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Children Are a Choice

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father with daughter

I remember when I was younger, my cousin and I would go to a NYC project to visit an older cousin who had the latest video game system. We would always play a basketball game, of course. Being much younger it was always cool to be accepted as one of the guys, especially when we were at least ten years their senior. It meant a lot for me, because these were the only male figures who took the time to chill with us. We respected them and they respected us.

I happened to run into one of my older cousin’s good friends that watched us grow up. Now that I’m approaching thirty it seems as if people are always asking when I am going to start to have kids. I was only asked, if I had any at all, because for some it just happens. I do not have any kids, but it is by choice. His response was, “You are smart.” It was this response that inspired my post today, and I thank him for sparking the conversation within me. It is a fact that kids are not born by mere happenstance. There are a series of decisions made, which bring about a baby being born. The first decision made is to have sex. The second decision is to not use a condom, or for a woman not to be on birth control (Please note, that even if a woman is on birth control you should still use condoms). The third and final decision is to have the baby after discovering that the woman is pregnant. Some women may decide to have an abortion, which again is a choice.

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There are a series of decisions being made that we should all take some thought. I just wish more people would have more conversations about having children, especially if your relationship with your partner isn’t that great. I have noticed some family patterns that I want to come to an end, but they first have to end with me, so I won’t inadvertently continue the cycle with my own future children. On top of that you need to make sure your partner recognizes their own family patterns, so you are aware, and vice versa. This creates an environment that is a clean canvas, for a child to really have infinite possibilities, as opposed to be limited to continue what the family cycle. Not all family patterns are negative, but just be aware.

With the plethora of young men out here without fathers present in their household, more men need to step up as mentors. That’s another discussion for another time, though. I look forward to the day that I do decide to have children. I will be everything that my child or children need me to be. I am not by any means disrespecting parents, who ushered children into this world with no discussion, conversation or thought. Life happens, but what I do know is that being a parent is by far the toughest calling of any human being. My decision to wait is how serious I take that calling. If you are called earlier than the average person, it is up to you and your partner to see that your child is taken care of, nurtured, and loved.

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I look forward to your thoughts. Did you wait to have children? Are you waiting now? Are you having the discussions with someone you are serious with?

*Don’t forget to remember Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on this day through community service, fellowship, or however you see fit*

– Alacrity Amir

Comment(22)

  1. Whether you have children unplanned…regardless of what you have to love them both equally and unconditionally. I think a lot of couples should address that issue. And said couple should be ready emotionally, physically, and most of all financially. Because in the end it's not a niece, nephew, or younger sibling where you can always bring them back home it's yours for keeps.
    My recent post 8 Ways To Say It Loud, I’m Black and I’m Proud!

  2. Not planning to have children ever. Talked about it with my girlfriend, she said she's fine with it, though I suspect she's only saying that now and later it may come up again.
    Having kids unplanned is something that needs to be discussed. A lot of people will say it was an accident when it wasn't. None of my friends except one were really "surprised." People need to stop pleading ignorance when they know exactly where they went wrong. All the people I know with kids were not using contraception or not using it properly. Except my one boy who had a broken condom incident. And the moral of that story is to always follow up.
    Condom breaks? Buy a pregnancy test immediately. Talk about your course of action. Plan B pill($50). Use it. Buy better condoms. Drunken night of debauchery? Avoid them in the first place. Make it a point to get a number before (or at least after)you do anything with anyone. Should you find yourself waking up with little to no memory of what happened, try to keep in contact with the person. Going raw? Your pull out method should be flawless. No mistakes. Failure rate should be <0.06%. It's called Damage Control and Prevention. It requires you to be proactive.
    Use maximum protection with people you barely know. If you have a long term partner (that means more than a year for you romantics out there who date someone for a month and think you know everything about them), have a conversation about kids. Do you want them? When? How many? Are you sure you want them with this person? Try not to have sex with people you don't know at all. Try not to have kids with people that have bad habits, irresponsible, perpetually jobless, pathological liars, constantly in legal trouble, abusive, horrible at financial mgmt, crazy people, anyone trained by Houdini, self-described polygamists and players, etc.

