Sunday, July 29, 2007

The Only One

J and I are going to have just one child.

I am amazed how many people are appalled by this. Actually I am shocked that people feel the right to have an opinion on it at all. Which is why I tell people shit because meh, no one is ever happy. But if it comes up people just freak out if you say you are just having one. It is only vaguely acceptable if you are like forty, but if you are young like us, having one child is a crime against nature or something.

I am actually not against having two--I think most people imagine the family they grew up in as being normal. But I am not sure. J is positive he doesn't want two. And I do think that every child has the right to be wanted. There is no point in having one that the father doesn't want if it can be avoided.

I know many people who are close to their siblings, where their sister or brother is their best friend. And I do think that it is a relationship that cannot be recreated in any other way. But there are no guarantees. My mother barely speaks to her brother. My father can only handle his sister in small doses. My sister and I have had stages when we were close and stages when we were not. I think we are currently working towards closeness. What I mean is, that blood relationship means shit if the two people can't get on. I don't think having a sibling means you won't grow up to be lonely or a psychopath.

If it were that easy to insulate your child I would totally do it.

J has a welfare child's fear of poverty. And he is desperate to never have more kids than he can afford. Which is admirable and practical. And while I think he is silly to think we cannot afford two children (I mean we can't afford them today but I think someday we would be alright) I can't really discount that we could do a lot more for one than we could two. College and sports and medical care--those things cost money. And you can only stretch money so far. And I think a lot of people who grow up poor have a real urge to give their kids the best of everything. I will try to pull him back from that but I can't pretend that he is wrong.

There is also that if you only have one you outnumber the kid. That is a powerful position. And given the whole vomity Epstein-Barr episode of the last six weeks, I am not really eager beavering to give pregnancy another whirl.

But honestly, people act as if we have announced that we are planning to raise our child to be an axe murderer. I do know some lovely only children you know.

We could change our minds, stranger things have happened. But really, the way people push the multi-child agenda it makes me think one is the way to go. It feels like a bait and switch really. Like they will lure us in with angel baby and then number two will be a whirling dervish of destruction and mayhem.

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