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2 Children Per Family? Why Is This The Norm? - Page 6

post #101 of 179
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That is so interesting! Would you be willing to share some of the links for someone who wants to go and read up about it?
Well, I was reading solid books, so I don't ahve links. The most recent book was Fatal Misconception, which also points out the ties between the birth control and eugenics movements (as forced/deceptive sterilization was mentioned in the thread here)

I knew a missionary doctor who would give depo to African women under false or deceptive circumstances. It's bad stuff anyway. But to take advantage of their trust and lack of education is just inexcuseable.
post #102 of 179
Is two the norm or the average. Looking through my friends and family I see a lot of 1s and 3s. Hardly any twos.

For myself I don't get a lot of say in the numbers. This month it has been ten years since I used any sort of birth control. I have one adopted daughter and am leaving for an IUI in about 10 minutes. We'll see how that goes. Getting to actually choose how many children you have is so alien to me!
post #103 of 179
I suspect that many of the rude comments are coming from people who are insecure in their own decisions to stop at 2 kids. Hearing that somebody else is planning something different is threatening to them, makes them think 'gee, maybe I made the wrong decision" and they're not sure how to handle that.
post #104 of 179
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Originally Posted by Masel View Post
For myself I don't get a lot of say in the numbers. This month it has been ten years since I used any sort of birth control. I have one adopted daughter and am leaving for an IUI in about 10 minutes. We'll see how that goes. Getting to actually choose how many children you have is so alien to me!
Good Luck!!
post #105 of 179
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Originally Posted by Masel View Post
Is two the norm or the average. Looking through my friends and family I see a lot of 1s and 3s. Hardly any twos.
If you see 1s and 3s, then wouldn't the average be two?
post #106 of 179
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Originally Posted by annettemarie View Post
If you see 1s and 3s, then wouldn't the average be two?
I think that was her point. Two is the average, not the mode (or "norm").
post #107 of 179
It annoys me, too. We are in the adoption process of our 4th (3rd was stillborn) and everyone assumes "well I guess this is it?".Even when I was pregnant with my second and wefound out we were having a girl everyone assumed "well you have your boy and girl, I guess you are done!" It may or may not be it.

Don't feel the need to justify your decisions for your family to others. It will drive you crazy.
post #108 of 179
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Originally Posted by Undercover Mama View Post
I have four children and one on the way. And I love my life. This is what I chose. They are ages 8 and younger. I have always been able to be a SAHM and I homeschool them. Does it get difficult? Of course.

Are we wealthy? Not even close. We practice frugal living, but don't feel deprived. Most of the clothes are free hand me downs, but you wouldn't think it if you saw them. I don't think kids "need" a lot of toys and junk to be happy.

We have never been on welfare.

On our yearly trip to Disney World, I smile as we find our seats on the jet for that cross country flight. The faces of the people around us are priceless, but I get compliments almost without fail about how well they did.

We value our time together and try not to over-schedule. Because we get our school work done much faster at home, we are able to fit in the extras without being consumed. My kids are currently in dance, horseback riding, karate and violin. We read together daily and play games, take walks, and spend a lot of time working together in our garden and orchard and taking care of animals.

Did it always make sense to have another? No, I think if I waited until it was logical, I wouldn't have had one yet. We do our best and trust that it will work out. Each one adds so much to our family.

Use logic to plan, but also listen to your heart!
Thank you for saying this, it is very wise. There is rarely a "perfect" time to have a child. If I had waited until it was an ideal time, I would still be waiting and I wouldn't have the three (plus one on the way) that I have. They add so much to life, I can't imagine it without them :

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Originally Posted by DandeCobb View Post
and God Forbid you have the 'holy grail' of families like we do. (at least in my area) had a son, 2 years later had a daughter. people don't ask if we are having more they just assume we MUST be done.
Sigh, yes. Our first two were a boy and girl and people were baffled when we decided to have a third (and even more flummoxed that we are having a *gasp* fourth) They are all wildly unique, especially my boys, so I guess I don't really get the "one boy, one girl" argument.

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Originally Posted by Kappa View Post
I'm writing a paper about coerced sterilization of Black women in the US (states and particularly Puerto Rico), and whoa, if some people only knew! Entire Native tribes have been sterilized with our taxpayer dollars, 1/3 of the island women in puerto rico, pregnant women (such as "illegal" mexican immigrant women" are still being coerced into sterilization being told "get your tubes tied if you want us to deliver your babe" at county hospitals. It's a crazy world out there.

