There are many reasons not to have kids—poverty, a family history of physical or mental illness, the fact that children are annoying and smell bad—but what about the reasons people offer for deciding to procreate? In this vastly overpopulated and under-resourced world, can any of them be justified? My answer is no, and since people now refuse to read anything that isn’t arranged in list form, I’ve made you a list of the most common examples. Enjoy.
1. You want something to love
Get a pet, you lonely wretch. A dog or a cat is infinitely cheaper than a baby, and if it suddenly dies you won’t be nearly as devastated. Why should somebody else have existence imposed upon them because you didn’t get enough attention as a child?
2. All your friends are doing it
As clichéd as the whole “if your friends decided to jump off of a bridge” line is, anyone so easily pressured into procreation should probably be encouraged to jump off a bridge instead. There are enough idiots in the world as it is. You’re on the Internet, for crying out loud—you should know this already.
3. You want to pass on a legacy
If you have underachieved so consistently in life that your only hope of impressing people after you’re dead is to make another person that might somehow end up less of a loser than you are, it’s safe to say you shouldn’t have kids. All procreating will prove to the world is that you were capable of knocking somebody up (or getting knocked up), and since the worst of society does this in droves I can’t see how it’s something worth proving.
Face it: However great you think you are, we probably don’t need more of you. If you’re that desperate to have people remember you, then try writing a great novel, or working toward world peace, or virtually anything else more noble than bringing a creature into the world that thanks to your selfish desires will have to endure the fear and suffering of death. How’s that for a legacy?
4. You want to redeem your painful upbringing
I cannot understate the amount of times I have heard people say that they wanted to have children because they fancied a chance at giving someone a better childhood than they had. A child is not a therapeutic device; it is a separate living being that will tune in to your insane level of self-involvement and ultimately resent you for it. Raising one costs almost a quarter of a million dollars, and while a decent therapist is pricey they will almost certainly run you up for less than that. Consider it an investment.
5. You got pregnant by accident
This is one of the worst and most common reasons that people give for having children. I was planned, and look at how I turned out. Remember these three simple words: abortion, abortion, abortion. If for some medical reason you can’t get one, then curse your rotten luck and have the stupid kid, I guess.
6. You enjoy being pregnant
This one goes out to the ladies, specifically the batshit insane ones; enjoying the rush of being with child is not a sufficient reason for becoming that way. Maybe take up shooting heroin instead. Like dog ownership or therapy it will cost you a lot less, plus there’s a chance it might kill you, which would be helpful to the rest of us.
7. Your partner sees it as a deal-breaker
If you don’t want kids but your significant other does, you obviously shouldn’t be with them. Why is it that some people can’t see that? Two people with such drastically opposing values will never survive in a relationship together. Adding the physical, emotional, and financial strain of bringing a baby into the mix is only going to exacerbate their issues. This kind of submission is especially pathetic if you’re a guy—stop being so pussy-whipped and tell her that you don’t want a baby. It’s going to be a lot easier than a secret vasectomy followed by years of feigned disappointment, I promise you.
8. Your religion tells you to be fruitful
Does your religion also tell you how we’re going to solve the energy crisis? Didn’t think so. Adopt if you have to, and sleep soundly in the knowledge that if your God objects to your decision to take on a needy child that is already here rather than making a new one entirely, he’s probably kind of a prick and you wouldn’t want to hang out with him anyway.