Friday, March 26, 2010

The Young Mother

First let me extinguish your current suspicions. I am not pregnant. :) This post is sociology related.

A certain situation has happened to me not once but twice. It is thought provoking, amusing and in a way kind of sad. I was talking with a young mother today and somehow the topic of birthdays came up with her kids. I told them I would be 23 years old this year. The mother, whose age I can not recall, said to me "do you have any kids?" "No," I responded. She responded with something like "Oh, you don't want any?" To which I wanted to reply "No, I do want kids but I really want a stable job and a husband before I have kids." Of course I did not say this because I would never blame or offend someone for their life choices.

This same thing happened to me a few months ago. Again, the mother assumed I didn't want kids because I was 23 and didn't have any. If anything, working with children has made me want to have kids even more so than before! I totally want to raise kids and have my own family. The very thought of it excites me. Yet the thought of a promising career as a social worker and a writer excites me too. I want to establish myself in my field and find a great husband before the kids enter the world.

So it kind of depresses me that a lot of these mothers think it is normal to have their first child at 15, 16 and 17 and have four or five kids by the time they are my age. In their eyes, I'm not interested in having kids since I'm 23 and single and childless. This doesn't offend me in the least but just sparks some thought provoking sociological ponderings.

I'm making different choices than they are.

Until next time...

2 comments:

  1. As a counterpoint to this, I work with what sounds like a similar demographic, except that mine are 12-15. They also assume because I am 23 and childless that I am not going to have kids. It's scary, because they are almost at the age when their mothers, aunts, sisters, and friends starting having children. And while I shouldn't judge, part of what we are trying to do here is breaking the cycle. Which means I am making a statement about which choices are better. It makes my life complicated.

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  2. Looks like we are looking at a different set point for normalcy. In my case, I will probably be in my thirties before I even have a chance at having kids. This is following the pattern set by my own mother and aunts. Before you can break the cycle of young motherhood, it seems like you almost have to entirely re-write what they think of normal. Does that make sense? And yes, I know I am posting nearly a month after the last comment. We're coming off of lent! Give me some slack!

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