Sunday, July 17, 2011

Why have all these children??!?

Some people accuse "large" families of the stupidest reasons for having "so many" babies. I'm here to disprove them all.

  • Mom is too lazy to do the housework herself: You may laugh at this, but there seriously are people who claim that mothers of large families keep having more and more children to have - you guessed it - more hands to help with the work. This is so incredibly stupid I don't even know where to begin. If having children were the easier thing to do, if it meant less work, then everyone would be doing it because everyone naturally tends toward laziness. Besides, the reason why there is so much work to do is because there are many children - childless couples no doubt have much less work to come by than parents of many children. 
  • Mom is addicted to newborns/babies: Guilty as charged. What better "thing" to be addicted to??!? So many people are addicted to anything from cigarettes to alcohol to drugs to TV to porn to shopping to overeating and on and on, all of which are harmful to one's health. Loving and cherishing babies, on the other hand, is a mutually beneficial "addiction". Any normal mother feels that way, it's only natural. It is also the foundation of a lifelong, loving relationship once those babies grow older.  
  • We don't actually like having babies, but are just doing it because we are scared of God: While we are commanded to fear and reverence God, and while the Bible says that children are His reward, not having babies by our own choice would be the punishment in and of itself for not trusting God in this area. There would be no need for God to punish us further. If I want to give my kids a reward, and they turn it down, it's their loss, not mine.
  • You get more welfare money: For the record, we have never accepted any government help, even though there have been times when we would have qualified for it. Not that it would be wrong of us to do so, but they can just take their money (which was stolen from others to begin with) and perish with it. God is capable of taking care of us without the help of our wicked government. 

  • We are selfish: In spite of the fact that caring for and raising children is probably the most sacrificial, selfless thing any one of us will ever do, the world manages to spin it so that we are actually selfishly claiming all these children, while others have none. As if there were only a certain amount to go around, and we keep going back for seconds and thirds at the "Baby Buffet" while others get nothing because of our greediness.
  • We are stupid: We are accused of being too stupid to know the world is already overpopulated (it isn't), too stupid to figure out "what causes that" (evidently, we do!), too stupid to realize how much it will cost to raise these children into adulthood (oh, really?), and definitely too stupid to understand that every other pursuit in life is more important than having a child. And because we are so stupid, the vast majority of us are outstanding enough in business to get by on a single income without government assistance, and give our children an education at home that no public school can hold a candle to. I wish more people were stupid like this. 
  • Making babies is the parents' only form of entertainment: If anyone actually thinks that TV or facebook or the like are more entertaining, they are doing it wrong.  


    1. Haha...I have heard some of these "reasons" before. This surely gave me a chuckle!

      Great post!

    2. There is a huge population of homeless children in Tempe. Take a look at the book The Kids Nobody Wants and the Doctor Who Heals Them.

      It's fine if you want to spend your time making more babies. I'm concerned about the children who have no home, who are right in your city.


    3. I don't know whether the world is overpopulated or not.

      However, if I was trying to find out, I wouldn't listen to a housewife who has been home with six kids for the last ten years, who gets her information from google.

      I'd speak to scientists and other professionals, people who have spent time and money studying this issue.

      I think meal plans are more your area of expertise (the meal plans you posted are very helpful).)

    4. I was the third of eleven and I actually think that some of the points you are trying to disprove were applicable to my family. We had very little money. I shared a twin bed with a sister throughout my entire childhood because our house was too small for each of us to have a bed of our own. We often went to bed hungry and I recently learned that I have very low bone density--a sign that I was malnourished as a child. I do think that my parents were selfish for choosing to bring more children into the world when there was clearly no space or money for more. By choosing to have as many children as they did, they sacrificed the health and comfort of all of their children.

      We were also responsible for raising our younger siblings. By the time my mother was having her last few children, she did very little child-rearing. I never once saw my parents cook or clean during the last few years I lived with them--the oldest daughters did everything from cooking to cleaning to potty training. Was they "lazy"? No (they did all of the work before their daughters grew up after all). But once we were old enough to be responsible for ourselves, they forced us to become responsible for all of our siblings. My parents took advantage of us and I believe that it was unfair of them to force us, still children ourselves, to be entirely responsible for children we didn't bring into the world.

      I'm not saying that having a large family is a bad thing and obviously your family suffers from none of these problems. But there are parents of large families who are selfish, who can't afford the children they have, who resent their children because they only have children out of a sense of duty.

    5. Wow. You hit the nail right on the head. I have seen AND heard these as well. So sad that people actually think like this, isn't it??

      Someone once told me a tiny story that really made me think. They had just told the mother's father that they were expecting baby #8. He then replied that was too many children. The mother shrugged and looked at her father and asked "Which ones would you like me to get rid of?" So true!

