Children require more care than I can imagine. For decades. Any there are more humans than the planet can handle. Furthermore, due to governments’ failure to protect the environment, ecological collapse will cause the deaths of billions of people in coming decades. Who wants their children to live (or die young) through that?
I have to seriously question why I want to have a child.
I do have a pregnancy drive, but that is a horrible reason to have a child.
In my generation of the family, there is me. I also have two first cousins. I have quite a few second cousins, and even more third cousins – but I don’t know any of my third cousins very well. One of my first cousins has said that she does not want children. I do not think she will change her mind. My other first cousin has not, as far as I know, made a statement, but she seems a lot more interested in her career than child-rearing. One of my second cousins has two children. Some of my other second cousins have one child each. Most of them are childless, and I think most of them are going to stay that way.
My family is going to become much smaller in the coming decades.
Family is important to me. The way I was raised, family are the people who stick with you even when everybody else has left you. There are relatives who my parents actively dislike, but my parents still help them when they are in hot water. When you discover that somebody is a blood relative, even if you have never met them, you will do far more for the sake of their well being than you would for, say, a neighbor (this has actually happened in my family). I know this is not how everybody experiences family, but it’s the way I experience family, and it’s the way other people in my family experience family. And the idea of my family gradually disappearing scares me.
Could I replace family with friends? Possibly. But they way I was raised, friends are people who you stick with because you like them, and when you stop liking them, you break apart. Right now, I cannot trust a friendship the was I trust family bonds. That said, some of the most painful relationships in my life are family relationships, but I stick with them because they are family. If we were friends, we would have split long before things got to that point.
If I had siblings who were planning to have children, or even if I had just had siblings, I would feel more comfortable with being childless myself. But considering the situation as it is, I feel that, if I want to have close family in the next generation, I have to take matters into my own hands.