    1. okay you are an asshole. seriously. and first of all, its because of idiots like that there are so many unplanned pregnancies in the world not excluding the countless of other extremely dumb ass women out there who don not want kids but youre too dumb to get on birth control or you don't believe in birth control, but yet you hores are doing what it takes to get them. idiots. all of you. and as for you, the "pull out method", I cant believe how many of you stupid ass men believes that that actually works…… THATS HOW YOU GET THE BROAD PREGNANT IN THE FIRST PLACE… who and I mean who was the idiot that told you that there is no sperm in the pre ejaculation of semen.. really? I have nothing else to say.

  3. There are some things that are definitely within our power. having children is one of them. I'm not going to police anyone's bedroom, but if unprotected sex is going down just don't be shocked if a lady ends up pregnant. as you said, we're given choices. And it's a damn shame when a child is born into less than stellar circumstances over the selfish decision to have unprotected sex when the two participants weren't fit for children. To answer the question, i do want children and i am waiting. In the perfect world, I won't have children til i'm married. I need to be with a woman I deem as fit to be a great mom to my child.

  4. I wish I would have waited to have a child for the simple fact that I didn't want my child to grow up without two loving parents in the same household. Don't get me wrong I love my daughter with all of my heart and at one time I did have love for her mother, but things just didn't work out. Do I regret making poor choices that resulted in a daughter? Not really…but I will definitely do things differently from here on out.

    My recent post Tuesday Morning

    1. I hope you're not beating yourself up about it. I know tons of people who did everything the right way, 100% by the book and ended up divorcing or enduring loveless marriages as a result. In life, there's never a guarantee. Just have to do the best with the cards you were dealt (or the cards that we deal ourselves out of our own imperfections).

      1. the story of my life…i stopped at 1 child….my husband and I are got divorced…he chose to be a dead beat dad (no involvement with the child whatsoever, doesn't pay child support) and that was enough for me to not have anymore children. My daughter is now 10 years and the same thing is still going on…I chose to keep my legs closed mostly and or use protection because it's a struggle being a single parent with a military background moving from place to place with no friends or family mainly raising a child while working and going to school full time…yeah I'm a sexless individual but I haven't gotten pregnant since or caught any stds…children are a choice and in most cases blessings. Parenthood is a rewarding experience that is tough (it does take a whole village to raise a child), but when both parents are involved it makes it easier for the child and the parents alike…

  5. Black women are definitely the worst mothers/women out here. I feel sorry for the dudes who get trapped by these females. Brace yourselves fellas. Impregnating a black chick is the worse! They’re crazy, irresponsible, delusional and sick. Not to mention they have the highest HIV/Aids rate in the country. They are not fit for motherhood. If you men don’t wanna listen, you will have to learn the hard way. Stop sleeping with black women!

    1. so go sleep with a white, non Hispanic, Hispanic or Asian woman and still catch AIDS..all you have to do is have unprotected sex….they're not immune you know…p. s. all races of women have the capability to be crazy, delusional, irresponsible or unfit parents

    2. is your mother black? is your sister black? is your grandmother black? is your aunt black?…. just exactly who the hell do you think you are? what, you think you some kind of prize or something? that a non African american woman would be better off if she had an ignorant asshole like you on your arm??? I bet your black mother must be proud that she breed another ignorant black man, as if the world doesn't already have enough of you idiots roaming around in it. but seriously though, what makes you think that any other woman would be lucky and blessed to have you on her arm? what do you have to bring to any womans table? how do you know that the white womans daddy and family wont mind having little niggers in there family? and one more thing…….. if you men would keep yalls dick in yalls pants and stop bending over men and then coming home to youre wife/girlfriend/fiancé an then bending us over, we wouldn't have HIV/AIDS to begin with you dumb SOB. who the hell do you think we getting it from stupid mf.

    3. Highest rates of HIV, eh? I wonder whom they got it from? I mean, especially since not all who come on the site to make unsavory comments about black women aren't trolls or non-black.

