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Any large families? Moms that do not believe in using birth control? - Page 3

post #41 of 55
Originally Posted by Asiago View Post

I have not read through the thread but do have a comment. From what I have read, humans have long had families of 4-5 children. Today in traditional societies in which people have children 3-5 years apart (4-5 years apart from hunter gather times) 5 children is not uncommon.  From what I understand, the commercialization of formula as well as birth control, had heavy influence on fertility, and therefore family size, in western culture in the last century. A lot has changed in the past century or so.

I actually view this as a very difficult century in which to have children. We seem to be bridging centuries and so much has changed for the last one hundred years of humanity.

In the 1800's no one would bat an eye at nursing a three year old and now it seems verboten. Before the 20th century, 5-6 children would seem common (actually it went from 7 children to 3.5 between 1800-1900).


It's also important to remember that maybe 2 or 3 of those children would have lived to adulthood. So, there may have been 5-7 births, but some would have died in infancy and others in childhood. Falling birth rates tend to have more to do with infant survival and industrialization (you didn't need so many children to work the farm). How late children were weaned has varied through the centuries.

post #42 of 55

I often feel that way Phathui5! I feel as if I am often swimming against the current.

Yes, LynnS6 from what I have read, there may  have been 8 births but 5-6 who lived to maturity (prior to the 20th century).

post #43 of 55

Non bc large family here too. I agree with the easy going sentiments in regards to comments. I used to get rather frustrated(though I never showed it to the people I talked to) but now I am more resigned and accepting of the fact that people don't know they are being rude. I always answer the hands full comments with a hearty yes and a giant grin as I hug my kids and that usually thaws any tension, or makes the person realize I am happy and that this is not some self imposed martyrdom.

post #44 of 55

Chiming in :D I do not use hormonal birth control due to the serious concerns it raises with me regarding health (every time I see a class action lawsuit against yet another Pill, I feel validated in this) and environment (the synthetic estrogens in the water system turning the male amphibians and fishes into females). We use the withdrawal method because I'm much to lazy to chart and temp, although I know many other couples for whom this works well. Breastfeeding keeps my periods away for a year or more after each baby so that helps a lot (and again, a health reason. Less breast cancer is a huge plus)


We have only got two kids and people have been harassing us to stop before I'd even birthed the first one. It's incredibly rude. Now that I'm 22 weeks pregnant with the third baby, the negative comments from family in particular have gone up significantly. I've gotten very good at shutting them down using whatever method I need to... It's crazy because we are good and kind parents, intelligent (and dare I say handsome :P) people and generally the sort of couple you would think would be encouraged to have children. 


We want five and I've already told my husband that I won't have any children past age 38. If our current spacing trend continues, I'll probably be done around age 32 or so... We don't leave it up to God, we use withdrawal and a little bit of chance until we feel we are ready as a couple to handle another baby. Yet family members will label us as irresponsible. It just baffles me.  Having a big family is a way I can protect my health and ensure an enjoyable and lively home life. I wish my family shared my enthusiasm. I joke to my husband that since my brother is a committed bachelor and my sister may never have kids, my parents should be pleased with me having "enough" to make up for the other siblings! But noo... they've just got to rain on my parade :/


Anyways, op you are not alone. There are a lot of families like us who are willing to leave it up to nature when we have babies and, hopefully, lots of them! Hold your head up high and think about how reduced your risk of breast cancer is, that's how I deal lol

post #45 of 55

@aurora skys: it's totally the same here, comments from my mom, or my grandmom, giving me the feeling, that i am totally uncapable of being a mom. I want four. But with the third pregnancy i got the comments of being selfish, taking the mom away from the other ones, not being responsible with the resources, not being able to cope.


Not that anyone would help at all. After having DD2 it's like: Now you ARE finished, right?


And I feel like I am mad and should talk to a psychiatrist because I still long for my fourth child. Even though it is hard, I LOVe my kids and I feel as if the fourth is already waiting to get to this earth :)

post #46 of 55

I don't have a large family (1 kid and another on the way) but if it helps you deal with rude comments about large families any better, you can just think smugly that because you are out-reproducing the rude people, your genes are much more likely to persist into subsequent generations than theirs, so in the end, you win. duck.gif

post #47 of 55

I've enjoyed reading through all the responses.  We have five, and I would like another- quick since I'm almost 37 and our original cut-off was 36! : )

I have gotten a lot of comments, some rude but mostly people are just surprised or obviously just want to interact with us.  We often have friends along with us too.  My kids are usually the ones to respond, listing off who is and isn't "our's" and how old everyone is, or who isn't with us and why...it's hysterical.  I just smile and let them do the talking!  

