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Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Why do you/some people have feelings of serious resentment towards children?

Asked by Simone_De_Beauvoir (38873 points ) August 24th, 2011

Inspired by the conversations towards the end of this q but also by many anti-kids answers on Fluther. As I say, I would be the last person to imply anyone needs to have kids just because that’s what many in society do, so this question isn’t about whether with child or without is better.

I just want to understand what experiences have brought you or those people you know who only think of kids as dirty brats to think that way. This question echoes a recent question about thoughts people might have about hating animals and how others reflect on those kinds of feelings.

Again, realistically speaking, not everyone likes kids. I just want to know if you think people should like kids or whether you think there is some psychobabble (which I take with a lot of grains of salt) behind those emotions that make people truly dislike children. I don’t want to put forth a notion that everyone who had a bad childhood or issues with parents will dislike kids since just as many of us who had same do like kids and are perhaps acting out our own psychological issues by having kids. So it’s not about that…

Just want to understand emotions I don’t understand. I don’t think my feelings towards kids changed because I had kids though I am more tolerant of random babies screaming on the bus or what have you. I always liked kids, I guess or felt neutral about them. I want to know how you get from feeling neutral about them to feeling negatively about them, especially if you don’t have kids and never plan on having kids yourself. Please be civil.

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159 Answers

JilltheTooth's avatar

GQ @Simone_De_Beauvoir , I’m curious, too.

KatawaGrey's avatar

I have always wondered this myself. Many people seem to think that kids are a whole different species who all act exactly alike, so they decide they hate all children no matter what. Anyone who takes the time to get know some kids would know that they are all very different people.

There are also a lot of people who have the idea that because someone chose to have children, they have no right to any kind of special treatment, and then get pissed when parents bring their children out in public. Many anti-kid folks feel that once you have children, you should just stay locked up in your house with them until they are eighteen when, apparently, children magically become acceptable members of society.

Many people also think that parents get special treatment in terms of work. If a kid is sick or just needs a parent with them for something, then the parents get the time off work, whether they ask in advance or use a sick day or leave work early. This frosts a lot of people which really bothers me. The way I see it, it is a family member who needs your help, whether that family member is a child, a parent, a sibling, a spouse, etc. I bet all of these people who complain about parents getting “special treatment” to be with their kids when their kids are in need don’t hesitate to ask for time off work if their spouse, sibling or parent needs their help.

tom_g's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir – Great Question! I often wonder the same thing.

Here’s my attempt at psychobabble…

We are kids, and some point we want to be “big”, so we start making fun of certain behaviors as “like a baby”, etc.
This turns into the “immature” tag when we’re adolescents.
Then something interesting happens in college – there appears to be a minor intentional regression. We’re now living away from home and have developed a sense of what freedom means, so we start experimenting with all kinds of childish behavior and drugs that put us in that state.
Then we graduate college and try to be adults again. For some people, they feel that they have lost that childlike lust for life, and almost resent seeing children enjoying life.

Ok, I’m talking out of my ass. But maybe some of it’s true. Children are capable of things that adults can work a lifetime trying to get back. Try to stay in the moment for more than 30 seconds. Meditation and other practices can help bring us in touch with the present. But children live there. They are able to experience things that adults can only reminisce about.

Kids kick ass.

[Disclaimer: I have 3 of these beasts, so obviously I am biased.]

Cruiser's avatar

Thankfully I cannot think of such a person I personally know but I think a lot of it may pertain to an overall erosion of respect the younger generation of today has pretty much across the board. I do see behavior in kids out and about that is frankly shocking to me and I could see how that would foster a disdain in some who see these same things I see. I will add support to this notion in that I often hear from wait staff, teachers, clerks etc on just how well behaved my kids are. They almost seem astonished by kids that are generally courteous and respectful.

nikipedia's avatar

When you are forced to interact with other people’s kids in public, you tend to get stuck with all of the crap (screaming, being in the way, making messes) without any of the positives (hearing they love you, seeing them succeed at something).

I don’t really have a problem with kids, but I often have huge problems with parents. There is a smugness and sense of self-righteous entitlement that many (certainly not all!) parents carry around—that their lives have more meaning because they have children, that special exceptions should be made for them and their children, that they can inconvenience other people because of their children.

And then there was the time a few weeks ago when my friend sent me a picture of his kid pooping, and I wondered what the f parenting does to your brain.

jonsblond's avatar

It does seem more acceptable to dislike children (at least it seems this way here at Fluther) than it is to dislike animals/pets. wtf is wrong with this picture? GQ. I will be lurking now.

Qingu's avatar

For me it’s really just a logical extension of my general misanthropy. I mean kids are basically stupider, meaner, more annoying and more selfish versions of regular human beings, a group of entities that I already widely despise and wish to disassociate myself from.

Kids are also less cute than cats, dogs (most mammals, in fact) and require far more maintenance at comparable ages.

It’s also an attempt to consciously bat down any flashes of paternal instinct.

Edit: I do think, and hope, that at least some people should like kids. In particular, parents and teachers. They’re just not for me.

Scooby's avatar

What @nikipedia said :-/ Lol…... Bollocks to that…..

CWOTUS's avatar

I love my kids, and I love kids in general. I ran a recreational youth soccer league for several years (while coaching two separate teams), and you can’t do that if you don’t like kids.

On the other hand… on my recent return flight from India I there were two kids in the seats behind me, and for the last two hours of the flight they kicked my and my neighbor’s seat backs continually. I wanted to cut their damn heads off.

Blackberry's avatar

Even though he said it in a very mean way, Scooby was kind of showing the same feelings some of us have. I definitely don’t hate kids at all; I think they’re cute and innocent, too. But they’re realistically not conducive to what I feel is a healthy, fun, relaxing, and free lifestyle.

I think about how hard it is for a lot of people to “make it”, then I think about how much harder it would be if I had a kid. And what if it doesn’t work out with the mother? It’ll just be one of those bad situations where I pay child support and do the visitation thing. I’m still young so my chances of surviving a traditional nuclear family are smaller because I don’t want that.

And just like nikipedia and Qingu stated, kids can be real incompetent and downright chaotic. I like cleaning my place and having it stay clean. I don’t know if I could handle my emotions if someone drew on my walls.

Qingu's avatar

@jonsblond, I wonder if that has something to do with the uncanny valley. Maybe not in terms of social acceptability, but the base feelings involved. You know a cat or a dog is very far away from a human, can’t be expected to act as a human, so you judge the animal by a different set of standards.

Whereas a kid is somewhere in the nether-region between “something else” and “fully human.” They slowly change into what we consider to be fully human, i.e. an intelligent person with rights and responsibilities. And just like the “almost human” zombies and not-quite human robots and CGI, that especially freaks some people out.

Blackberry's avatar

@jonsblond Lol. I was helping collect money at a picnic for big brothers and big sisters, and there was another booth there collecting money for animals. The lady I was with went on a rant because she says people always give more to the animal causes lol.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Qingu Huh, usually when I talk about the uncanny valley, a lot of nerdery is involved (like discussing sex robots), not kids, lol.

Aethelflaed's avatar

Some of it is probably that everyone promises you that you’ll love your own little darling, it’ll be different with your own precious one. But this obviously isn’t true; there are tons of parents who don’t love their kids very much, who don’t love them enough, who do things more out of a sense of duty than love, who love them but also resent them for unintentionally ruining their chances of having the life they wanted. You don’t do abusive things out of a purely loving place, and the world isn’t exactly short on abusers. So then it’s not actually a guarantee that the buggers and screaming and lack of sleep will be ok, or that your kids will love you and be grateful afterwards, or that they’ll be there for you when you’re old and senile; in other words, you don’t know that you’ll have good stuff to balance out the bad stuff.

SpatzieLover's avatar

Emotional immaturity, on the part of the child dis-liker.

KatawaGrey's avatar

I think it’s interesting that many people say they hate kids because all kids are annoying, mean, gross, etc. No one says they hate adults because all adults are loud, rude, and elitist, which many of us are.

@Aethelflaed: Just how much abuse do you think goes on? Believe it or not, but most parents don’t abuse their children.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@KatawaGrey And I wonder if some of the dislike has to be with discomfort of all bodily issues. Kids crystallize our animality.

tom_g's avatar

@Qingu: “For me it’s really just a logical extension of my general misanthropy.”

To me this seems to be the most honest answer.

Aethelflaed's avatar

@KatawaGrey Enough that it’s still not absolutely definite that everyone who has a child will love them. I also think there’s quite a lot of abuse that isn’t as severe as shoving your child into an oven that most people don’t consider.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@tom_g I don’t know ‘cause I dislike a whole bunch of people really and a lot of humanity but not kids.

nikipedia's avatar

@KatawaGrey, I think it has to do with having these things thrust upon you unwillingly. Most adults treat strangers courteously or minimize interactions, even adults who are otherwise heinously evil. They are not going to run smack into you, shoot you with a water gun while you’re out running, or rub their boogers on your clothes. They will just be rude and elitist in their heads. (I am not sure I agree that most or even many adults are loud.)

tom_g's avatar

@nikipedia: “that special exceptions should be made for them and their children, that they can inconvenience other people because of their children.”

Hold this thought. The interesting thing is that from a parent’s perspective this makes little sense. In fact, it appears to me that it’s quite the opposite. Children are considered a % of a whole person – or maybe just a pet.

KatawaGrey's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir: I think you’re on to something there. Kids do not play by all of the neat and tidy and constricting rules that society has dictated so we are reminded that we are, in fact, animals and no better or worse than a dog or cow or chicken.

@nikipedia: Clearly, you have never worked in a mall.

tom_g's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir – Disliking people and disliking humanity are two different things. To dislike humanity and to see seedling humans running around must be a nightmare. He (or she) even sees dogs and cats as the cuter of the species.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@nikipedia You mentioned that you never get to experience the positive things associated with children. I experience positive kids all the time, babies that aren’t mine, children that wave hello, etc. How is it possible that only their negative aspects are on display all the time but not their positive aspects?

tom_g's avatar

[edit]

KatawaGrey's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir: The other day at work, there was this little boy who ran around putting everything back in it’s right place. It was so cute to watch him clean up like that. Also, it meant I had less work to do. :)

nikipedia's avatar

@tom_g, I can think of a couple specific circumstances. There is one that drives me nuts, and every time I try to remind myself that they are not trying to inconvenience people, but probably have no reasonable alternative.