  6. @geehooker

    Of course that’s the same ol’ rhetoric. Whenever someone says anything bad about black females, you automatically assume they’re non-black or a troll. You do understand that everyone does not like most of you black females right? Many brothers can attest to the same thing. Unfortunately, many are too afraid to come out and say it. There are three things you can do for me miss. You can either:

    A) Get back to reading madam noire and jezebel articles

    B) Get your spaced out eyed, pasty clown face back in the kitchen or,

    C) Get back to sucking my nuts.

    You choose.

  7. While I agree with some of what's being said in the comments, I do notice that no one wants to point out that the final and most important choice: to bring kids into the world in the first place. I hear y'all about contraception and all, but did I miss the session of Congress where they passed a law overturning roe vs. wade, or that adoptions are now outlawed, or better still that women who get pregnant HAVE to give birth period. I'm not bashing, I'm just attempting to point out something that gets ignored in these discussions. I will conclude by pointing out that women have 2 legal options out of parenthood, men have virtually none. A fact that gets overlooked when we discuss baby mammas/daddies, deadbeats, and child support.

    1. It has become taboo to question people's choices regarding children, family, and relationships. No one should be shamed by society but we've ended up at the opposite end where certain people can't be questioned. And in the black community this doesn't just affect family planning. We have to ask why this is and how it got this way.

      People will pretend that there are no choices to avoid taking responsibility for an action. When asked why she had sex with an irresponsible partner and decided to go forward with the pregnancy, she'll say that she didn't have a choice and that what happens, happens. That's a cop out. I can use that excuse for literally anything I do. The first part of learning from a mistake is admitting that you made one in the first place. Many people won't do that. They'll pretend everything is ok although they know very well they are not ready for a child. So abortion or adoption comes off the table because they think they can handle it or that guy who won't claim his child will magically turn into the father of the year. Are there some exceptions? Yes, but they're just that, exceptions.

      Also another thing is that people need to have the conversation about a course of action during a pregnancy. Family and friends will avoid talking to someone about that but after it's all said and done want to come out and start questioning the person for having the kid. Why wait til after the fact? Especially with teenagers and young adults. No one wants to ask the serious questions. Are you ready? Do you have a plan? Where is the father? Are you sure he's going to step up? Who's going to help you if you have this kid? Can you both take care of this kid? Does the father know that paying child support without ever seeing the kid is still being a bad father? And press for honest answers. If people dealt with reality sooner rather than later, then maybe people could make better decisions for themselves and future kids. This could be helped if people could told all their options instead of what they want to hear or want them to hear.

  8. This post really hit me. I was involved in an “unplanned pregnancy” at the age of 27 with someone I had only known 4 months. This totally turned my life around and took me down a rough and unplanned path. I made the decision to have a vasectomy at 27. I vowed that I would have a choice and I made my own choice. I had no voice and no input in the pregnancy at all. I got the call and her made was made up at that moment. No discussion even took place about parenthood and raising a child. Now at 31 I must say I am so glad I made the choice I did at 27. I love my daughter, its all good. But I definitely don’t regret the decision made to ensure I don’t have anymore. I think it is a responsible move on the part of men if they know for a fact that is not a road they want to travel.

    1. These are the stories that don't get told. All we hear is about how we need to use condoms and all that, but that's just a tip of the iceberg of this subject. Men and Women CHOOSE to have sex, so they should both be able to CHOOSE whether to bring kids into this messy world.

  9. I was engaged when I had my first and only pregnancy.

    Produced two kids with an excellent father. Our marriage didn't work out but we co-parent and speak almost everyday. There wasn't ever a lapse in our co-parenting relationship even while we were fighting over our break-up.

    With that said, I have no plans to have another child. It such a large commitment with another person. Yes, marriage is a commitment as well, but had we been married and didn't have kids, we could just part. Since we have children, my ex is very much ingrained within my life. I can't imagine going through this again with another person. So I choose not to.

    It does get annoying when people act all shocked like I'm required to have more because I'm still sort of young. "What if you fall in love?" Falling in love is not a legitimate reason to have a child on its own. There are many other factors involved in planning to have a child and raising him.

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