Strangers' comments don't bother me.  Family being unsupportive bothers me- my mother in law called me crazy to my face when we told her we were pregnant with our 5th, and my mother says things like, "Well, I'm glad you are happy but don't get too happy or you might end up pregnant again"...when I was leaving her after visiting her and my sister and her new baby last month, she said, "Now don't go home and conceive one of your own."  WTF mom?!  I KNOW that she just worries for my health and sanity, she worries for us financially- and yes, all because I've called her crying or stressed or not knowing how to deal or broke!  But most of the time we are good.  

I remember reading a party in Mary Ostyn's book "A Sane Woman's Guide to Raising a Large Family" where she shares a mother's concern for a daughter having a large family because she was generally concerned.  It sounded unsupportive but we just have to remember that they've been through raising a family and there is a lot of heartache, suffering, sometimes loss involved when you bring people into the world- my grandmother thinks I'm increasing my odds for suffering having more kids!  So let's not be to defensive or hard on them...just remember this for when our kids have kids!

There's a dad I know who, whenever he brings my son home from playing, always comes in and looks around at our pictures and watches me with such curiosity.  He asked me if I'm Mormon or Catholic, and then when my answers were no finally asked why I had so many kids.  I said, "Well, I like my children. I like giving birth to them and watching them grow."  Some people don't really enjoy parenting.  

post #48 of 55

You have described your feelings towards being a wife and mom so contently and happy with your situation so just ignore other people's opinion.

I am from a family of 8, and my aunt's have 13, 8,9, 2, 3 and so on kids,...lol my mom is from a big family so I can't tell how many kids my other Aunt has..lol but on their part the kids just keep coming. We are catholic and from a middle class family so I guess having a large family will just be okey. On my part, I had just one.. before I would love to have 3-4 kids but now I only want 2-3 because of so many things to consider such as priority, time, plan and others but in your case if all your time, priority and plan for your family can be meet even if you may have more kids,.why not. GO ahead!! Kids are so adorable and they are a gift from god.

post #49 of 55

We do not use any hormonal birth control.  I mostly belive that God is in charge of my fertility and everything he chooses to do either giving or not giving us children is up to him.  As far as people making comments they make them both ways to us.  After my second son I got asked if we were done or if we were going to go for a girl.  After my third I got told by total strangers now that DH and I were outnumbered we needed to be done and at the same time I was asked as soon as ds2 got to about 2 when we were planning on having more. 


I refuse to discuss my fertility with stangers and really do not think it is even most of my families business, so my answer is just we let God have control and that shuts most people up. 

post #50 of 55

Such an interesting thread and I wanted to chime in from a childless (but TTC the first of hopefully several) POV. I'm a children's librarian and I LOVE it when big families are in the library. One of my favorite families has 6 living (one deceased) children and I adore them. Our staff recently toured another library and looked at their very spacious family bathroom and I said, "Wow, you could fit the whole ******** family in here!" and meant it only as a compliment.


I am fascinated by big families. I'm one of four myself and want four. I have really worked on what to say in response to mamas with more than 3 so as come across as interested and happy rather than rude. I generally stick to "oh my goodness, what a gorgeous family you have" and that usually works.


My mom recently told me that when none of my sisters or I could attend a family picnic, my great aunt wanted to cancel it, saying, "if the ****s aren't here, there isn't a party." My mom laughed and said that's why she always loved having four kids- she just took the party with her wherever she went (had they been able to afford it, my parents would definitely have had more. My dad wanted an even dozen). I looked at DH and said, "Exactly! I want to take the party with us!" As it is, I've got a "we can discuss a third after we have two" agreement with DH.


I don't think most people who comment mean to be rude. They just don't know WHAT to say and feel like they should say something. Or they are feeling so overwhelmed by their own children or lives that they can't imagine keeping it all under control. There may also be some jealousy, from people who want more but didn't make the same decisions (my best friend is convinced that a 3rd delivery will actually kill her so her husband got a vasectomy, despite both of them wanting more children). Or just not understanding.