We have a very nice farmer’s market near my house on Saturday mornings. It has gotten very popular and tends to be very full. The aisles are relatively narrow, and it is difficult to accomodate all the people who come each week.

Enter parents with strollers. The strollers are so large, they block the aisles and back up foot traffic, sometimes in both directions. Parents leave the strollers in the aisles while browsing for the perfect organic nectarine, and sometimes use the strollers as shopping carts while their kids run around knocking over fruit displays and further impeding foot traffic.

This is hugely inconvenient, and the assumption on the part of the parents seems to be that everyone else at the market should just be accommodating of their stroller needs.

And for what it’s worth, I hope you understand how condescending your last quip could be interpreted to be.

@Simone_De_Beauvoir, I appreciate a cute baby smile as much as the next person, but it pales in comparison to the 9 hour flight I took with a screaming baby in the seat next to me.

Hibernate's avatar

Not trying to be rude or anything but it’s just because they can. Or just because it’s Friday. There’s a bunch of answers here and people can say whatever they want. It’s not like one needs a particular reason.

tom_g's avatar

@nikipedia – I removed the last quip. I honestly didn’t mean it as condescending. I was attempting to say that I understood where you are coming from to some degree because I felt it. Honestly.

Qingu's avatar

I wonder if I am just lacking whatever gene(s) makes you think infants of our own species are cute. Because there is no way you could convince me that a baby is 1/100 as cute as my cat, or a red panda, or even a polar bear who might conceivably try to kill and eat me. I think babies are weird and gross.

tom_g's avatar

@nikipedia: “Enter parents with strollers”

I completely agree with you! Strollers are not cool in my circle. Carry your babies (in slings, carriers, etc) for f*ck’s sake! Don’t even get me started with head flattening problem we have in this country.

There are progressive parents who look at the stroller culture like we do fast food and over-consumption.

Anyway, is that it? Is this stroller thing the special accommodations thing you speak of?

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@nikipedia Well sure, who’d like that?! You think parents like to be next to screaming babies for 9 hours? No one is supposed to like that, it’s an evolutionary thing to react to that kind of thing, to make sure the screaming stops, that’s why we have that ability during childhood, to scream when our needs aren’t met.

A separate question to those who dislike kids: Does it feel like there is a clear detachment between your childhood and your adulthood? Does it feel like you don’t see yourself in children, your younger self?

KatawaGrey's avatar

@nikipedia: So you hate an entire group of people based on the actions of a few some of which aren’t even the fault of the group you hate?

Qingu's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir, I don’t feel a clear detachment; in fact I usually still feel like a kid. When I do grown-up things it often feels like I’m “pretending” or “dressing up.” I am looking forward to the next Zelda game with a glee that could be described as “childish.”

I know there’s this idea that kids are blessed with a clean slate with which to better feel wonder and awe, but I don’t think I feel less wonder and awe now than I did when I was a kid. I was a a pretty picky and cynical little fucker though.

Aethelflaed's avatar

For me, at least some of it is just that it seems like you have to use stronger words than you necessarily actually mean in order to get people who love babies and being a parent to leave you alone. So many parents are so happy with being a parent, and it’s built into our culture that you have babies and love them, it’s just what you do, that people don’t really believe you unless you use strong words. They say “Oh, well, you’ll change your mind as you get older”, because obviously this is a silly phase and not a real way of seeing things.

nikipedia's avatar

@tom_g, the water gun example mentioned previously was a true story. I was on a tough run and trying to hit a specific time, and this kid looks up at me, grins, and shoots me in the face with a water gun. His parents looked at me like, “Aw, isn’t he precious!?”

@Simone_De_Beauvoir, the difference is, the parents can choose not to put the child on the airplane. I cannot remove their child from the airplane.

@KatawaGrey, can we please chill a little. If you see my original quip, nowhere in it did I say I hate all kids, and I specifically said that I have more of a problem with some (let me quote myself, “certainly not all”) parents. I’m trying to answer the question in a way that might be helpful and am starting to feel like a punching bag here.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

How much does all of this have to do with notions of biopower and control? How much does all of this have to do with having kids been seen and not heard, same with the homeless and those mentally disabled? Is this all really about moving through the world w/no annoyance?

I don’t think any of us (especially those of us living in cities) move through the world w/o annoyance, I get murderous on the subways and when people fight over mundane shit. I have zero patience for a lot of adults, much more patience for children since they just haven’t been banged enough on the head about ‘propriety’. I see a lot of parents making their kids do things for the sake of other people. I disagree that my entire point in parenting is to make sure my kids don’t inconvenience anyone else.

@nikipedia Well, no we can’t. We can’t afford to not take our kids. That’s kind of ridiculous for us, as a family, to travel without our kids…not that we don’t…but when it’s a family trip, it defeats the point to leave them at home.

mangeons's avatar

I’d have to say that I’m not a huge fan of children in general. While I adore my own niece and nephew, most children tend to get on my nerves to be quite honest. It’s nice to see a cute kid and all, but I find it to be just plain rude and inconsiderate when you go out to a restaurant, a play, a movie, etc. and you’re constantly interrupted by a screaming baby, while the parent does nothing to remedy the situation. I understand that it’s not always in their control, but the least they could do is take their kid outside and try to calm them down. I’m not saying I dislike all children, I guess you could say I’m also not a fan of some parents. I don’t have a lot of tolerance for that kind of thing, and I easily get overwhelmed/annoyed by children who are running around screaming, making messes, not listening, etc. It’s not their fault, I know, it’s just in the nature of most children, but it doesn’t really make it any less annoying to me. I find children cute, but I wouldn’t necessarily want to spend a long period of time with them. That may change in the future, but at this point in time that’s my opinion. Maybe someday in the future I’ll have kids and change my mind, maybe not.

Qingu's avatar

I can sympathize with parents who take their kids on airplanes for family vacations.

What I can’t abide by are parents who take infants to movie theaters.

Another line that shouldn’t be crossed: when my fiancée graduated there were at least 30 or 40 parents standing in the back of the auditorium with screaming infants. What the fuck? Why would you ever bring an infant to someone’s graduation ceremony, even if you like and respect that person?

Blackberry's avatar

@Simone_De_BeauvoirIs this all really about moving through the world w/no annoyance?

Not any annoyance at all, just minimizing it, and it doesn’t matter if you have the cleanest, quietest kid, it’s still adding on a lot. I wouldn’t move in with a girlfriend for the same reason. One has to be really ready for that stuff.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Qingu I don’t get that either, sometimes. It’s clear to me that no infant will sit through 2 hours of loud noises and changing lights without freaking out. I mean, I feel like I know that instinctively. Last time we were at the movies, there was a screaming infant and people were so vicious to the parents, who granted should have taken the kid outside. It’s the degree of viciousness that interests me. It’s bizarre how intensely people will blow a load on a kid or their parents? Does it feel like something more acceptable ‘cause the kid nor their parents is as likely to fight back?

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Blackberry What is the ‘a lot’ that the cleanest quietest kid adds? I mean more than those who annoy you on Fluther, let’s say?

tom_g's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir: ” I see a lot of parents making their kids do things for the sake of other people. I disagree that my entire point in parenting is to make sure my kids don’t inconvenience anyone else.”

Yes! I see many parents who go through the most ridiculous shit just to make it appear that their kids are not kids.

Many people seem to think that we’re not actually animals with developmental stages. Toddlers can be annoying shits to non-toddlers sometimes. So the f*ck what? Who is developmentally more capable of dealing with developmental diversity, the toddler with shit in his pants or the “adult” reading the New York Times?

mangeons's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir People get angry because they came to watch a movie, not listen to an infant scream. They basically just wasted their money, and they can’t do anything about the baby, but the parent can. It’s extremely rude and inconsiderate for the parents to just sit there and let their baby cry because they feel like there’s nothing they can do, that they shouldn’t have to do anything about it; therefore ruining the experience for everyone else there who didn’t bring a baby to the movie, and it’s unfair to those people. Inconsiderate parents can be just as annoying, if not more annoying than kids, and they actually can control their actions, unlike kids.

Blackberry's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Well of course the best kids still have meltdowns. That thing where they won’t eat their food, missing guys or girls’ night outings (which isn’t the kids fault), the bills of course, the stress of wanting them to be the best they can be…maybe annoyance wasn’t the right word, but stress? Having to listen to the music and cartoons…..I know it all sounds very selfish, but that’s why I said one has to be ready for it.

nikipedia's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir, not to be a bitch, but just to recap: you think you’re entitled to a family vacation requiring airplane travel with small infants, and then you wonder why people have a problem with kids.

I’m not saying that you necessarily shouldn’t take plane trips with your kids, but don’t get all confused about why people find them annoying.

Blackberry's avatar

@Simone_De_BeauvoirDoes it feel like something more acceptable ‘cause the kid nor their parents is as likely to fight back?

Not at all, it has to do with what you guys said about not inconveniencing people. I would also think it common sense to not take my kid to a movie theater if they weren’t old enough. It shows disregard for everyone around you.

jonsblond's avatar

@mangeons I’ve gone to a movie and had it ruined for me by adults who were in the audience. A woman was sitting in front of me and was texting during the entire movie. The light from here phone distracted me during the entire movie. I’ve started to resent adults because of this. ;)

mangeons's avatar

@jonsblond I’m not saying adults can’t be annoying too. I’m equal opportunity here. :-)

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@nikipedia I feel I am no less or more entitled to a vacation. With or without my kids. My kids, whether they were infants or not, didn’t scream on planes. When they did, I did apologize to those around me, since it is closed quarters but I didn’t feel like I needed to burst into flames in shame. In general, you can’t actually believe that people shouldn’t travel with kids. Sometimes, people must (it’s a revolutionary concept) move from place to place, using air travel. You can’t tell people they can’t because you find kids annoying.

