humanity and our relationship with the world. It’s tricky because people really strongly feel the need to reproduce, it’s wired into us. On the other hand, things are going to get real tricky for future generations, we are going to run out of certain recources, the world is already overpopulated by a lot. Whenever I ask this question to people, they seem unbothered by the current situatoin in our world and unable to look farther than themselves. Obviously there is no right or wrong answer here, Thoughts?

July 29, 2016 at 2:33 am
Jean Akol (1) (@Jnealtm) 4 years, 5 months ago ago

Given the unfolding of the current world events, it is easy for one to not only wish they were never born but also avoid having children because the next generation children are bound to fall into this craze called, “Life today”…… I however still think its fair for us to have children, it is just that the burden is on us to work harder than ever before to ensure a good future for our children.

I do not have children of my own yet but I would definitely love to have one or two and put my best foot forward at making sure they live in paradise even amidst the trecherous world.

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Soulful Sapphire (3) (@Kerrydaktyl) 4 years, 5 months ago ago

It’s not selfish to have children and raise them to help. I’ve wondered this myself. I used to know a guy who said he wouldn’t have kids because it’s a horrible world. I thought he was a bit mad tbh. I went ahead and had two kids. Hormones and maternal instinct take over and it’s almost not even a choice. I cried at pampers adverts, I’d stalk the baby aisle at supermarkets fawning over miniature socks. I simply had to have a baby. Then bizarrely I wanted another one despite the horrors of pregnancy, birth and motherhood.

Recently I had a spiritual awakening. Now I see everything differently but also am able to see it in more than just one way. So I started to see how awful this world is and thought maybe it’s not fair because things are getting worse. But then I thought how are things going to get better if the good people don’t breed. My eldest is very very clever like her dad. My youngest is very sensitive and compassionate like me. They will be ok and they may even help the world along the way.

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Mirthful (13) (@mirthful) 4 years, 5 months ago ago

Personally, I’m grateful for the life I’ve been given and, in return for it, I feel a responsibility to do everything I can to leave the world a better place than I found it. For me, part of this work is raising children who will, in turn, leave the world better than they found it. It’s a kind of a custodian belief, that good stewardship includes ensuring that there is someone to take up my responsibilities when my turn has passed.

The planet is a single living system, in the same way that my cells along with the bacteria, fungi, viruses and (possibly) parasites living in and on me are a single living system. We have a place within this system but, unlike the others components, we have developed a level of agency that allows us to choose which place we occupy. If we choose to remain the metastasised parasitic pests into which we’ve developed then you’re right, we’re overpopulated to the point that either, the host’s immune system will kick in and take care of the infection or we’ll kill the host, not a bright future i either case.

On the other hand, we can decide to be benevolent custodians and regulators of the system, in which case a little bit of enlightened resource management should allow us to increase in numbers well beyond the point where SES creates negative population growth figures (as has been seen in most of the western world over the last couple of decades). There’s no use in despair, I’ll act as if this is what’s inevitably going to happen in the hopes it will and, if it doesn’t, in the hopes that one of my kids is among the handful of humans left scratching a living on Antarctic coasts and enshrines these as core values when they rebuild civilisation.  

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gilo (1) (@gilo) 4 years, 5 months ago ago

Hi. Im pro to life but i don’t see the world will come a better place for bring more childrens to it. Don’t get me worng at all, I love children and sometimes I dream to have one of them one day, but as more thoughs I give in to the situation, more I think and belief is a selfish way just for no having a boring life. Is like if you are married and have couples years already, the society push you the next step is having kids, but is just a natural response or a selfish desire of you to have a little you.

I’ll be glad to create a little person and raise it, try to make him or her a better person, but by the end, to be a better or good person, is their choice, not mine. My parents raise me by the way the though was right, but is my choise what I will be doing the next hour and the next years. 

So, I think besides the reproduction instintc, is a selfish desire, because, right now you may be worried or scared about any negative situation in your country, neighborhood or even in your house, and you want to bring a little person, who doesn’t know why is there or why is that happening to him or her, just because you want a little you. Why don’t you try to fix the kids the world have already? 

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MoreGong (1) (@bamybill) 4 years, 5 months ago ago

I think there are all sorts of reasons why people reproduce, and those reasons aren’t exactly hanging around each new mother and father’s neck for the world to see and form their conclusions. Assuming that someone reproduced to pass their genes on ignores all of the nuance and complexity that can surround a child’s conception. For example, many women are raped and decide to keep the baby out of a belief that the unborn child’s life is sacred. It made me very uncomfortable after my daughter was born when I encountered people who seemed to think I was selfish for reproducing, when it really wasn’t my plan to begin with, and I sacrificed quite a bit to preserve my daughter’s life stictly on principle.

There are all sorts of myriad reasons why people reproduce, and even if you have one child, you’re still doing your part to reduce the number of people on Earth while still following your instincts, if you’re so inclined, to give life to a new one. And parenthood is an enormous amount of self-sacrifice, so I wouldn’t be quick to use the word selfish, either.

Overpopulation is an interesting argument waged against parents. Sure, I’d agree that with our current infrastucture and system, one surefire way to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and stop wrecking our environment is to reduce our rate of reproduction (obviously if no one had kids we’d go extinct as a species). But this isn’t necessarily the only way. Our societies are built on a lot of inefficiencies, for example our water use could be much less wasteful and our homes could be built using much less environmentally impactful ways. If everyone lived a life where they only used what they needed, we may well find ourselves not gutting the planet even with twice or ten times as many people as we have now. We just don’t really know.

As with anything, if it bothers you, I think you need to address the reasons and motivations behind why poeple reproduce, particularly more than once. For many, it’s not much of a choice. Birth control access isn’t prevalent on a worldwide scale. For many others, there’s a lot of pressure on women to have sex in order to feel like they’re going to be taken seriously. And still others want their children to have playmates who are reared by parents with the same philosophies as their own (only way to know for sure is to be the other parents). I believe we’d reduce our rates of reproduction quite a bit if we offered support in these areas. Beyond that, we can work to reduce the global environmental inefficiencies per person, and stop buying more than we need.

Interesting topic, thank you.

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wonderwoman11 (0) (@sharontiffanie) 4 years, 5 months ago ago

Hi Melissa!

I was in the same boat of thinking not too long ago. There are so many people having babies and as someone who is always around children I have mega baby fever. I know at this point in my life it would be selfish to have a baby as I do not have the resources that I would want to give my child but asides from that, the future of the world is a little scary. 

I thought about how corrupt the world is becoming and came to my LT boyfriend with my worries and what he said was so relieving. I asked him if it was really fair for us to bring a child into this world and he came back asking if it would be fair to keep the world from our child. He went on to explain somewhat of what (@mirthful) had mentioned. Who says our child(ren) have to be victim of this world? They have the ability to be the change and the strength in our world – to make our world good again. He went on into more details and I was blown away. What he said gave me so much contentment with the idea that it would be anything but selfish to have a baby.

If we bring a child into this world and show them love, they will spread that love. If we show them strength, they will spread that strength. Our children will not see their feats as a chore but rather as an act of love for their world and everyone in it.  This world can definitely use a fresh generation full of love and light. I seen your discussion post and felt to share this. Of course, there are many different situations that may cause it to indeed be selfish to have a baby (for example to try to save a marriage or to find a source of love) but I believe that if you have good intentions for the baby that baby will have good intentions for our world. 

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