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Comments about ‘In our opinion: Time magazine's deceptive fantasy of the child-free life’

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Published: Sunday, Aug. 11 2013 12:00 a.m. MDT

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Hutterite
American Fork, UT

There's nothing at all with all wrong with childless couples. Indeed, we should applaud those that decide they shouldn't have kids just because society or their mothers think they should. Have kids if you want, but not because you have to. You don't.

Mainly Me
Werribee, 00

This falls in line with the progressive/liberal/socialist agenda. Encourage a lack of family commitment, encourage the breakdown of the family unit.

JoeBlow
Far East USA, SC

"Despite its allure, it would be disastrous for our collective prosperity and character were this conceit of childless fulfillment to become a commonplace lifestyle."

Just as it would if every couple in America got married at 21 and had 7 children.

I dont think that Time was advocating for a childless lifestyle. I think they were saying that it is OK.

There are some people who are better off going through life single. Some, better off childless.

Why should everyone fit a specific mold determined by others?

10CC
Bountiful, UT

I often disagree with the D-News, but in this case they're right on.

Digging deeper, a primary cause of this disturbing trend is the increasingly tenuous nature of employment. Childless couples who are doing well financially know it could all crumble (literally) the next day, depending on if their company is bought out, or its product rendered obsolete by the rapid change in products, or the company decides to go in a different direction in production, or outsourcing, etc.

Economists and conservatives often talk about "creative destruction" in the economy - change is disruptive, but the innovations and consolidations end up being beneficial for all. We've always had economic change and technological displacement, from the invention of the wheel to the rise of the Internet.

But the rapid and continuous upheaval we see now affects not only those who are caught in the disruption, it's having a corrosive effect on our society & birthrate, as people realize the ranks of the unemployed could quite easily include *them*, and raising a family in those circumstances is risky, at best.

Economic reality renders the most thoughtful and well meaning editorializing as empty rhetoric.

KJB1
Eugene, OR

I have six siblings and a daughter who I cherish more than I ever could have imagined. That said, not everyone is meant to be a parent and no one should be guilted into having children.

This article is driven more by religious dogma and paranoia than anything else. Typical DN.

Cedarite
Cedar City, UT

People who do not want children with their whole heart should not have them. Trying to berate those who don't want them into having them as a duty does no one any good, especially the unwanted children.

Daniel Leifker
San Francisco, CA

Society itself is starting to frown on large families because of the idea that more humans in the world will consume scarce resources. I know someone who has six adopted children, and when he takes his family out to restaurants or outings he gets lots of disapproving looks from strangers. Some of them even approach him and tell him he is selfish and immoral to have so many kids. They become very sheepish when they learn the kids are adopted.

no fit in SG
St.George, Utah

Looking over the childless couples we know who range from 25-80+ in age, we are seeing, and have seen, lives well spent.
Some of these couples were physically not able to have children and some of them made a choice not to.
Who knows what kind of childhood experiences may have traumatized them? Many private issues have led them to make certain decisions. We cannot judge them.
These couples are to be loved and admired as they become the "favorite" Aunt and Uncle to the children of both family and friends.
They have the time to do more charity work than families busy with children. They are, many times, more generous with their finances than most.
They have the gift of time to do many beneficial things.
How about doing an article about this?
These articles are not well thought out and definitely unkind.

Larry Chandler
CEDAR CITY, UT

"Having it all" is just a slogan. No one can have it "all." But people and couples can decide for themselves what they want. If they want no children, that's their decision and their right. If they want 10 children, that's also their decision and their right (assuming they can afford it and not depend on the state for assistance).

Since when is the right of the state (or the press) to determine for others how best to fulfill their lives?

tll
Ogden, UT

Anyone who thinks someone's personal choice to have or to not have children is any of their business and calls them conceited for those choices are, themselves, blowing conceit outta the water! myob.

Clarissa
Layton, UT

When I found out I couldn't have children, I was devastated. Because of my health and other problems, we decided not to adopt. Every day I wish I had children. Not having children, in my personal opinion, is the height of selfishness. I also believe children should be brought up in a traditional family unit. No unwed mothers. Families who are willing to sacrifice for their children are wonderful!

Twin Lights
Louisville, KY

Though I agree that the choice to be childless can be motivated by selfishness, I think that 10CC has hit upon another issue - risk.

When my parents were young, my father was virtually guaranteed to be able to find good work (plus he had an education). If you were a good employee, you could generally have a job for life.

For my generation, it has been a bit more difficult but some level of training beyond high school and a good work ethic meant employment most of the time. I have friends who have struggled (despite good education and work backgrounds) especially as they age.

For my kids, the situation is much more fluid. Steady, long-term employment is a rarity despite whatever level of education is obtained (obviously, there are a few exceptions).

The progressively less stable work environment means greater risk of not being able to support the family.

I still encourage children and believe they are an important component of a family. But there is no doubt that the calculus has changed.