SpatzieLover's avatar

Children are only as annoying as the adult counterparts they are accompanied by.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@SpatzieLover People have strong negative feelings towards parents, as well sometimes, even if the kids are behaving. It has to do (sometimes) with jealousy and things they don’t have. I’ve had a number of women stare at me with dislike when they saw my kids and my husband and I playing or laughing or whatever.

KatawaGrey's avatar

@mangeons: I agree that people should take their babies out of the theater if they start to cry, but there are many inconsiderate people that go to movie theaters who don’t have children. I can’t tell you how many times a movie-going experience has been ruined for me because an adult has been on their cell phone or been talking or kicking the back of my chair. These things are also preventable but seem to get much less attention than children in similar situations.

What I want to know is where are all these screaming airplane babies? I’ve never been stuck on an airplane with a screaming child. I’m not saying it doesn’t happen, but every time I have flown, there have been several children on the plane. Should these kids be banned too because you don’t like that a few times you’ve flown, a baby has cried?

@nikipedia: Unless you fly first class, your flight is not going to be comfortable. I’d rather have a loud child next to me on a plane than a creepy guy hitting on me, or someone blasting their music, or someone trying to talk to me when I’m trying to read my book or talk to my mother. At least if an unhappy child is sitting near me, I can help the parents calm the child down.

@Simone_De_Beauvoir: Oh, didn’t you get the memo? Being outside with your children and your husband is flaunting your happiness and fertility to unhappy single people who are having trouble getting pregnant. Shame on you!~

mangeons's avatar

@KatawaGrey I’ve been on an airplane exactly twice in my life, on the way to and back from Florida when I was five years old, so I can’t really attest to whether there are screaming children on airplanes or not.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@KatawaGrey Right, I agree. There can be a group of people making comments throughout the entire movie and they’re loud and dumb and you just want them to vanish but the special vitriol is only for crying kids. People will shush those other people too but not with the same hatred in their voice. As for the memo, I get that it’s hard for many people (this has to do with race and class) to see our family, they think we’re the rich white hetero breeders. They of course make superficial judgments and don’t know how far we are from that.

SpatzieLover's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Yes, I’ve experienced the same “look” along with negative comments. Both my husband & my son say “I love you” to me a lot, loudly in public. Countless times, other women have come up and said “Just wait ‘til he’s a teenager and he screams I hate you!…”

Luckily, the positive comments have balanced the negative a bit.

JilltheTooth's avatar

I find it curious that so many cite airplane travel as the ultimate “ruined by children” event. In my world, airplane travel is a method whereby one gets from point A to point B, not the ultimate destination in itself. Really, I’ve been driven to distraction by a screaming baby on a flight, too, but I remember that the baby is in some kind of serious distress to be yelling like that. I’ve also been driven to distraction by a foul smelling adult sitting next to me. Really, lobby the airlines to have child-free flights, or perhaps travel at a time when families are less likely to. It’s not unnatural to have children.

jonsblond's avatar

I’m thinking the airplane and movie theater experiences are lame excuses and not getting at the truth here. just a thought

tom_g's avatar

@jonsblond – bingo

I’m getting the sense that people feel victimized by the children in public spaces. They seem to feel that they have a right to be free from younger humans when in public.

ucme's avatar

Maybe it’s to validate their decision to remain childless, I dunno. Seeing children as universally “evil” being a nice way out, as it were. Of course, as all parents know, children are awesome, adorable, loving creatures & not in the least bit evil, well okay, maybe sometimes ;¬}

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@tom_g Isn’t that kind of thing usually looked down upon in ‘civilized society’? Yet we, as parents, seem to be apologetic rather than indignant. Or we go back and forth. But if you think about it, if the same was said of queer people (as it is, often), we’re a lot more indignant than ever apologetic.

JilltheTooth's avatar

I’m thinking that @jonsblond just may have the right of it. I think it’s much more honest to not want them because A) you had to raise and care for many younger sibs when you were younger. Yes, I can totally see not wanting kids after that. B) The stress involved is huge, and should be taken into consideration, especially if you have issues with stress. C) Your concern about the financial aspect is a major factor, there is a finacial burden that comes with kids, responsible assessment of that is a good thing. D) You don’t want to alter your lifestyle to accommodate child-rearing; fair enough. You shouldn’t then.

But toddler snot? Really? I don’t have the exact figures at my fingertips but I’m pretty sure that the incidence of catching, say, dengue fever from toddler snot is, well, zero.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@JilltheTooth Right, that’s why I wanted to explore bodily functions. This way, people hate the young and the old similarly – both have uncontrollable functions that makes people realize that they’re close to death or that they have functions too. Perhaps, people who are grossed out by what our bodies do are more likely to dislike kids and the elderly. Again, I must say this has to do with control issues.

JilltheTooth's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir : Every pet I’ve ever had, and my daughter all poop. And dare I say it…me, too. I applaud all those who can go for a life without dealing with poo and snot and noise, I plan to retire where they are some day!

tom_g's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir – right. “Just don’t flaunt it in our faces!”

I have an idea. We’re all out there trying to live our lives. Nobody is an extra in this little play of ours. We can walk around trying to make people act the way we want them to, or we can accept the fact that we’re all different. Race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, ability, age – none of these should piss you off when you see these variables expressed in public.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

So what does everyone think? Are people who dislike kids more likely to dislike animals? Are people who dislike kids more likely to dislike the elderly?

mangeons's avatar

@JilltheTooth I can honestly say, at my age, my biggest problem with children is that I find many of them to be annoying. I’m only fifteen, so like I said, it’s very likely that my opinion will change with time. I do love my own niece and nephew, and love hanging out with them, so it’s very possible that I’d love to have kids as well. I’ve never said I don’t want kids, it’s just that at this point in time I’m not particularly a fan of them.

JilltheTooth's avatar

@mangeons : When I was 15 I was forced from time to time to babysit and I hated it, and as a result, most little kids. It wasn’t until much later that I realized that when you have to force someone to babysit, it means that no sitter with a choice in the matter would touch ‘em! 40 plus years later, and I still haven’t forgiven my mother for making me sit for those awful brats!!! :-)

JilltheTooth's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir : I honestly haven’t seen a correlation in the two, personally, because I know people that are appalled at the thought of handling children and their inherent icky-tude, who have chosen to be caregivers for the elderly, and their level of gentleness, tolerance and compassion are unmatched.

ucme's avatar

I’ve changed many a nappy/diaper in the dead of night, eyes aching to be closed. Just when baby’s bottom is all clean, dry, & talced up…....boom, my little boy’s tail rises & he pee’s with an arc capable of hitting my face, nice!! Am I deterred? Feeling sorry for myself? No I tell ya no!! Just thought i’d add this for no good reason.

raven860's avatar

Kids require attention and caring for. I think people who dislike kids are trying to runaway from the responsibility. I like little kids to the point when they are fun and act adorable. I can’t handle tantrums well. I think I like hanging out with kids becasue they live in a nearly care-free world with problems which are usually very easily solvable. They are happy people! I think thats what attracts me to them the most.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@raven860 I don’t know if that’s it since they actually don’t have to have that responsibility because they’re not having kids.

KatawaGrey's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir: I think a big problem is that there is such a huge pressure to have children in most societies. If someone doesn’t want to have children, then they are perceived as having something wrong with them so they react defensively. This sort of warps and starts to extend beyond simply defensiveness. If they can find all sorts of reasons and justifications as to why kids are horrible creatures, then they no longer feel bad about society’s pressure on them to have children.

The way I see it, anyone who hates children shouldn’t have children. They would probably be horrible parents anyway.

Blackberry's avatar

To summarize: it’s not really about being annoyed by them in public or on airplanes. It’s really only about the hardships that come with raising them, mentally and financially. All the other stuff are reasons that help reinforce our decision. It’s a bad economy and it’s already hard enough for some people to get free time to watch their favorite show or go hiking in between working.

linguaphile's avatar

Umm… why are kids, with their few years of existence, being given the accountability for lazy parenting??? There are many kids who know how to behave in public (like my daughter) but they’re very rarely noticed or even complimented for that very reason- they are not obvious, while the kids who scream give other kids a bad rap.

When people say they don’t like kids, why do they look at what the kids are doing than what they themselves don’t like. Instead of “Kids are noisy and rude,” why not “I don’t like loud noises.” It doesn’t make sense to me to blame the kids… they’re a product of their environment and respond in very basic and instinctive ways to their environment, while adults can control themselves and make intelligent choices (like taking screaming babies out of performances, movies, etc). The ADULTS are being rude and obnoxious, not the kids.

I didn’t want kids to begin with because of the demands that kids would make on my time and I am not really a caretaker. Taking care of things, people, pets do not come naturally for me. I’m not selfish, I’m overly generous, but my attention span is very self-centered so I know-know-know that I should not own pets, but I had kids and stepped outside of my comfort zone to raise them. They know mama has attention issues, and adjusted. My point is, I know I am not a caretaker, but I’m not going to say I hate kids because of something that’s really part of my personality.

But, my kids NEVER are rude in public. I would drag their tiny butts out of there and give them a what-for if they don’t behave. I’ve gotten compliments frequently on how shockingly well behaved my kids are. It’s not that hard! Teach them right, be considerate of others and take the screaming babies out of the audience.

As for the stroller culture, I absolutely despise going to Disney now for that reason. Stroller-sea. It’s horrible. What happened to letting little legs get some exercise? Mine didn’t have any problems getting all over the park in 1977, and I doubt anatomy has changed that much. Again- parents are being rude. The kids are doing what they’ve been allowed to do.

That being said, I don’t want any more kids because I want more time for my own projects, not because they’re horrible little critters. I have respect for people who consciously decide they don’t want kids for whatever reason, but hey… put the smelly, sticky, noisy part on the adults who aren’t staying on top of things, not the kids.

