I love my daughter, but I never actually wanted to have children. You know as an adult you aren’t actually to say that. Its right up there s one of the most offensive things you can say. It seems to get right up the nose of so many people. They take it really personally, even if it has absolutely nothing to do with them. Its as though, by not wanting to follow their life choices you are opposing them.
The reason I didn’t want children is fairly simple, I was selfish. I liked drinking with my friends, staying out late, and spending all my money on absolutely pointless crap. I was a hedonist, I would think nothing of staying out until 5 am on a school night and spending a weeks pay on beer and cigarettes.
Then boom and unplanned pregnancy hits and I step up as a man. My girlfriend and I move in together and then I’m a dad. And away goes the constant hedonism and out comes fatherhood mode. Fatherhood mode for me consisted of a sleep regime that was akin to the prisoners of Guantanamo Bay, sleep deprivation is actually a legitimate torture method after all. Then came the depression, I was actually really depressed, to the point where I was exhausted just washing the dishes, I ended up on anti depressants. I missed my friends and I missed having a life. I admit it was a pretty shallow and wasted life, but I think that’s what made it worse, the fact that I felt as though I wasted my life, and that really threw me towards despair.
Then it hit me I may have spent my late teens and early twenties in a drunken haze, surrounded by a cloud of smoke but what was stopping me doing something with the rest of my life. well as it turns out trying to balance being a full time dad with the career path that I wanted is a pretty hard thing to manage, and this is why I really don’t want more children. I’m willing to put my life on hold for my daughters sake, but not indefinitely, I have dreams that I really want to pursue and balancing that pursuit with a young child is something I’m not capable of. I owe it to my daughter to postpone it, but I owe it to myself to pursue them too. Having more children would rob me of that I feel.
But you can’t say any of this to people, because they say things like: “it’s selfish” or “Marianna will be lonely” or “you’ll change your mind in a few years”. Because apparently I don’t know my own mind, and now that I’ve procreated once I’m going to want to put myself through the hell that it was more than once, with the added hell of an older child to resent the crap out of and torture the new one. But saying any of this seems to make you the devil.
Is it worng that I’m putting my life before that of a hypothetical child, probably, but guess what. Its my life, I can do what I want with it. As long as I try my hardest to do a good job with Marianna, child that I already have, surely that’s me meeting all obligations as a parent.