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JLeslie's avatar

When you had children what was the driving force?

Asked by JLeslie (54508points) September 11th, 2012

Was it that you wanted to be a parent? Be in that role?

Was it that you wanted to continue your family? A way of having immortality?

Was it that you wanted to have children with your spouse?

Was it to have family around as you grew old?

Did children just seem like they would be a lot of fun?


How would you sum it up, and did having the children acheive what you wanted? Or, thought you wanted?

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18 Answers

Sunny2's avatar

I was over 30 years old and thought I would be a good parent. I liked kids. Continuing the family didn’t enter my mind, nor did your other questions. I think it was just basic instinct. I wasn’t as good a parent as I had hoped but I wouldn’t have missed the experience for the world. And my kids are very good people.

Jeruba's avatar

I never saw children as a means to an end. It seems to me that someone who does is asking for disappointment.

My husband and I loved each other and wanted to make an “us.” And we felt ready to be parents. Beyond that, it would be as hard to give reasons as it would be to explain why I love my husband.

JLeslie's avatar

@Jeruba Which end do you mean? The one about having a family around when we get older?

Would adoption in your mind have created the “us” you felt compelled towards?

Jeruba's avatar

Any end: support in old age, fun, entertainment, personal satisfaction, an egotistical desire for a “mini-me,” or what I’ve read as some people’s (young women’s) reasons—“I wanted someone who would love me no matter what, someone who would be all mine…” If you have children for a purpose, I think you’re going to have a hard time letting them be who they are, separate individuals with their own lives and their own reasons.

YARNLADY's avatar

I always loved children and believed I would grow up and have them. I wanted four, but I ended up with two. Now I have six grandchildren and the future possibility of great grandchildren.

I had no special or mysterious expectations beyond being part of a family, and that’s what I got.

Dutchess_III's avatar

No driving force here. I just laid there and let the sperms drive!

I just wanted to be a Mom. Didn’t think about it much beyond that.

Jeruba's avatar

@JLeslie, I guess I missed the second part of your follow-up Q addressed to me, unless it wasn’t there when I answered.

I honestly can’t comment on adoption because we never had occasion to think about it. I don’t go in for hypothetical questions very much; I don’t think we really know what we’d do in a situation that hasn’t arisen. So I can’t tell you what we might have done if it had turned out that we couldn’t conceive. In any case, we were somewhat late starters and might not have made the same decisions that a younger couple would make.

wundayatta's avatar

I wanted to be a father for so many reasons that I can’t even remember them now. I thought I would be a good father. I didn’t like most parenting I saw going on around me and thought I would do better. I think the greatest expression of love is to create new life. It is about hope and love. I wanted to do a better job than my own parents had done. I wanted to have a chance to pass on the things I have learned in life. I wanted to pass on my genes because I think they’re pretty cool (having produced me, who I like even if not a lot of other people do).

I thought my children would probably appreciate me. Maybe they’d get me. Although even if they didn’t, it doesn’t matter. They do, of course. And they are kind of crazy, like me.

It was all put into perspective when I found I couldn’t have children naturally. Then we went on a six year fight to have children, and were ultimately successful. Those kids know what we went through to have them. I hope they feel how much they were wanted, and how much we still love them and want the best for them.

I couldn’t be prouder of them. When they do what they love to do, it’s wonderful. The only problem is that they also have to do stuff they don’t want to do, and getting them to do that causes some significant friction from time to time. If only we could get through life doing only the things we love to do, instead of having to learn to do stuff that society deems necessary, but which may not be. Like reading. Writing. Playing boring music and doing exercises. Doing arithmetic (instead of theorizing). Etc. Etc.

My daughter buckles down. She’s the first born. My son really, really doesn’t want to do anything unless he loves it. Like I said. We have strife as a result. But he is so wonderful when doing what he loves to do.

6rant6's avatar

I always assumed I’d be a parent. Our discussion was never, “do we want them?” but just “how about now?”

cookieman's avatar

Was it that you wanted to be a parent? Be in that role?
Kind of, but not really.

Was it that you wanted to continue your family? A way of having immortality?
Not at all.

Was it that you wanted to have children with your spouse?
Well who else would I have one with?

Was it to have family around as you grew old?
Didn’t think of it, but now that you mention it – not a bad perk.

Did children just seem like they would be a lot of fun?

Honestly, it was just “time” to do it. It was the next, best choice in our “family”, in our relationship.

How would you sum it up, and did having the children acheive what you wanted? Or, thought you wanted?
We love her more than the world. I don’t know if it’s what I wanted, but I’m sure as hell happy we got it.

Cruiser's avatar

I loved my childhood and wanted to be able to share the joys in life I experienced with my own child. Part of that experience was loving my parents and the things they taught me, the way they loved me and the way they provided opportunity at every turn. I know my wife shared this experience of a loving, fun childhood and we both wanted to have that opportunity to raise children sharing in not only the joy of being a parent but seeing a young life develop with the same curiosity and zest for life we shared. Being a parent is NOT easy, but the rewards are far greater than I ever imagined. The first time my son said I was “the best dad EVER” brought me the biggest tear filled smile and still brings a sense of pride nothing else I do could ever bring. Being a parent is filled with experiences and chances to learn things about life you cannot learn in a book, video or website. IMO being a parent is truly what life is all about and an experience I could not imagine not having.

filmfann's avatar

Q: When you had children, what was the driving force?

A: My hips.

I always wanted kids, and when I was looking for a wife, it was important that she felt the same way.
Looking back, I am sorry I didn’t have more (I have 2, and a step daughter), but I really don’t know how I could have afforded that.

rojo's avatar

I can’t speak for my wife, but for me it was just something that happened while you were enjoying yourself and you accepted it as the natural progression and enjoyed what followed. I love my kids but I cannot say they were “planned” or “necessary”, but I can say they are a joy I sometimes wonder if I deserved. Does that make sense?

Pandora's avatar

I guess it was yes to all. Well except for the immortality stuff for myself. I wanted my children to know about their grandfather and pass down all the cool stuff he taught me and to share that same bond with someone else. I wanted his love to live on through them.
I also wanted them to be a symbol of my love and my husbands love. I really didn’t care if they were of our flesh and blood but so long as they were ours to share our life and love with.
I always did well with pets and children so to me it always just felt like the natural way to go. I wanted to be a mom since I was 10, I don’t mean to be a mom at the age of 10 but I remember my aunt asking me what my future would be like and I told her I was going to have my own family some day. I told her that I would have 4 children. Two of my own and two adopted because they need parents too. Only had the 2. At 10 I had no idea how being broke for so many years would prevent that from happening.Well I’m not dead yet so lets see. LOL

augustlan's avatar

I never really thought about why, really, it was just always a given that I wanted to have children when the time was right. Part of it, I’m sure, was the fact that I had a terrible childhood and wanted to give my kids a better life than I’d had. That worked out. :)

ucme's avatar

@filmfann I thought you were funny-ish, even if no one else did!
The wife & I made a mutual decision to have kids based largely around the fact that we’d make for truly awesome parents….which we did/are.

filmfann's avatar

@ucme Funny-ish. Yeah, that’s what I was going for.

Jeruba's avatar

@filmfann, I kind of hate to admit this, but that was my first thought too when I read the question.

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