Saturday, January 25, 2014

Is it better to be with someone you love or have kids?

This, at first seems like a no brainer. But, in the long run it is a very serious question that many of us face in our lives. For example, I had to break up with someone I loved first because they didn't want to have children and second because they wanted to remain celibate throughout their lives sort of like a nun even though they wanted to marry me.

So, this though it sounds crazy is actually what many people deal with in their lives, the choice of children or marriage without children. Though initially it almost killed me in the long run I know I made the right choice.

In the 1950s when I grew up I looked at what adulthood was then and thought that a bullet to the head would be a better choice than what I saw people going through every day then. So, by about 10 to 15 I decided I wanted to have kids, because I didn't see how I was going to survive adulthood without having kids around to bring joy into my life with all their happiness and exploration and by doing this I could extend my own childhood into my 40s at times by doing this and showing my kids the world before, after and during when they went to college. However, actually pulling this off was hard until I was with the right person at age 25 who got pregnant (accidentally) and who was also faced with a difficult life choice because she had never intended to have children because of difficulties in her childhood as well.

So, I was trying to stand by her as she went through this space of thinking she needed to kill herself because she was pregnant because she didn't believe in abortion. To me now this seems comical beyond belief but at the time she was 21 and I 25 and it was serious business because I wanted my son to be born. So, as I watched her walking out into the waves at Moonlight Beach in Encinitas in her clothes because she said she was going to drown herself there wasn't much I could do but watch. However, I also am an expert swimmer, surfer, Scuba diver etc. But, until she was asking for my help there wasn't  much I could do. So, she got out up to her neck and I saw her slowly coming back out in her clothes and she said, "I had a vision of our son telling me he wanted to be a fruitarian. So, I'm going to have this child."

This also is incredibly funny to me in retrospect but at that time my girlfriend was a health foodist who had just moved over to California from the big Island of Hawaii and was amazingly beautiful and sort of an ideal hippie like elven princess whose mother was once on the cover of Life magazine with a full spread about her as a model likely in the 1950s sometime. So, my girlfriend was incredibly beautiful then too. So, we had our son together even though she was only 21 and I 26 a month before he was born. We got married a month before he was born too.

So, for me, in the end I didn't have to choose between having kids and being with someone I loved. Though my first wife and I broke up when I was 29 and she around 25 we had an amazing 4 years together.  I was a single father for about 3 years after that until I remarried around 1980.

So, some people have asked me about all this along the way. If this is a man I'm talking to capable of taking care of himself and a wife and children I'll often say, "If you want to have children with the woman you are living with be sure to get her pregnant before you marry her."

This is a very direct statement because of many things that are true about both men and women especially in their teens, twenties and even for some into their thirties. What it is is that often people aren't honest with themselves. If someone is not honest with themself they also cannot then be honest with others. Think about this.

So, a woman can tell a man almost anything and maybe believe it and the same is true of many men. But, once a woman you are living with is pregnant you will find out everything you need to know if you want to have kids with her. First, "Can she get pregnant?" Second, "If she is pregnant can she carry this child successfullly?" Third, "Is she the type of person who both wants to have kids (With YOU) and not someone else?" and fourth "Can she carry this child to term and maintain her health and not die." And does she want to raise this child with you?

Unless you know the answers as a man to all these questions you really don't know anything about the woman you are with(if you want to have children). People can say anything (men and women) but until you are there actually doing all this you don't reach your moments of truth (both men and women).

Because reality is a whole lot more overwhelming than theory in every single way. Truth will come out one way or the other once someone is pregnant. Either they are going to want an abortion, can't get pregnant, don't really want to get pregnant or they can get pregnant and do and want to have a child with you. So, the whole thing is actually way more complicated than you might think.

But, unless everything is working, physically, mentally, emotionally and commitment wise as well as economically it isn't going to work. And that is the truth. That is reality.

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