TexasDude's avatar

I’m not anti-kid, per se, and neither is my mom, but she works in childcare (she is in charge of a day care at a fitness club) and 100% of the kids she works with are the spawn of satan. You wouldn’t believe the horrible things these kids do to each other and to adults. I could take up a whole thread on here with stories.

It’s easy to paint with a broad brush, but the fact that so many of these kids are evil little shits is rather disheartening.

But the thing is, that most of these kids have really shitty parents, so I guess it’s unfair to blame the kids directly. Garbage in, garbage out, and all that jazz.

tom_g's avatar

@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard: “and 100% of the kids she works with are the spawn of satan”

First of all, I get that this is not a representative sample (day care at a fitness club), but really? 100% are the spawn of satan?

I’m curious…how do the child-less people out there believe a non-satanic kid should act? In other words, paint me a picture of a kid who would be ok in your book.

TexasDude's avatar

@tom_g I’ll give you an example of how these kids act, which will be easier than defining how I think kids should act.

One of these kids has chased another boy with scissors before. When he caught him, he climbed on top of him, put the scissors to the other kid’s throat, raised his finger to his lips and went “shhhhhhhhhhhh” before being pulled off by my mum. Another kid slaps the adults in the face and takes great pleasure in demolishing the lego creations of the lone sweet girl (I should have said 99.99%) in the class over and over again. Another kid threatens to kill the other kids all the time… with bombs.

I may not have children, but I don’t think that excludes me from making a judgment that this sort of behavior is unacceptable in children. Would you agree?

And for the record, I’m willing to bet that most of these kids are abused or agged-on by shithead lowlife parents. Where else would they learn this behavior? That’s why I qualified my previous answer with “kids can be assholes, but…”

In relation to this whole question, I think it’s safe to say that it’s easier to target brutish children over their influential parents since the children represent the actual manifestation of the shitty behavior.

tom_g's avatar

@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard: “I’ll give you an example of how these kids act, which will be easier than defining how I think kids should act.”

No. It’s not the same. There are some expectations here that I am interested in hearing about. Please answer the question.

I’ll now read the rest of your post…

tom_g's avatar

@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard: “I may not have children, but I don’t think that excludes me from making a judgment that this sort of behavior is unacceptable in children. Would you agree?”

Of course, but not entirely relevant to this discussion. Where does your resentment towards children come from? Not those kids you hear about from your mom.

Keep_on_running's avatar

I don’t resent, rather I dislike children. It’s a result of my feelings towards the fact that society still regards child-bearing as a woman’s greatest achievement and how “wrong” or “unnatural” it is to be childless as a woman. It angers me, and disliking children is an extension, or result, of that feeling to be completely honest.

Of course the general behaviour and irritation of kids plays an important part too.

linguaphile's avatar

This thread inspired my next question

I wanted to add… when my friend was going through therapy for being raped by her grandpa, then blamed by her mom and grandma, her therapist asked her how old she was when she was raped. Her answer, “11.” How old was her grandpa? “About 55.” The therapist asked her… who is more experienced, knowledgeable and has been on earth long enough to know better, therefore is accountable? Obviously, grandpa.

I think the same principle applies here. 6 month old baby screaming in a movie vs. 25 year old parent…. ahem…. who’s been on earth long enough, has experience, knowledge and maybe come cultural inkling of what’s rude…. the answer????

Unfortunately, like my friend’s mother and grandmother blaming her for being raped, we blame the 6 month old baby. (or the 3 year old toddler, or the 7 year old brat, etc)

I guess what I’m trying to do here is offer a different perspective—if someone resents children, maybe look towards a different source than the kids.

TexasDude's avatar

@tom_g I don’t resent kids. I never said I did. I’m more sad at the state of how many of them seem than anything. Which is really an indictment of parenting, more than anything, as I also mentioned. I’ve had my own experiences with kids to incite these feelings. Neighborhood kids between the ages of 6 and 10 have put screws under my tires, smashed my pumpkin patch, stolen my mail, stolen things from my mom’s car, left trash in my parking space, and so on. When I mention this behavior to others, they share similar stories which lead me to believe that poor behavior is a burgeoning trend among kids.

As for how I think children should behave? I think they should be polite, curious, respectful, yet not foppish, and they shouldn’t climb on other kids and put scissors to their throats, or act like little sociopaths, in general.

Blackberry's avatar

@SpatzieLover

Emotional immaturity, on the part of the child dis-liker.

Just wondering, but does this mean that every emotionally mature adult will eventually want, or should have kids?

tom_g's avatar

@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard – I get this. If you are exposed to 10 children and 6 of them steal your mail, etc. You might feel a bit concerned about “kids”. Are you sure, however, that the actions of a small percentage might be informing your opinion about an entire part of our population? In other words, what is that percentage? My father was a racist, but claimed to be justified because he had been robbed or beaten twice by African Americans.

Many kids are the way you describe – however, they are kids. Kids are not small adults. I just want to make sure people aren’t expecting them to be adults. And more importantly, would we want kids to be mini adults if they could?

tom_g's avatar

@Blackberry – Not everyone will want children. But there is no denying biology and our desire (crazy or not) to produce children. There is a developmental aspect to this.

SpatzieLover's avatar

No @Blackberry, it means they will respect them for what they are. Children are growing into our society.

linguaphile's avatar

@Blackberry I agree, not everyone should have kids. People who don’t want to deal with the responsibilities should not have kids and those that are mature and self aware enough to make that decision, I applaud them. That’s rational. I should not have a pet… if I chose to have a pet, I’m doing the pet, society and myself a disservice. Simple.

The ones who just hate kids without any real analysis or just because they’re annoying are (I’m repeating myself) not putting fault towards the right source. To me, they’re ignoring the laws of cause and effect. Hating kids themselves because they’re horrible little critters, to me, shows that the person hasn’t been able to see the big picture yet.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

So, here’s a question? Do people who dislike kids not want kids because they dislike kids or do they dislike kids because they don’t want kids?

Blackberry's avatar

@SpatzieLover Oh of course. There’s a difference between hating kids and not wanting them.

SpatzieLover's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir I didn’t want to have a child until my late 20’s. I have always loved and cared for children. I babysat/nannied for over 20yrs. To me, it always comes down to the parenting/family relationship with the child.

For the dis-likers, one thing I learned long ago: Behavior is communication. If a child seems disturbed or is volatile or obnoxiously rude, most likely the situation that child is in is worse than you can imagine.

tom_g's avatar

I’m checking out for awhile (leaving work and going away until next week). My final nonsensical words…

We no longer get offended at having to dine with African Americans.
The civilized among us no longer request that homosexuals stop being homosexuals when in public.
We don’t resent the physically-disabled for taking up more space, getting the good parking spot, or slowing you down as you walk down the sidewalk.
We don’t resent the elderly being all elderly.
If a developmentally-disabled adult is guided through a public market, we don’t expect that person to act any differently.
We even embrace cultural diversity.

However, when it comes to kids, we seem to think that a kid being a kid in public is unacceptable. A kid is a human being in a particular developmental stage. That stage includes some amazing things, and some terribly annoying things. One thing that stage is not, however, is a fully-mature adult. To expect a kid to be an adult is unreasonable.

Many of the complaints I have seen above either are really complaints about the adult parents, or complaints that could easily be applied to the general population of adults.

As for the adults who are not quite fond of kids, do you consider yourself strong? Not physically strong, but strong as in “I can go out into the world and handle it the way it is.” If so, how do you reconcile this with the fact that you’re incapable of being in public with a being who is not doing what you want them to do? Humans start off as kids. That’s just the way it is. It’s like having a tantrum every time it rains.

Blackberry's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir I don’t dislike kids, and I think you guys are wanting to hear from people that specifically do not like kids, so I can’t tell you how they feel. I’m only approaching it from the mental and economic aspect. I used to “hate” kids for the annoyance reason, but not anymore.

I could end up really wanting kids in 10 years, I don’t know, but I do know that I feel very passionate about not having kids until every condition is met, and if I don’t meet those conditions, I don’t want one.

augustlan's avatar

[mod says] This is our Question of the Day!

Qingu's avatar

@tom_g, I worry that the two sides in this question are talking past each other. I don’t think anyone, even the most virulent anti-kid folks like me, would expect parents not to bring kids with them on public streets or on airplanes. I think kids can be annoying on airplanes, but so can adults; air travel itself is annoying.

But movie theaters, plays, and graduation ceremonies? Why would you bring a kid, particularly an infant, to something that the child has no chance of understanding, appreciating, or enjoying, but nevertheless has almost 100% chance of annoying everyone else there?

I’m trying to look at this apart from my unwarm feelings towards children, because I feel the same way about pets (who I love). I have no problem with people who bring pets in public places like streets and on planes, and I wish pets would be welcomed in stores as well. But why would you bring your dog to a movie or to someone’s graduation ceremony? The dog gets nothing out of it, and there’s a strong possibility that lots of people around you will get annoyed or at least distracted by it.

As for comparing society’s acceptance of children to African Americans or old people, I think that’s an unfair, or at best mismatched, comparison. An adult black person has the same capacity for reason and responsibility as a white person.

Old people and mentally disabled? Society does have different expectations for them, because they have different capacities for cognition and responsibility than “normal” people do. Old people with dementia and mentally disabled people with a five year old’s intelligence are not allowed to drive cars. Should people get upset when they see old people or mentally handicapped in graduation ceremonies and movie theaters? It obviously depends on the old/disabled person involved, but if the person’s cognitive capacity and ability to remain quiet and respectful is comparable to that of an infant, I think people absolutely have the right to get upset.

nikipedia's avatar

For what it’s worth, I think it’s pretty lame to ask people why they don’t like kids and then attack them for giving a straightforward answer.

casheroo's avatar

I’m obviously not “anti-kid” But I do not really like most other peoples kids. Mine can annoy me in certain ways, but they have to be taught to basically not annoy people. If a child is doing something they shouldn’t, then you teach them not to.
But I also adhere to as gentle (and patient when I can lol) way of parenting. I’m not going to start screaming at my kid or threatening them just because they did something they shouldn’t to someone else, like accidentally walk into them since kids tend not to look ahead of them when they walk…I think people seem to want parents to be “disciplining” kids constantly in public, although I feel kids learn from experience and watching an adult in the proper way.