      I also love how not being on birth control allows GOD to have HIS perfect will in how many children you have and when they arrive. His ways are so perfect! Thanks for the great post. :)

    6. It's interesting that you think you have to defend what you say is your choice to have as many children as God gives. God's will needs no explanation or defense. His Word stands alone.

    7. LOL!! While some of those accusations sound ridiculous. I've heard most of them. I think it's crazy some of the things people think about those of us that choose not to use birth control, and allow God to choose how many children we have. I've also heard "If you don't use birth control, you'll have a baby every nine months". It amazes me that people will trust God for their eternity, but doubt that He is in control of how many kids they can handle. I have some friends that have never used birth control of any kind and they have been married for over 10 years and have 3 children. I have another friend that has been married several years and hasn't had any children yet. Just because you choose to let God control how many children you have does NOT mean you will have babies every nine months.... unless of course that is God's will for your life. I truly believe that using birth control is one of the biggest displays of a Christian not trusting the Lord. It's like saying "I don't think God can handle this" or maybe "I know God can handle this, but I don't think I'd like the way He would choose to do things, so I want to do it myself".... Why would anyone want to miss out on God's blessings? I hear ladies say all the time. "I don't like being pregnant." I'm not sure why they don't... other than they are selfish. To think of nurturing a baby in your body and giving birth to a new life, it's AMAZING!! And the little (or even sometimes big) pains and discomfort along the way, is nothing compared to the reward of a baby. When my (almost) 2 year old daughter comes up and puts her hands on my face and kisses me and says "Mommy... I love you!" It's ALL worth it!!!! :-D

    8. this post reminded me of this re-write of an old infamous nursery rhyme " There was an old woman who lived in a shoe she had so many children, and loved them too, she said 'Thank you Lord Jesus for giving them all bread' and kissed them all gently and tucked them in bed."
      Anon1 so if you're so concerned with the children in Tempe, do something about it adopt one or two or three. Anon2 which scientist would you trust? The ones who were proven to have made up data about "global warming"? The world isn't even close to being over populated why don't you take a drive through the United States and tell me which of the States is overpopulated (not which ones have very large populated cities either) Have you traveled the world? Which country has run out of space? There are countries who are facing just the opposite of over population, they don't have enough of a generation of children to care for the coming generation of elderly.

    9. I have a lot of respect for your family and everything you do for your children. I don't think you are stupid in the least, and I don't think that generalization about "large" families makes any sense in the same way you can't generalize about "small" ones. However, not everybody is cut out to be the mother or father of that type of family. If I choose not to have more children (or to only have 1 or 2 more), I think that is completely a valid choice. And God gave us free will to be able to make exactly those kinds of choices. The moral of the story for me - I agree completely with what you said about judging large families. Just don't judge families that make a different choice about the number of children they choose to love, kiss, teach, worry about and raise to be good people. We don't love our children any less than you do (or the Duggars!).

    10. Most people get all out-of-whack when you break away from their perception of normal. Really, why on earth would people care if I have 30 kids...they're not raising them, they're not on "the system." They're our responsibility anyway.

      Our 5th baby is due in September and I promise, you'd think it was our 85th baby.

    11. "Have you traveled the world? Which country has run out of space?"

      We're not running out of living 'space', we're running out of viable land for food/produce, as well as other commodities such as clean water, phosphorus to fertilize produce, etc. There is plenty of open, sandy desert left in the world but it's not feasible to grow large quantities of food in it. Of course humans are able to live in very small spaces (think city apartments) but we also need food - it has to come from somewhere, and the space for growing it isn't unlimited. There has to be an upper limit on how many people the world can sustain, even if it's only a hypothetical number.

    12. I live in Australia, and my husband and I drove through the country on the way to our parents homes this past weekend. We passed enough unused land (we lived in the area long enough to know that it was not a rotated field or cow paddock or anything of the like) to feed a large town, perhaps even a city. And yet, we import our fruit and veg from china and america and vietnam and everywhere BUT here.

      The problem is not lack of land, the problem is lack of people farming the land and the price to purchase the land in the first place. My husband and I would become market gardeners if it were at all financially viable. There is the oft-quoted statistic that the population of the world could live in texas on 1 acre lots, plenty of space for all in that one state. Can you honestly say there is not enough farmable land in the rest of the world to feed them? Not enough water in the myriad of water systems?

      In regards to the post, love the comics, and I am dreading when we will hear these sorts of comments ourselves. We have already recieved horrified looks at the fact we are ready for another while our daughter is 6 months old (ready does not mean expecting btw)

    13. Ooooh, this got under some ladies skins didn't it! Protesting too much perhaps, to justify their own worldy choices, of not wanting more children?!

