Thoughts of a Childless, Middle-aged Man
I don’t have children. I don’t want children. I have no problem with children, and you may have as many as you like.
As a married 38 year old man I have had to answer this question constantly. “Why don’t you have any children?” I am sure this question has come up for Sara more often; when you have been married for a number of year’s people assume that there must be something wrong with either yourself or your spouse. Some people are built to be mothers and fathers. Enjoy every aspect of it. And others *insert a picture of Sara and I giving the thumbs up* are not.
I am sure that this was a more difficult conversation decades ago. Sara and I haven’t had that tough of a time with it. Most people can see the type of personality that we have as a couple, and know that having a child would probably rip at every fabric that makes us tick. The pressures seem to come mainly from a couple of different areas from me internally. Needing somebody that I can live vicariously through, and needing somebody to carry on my name or legacy.
These are two things that can go in the nice to have category, but cannot be used to pull the trigger so to speak. Sure, it would be great if I had a little boy that was instantly 12 years old and absolutely loved baseball, golf, and hockey. Was a straight “A” student, extremely popular without being a douche, and went on to be successful in every single aspect of his entire life. Just came straight out of the womb like that. Sign me up for that exchange program. Trading in Donald Trump for that scenario would be ideal.
There are other reasons why bearing children does not interest me. I have no interest in raising anybody into this world that we have created. It’s an utter mess. Violence of course, but more importantly ignorance in both religion and global warming. If you had a car with a tire that had a 3 inch hole in it and there were no other tires available. Would you drive the car, and think to yourself “that hole won’t get any bigger.” Or would you attempt to summon somebody from the sky that possibly doesn’t exist to give you a new tire.” Or, the third option. Give up a small amount of your empire to try to seal the hole in the tire?
As I grow older it’s strange. You expect to have that moment when everything just clicks. Knowing exactly what needs to be done to allow a 60 year old Daryl everything that he could possibly desire. This moment hasn’t struck yet. The set plan that I see on every Freedom 55 commercial is the following. “Yeah, saving 25% of my $100,000/year job is easy. Retirement is right around the corner.” Unfortunately, many people are working multiple jobs to make ends meet for their $500,000 mortgage on that 2 bedroom bungalow that was half of that price 5 years ago.
There is another issue. The rat-race is real when you get that first grown-man job. Maybe it’s immaturity or maybe it’s boredom of the everyday. I just don’t have a set schedule. To come home every day and follow up on the latest seasons of the 9 different shows that I am currently watching sounds like an absolute nightmare to me. And now that I have a 9-5 Monday-Friday grown up job I feel myself falling into this pattern. It’s terrifying. Is this the beginning of my middle-aged boredom?
What’s next? Coming up on 40, don’t have kids to keep myself occupied. Many of you that do have kids would just love a few hours of free-time. Hearing a DINK (dual income no kids) describe his issues of having too much free time must really grind your gears. Can you let me get back to my middle-aged whining now? Geez, so selfish. It’s the complete opposite side of the spectrum. Sara and I are fairly active, but my tendency to not be able to relax can drive her crazy at times. There are instances where I swear that she wishes that I had too much to drink the night before so my need for activities would slow down.
Even though I don’t have any answers whatsoever I still try new things out to fill the hole. Is this the canyon that people constantly try to fill with children? Maybe it is. Some people fill it with alcohol or drugs. Others fill it with sports and volunteering. I don’t have a passion. There are many things that I enjoy doing, and I feel that I am a well-rounded person – is there a pie chart of things that will keep me occupied and content?
Most of this is a ramble. Confusion of a middle-aged, middle-classed, childless male that would like somebody to access his brain to create a calendar of events for the next 25 years of his life. If I only had an extremely wonderful event planner that worked in that area of my brain.
Happy Thanksgiving Everyone. This is one holiday that I absolutely adore.