I also think the airplane example is hilarious. I don’t get it…so parents must be “entitled” just because they have kids, and take their children on vacation, said child happens to cry because they have no other way of expressing themselves But of course it’s the parents fault because they just HAD to take their child with them on a plane that a person who does not like children is on, so this was done all in spite of the non-child liking person,.
I think that sounds a little far-fetched and not very likely. Kids go places. It’s what they do. I do agree they shouldn’t go to a movie unless it’s a kids movie or specifically for babies (in my area they have certain showings just for parents with little kids of adult movies, the volume is lower and the lights are on, people know what they are getting into with that sort of thing.)

Not everyone likes kids. I get it. I think a lot of the kids I see at playgrounds have absolutely no manners and are extremely rude, and I always wonder where the heck their parents are because the kids are so misbehaved.

ubersiren's avatar

I think it’s finally becoming okay to chose not to have kids. Before, it was an adult’s duty to make a family with lots of babies. But now, we don’t have that pressure, and younger generations (especially, but not entirely) are finally able to express how they really feel about children. The fact is that children are less developed that adults which makes them high-maintenance, not easily controlled, and really annoying. Some people just can’t handle that. Some people also can’t handle working around the elderly or special needs adults. It’s not really different. I think it is a new thing, though, to be able to express your dislike of children and it’s super easy to do under the anonymity of the internet.

I kind of get it because I’m in both worlds. I have two of my own who I adore, but other kids scare the piss out of me. I don’t want to touch them or interact with them if I don’t have to. Including family. I even need frequent breaks from my own.

CaptainHarley's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir

Those are the people who have yet to grow up themselves.

Facade's avatar

I wouldn’t say that I have “serious resentment” toward them, but I’d rather not be around children. For me, children fall under my annoying category along with people who are loud and obnoxious or with whom I cannot communicate. I have trouble relating to kids. I’ve tried; it doesn’t workout. If they were more emotionally mature, I wouldn’t have a problem with them, but then again they also wouldn’t be children.

As far as the offspring part of it is concerned, having a child goes against everything I desire for my life. I wouldn’t ever knock someone for wanting to be a parent, but it’s just not for me.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@nikipedia I’m sorry you feel attacked. I don’t think I was attacking you and I gave you GAs where I felt they were necessary and appreciate your input. Perhaps, this is a really triggering thing for you, though and you feel uber-defensive? I think we’re just having a conversation, perhaps you need to step away from it for a bit to see things for how they are. There are no sides here, there is a continuum of opinions as you see and I don’t think anyone was attacking you, specifically, for any of your views. I also can’t hold anyone else responsible for what they say but I stand by the fact that I didn’t attack you. Also, let me not get extra cranky about how you told me I shouldn’t travel ‘cause I got kids.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Qingu “Why would you bring a kid, particularly an infant, to something that the child has no chance of understanding, appreciating, or enjoying, but nevertheless has almost 100% chance of annoying everyone else there?” Because sometimes we can’t afford to leave them anywhere or pay for a babysitter. It’s called money and we don’t always have it.

CaptainHarley's avatar

Then why not forgo the event entirely?

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@CaptainHarley Oh ‘cause you know, it’s MY graduation.

CaptainHarley's avatar

Oh. Sorry, didn’t see that. : (

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@CaptainHarley I didn’t put it, but of course I had that happen. My college graduation, I was pregnant with my first so that doesn’t count. My grad school graduation, I was pregnant with my second and my first came (he was around 2). As far as weddings, many of my friends are pretty cool about bringing kids so we do, people love them around. If someone said no kids at the wedding and we couldn’t afford to have them stay at home with someone, then yes we would not attend.

tinyfaery's avatar

Hmm. I in no way hate or resent all children, but I’m not a big fan of them either. I don’t want to reiterate everything said above, but many good points were made.

I guess my hang up is I just don’t understand. I don’t understand why women want to put their bodies through such torment. I don’t understand why people feel the need to bring another life into the world just to have power and dominion over another life. I don’t understand how people who can’t afford to feed themselves choose to have children who will always be needy. I don’t understand how a person could so inconvenience their life just to pass on genes. I can go on forever.

I was an abused child. I have worked for many years with abused children. My disdain is much more oriented toward parents. All I see when I go out into the world is a bunch of fucked up people rearing more fucked up people.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@tinyfaery We, as parents, see that too, often. All of us judge other parents, according to our own ideas. It’s hard to live and let live but I’m trying. And the body torment thing…can’t remember it now. I know it used to hurt towards the end of both pregnancies (Alex remembers a lot of my suffering but I don’t, lol…that’s an evolutionary thing too, so that we can keep doing it) but there are many things (like tattoos! or saving a person from a fire) that hurt but are worth it.

MissAusten's avatar

I’ll tell you what pisses me off about kids. I missed this question because I was hanging out with mine all day! The nerve of those little brats.

I have never disliked children, but I am totally cool with people not wanting any of their own. I can even see how kids can be annoying if you don’t appreciate the humor or cuteness of the many things little kids can do. However, as a parent I really don’t understand the outright anger and hostility that is sometimes directed at parents who are doing a good job and who are trying their best. There’s no empathy or attempted understanding, just an immediate attitude of dismissal and disgust.

Like someone else mentioned way up there, I think using movie theaters and airplanes as a reason to dislike children or complain about parents is so overblown. The vast majority of times I’ve been at a movie, out to eat, or on an airplane (never first class), I’ve very, very rarely had any kind of issue with a baby or child being loud.

Since I have three kids, and each of my kids has friends, I see a lot of kids on a regular basis. I volunteer at their schools, help with Girl Scout outings, and in general spend a lot of time around kids. The vast majority of kids I see behave perfectly find for their ages. Most parents are aware of the people around them and try not to impose.

Personally, I think there’s this whole idea that real kids act like kids on TV. Kids in commercials and on television shows are often portrayed as spoiled and rude most of the time. Also, while it’s completely unacceptable to make assumptions about other groups of people, it’s perfectly OK to bash “parents today” or “kids today” as if we’re all the same and most of us are assholes. We’ve all seen Super Nanny and Nanny 911. Should I assume all dog owners are incompetent assholes because I’ve watched “It’s Me or the Dog” and “Animal Cops” on Animal Planet, or because there was a lady at the orchard the other day whose dog barked constantly the entire time we were eating our peach shortcakes? Of course not!

Entitlement? Holy crap. I can’t think of a single parent I know who feels he or she is entitled to special treatment for having popped out a couple kids. I’m sure there are people out there like that, but instead of assuming MOST of us are jerks, I think the opposite is true. Parents are entitled to the same things everyone else is entitled too: a little bit of respect and understanding.

I’ve been in public (thankfully rarely) with an upset infant or toddler. It is hell. People glare at you as you do everything you can to quiet your child, or even as you quickly head toward the exit. Ever see a mom in a checkout lane with a crying infant and a squirmy toddler, trying to get out of the store as quickly as possible while everyone sighs, glares, huffs, and puffs? It really bothers me that people are so quick to get mad and judge, or say, “Just drop everything and leave!” That kind of attitude is just as crappy as those parents that do bring crying babies to the movies. How about being a decent human being and offering a helping hand or a kind word?

Aethelflaed's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Actually, I’m with @nikipedia on the attacking. This hasn’t been a very welcoming thread, and I’ve avoided commenting further because of it. No, not all of the comments are from you, to be sure, but you also aren’t shutting those comments down and telling others how you wanted this thread to be a safe space for understanding a different mindset instead of explaining to people who don’t like kids why they’re wrong. There have been various comments about how the answers you got from people who don’t like kids are dishonest, disingenuous, unreal, petty, and generally less valid. The tone from many is one of condescending derision. Instead of comments from people who actually feel this way, it’s mostly comments from people who love kids claiming to have some superior insight into the emotional immaturity and dishonesty of “those people who hate kids”. You started the thread off by linking to specific comments on a different thread, grouping people of various beliefs into pretty much one comment. Why didn’t you just pm that one user, ask them?

I don’t actually think anyone is suggesting that you not take your kids with you on the plane. However, @nikipedia is right, she can’t do anything about your kids on the plane – it’s called a felony. You, however, can. Those choices may not be particularly desirable, it may be that taking them on the plane is the better of your various non-optimum choices, but at least you can do something about it without breaking any laws. That’s a cornerstone of the “leave it to the parents” philosophy, that you then do the things others are leaving to you. Why is there no nuance between “I don’t think your child has a right to be here, in this public place” and “Your child does have a right to be here, but in a utopian world would handling themselves better (and you could, too), and it’s still annoying me and inconveniencing me to have them acting this way”? Why is an acknowledgement that an infant screaming on the plane is really sucky suddenly tantamount to thinking they don’t have a right to be there, and shouldn’t? Most people don’t realize when they have a disapproving look (or any look) on their face, especially when they aren’t playing poker. So why aren’t all the looks of disapproval and annoyance seen as a celebration that, yes, this person could be happier with you and your children, but they’ve realized that you do, in fact, have a right to be there and that it would not be appropriate to go over and yell at you? Why are looks not some kind of compromise?

Having kids is not the default for everyone. It clearly is for you, and for others, but it’s not for everyone. Not everyone comes at it from an angle of “why not have kids?” and instead asks “why have kids?” If you come at it from an angle where having kids is not a default, then snot and stickiness and loudness are all much bigger issues.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Aethelflaed Well, I wasn’t able to police my q all day ‘cause I was working but I take your criticism seriously. I did want to get at the whys of people’s dislike of children but rather than seeing someone try to provide reasons, I saw more answers that are just dislikes of children. I want to know why people think they have a dislike of children and I don’t think it’s about ‘they’re just noisy and dirty and bratty’. Perhaps I’m wrong, maybe that’s all there is to it. And having kids wasn’t ‘the default’ for me, at all. I thought I would have kids very late in life if at all and that’s now how it turned out, due to medical and personal reasons. Again, I really don’t think many people should have kids, whatsoever.