The Caravan Moves On
Enid, OK

@ Hutterite - American Fork, UT - "There's nothing at all with all wrong with childless couples. Indeed, we should applaud those that decide they shouldn't have kids just because society or their mothers think they should. Have kids if you want, but not because you have to. You don't."

Get real. To choose to not have kids when you have the physical/biological ability to have them (in marriage) is selfish. Period.

Take note that I said those who "choose" to not have kids when they "could" have them, in a marital setting. If a man or woman is not biologically capable of having children, then there is NO shame in that. None whatsover.

But to choose to not have children when you do in fact have that ability is selfish, plain and simple, and no amount of screaming will change that.

Joseph Smith (yes, that Joseph Smith) prophesied that the day would come when none but faithful Christians would want to have children. How utterly pathetic that those who (obviously) were brought into this world by parents who sacrificed SOMETHING to raise them now honor those sacrifices by criticizing their parents' selflessness and reveling in their own selfishness.

IDSpud
Eagle, ID

@no fit in SG. Actually, the article was very well thought out. In fact, it's the kind of commentary this country needs now more than ever. You point out some valid reasons for not having children. However, this article was referring to the general trends and statistics, which suggest that if the current birth rate continues to diminish the whole social safety net is at risk. I don't believe the article was speaking to those who can't or shouldn't have children, but mainly to those who can and otherwise should. Obviously, it comes down to personal choice, but there are also consequences (unintended or otherwise) for certain choices.

Matthew C
South Jordan, UT

I'm amazed people are talking about not having children as being selfish.

What do you think is driving your need for children other than your emotions? And what do you think that emotional desire is if not selfishness?

Cedarite
Cedar City, UT

The Caravan Moves On- you have no idea the life history or reasons people have to make that choice, so you cannot call them all selfish. In my own family, my parents were and still are unstable people who we would now classify as sociopaths or pathological narcissists. They both have differing organic issues with their brains which mean they don't even remember their self absorption and random viciousness so no atonement can ever be made. Some of my siblings felt they were able to overcome the brutalization and resulting anxiety and had children, some did not. The deep seeded feelings include not being able to trust control of ones' rage and issues enough for full time parenting. Call them selfish if you must, but the self awareness it takes to say "I do not trust myself to have the patience required to be a good parent" should not be sneered at.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

If we reject the Creator and his purpose for creating this world and all things hereon, including ourselves, we will accept the false doctrine that we are here to pleasure ourselves no matter what the consequence is to society. NOT marrying someone of the opposite sex and NOT having children (when that is physically possible) is directly opposed to the direction given to us by our Creator. It puts us first in our lives instead of allowing us to learn to serve others. Can anyone deny that being a parent gives the parent opportunity to learn to love unconditionally? Can anyone deny that a parent grows in his/her ability to face demanding situations? Can anyone deny that the purpose of having children is not to "own" children, but to give others the same or better opportunities to experience all the joys of mortality?

Selfish people put themselves first whenever they are given the opportunity to either serve themselves or to serve others. Learning to be unselfish and then to teach unselfishness is why we are organized as families and not as a "herd" of human beings.

oragami
St. George, UT

"This meta-analysis finds that parents report lower marital satisfaction compared with nonparents (d=−.19, r=−.10). There is also a significant negative correlation between marital satisfaction and number of children (d=−.13, r=−.06). The difference in marital satisfaction is most pronounced among mothers of infants (38% of mothers of infants have high marital satisfaction, compared with 62% of childless women). For men, the effect remains similar across ages of children. The effect of parenthood on marital satisfaction is more negative among high socioeconomic groups, younger birth cohorts, and in more recent years. The data suggest that marital satisfaction decreases after the birth of a child due to role conflicts and restriction of freedom."

Twenge, J. M., Campbell, W. K., & Foster, C. A. (2003). Parenthood and Marital Satisfaction: A Meta‐Analytic Review. Journal of Marriage and Family, 65(3), 574-583.

Kings Court
Alpine, UT

Unfortunately, our economy is based on population growth, which is also unsustainable given the small size of our planet. The article brags about how much to the GDP each child contributes, but how much does that same child consume in finite natural resources? There are two sides to this equation. Time is one side and the DN is the other side, but the best solution is somewhere in the middle. We need children to sustain the human race, but unless we can find another planet (and soon) to provide food, natural resources, and living space, I predict there will be some terrible pain and suffering for the human race (and our posterity) in the future. There will come a time where the human race will face mass starvation, disease, exposure, and endless wars and suffering that will touch every continent and every person because of our greed and short-sightedness.

oldgoat
Midway, UT

I don't believe the DN writer was saying we all have to have children as some of you have implied. He/she was taking to task Time magazine for glamorizing those who choose not to have children. Time pointed out all of the perks of being childless but none of the disadvantages.

Can't say I'm surprised though. 'Time' has been terribly one sided in its reporting for decades now--sad.

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