Those of you with big families- know that there are plenty of us childless or parents of small families out here who actually think you rock and are doing an amazing job and you actually bring us great delight when we see you.

post #51 of 55

as a mom of 3 i feel like that sometimes. Its a party. A noisy chaotic party maybe, but a party nonetheless.  I came from a family of 5 myself.

post #52 of 55

I'm only a mom of 1 (15 months), but I agree that a woman's fertility is no one else's business. I don't use any hormonal birth control either, but DH and I are using NFP. As a Christian I would love to let God decide how many little ones we're blessed with, but sadly DH isn't a believer and has put his foot down at 3..and we aren't trying for #2 until 2015! :(

post #53 of 55
Originally Posted by queenofchaos View Post

 It should be no surprise that people have such a backward view of children.   If you don't believe in God, don't believe the Bible is God's word, then why would you believe that children are a blessing?  Our society is very anti-child and self-centered. 


My devoutly Christian cousin and her husband stopped after three, because her second child wrecked her body pretty badly, and it became obvious during her third pregnancy that it wasn't going to go away. Her Christian parents stopped at three, for reasons they've never chosen to share with us (nor have I asked - it's none of my business). I've known many, many Christians who have used birth control, up to and including tubals and vasectomies, for all kinds of reasons. I've also known multiple Christians with very negative views of children (some of them parents, unfortunately).


I'm an atheist. I have four living children, and if my reproductive journey hadn't ended up being a long, horrible ride through despair and pain and loss (and I'm talking about the reproductive side - the infertility, miscarriages, c-sections and stillbirth - not the parenting side), and if I hadn't had my last child at 41, I'd have probably tried for at least two more. My atheist brother and his wife have four children. My atheist sister has four children. My atheist mother wanted six, but was pretty much ordered to stop at three, because they were all c-sections (classical incisions, too). I know other atheists who have, or are planning, large-ish families, or who aren't planning at all, but aren't using any kind of birth control.

Your above quote was very judgmental, and really quite ignorant. Our society is very self-centred and anti-child in many ways, but that's not all about religious beliefs.



For the record, I also hate the "you know what causes that, right?" stuff. And, the person who has said it to us most consistently is a Christian, with four children of his own.

post #54 of 55
Originally Posted by queenjane View Post


Its funny because there is a similar thread going on right now on the Adoptive and Foster Parenting board about others trying to justify (as if they have to!) why THEY "cant adopt" when they see a family with adopted children. For some reason some people feel like another person's decisions is somehow a comment on THEIR own decisions (like, if my kids are adopted, someone im thinking you should to? but really im not!)...no matter if its formula/breast, home/daycare i think people want affirmation of their own decisions or something. i dunno.


Often too, i think people are just surprised by the "unusual" and say stupid stuff in the moment without meaning to be offensive. Or they dont think about how it may be funny to THEM but its the 100th time you've heard that comment. My oldest has red hair and every.single.time we left the house he heard "where'd ya get that red hair??" or i'd get "does his father have red hair??" EVERY TIME WE LEFT THE HOUSE. people just dont think. I usually tried to think of them as being curious or making smalltalk rather than rude though.

blush.gif  bag.gif......

I remember you schooling me a couple of years ago when I saw a pic of one of your kids and said "He looks like he could be yours!" I still often think of that and want to bang my head against the wall for how stupid I was. People could probably do for a bit of just outright telling them their comments are ignorant. 


Edited for terrible, terrible spelling errors. 



Originally Posted by queenofchaos View Post

I agree with the concept of letting God control your fertility, but my DH took the upper hand and got a vasectomy when we found out we were expecting twins!  The twins were babies #7 & 8, and I am pushing 40, so I was at peace with his decision.  I also have a step-son, so all told that is 9 children and I totally understand where you are coming from regarding people's attitudes.  It should be no surprise that people have such a backward view of children.   If you don't believe in God, don't believe the Bible is God's word, then why would you believe that children are a blessing?  Our society is very anti-child and self-centered.  When you think about you realize how messed-up things are.  I just try and stay positive and mainly ignore people when they say hurtful/mindless things.  If you feel the person has an open mind, then maybe open up about why you live your life the way you do.  But really, as you know, changing the subject is usually your best coping mechanism. 
The area we live in has a proportionately large number of families with more than your average number of children, so it's pretty easy for me to get together with other large families, and this has been the best thing for me to do.  Surround yourself with like minded people, if you can.

Yeah, I dont believe in god, but my kids are blessings. Im not anti-child by any means, but Im pro-children being able to have the attention they deserve, and for me and my family that means a limited family size unless DH can find a way to actually be a farmer and stay home on our land with me and the kids. 

post #55 of 55

i believe Gd works in many ways, including through our own wills and ability to plan, whether we plan it, desire it, or dont, it Gds will.

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