Aethelflaed's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Ok. My bad. I thought I remembered you saying on a different thread how you always knew you needed to have kids to experience all of life, but maybe I’m confusing you with someone else.

rooeytoo's avatar

I think it is just as unrealistic to say “I love all kids” as it is to say “I love all adults.” All people are different. @Simone_De_Beauvoir once told me she hopes I never have children (since I am 66 there is not a great chance) because I said children should be seen and not heard. I don’t mean that absolutely literally but so many parents allow their children to interrupt at will, anyone at any time. And if pointed out, said parent will usually respond, well he/she said excuse me. I don’t find that acceptable. So I think that is part of the reason why many kids annoy me. The thing is, your (meaning all of people, no one in particular) kid may be or even should be the center of your universe but that kid is not the center of my universe and I don’t want it to be. That is especially true when misbehaving children disrupt my dining, traveling, etc. I train my dog not to annoy other people who may not like dogs, a child has a brain, shouldn’t they be easier to train?

Parenting today is different, most seem to think it is better than when my generation were children but I am not convinced. It seems to me there are more kids into more trouble than ever, more disrespect for other humans and their property. There was a question in here some time ago about whether the parents should be responsible for the medical bills of an old lady whose hip was broken when she was knocked down by a child on a tricycle. The consensus was no, kids will be kids, the old lady should have jumped out of the way, parents can’t control their kids and on. That is the kind of parenting and thought process that causes problems.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Aethelflaed No, that sounds like something I’d say, lol. I always knew I wanted to live life’s width as well as length, that’s true. Seeing kids as an example of life’s width came later though, when I was faced with the fact that I might not have any. @rooeytoo Yeah, I remember telling you that, for sure. I stand by that comment. However, we’re all guilty of hyperbole here. Just because I don’t think kids should be seen and heard does NOT mean I think mine is a center of anyone’s universe. My kids aren’t the center of my own damn universe. As to the rest, well everyone falls into the trap of thinking there were some good ole days when things were better. That’s just not true.

Blackberry's avatar

@rooeytooThere was a question in here some time ago about whether the parents should be responsible for the medical bills of an old lady whose hip was broken when she was knocked down by a child on a tricycle. The consensus was no, kids will be kids, the old lady should have jumped out of the way, parents can’t control their kids and on.

O.o Really? I would expect the opposite. That’s a tort case waiting to happen, aside from just dodging responsibility.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Blackberry I don’t remember participating in that q but if my child led to a hip break, I’d feel somewhat responsible, duh.

Blackberry's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Indeed, that’s why I was surprised.

@rooeytoo Do you remember the name of the thread?

KatawaGrey's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir: I think the attacks to which @nikipedia referred were my comments, though I did not intend them to be attacks.

@Blackberry: I was in a car accident when I was 13. The driver was an adult. My mother still had to pay for the medical bills. Before this happened, I might have disagreed with you, but considering that I have been on the receiving end of such an unfair situation, I do agree with you. Whoever is responsible for the child should be legally responsible for any damage done by the child.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Maybe..some people have this image of themselves as perfect and sophisticated and they don’t like being confronted with the exact opposite of that. They can’t relax for fear of tarnishing their perfection.

Others maybe just don’t like the spontaneity and unpredictability of children.

Pandora's avatar

I love most children in general. I don’t treat them any different from any other child based on what I hear. However, they are still people, only smaller. If they act like tiny little jerks, I will even go out of my way to try to show them which behavior is good and why it is not acceptable behavior. If they still go out of their way to act like jerks than I will shun them. Its not my place to be their parent nor should I have to put up with their crap either. It is rare that I will blame them for their behavior. Unless they are old enough to really know better. Most of the time my anger will be directed to the sad sap parents that raise them. Seems like all of a sudden the half of the population has developed ADHD and that always seems to be the problem. Not the kids fault and not the parents fault either.
I know I raised my children to be respectful to everyone. I did my job, I’m not doing someone elses. Loving children doesn’t mean you are ever going to love all the little darlings. Especially if they are not that darling.
Its not hate for children your hearing. You’re hearing disgust for poor parenting and lame excuses.

rooeytoo's avatar

@Blackberry, this is the thread I was talking about. I thought it especially interesting when a flutherite called me a twisted and bitter old person for my opinion that parents should be responsible for their children.

linguaphile's avatar

@rooeytoo Yikes! You’re anything but twisted and bitter!

CWOTUS's avatar

Well, twisted, maybe.

KatawaGrey's avatar

@rooeytoo: Just out of curiosity, why didn’t you say anything to the child? My mother has stopped children from doing destructive things in public when their parents have done nothing and told them why their actions were wrong. You say parents should be responsible for their children, and I agree, but if the parent does nothing, what is the point of grousing later on where it does nobody any good?

rooeytoo's avatar

@KatawaGrey – First I don’t think it is in my place to reprimand an unknown kid. Second, judging from the reaction of the father when I spoke to him (and by this time the kid was well up the path) he probably would have sued me for molesting his child.

And therein lies the difference in parenting. This enlightened father was encouraging his daughter to explore and be spontaneous. My parents taught me respect for my elders before I left the house and if I had behaved as this kid, my dad would have marched me back and had me apologize for my actions and made it clear to me that my actions were not acceptable. He also would have taught me how to ride the bike before we left the back yard, for my own safety and society at large. He would not have taught me to expect pedestrians or traffic to stop for me.

KatawaGrey's avatar

@rooeytoo: Sure, it’s not your responsibility to raise the child, but what would you do if it was an adult who had done this? Gone merrily along and then whined about it later, or would you have said something to the adult as soon as it happened? I just don’t understand why you are more willing to complain about this girl’s actions long after the fact which does absolutely nothing than you are to say to her, “Hey, it’s not nice to do something like that. You hurt me, you should apologize.”

rooeytoo's avatar

I am a dog trainer not a kid trainer. It is not my job, it is the job of the parents or they shouldn’t have them. I don’t care if people don’t like the comparison between dogs and kids, to me it is the same principle. If you can’t train them properly and bring them up correctly don’t have them. Or send them to boarding school/military school and let someone else do it for you.

In this case there is no doubt in my mind that had I dared to say anything to the kid, I would have been opening myself to abuse from the father who thought his little darling had the right to run me off the bridge because she didn’t know how to use the brakes.

I resent the fact that you are accusing me of whining and other dastardly omissions. You do not have the right to insult me just because I don’t want to raise some stranger’s kid.

KatawaGrey's avatar

@rooeytoo: I am not trying to insult you. I am just honestly baffled by the fact that this child did you physical harm but rather than saying anything to her or any other child who might do something like that, perhaps one whose father you don’t suspect of crying abuse you’re sticking stubbornly by the whole “it’s not my responsibility so I’m not going to do anything about it” guns. Frankly, if someone caused me physical harm, whether it was on purpose or not and whether it was a child or not, I would say something. I apologize for the perceived insult. As I said, I don’t understand why you wouldn’t say something to someone who caused you physical harm, regardless of the age of the person.

Then again, I never got the whole “I’m going to sit here and be annoyed and uncomfortable rather than tell a child to stop doing what they’re doing or ask their parents to do something about it” thing. Once again, it baffles me how so many people would rather be annoyed and uncomfortable than say something because “it’s not their responsibility.” It’s not my responsibility to pick up trash someone else discarded, but I do it. It’s not my responsibility to report domestic abuse to the police, but if I see it, I report it. It’s not my responsibility to make sure that a homeless person doesn’t starve or freeze to death, but I still try and give them a little money when I can.

Blackberry's avatar

@KatawaGrey Some parents are very touchy, and you don’t know how they would feel if a stranger talked to their kid. I’m all for speaking to the parent, but confronting someone’s kid directly, especially if you don’t know them, could start some problems.

KatawaGrey's avatar

@Blackberry: But if you don’t even try, it’s not really fair to harbor all sorts of resentment towards children. Most parents I know would want someone to tell their child they’re being disruptive if mom or dad didn’t notice. I think, as far as children go, people are just lazy and would prefer to glare angrily than do anything, no matter what.

Blackberry's avatar

@KatawaGrey Meh, I’ll leave trying it for the first time to someone else lol. That’s one confrontation I don’t want to deal with. All I need is that one mom to scream out in public “Get away from my kid!” to nip that experiment in the bud.

And when I said “you”, I didn’t mean you. I should have said we.

Facade's avatar

@KatawaGrey I’m with @Blackberry on this. You never know how parents are going to react. I’ve been reprimanded for try to control a toddler in my own apartment who was basically tearing up the place, not to mention throwing her sippy cup at my face and laughing about it. Needless to say, I’m not allowing any more children here. I didn’t want any here to begin with.

JilltheTooth's avatar

I’m the person that tells kids to stop. If they’re goofing and really don’t get that they may be being destructive, I explain it. If they are willfully behaving badly I intimidate them with my “I am a scary and really pissy you don’t want to mess with me grownup” attitude. If their parents don’t like it and express upset, I do the same to them. When my dudgeon is high, I’m pretty good at making an impression. I also have the advantage of being a small middle-aged woman in funky pants, so anyone really getting all up in my face just looks silly.