    14. Zsuzsanna~ Love the post! Some of the comments you get amaze me. When I am reading them I just want to respond...but what am I really going to be able to say of any importance.... I would be writing to a brick wall.
      But I do have to say, yes, I feel horrible for the children who have no family and who don't have parents to LOVE them and raise them...but that is not what we are doing...we haven't had children that we are adding to this homeless, child orphanage population. We are responsible and taking care of those God has given us! If we were give birth to 10 or so every 10 years, and getting rid of a couple here and there you could say that.
      And I understand that you just have a heart for those who have no family, I do too. EVERY day my husband and I wonder if we should adobt. We still dont have peace about that at all, but we just cant get past the thoughts of little children having no family.

      And I can't really comment on the scientist one too much. All I can really say is, basically, don't ever listen to a scientist? They may be what you call "professionals" but for being so called "so smart" they are just so stupid.

      Well, like I said, nothing all that great to say, but I couldn't help dishing out a tiny bit of my thoughts.

    15. If some of you were to have cancer, would you trust god to take care of you or would you seek medical treatment?

      It's really none of your business whether people choose to use birth control or not.

    16. "The problem is not lack of land, the problem is lack of people farming the land and the price to purchase the land in the first place."

      Yes, in Australia we are fortunate enough to have substantial land compared with the population size. But I was talking on a global scale. Most of the issues related to food availability are relevant in developing areas, where deforestation is often necessary to create land for agriculture (and that creates its own problems).

      "Can you honestly say there is not enough farmable land in the rest of the world to feed them? Not enough water in the myriad of water systems?"

      I didn't say there isn't enough land to support us today, I just said there's a hypothetical upper limit to how many people the planet can sustain. It's true of any living creature in any natural ecosystem. There are a finite amount of resources and therefore there's a finite limit on how many people can be sustained by them.

    17. Don't let it bother you if they don't apply to you. There are some people who just dislike the idea of large families and think that, because it's not their "thing", it's not right for anybody. You're not going to change those people's minds.

      That said, there are some families who do fit the descriptions in your post, and they give other people a bad name. There are people who have children just to get more welfare, because they like the attention of being pregnant/having a newborn, or because they feel pressure to do so within their religion/culture, even if they don't really want those children.

      As far as the first category, it does seem like more children must equal more work, but certain high-profile families on TV and on a few blogs do make it seem like the older children do all of the childcare and household work, while mom does little or nothing. Bloggers who brag that "once the children are x years old, you shouldn't have to do anything but supervise or set chores" or that they move small babies in with teenagers so the adults can rest (or have more children) and families where you see teenagers holding, schooling, and caring for small children, but rarely see mama doing that, don't really help dispel that argument.

    18. I think you would listen to scientists who say things you agree with. It's just scientists who disagree with you that you have a problem with.

      Unless you understand the calculations, statistics and modality of scientific data, I don't think you should provide an "opinion" at all. That's like a woman with no kids who have strong opinions on home birth or breastfeeding. What would she know?

      While not all scientists are correct about everythign (who is?) I would sooner listen to someone who has studied the subject than someone who has spent the last ten years baking organic cookies and changing diapers.

      And children who have the privilege of learning from scientists are the ones who will make changes in the world. Kids with little education or life experience do not usually reach political positions of power, where they they can change the laws they disagree with.

    19. Great post!! I just had my 4th baby and you would think I committed a crime...

    20. I liked this post.

      I am curious as to the overpopulation thing though. An average of 150k to 200k people die everyday. I wonder if slips the minds of some that people are not just born, but die also. Overpopulation is a big ole lie, a fear tactic. We aren't running out of viable land to grow things, the governments who impose ridiculous laws stating when, where and under which conditions you can grow things are causing the most problems.

      My husband (who is not a Christians/church going man) always says, we're having a bunch of kids so we can greatly outnumber you "2 kid having liberals". =)

    21. I am a "2 kid having..." conservative Christian. We had hoped for more but that was not to be. Not all of us with small families planned it that way; nor do we have liberal political views or judge large families harshly. I am thrilled and excited when I see large families because I adore children and admire those who raise large families well.

    22. Loved it! Although there are times we humble ourselves and use government assistance (like WIC or food stamps) because my children are more important than what someone thinks of a larger than normal family on food stamps :P

      I actually have a vision for government assistance. Do you know how much we are given a month for food stamps? DOUBLE the amount I would spend if I were buying all our own food. It makes me sick... so if we are in need (and the economy and construction have been really hard) We get assistance for 3 months and then off for 6 months. I am able to stock up my pantry to last for 6 months and go back to only spending a fraction of what I normally would spend.

      My vision is that the government would give less money per person and help more people. I've seen other family members struggle for whatever reasons.. but to the government they make to much money for help.. yet they have empty cupboards and they are they ones who could use the help. It's also a crime for me to use my food stamps to help them. I don't mind paying my taxes any longer. Because sometimes we may just need some of that assistance ourselves.

