1. You're "running out of time" We've all felt a bit of pressure from the ever ticking biological clock. It's true, as a woman, you won't be able to bear children forever. If you are considering reproducing because the big 3-0 is coming, or you feel like 'time is running out', I strongly urge you to reconsider. Not only are medical advances allowing women to safely have children later in life, but having a child should not be a fear based response. Children should be welcomed into the world because you want them, the fear of one day it might be too late is not a good reason to reproduce.
2. You're wearing baby goggles Once you hit your early to mid-twenties you get blinded by 'baby goggles'. Kinda like beer googles but with babies. The goggles go on and suddenly any red flags disappear. Wait it out. After a while the baby goggles come off and your field of vision is clear. If you haven't thought past the rolly-polly-fat-cheeks-and-thighs stage and considered that a baby will eventually be a fully grown toddler, preteen, teenager and adult, then you aren't really considering all that comes along with parenting. It's not all cute baby shoes and hair bows forever. A day will come when you're talking periods and mood swings and teenage rebellion. Wait until the baby goggles disappear and consider every aspect of your decision.
3. Pets are a handful If you find yourself annoyed, frustrated and inconvenienced by pets, kids might not be for you. I don't say this to bash children, but kids are a lot more work than a dog or a rabbit. A pet can be left alone for a few hours, if you do that with a baby I guarantee Child Services is going to get a phone call. I quickly learned that my favourite thing about my pets are the things that children don't offer –– silence, independence and low maintenance. Dogs require constant care 100% of the time, they will destroy things you love and make a mess of the house.. but so do children. If Fido is too much than little Timmy will be too.
4. You like to be in control
Children demand all your time, energy and money until they move out.. if you're lucky. Having children you are giving up your own life. Your life now revolves around their schedules –– nap time, soccer practice, school, bedtimes. Children will have their own personality, their own opinions and their own (very strong) will. If you enjoy having your own schedule, your own budget and your own hobbies than I would reconsider jumping head first into parenting. 5. Finances are hard Unpopular opinion warning - If you can't afford children, you shouldn't have children. Let's be real, babies aren't cheap. Raising a child costs an average of $14,000 and that's not including college or extra expenses. If you're having a hard time with your money now, adding a baby or two isn't going to make it any easier. There are so many costs like daycare, college or university, extra curricular activities, school trips, the list goes on. Children are a big financial commitment and one that does need some objective, logical consideration. 6. They're a great retirement plan
So often as a childfree person you get asked "Who will take care of you when you're old?" I want to make this very clear, children are not a retirement plan. Not only should you not rely on your children to take care of you, but your retirement should never come into the equation when considering becoming parents. Having children for the sake of your future care is self serving and selfish. Children or not, you should be preparing to fund your own retirement.
7. You might regret it
My husband and I joke about this often. He has a fear that I will wake up one morning and regret not having children, but that's not reason enough to have one. A child isn't like a puppy, it cannot be returned to the breeder if things don't work out. There are so many other ways to pour into the lives of children that do not require producing any of your own. There are always children to adopt, foster, Big Brother/Big Sister etc. nieces and nephews or even just mentoring children within your church or community. If you are not 100% sure you want to be a parent, take some time to think it over. It's easier to live with the regret of not having them than the regret of having them.
To steal some wisdom from the Bachelor, make sure you are doing it for the right reasons. Bringing another life into the world isn't something that should be done in haste or in fear. I truly believe that parenting is a calling from God, just as any other calling. Some of us are called to be parents and some are called to be missionaries and some are called to be in the worship band at our church and some are called to be accountants.. and all of those things are okay. If you aren't feeling called to parenting, don't let external pressures make you doubt yourself. What are your thoughts and feelings on the subject? Let me know in the comments!