Scooby's avatar

I think by choosing not to have kids I have made a very mature decision, as apposed to
the Immaturity shown by countless parents out there who did choose to have them but just can’t hack it… Too many immature, self-righteous people are starting a family, not out of love but because it’s the fashion. Just so they can shove that kid in your face for you to say “ahhhh isn’t it cute”…. Most babies look like little old men & stink of poop… It doesn’t matter how much you dress it up it’s just a wrinkly smelly little fashion accessory for most young immature mums…. Once they start to walk & talk, the parents start telling them to shut up & sit down, no wonder there’s so much teenage angst on the streets these days, they don’t know if they were ever loved for who they are or just because they were supposedly cute one day & grabbed a lot of attention. Once the novelty of new born wears off they’re cast aside like so many other “last season accessories”…… Most parents I know have admitted to making mistakes by having their kids too young, many even regret having them at all because they just can’t afford them, they even go without to get them everything they want just to keep up with the joneses :-/……. Being a parent is not for me. Not bringing a kid into this world has been the best decision of my life to be honest, so my conscience is clear & as far as the good outweighing the bad, some how I don’t think so……. Through bad parenting by young immature people who just can’t be bothered with their kids, now the novelty has worn off is most likely the reason why we have so many feral kids rooming the streets causing problems for so many of us RESPONSIBLE people…. Ask any parent if their kids misbehave & you’ll see how deluded they are…. Not my son , he wouldn’t do that, my kids are as good as gold, Pahhhh!
I really do feel sorry for the minority of responsible parents who do bring up polite & descent kids, they’re not going to last long in this day & age….. Kids these days are ruthless, unfeeling, driven by want & material possession…. Even the good kids go bad, when they mix with the wrong crowd….. And they will…… I could never forgive myself if I brought a child in to this world, what chance have they really got….. I can’t remember the last time I heard a kid say please or thank you, it’s usually, “I want” & “give me, NOW”.....

Pandora's avatar

@KatawaGrey Your assuming that most parents would appreciate you correcting their child because of how your friends would react. We tend to know people who are similar in thought to child rearing when we have small children and avoid those who have bratty children. Mostly because most children are very frank about not liking a bratty peer. I raised my kids to be respectful and I was always ok with someone telling them to stop doing something but if getting in my kids face for an accident would be another matter. Its not their place. I use to tell teachers that it was ok to reprimand them but if stronger action needed to be taken than they could call me and I will fix the problem. I would then hand them my phone number in front of my kid so they knew they better be on their best behavior.
@rooeytoo I wouldn’t have said anything to the kid except maybe yell, he watch it. To the parent I wouldn’ve told him it was irresponsible for him to allow a small child ride her bike over the bridge without any control. She should’ve walked the bike across. Then told him, how would you have felt if she ran over someone elses child or fell off the bridge herself? At the same time, I understand what happened with the child. Yes, you learn to brake but it can still be a scary experience. I remember the first time I learned to ride a bike on two wheels. It went so much faster than when I had training wheels. Mostly because it drags and bumps into things and would slow it down. I was scared for my dad to let go and then he kept yelling to go faster. I had no idea he had let go until I looked back. He was my brake. I was speeding and before I knew it I had to quickly detour my bike between two car doors that opened at a gas station. Luckily my screams kept the people from getting hit as they stepped out. I heard my dad yell, brake, brake but I never used my brake at that speed and was afraid to do so. Braking on my bike back then meant I had to back pedal. I had no hand brakes. I had to finally jump up off my bike and let the bike crumble to the floor. The ground was also a little hilly and I was going down and picking up speed. I was petrified but I had to find a way to stop since I was coming to an intersection. We all learn through mistakes. My dad learned he should’ve warned me and not told me to speed up. We started this on a very barren street by the way. It was wide and the only thing at the end was a gas station. The reason I didn’t want to just brake was because the one time before I did use my brake, I hit it hard before I hit a chain in a park and I had flip over the chain and the bike landed on me. I was afraid the same thing would happen at the cars. Parents try to teach us to get over our fears but that isn’t an easy task.
In this case though, the dad really should’ve had her walk across. Even when my kids road their bikes well, they always had to walk their bike across a bridge, same for crossing streets. Too easy to hit a bump and end up on someones hood.

rooeytoo's avatar

@KatawaGrey – you may not be trying to insult me but when you call me a whiner and complainer, I do not find it complimentary.

And you are not listening to me, even had I chosen to say something to the kid, it was all over and the kid was past before I could say anything. Did you never yet have an experience like that, you see something unfolding in front of you, but you keep thinking it will not happen as it does? I simply was not expecting to be run over by a rude kid.

The only time I correct a kid is when they try to run up to my dogs. I am always on guard when I have my dogs in public. Because I must protect my dogs from untrained and stupid children and their parents. At the same time I am protecting the kids from a possible terrible result. Not from my dogs, they are trained and I keep them under control at all times, but from another dog who might not be like mine. It is amazing how many times I have been reprimanded, given scathing looks and generally abused for trying to tell a kid they were endangering themselves and how they should instead approach a dog.

So nope, I say again and again so maybe you can understand, even though you have thus far refused to respect my decision on how I am going to act, it is not my job to raise people’s kids. Raise your own damned kid or don’t have it.

That’s all I have to say. Now insult me again if you choose, I am finished.

nikipedia's avatar

I’m not going to point fingers at who was attacking whom. All I’m saying is that I don’t think it’s a big mystery why some people don’t like kids, and I’m starting to wonder if the appeal of the question was finding some punching bags.

Calling someone “childish” is rarely a compliment. Children are little people who do not understand many things, including appropriate public/social behavior, and sometimes that is problematic for people.

For (yet another) example: My college boyfriend had a graduation party that his friends and family attended. One of his close friends, a recovering addict, had become morbidly obese, and was struggling badly and very embarrassed about it. The boyfriend’s young nephew ran up to the friend and said, “Fat man! Fat man! Mommy, look how fat he is!”

And another: A friend in high school lost her father. After some time, her mother began dating again, and her new boyfriend was black. My friend’s niece (the granddaughter) was presumably confused about her grandfather being replaced, so upon meeting the new boyfriend, she looked at him and announced, “Mommy, I don’t like men with dark skin.”

In this thread, minor annoyances (planes and movie theaters) and major annoyances (running someone off the road with a bike) have been documented. Yet, it is still acceptable to write off people who dislike kids as “emotionally immature.”

Not a single person has come forth and said, “I hate all kids in all circumstances,” or even “children should not be allowed to [get on airplanes/attend farmers markets/enter movie theaters].” Your children sometimes affect other people in a negative way, and people are going to have feelings of resentment toward them as a consequence of their behavior. This seems not unreasonable to me.

jonsblond's avatar

@nikipedia Children are little people who do not understand many things, including appropriate public/social behavior, and sometimes that is problematic for people.

That’s a wonderful point. Some children do not understand because they are learning. I’ve known many adults, including some here at Fluther, who should know better than to say rude and hurtful thing to others, yet they still do. what’s their excuse?

MissAusten's avatar

@nikipedia I understand feelings of resentment. Sometimes, though, there’s a tendency for parents and/or kids to be lumped into one of two groups: those who spoil and smother their kids and expect others to do the same, and those who ignore/abuse/neglect their kids as they run wild and turn into criminals. I’m not saying you do this, of course, but so many extreme examples of poor behavior are offered up as evidence (when we all know it is nothing but anecdotes) that the many, many parents who are doing a good job can’t help but feel like they have to stick up for themselves.

As for the kids who made comments about the obese man and the black man, how old were they? I know you call them young, but if they were preschool or kindergarten age, I wouldn’t hold it against them. I can tell you first hand that it is mortifying to be a parent and have your very young child comment loudly on someone’s size/skin color/hair color/clothing/medical condition. It isn’t meant to be hurtful and kids can’t possibly understand the emotions adults attach to things like weight, race, sexuality, or any number of complicated issues. When my daughter was about two, she walked up to a man at the gas station and said, “You’re really fat, like my Papa!” I felt awful, shushed her, apologized, and later tried to explain to her why that was wrong. To her, “fat” was just a description, like “tall” or “short” or “blonde.” My six year old is just beginning to understand that certain adjectives are not polite, but he is still likely to forget himself and point at someone who looks different and ask a question, and never in a whisper, of course.

Such examples only seem to imply that people who don’t like children don’t understand them. I’m not at all saying any unacceptable behaviors have to be excused or are OK because “kids will be kids,” but like @jonsblond pointed out, kids aren’t the only people to exhibit rude and hurtful behavior but they are the only people who usually do it out of ignorance or innocence rather than a desire to cause pain. Well, until middle school.

I can understand the annoyances, but I don’t understand why those annoyances are held against an entire population of people. It’s OK to judge all children or all parents by the actions of some, but those same people would be completely livid and all up in arms if someone dared to judge any other group of people by the actions of some. We have sexism, racism, ageism, and whatever other isms you can add and all are not tolerated here in Fluther. Maybe if we invent an ism related to parenting/children it will suddenly become taboo to openly disparage them as well.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@nikipedia In the examples you’re giving you haven’t given ages. That makes a difference. A three year old is just being clueless, but it should still be addressed by the parents so he or she isn’t clueless any more. A five year old saying such things is being rude and should know it, and in that case I “resent” the parents, not the children. I don’t start resenting children until they’re about 10.

bags's avatar

Children are demanding just because they are children. Poorly behaved kids mean one of two things, a child with medical issues, or a child with parenting issues. You can’t blame a kid for medical issues…..at worst you blame the parents for not having those medical issues addressed.

I don’t ‘resent’ children. They are what they are…what they were meant to be…selfish, undisciplined, loud, frivolous and immature, i.e. ‘childish’. And the cute factor usually balances out the rest. I really resent parents that are not invested in their children and they job they signed up for at birth.

jca's avatar

I never considered myself particularly “good” with kids. Some people are, I never was but when I had one, miraculously, I am “good” with her and fortunately, she’s well behaved and sweet (not just my opinion, but the opinion of other people as well). Once I had a baby, however, I started really noticing other people’s kids and how they behaved, and how the parents treated them, in order to learn and also comparing myself to them (yes, I do that, because I am not perfect and sometimes like to see how I might be doing things better).

I see parents giving their kids candy all day, and the kid is off the wall, but does it occur to the parent that maybe candy does not make a calm, focused child? I see parents teasing a toddler, and we all wonder why the toddler becomes a screaming terror. I see parents in public, and when the kid acts in a way that is unbecoming, instead of distracting the child, they do other things like scream at the child, which is not helpful.

