Deciding whether to have a child or not is far from being a straightforward decision because there are a lot of cultural expectations and personal accomplishments tied to the idea of reproduction. Becoming a parent has very serious consequences that could affect every aspect of your life and the world in general. If you’re still on the fence about bringing a child into this world, here are some very strong reasons to consider not having kids.
You won’t become sleep deprived. Parents have to sacrifice a lot for their kids and one of the things they tend to lose is quality sleep, which can then lead to other problems like impaired mental skills, high blood pressure, weight gain, and depression. Parents are nearly 30% more likely to rely on coffee to find the energy to get through the day because they’re sleeping less than six hours every night compared to non-parents.
You won’t have to miss out on opportunities. When you have children, your life ceases to belong to you. You have to move everything around to accommodate them and make decisions with their wellbeing in mind. You have less free time that is just yours alone. You end up missing out on so much in your personal and work life because you simply can’t find time to do the things you want.
You avoid the risk of losing important friendships. Interpersonal relationships always change after the birth of a child, and often for the worse. Child magazine conducted a survey of 1000 parents and almost half of them admitted to losing friends after their children were born. Having kids means having less time to spend maintaining friendships.
Your physical appearance is less likely to drastically change. People without children tend to lead healthier lives than those who have kids. This is because they’re more likely to exercise regularly, eat right, get quality sleep, and practice other forms of self-care. In contrast, parents are 54% more likely to smoke cigarettes or consume alcohol daily as a coping mechanism, which leads to them being in bad physical shape.
Kids will ruin your sex life. Everything you heard about kids getting in the way of intimacy is true. In the first year after childbirth, sexual activity between couples typically drops by over 40%. Men experience a drop in testosterone to enable them to be better caregivers and women are too exhausted from taking care of the kids or still healing to work up a sexual appetite. The situation does not get much better until the kids are a little grown-up.
Having kids can increase the likelihood of marital problems. Having kids can negatively impact how satisfied you are with your marriage or relationship, especially if you have them at a younger age and your economic status is a bit shaky. You and your partner might have different ideas about how to raise your kids and this can drive a wedge between you both.
You can avoid workplace discrimination. It’s no secret that mothers are subjected to harsher standards of treatment in the workplace compared to their childless peers. Being a mother is associated with less career commitment and competence by employers, so women are denied jobs and promotions as a result. Women also tend to get paid less if they have children.
It’s the best thing you can do for the environment. Forget about not using plastic and reducing your gas emissions, not having kids is the most effective measure you can take to reduce your carbon footprint and conserve the environment. One less kid in the world can save an average of 58.6 tonnes of toxic emissions per year which is equivalent to 684 teenagers adopting comprehensive recycling practices for the rest of their lives.
Kids wreak havoc on your finances. It costs an average of $234,000 to raise a child for the first 17 years. Imagine adding college and other unforeseen expenses to that bill, multiplying it for each additional child you have, then adding your own upkeep. That kind of expense could you put in serious debt that you’ll spend the rest of your days trying to get out of.
You can avoid future guilt. There’s so much that’s wrong with the world and you can’t protect kids from most of it. I’m so terrified of screwing up someone else or being unable to keep them safe from suffering, so I don’t want a child if I can’t guarantee that. If like me, you suffer from depression, anxiety, and other disorders that can be genetically transmitted, then you probably don’t want a kid living with such difficult conditions.
Your burden of responsibility will be greatly reduced. Raising kids is an enormous, overwhelming responsibility that’s going to eat at you whenever it seems like things aren’t going so smoothly. It’s one thing to have to make peace with struggling through life, doing with a child tagging along is a whole different ballgame.
Kids contribute to unhappiness. Parents have to deal with more stress and complicated life situations than non-parents, so they tend to be more unhappy. Young parents and parents with little kids suffer this the most. If your finances, health, and life satisfaction aren’t in a good place with children in the picture, you’re going to be less than thrilled with your life.
Pregnancy is all kinds of f*cked up. Seriously, pregnancy is one of the most difficult things that you can put your body through. So much could go wrong. Your body would change dramatically and you could end up with serious complications or even losing your life. Sure, everything might go normally for you and your little bundle of joy. But if you ask me, that’s an awfully big gamble to take.
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