      Also our God can use the government for His glory. He can use anyone or thing. He is our Almighty God.


    23. Just love that picture of the lady with all the kids in a shoe:-)

    24. some free jinger dimwit thinks that just because land is desert it can't be used for agriculture. I guess maybe she'd change her mind if she saw all the farming in Arizona and Southern California but she wouldn't care she'd still believe all the over-population lies.

    25. I know this is off-topic for this post but I thought you might find this amusing. Sleeping with your toddler isn't harmful LOL took they had to do research to figure this out

    26. I believe in personal choice. If you can handle it, then go for it. If you don't want kids, that's fine too. In the end, no matter what the Bible says, none of us really knows what God wants, or what He thinks of everyone's life.

      Overpopulation is not a serious issue in the USA, and indeed here in Canada we are eager for more immigrants because there are fewer births these days, but there are definitely some countries where overpopulation is horribly difficult. People do not take up a lot of space, but they take up a lot of resources, and if resources are sparing, you are in trouble. I think it is certainly sensible to delay (more) children if the family is in a difficult situation, but once again, would never tell a woman not to have a(nother) child.

    27. Another great post Zsu! Jessica I wish you would reopen your blog, I loved reading about your family's adventures as well (I don't have a blog of my own to share with you as my husband is a very private man and as his wife I respect his wishes to stay private with our family). Don't let a few negative comments get in the way of you and Chad spreading Christ's message. I learned a lot from you just in your short time on the web!!!

    28. I loved this post! I have also heard all these stupid and ignorant augments made toward large family's. It's totally acceptable to make all the rude comments like "Why would you want more, your nuts!" but if we said "whats wrong with you, only two kids? your selfish!" it would be totally rude! I do think that would be rude, but why is that unacceptable, but rude comments toward large family's are not? I have been married for 41/2 years and still don't have children, but that is not because we are preventing them. So it is hard to judge some times. I want to ask these people, whats wrong with you? I would do anything to have a child and you can have many and choose not to! It baffles me! I don't expect worldly people to understand, but Christians are just plain not trusting God in this area. It's clear in the Bible. They have no verse to support preventing kids.

    29. husband is one of the scary/stupid scientists whose field is sustainability. He'd make the argument that overpopulation isn't about space. Or even about food. Fuel is where the problem is at. Because cheap fuel is on its way out. We can get more oil, but it's not going to be cheap to get to it or to refine it so we better have some contingency plans (I have a friend who is much more alarmist who has seen the projected data for fuel shortages...that's around 2017-2020). Quite frankly, that's the kind of crap that keeps me up at night.

      I live in Arizona, too. Sure we farm. You have any idea what the water situation here is like? I do. I wouldn't count on farming in the desert to keep us going if I were you.


      (who really doesn't care how many kids any of you please don't waste your energy caring that we stopped at two)

    30. HW, I apologize that my comment was taken wrong. We do not ever look down on anyone who has only 1 or 2 children. I have a very close friend who in 23 years of marriage, allowing God to plan her family size, had just one child.

      The tongue in cheek statement is simply a jab at those liberals (or anyone) who insist that a woman should have two children only.

    31. Kimmie - thank you for your kind apology. It is unnecessary as I do know you had no intent to be rude. As with most things related to motherhood, I guess family size can hit a sore spot with some of us - especially those of us who have hoped for more children. So I just took the opportunity to put another viewpoint out there. Thanks again and enjoy your children. Time does move quickly with them.....

    32. I wanted to get your advice on something I am feeling conflicted about. My husband and I have two children. We had initially decided (after the second one) that we were done. There were many logical reasons (comfortable level of living among one).

      I would now love more children. We had an IUD for about 7 months, but it recently fell out. I am feeling like this is God telling us this is His plan. My husband is open to having more as well (one or two, I think). What advice would you give on this situation?

    33. Great post , for the people out there who only have one or two children by choice do you ever think about how the child feels about growing up alone ? I always wondered what it would be like to be a part of a big family , my step sisters had already left home when I was born and my brother was born 5 years after me , it would have been nice to have had someone to play with and to talk to . I used to go to this ladies yard sale and she had like 4 kids the last time I was there and her parents was always talking about how she needed to stop having kids because they thought she had to many and after every baby she would say well this one needs someone to play with , I thought that was cute .

    34. From my observations, the "we don't use birth control / we have large families" lifestyle can become a source of spiritual pride and gives a message that large families somehow think they're most pleasing to God.

    35. I love how matter of fact you are about is the truth! Blessings!

    36. Well said! Thanks for the post!

    37. i have a question- is it wrong for a man to get a vasectomy? Would God curse one's family is the husband went and had one because financially he could not support having another child?


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