Children are a blessing, not disruption
Your articles on marriage were sad, but I wish to enlighten those who think that children are a disruption. I have always felt and said that if you are waiting until you “can afford” to raise a family you will never have a family. The problem is that we are becoming too affluent. The Bible states that “the lust for money is the root of all kinds of evil” (1 Timothy 6:10, among others). All the things that people want are related to “money.” It is actually a form of selfishness and greed. As I see it, this is the prime cause of the downfall of our society and family. People who feel this way miss all the joy of having children. Sure they can cause anxieties and strains in the process of rearing them, but what an empty life it would be without them. My wife and I worked to put me through dental school and our first child was not a hindrance, but was actually a joy to break up the stresses of completing the education and preparing for our future.
I come from an immigrant family (GermansfromRussia),anditwascommontohave large families (we are 11 siblings). It was usually benefitial to have large families to help work on the farm. It also became a home for the parents in their old age. My parents’ life, as immigrants, was a one of what I call eat, sleep,work and go to church. We did not have all the “things” that people today seem to feel are necessary for happiness. When you wrote of the benfits of marriage, you did not include the clinical relationships of parents and chil- dren, i.e., the love and nurturing of a family. Then there is grandparenting, which is delightful,butalsostressfulinworryingaboutthe grandchildren and their future as you see it.
There is one additional piece of the pie that you failed to include. Your children will be there for you in your ageing retirement years, whenyoumayneedspiritual,maybefinancial and social support. It might be necessry for themtobeyoursourceofcareinsteadoffarming out your parents to a senior retirement facility. My wife and I had my mother for 17 yearspriortoherdeath.Whatablessing.Now we have her mother for the same assistance. Suretheremaythedaywhenwecannotphysically handle her and she may need assisted living, but in the meantime, we are a blessing to her and she to us. Those who choose not to have children do not have the benefit and blessing of children to support and comfort them in the older years.
We have been on missionary trips to third world countries where we saw that it is natural for the children to take care of the their ageing parents. We as a society are missing our sense of responsibility to our parents who nurturedusandcaredforus.Nowit'sourturn to return the favor. As I am now in semi-retirement I think what an empty existence it would be without children to visit and offfer guidance. Norman C. Bitter Fresno, California