In the examples above (way above) about people bringing babies to graduation ceremonies, maybe it’s not necessarily or just a money issue why the baby is not with a babysitter, but maybe the parent could not locate a babysitter for that night. I have had rare occasions when there was something to do at night, and my parents (who would be the usual babysitters) were also attending, therefore, I had to find a “real” babysitter, and it’s hard to give up your little baby to someone they were never with, and it’s also hard to find someone willing to watch a baby. Since the moms in the examples were in the back of the auditorium, that wasn’t too bad, was it?

In the example of the Farmer’s Market (above, way above) having strollers in the aisles, maybe there should be signs up that state “No strollers in the aisles please. Please leave your strollers in the designated stroller area.”

In the example of Disney World having a lot of strollers, yes, little ones can walk around a big amusement park, but when they decide they’re tired and say “carry me,” it’s very hard to carry bags of crap and a 40 lb. toddler at the same time, in the heat and humidity. Strollers in a situation like that not only serve to transport the child, but when they need a nap it’s a portable bed on wheels, and also a way to carry the souvenirs, water bottles, etc.

I agree with the OP, that there seem to be many on Fluther who are resentful of parents getting “special treatment” in the workplace, yet we would be more accomodating if it were adult children taking care of their parents, or siblings or whatever. I remember that question being asked specifically about a year or two ago. Something like “Does it bother you when parents get to take time off of work for a sick child.” To anyone resentful of that, if your parent did not take care of you when you were sick, you might not be here at all, now would you?

MissAusten's avatar

@jca Excellent answer. I think you make a particularly good point in asking those without children to try to look at situations through the parents’ eyes.

Basically, there are a lot of selfish, inconsiderate, lazy, and clueless people in the world. Some of them don’t have children. Some of them do. Can we all just agree not to lump them all together and not always start with the assumption that a parent and/or child automatically has to be an object of resentment?

casheroo's avatar

@Blackberry It’s so funny you say that (about not approaching children because you don’t know how the parents will react) I’m of the camp that is completely fine with others saying things to my children, or helping me if they wish. I was in PetSmart and paying, when my youngest got away from me, my oldest was looking at the cats (4year old and 18 month old) I am also the type of parent that does not think or fear my children being snatched and I do let them wander in stores, they are both behaved, they cannot run unless we’re playing tag..which they did in Target with my husband today in the childrens clothing area, not all around. Anyways, I do not hover, I let them do their thing because I know they are not destructive. A lady in line behind me asked if she could go watch my youngest at the birds and she skipped over and was talking to him while I paid. I found it to be very sweet so I could finish up, and I just think as a society it’s nice to have others willing to just lend an eye like that…
If my child ran into someone, (older son) would know to apologize, he would then have to walk and stay with me until he calmed down if he was hyper.

I think some parents get so uppity. I never mind if my kids lets say, touch something gross and someone says “hey little guy don’t touch that” because if I don’t see, then they bring my attention to it.
I also think when people feel annoyed in certain situations, like a plane…yeah it’s annoying for everyone but you could also help distract the child..they usually don’t want anything to do with the parent and want to run around or something. I think I’d prefer a child running the aisle and not crying, as long as they were being quiet, but people even get annoyed at that!

Blackberry's avatar

@casheroo That’s really awesome of you to be like that. It says a lot about your character and trust in humans, but people like you (like us) are a minority (in my opinion) lol. There’s a lot of fear out there, in general.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@casheroo You ever have them hide in the middle of a circular clothing rack, giggling and watching you starting to panic when you can’t find them? The little shits!

Supacase's avatar

I don’t dislike kids, but I didn’t particularly like them until I had one, either. I’m not sure why I wasn’t a fan of children before or why I’m not all that interested in other people’s children even now. I like kids who are friends with my daughter or are children of my close friends, but I don’t like to interact with other children in general.

One thing is, kids are erratic. You never know what they are going to do. Being around them makes me uncomfortable. Some parents flip if you say “hi” to their kids, let alone tell them to stop running rings around you. Or they trip and cry and blame you when you didn’t do anything – but their word against yours? The kid always wins in the eyes of most parents. I always make it a point to ask my daughter what role she played in any situation before making a judgment call. With my good friends, I know how they parent, what they expect of their children, and how they will react to my disciplining their children so I more at ease.

I have seen kids do gross, inappropriate, mean and bratty things. Their fault? Eh, usually the parents, but some kids really are difficult and exasperate even the best parents. Did knowing children could do those things turn me off from wanting to be around them, their fault or not? You bet.

ubersiren's avatar

@Scooby: For someone who claims to have made mature decisions, your answer feels a bit on the immature side to me. First, babies are only wrinkly for the first few days, maybe weeks of life. Then they plump up and are quite pudgy, squishy, and round. Also, babies’ poop doesn’t stink until they begin eating solid foods, so basically a baby wouldn’t really be wrinkly and poopy at the same time.

Secondly, it seems that you hang out with some sketchy people. Picking up on my last note, if the babies you’re around all smell like poop for a majority of the time, then the parents are horrible. That literal shit causes painful rashes! Good parents and people who have beating hearts want to care for the children they’ve bore. That includes keeping their little butts soft, clean and blister free. That means not tossing them aside like a dated fashion accessory. I don’t know anyone who treats a child this way. So perhaps you are one of those unfortunate souls who fell in with the wrong crowd?

You have to know that not all kids roam the streets and cause trouble, right? Not all kids end up miscreants. I think it’s safe to say that in most people’s youths, there are experimental times (drinking, exploring, drugs, sex, etc) but I personally don’t believe that is a bad thing as long as it doesn’t turn into a lifestyle. Experimenting is normal, healthy, and necessary for development. I know for a fact that my children will likely do some of those things. It’s a part of most people’s lives. But not everyone ends up a drug-slinging street rat. Again, that goes back to the bad parents you seem to have associated yourself with. This is the pattern I picked up on in your response. It’s the same with the rudeness of children. Very young children don’t understand the concept of “please” and “thank you” but that’s been the same since the history of time. It’s got nothing to do with “Kids these days.” Once a child reaches school age, if he still behaves this way, once again, it’s a parenting issue.

I get that being a parent isn’t for everyone. I would never condemn someone for choosing not to reproduce, but you are making ignorant, generalized assumptions.

Scooby's avatar

@ubersiren

Ignorant, generalized assumptions…… I live in the real world not a bubble, yours will burst one day… I hope you can handle the reality of it… Besides I’m not really interested in your opinions of me, you don’t know me. So feel free to make your ignorant assumptions & sweeping statements, I care not ;-) just so you know, you can get off your soap box now.

JackButler's avatar

I will answer this question and end any confusion.
People who do not like Children or who get annoyed seeing parents with children are jealous.
They want something that they don’t have.
⅓ of women hate to see a happy parent with their happy children. It’s the green eyed monster.
Some women hate to see a good father with his kids. They either can’t meet a good guy or don’t have a partner that will do what he will.
People are just jealous of what they don’t have.
It’s natural to want to have kids.
The human brain changes and evolves as a parent. People learn to care for others. People learn about life and directly see the human stages in front of their eyes. The brain literally becomes smarter and more advanced as a parent.
There is no greater reward than seeing the direct result of good parenting on another human being.
Women should not have kids until after 23.
Men should wait until after the age of 30.
This would allow maturity to set in for parents.

T

Blackberry's avatar

@JackButler You didn’t end any confusion. You just made me more confused by your ridiculous claims.

mangeons's avatar

@JackButler I think it’s awfully arrogant of people to just assume that anyone who doesn’t like children is just jealous. As shown in the previous answers on this thread, there are many other reasons for disliking/not wanting children. So I’d suggest you get off your high horse about it.

CWOTUS's avatar

Welcome to Fluther, @JackButler.

You’re going to have to grow a thick skin pretty quickly if you want to make strong claims without better backup than “because I say so”. (Not that no one does that here, but the ones who do have thick hides.)

But welcome to Fluther anyway – and start building callouses.

Facade's avatar

@JackButler Did you actually read any of the thread before you went off on your delusional ramblings?

rooeytoo's avatar

Seems as if @JackButler has gone strangely silent, wonder what that means???????

JilltheTooth's avatar

Maybe @JackButler was an alter created to throw that post in here to divert everyone’s attention from the battle. Seems to have worked. Good on yer, @JackButler, we are distracted!

wildpotato's avatar

Two points:

I have asked a child to stop doing something annoying. At the time I was 18, and the child was probably 9 or 10. The mother got FURIOUS and started screaming at me about how you never ever speak to someone else’s child, and if I had a problem, I needed to talk to her. So, @KatawaGrey, I really have to disagree with you on this one – that woman may have been a huge bitch about it, but she did teach me to better be safe than sorry, and never address a child directly. For all I know, that family had experienced a recent attempt at child-snatching or something. And good on ya, @casheroo, for not feeling the need to behave like the mother in my story did.

Background to my second point: I don’t have kids, and on the whole I don’t like them much. Individually they’re usually quite fun, but just running around in public, I find them to be utterly thoughtless. And that’s cool, whatever – humans and other animals all go through a period of brainlessness when young – it’s just my reason for not choosing to hang out with them much. I do think I’ll want to reproduce someday, however.

So that’s the position I was coming at this thread from, but I startled myself by my pro-kids reaction to one of @Qingu‘s posts: he brought up his pets to contrast his feelings about them with his feelings about children, which started me thinking about my own pets. Then he said that he would never bring his dog to the movies, because she wouldn’t get anything out of it, and compared this to parents bringing their kids to a movie. I thought to myself, if not for the loudness, I’d love to be able to bring my dog to a movie – not because I think she’d get something out of the movie, but because the only thing she wants in life is to be with me at all times. And this is not dissimilar to the situation of parents and babies. After reading Winnicott and Kohut and other developmental psychologists, I tend to think that babies really need quite a bit more parent-time than most parents are able to give in this day and age. Ideally, every area ought to have something like @casheroo‘s movies-for-parents-with-kids option.

So thanks, @Simone_De_Beauvoir & everyone else, for helping me uncover some of my own feelings about this. It’s been an interesting & useful thread.

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