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A Spiritually Enlightening Online Magazine. November Theme: "Unique Perspective"
Volume 2 Issue 1 ISSN# 1708-3265

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I Choose NOT to Procreate!
by Charlene

The mainstream media's opinions for "today's female role models" are more often than not promoting a common theme; "Women Chasing Men", "Women Need Men", "Women Need To Reproduce To Feel Whole"…

What year is this?

Maybe I'm in the vast minority regarding the choice to have a uterus and yet not use it for procreation. Since birth I have known I would not reproduce - it has never interested me. According to reports the number of women choosing careers over family life are climbing. These articles are usually peppered, however, with "statistics" stating the health problems these childless high-level corporate females encounter, (such as heart disease and shorter life expectancies). Funny, I had no idea having children and being a housewife extended your lifespan and reduced your stress!

Likewise, famous women who choose not to reproduce (ie. Oprah and Stevie Nicks) rarely receive press on the issue, unless a tabloid decides to make a statement about them already having children (unbeknownst to everyone else) or to plant suggestions that they are secretly planning on adopting.

The concept of being fulfilled without children seems to be lost on the general populace. Pregnancies in Hollywood are celebrated and the famous-and-new-to-motherhood are regularly featured on "Entertainment Tonite". How great these famous women are for making babies, as though it is some amazing unheard of feat! "Look how so-and-so can be a mom and juggle a career at the same time." The inference from our media being that if you are "up to the challenge you too can do both and still be successful."

Reality of course is, those unable to afford personal trainers, nannies and chauffeurs often are forced to choose between staying at home to raise their children or attempting to juggle two careers at once - motherhood and their job, due to the cost of living alone. The level of their guilt and/or the stress to themselves can become overwhelming - and we as a society wonder why?

But forget the mass media - let's look at our media at a local level. I love it when they release the stats saying the birth rate is on a sharp decline. The cold hard fact is the economy depends on community growth. I suppose the economic impact of the disposable income over a lifetime of a childless professional couple would never equate to that of a family with 2.5 kids. It costs to have a family, and that's good busine$$.

Rather than the childless couple spending money on vacations they are at home spending their money on daily living! Hence the proliferation of big-box chain stores and "super-sized" and "family-portion" packages of practically every available product on the market today.

My other major concern with procreation is in the amazingly inadequate planning and pondering leading up to it. How many women do you know who spend time considering their thoughts on these topics:
What a "family" is
What raising a child involves
(especially the potential of raising a special needs child or multiple children - or are they thinking this 'won't happen to you'??!!)
The level of investment required (emotionally, financially, physically) Their parenting and personal values, morals and disciplinary attitudes, and whether these relate to their spouse's vision.

Or how about ultimately the biggest question of all, WHY do I want kids?

Do I want them because I've been encouraged to do so since birth because of my gender?
Do I want them because my family wants them?
Do I want them because my spouse expects them from our relationship? (Have we discussed this?)
Do I want them because I feel I can effectively teach and mentor someone throughout their life?
Am I going to raise them myself or put them into a daycare where a multitude of minimum wage workers will raise them instead?

How about this one (my personal favourite and by far the most indignant question in the list): Why does having a family mean we have to become pregnant and have "OUR baby"?

If you truly wanted "a family" and to make a difference mentoring young lives, wouldn't you want to consider providing foster care or adoption? What is the necessity of having "your own" if those needs and "family qualities" are then satisfied?

I can only conclude that many couples are enamoured with their own genetics and creating "Mini Me's" that, in theory, effectively capture the best qualities of each parent. What other reason is there?

Are your genetics that amazing that they need to be xeroxed, or are you genuinely interested and dedicated to parenting? Dedicated enough to unselfishly raise those children who are already here and in need of the love, support and stability of "a family"? And how many xeroxes of your genes do you need?

Understandably, many of those who are already parents are not at all receptive to this theory. I agree it's fairly offensive to suggest that ego plays any part in creating a family. But I argue that it does - unpopular idea or not.

I hope this stimulates some conversation and thought within you all. Whether you agree or disagree with my rantings, at least take the time to discover WHY you feel the way you do. This is obviously a topic I feel passionate about and I encourage you all to have a conversation about it with women of all ages. It's so important for each of us to reflect and review the roles of women in our ever-changing society.

Think! Because a thought is the greatest creation your body can make!


Charlene is 31 and resides with her husband in British Columbia, Canada. She works full-time in the wholesale warehouse industry and in her spare time enjoys surfing the web, posting on weblogs and forums and participating in provocative discussions about sensitive and controversial topics. Her next quest is to invade and conquer more blogs where she will plant her signature flag and post her supportive opinion about homosexual marriages.

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