My sis is a doc, and she told me she would insist that young teenage girls get the depo shot after they delivered when she did her ob rotation. Intentions seem good, but oh what an abusive way to go about population control.
That is not surprising, but very sad. When I went in for my c-section with my second child, they asked twice if I wanted my tubes tied. I told them to absolutely leave my tubes alone. It was a little disturbing.

I think there is this idea, at least in part, that since birth control is available, there is a duty to use it, and people that have larger families aren't doing their "duty" and are irresponsible.

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Originally Posted by Romana9+2 View Post
My parents and MIL are putting a lot of pressure on us to be done. I'm in my late twenties and I see no reason to be done. None whatsoever. We love and care for our children; we make sure they have what they need and most importantly we're warm and open to them. I know there will be a lot of criticism if/when that 3rd pregnancy occurs. I'm considering not announcing it at all.
Yuck. I am pregnant with my fourth and I don't really want to tell my family. Dh's family will be fine, but my Dad will probably shake his head and say, "Oh, Erin" like he did last time. We live out of state now, though, so I am considering not telling him until I have to

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Originally Posted by momz3 View Post
It annoys me, too. We are in the adoption process of our 4th (3rd was stillborn) and everyone assumes "well I guess this is it?".Even when I was pregnant with my second and we found out we were having a girl everyone assumed "well you have your boy and girl, I guess you are done!" It may or may not be it.

Don't feel the need to justify your decisions for your family to others. It will drive you crazy.
So true, thanks.
post #109 of 179
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Originally Posted by Romana9+2 View Post
Of course I understand that most families are complete at one or two and I see nothing odd about that. Just that, for us, we know there are more people waiting to be born to us.
I love that thought. We have one and I'm pregnant with our second. I'm not sure how many we'll end up with but know that each will be a gift.
post #110 of 179
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Originally Posted by Veronika01 View Post
That's not what I meant at all, sorry if it got lost in translation. I meant that people are so consumed by giving, giving and giving to their children (which can obviously happen in any family) that the children never learn to work towards anything for themselves. I myself grew up with only one sister and we never got everything we wanted. It might not have felt fair as a child, but in the long run it does teach you to have goals and reaching those goals does a heck of a lot to build self esteem. It is interesting to me that the suicide numbers among children in wealthy families are much higher than in middle class or poorer families. To me it says a lot about children who might seem to have everything, but not necessarily feeling like there is a purpose in their lives. But that's just my opinion about it. My niece is an only child and my SIL, though not well off, gives her every little thing her heart desires. I can promise you that she is not a very nice child to be around because everything always has to be about her. At the age of 8 she is still completely incapable of thinking of anyone else or sharing with anyone else. To boot she treats my SIL and MIL like her own personal slaves and gets away with it.
And that, to me, says more about the parenting than the family size.

I have an only. Although we have the financial resources to give her just about anything she'd want right now (she's two, so, her desires aren't very grand), we don't. On principle. We occasionally say "Yes" to buying something small that wasn't planned (nowadays, it tends to be a special piece of fruit at the grocery store), but, we much more often say "No". She takes "No" well about 80% of the time (she's a toddler, so, of course there are times she doesn't - but she doesn't get her way). Like I said, she's 28 months, and she knows (most of the time) how to share and take turns. I make a point of ensuring that she knows this. She waits her turn for the swings and the slides and her chance to play with Toy X. And if she doesn't, I step in. She says please and thank you (So cute last night - "Twick o Tweat, pease. Tank oo - Happy Ween"). She knows to put her dish in the sink, and her dirty clothes in the laundry, and to pick up her toys when she's done playing with them. If Mama's busy, and she's hungry, she knows there is food on the lower shelf of the fridge/pantry that she can help herself to.

I know kids who are "brats" from every size of family. I don't think being an only, being in an "average" family, or being in a larger family dictates that.
post #111 of 179
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Originally Posted by Ruthla View Post
I suspect that many of the rude comments are coming from people who are insecure in their own decisions to stop at 2 kids. Hearing that somebody else is planning something different is threatening to them, makes them think 'gee, maybe I made the wrong decision" and they're not sure how to handle that.
This statement is just as rude as those that people on this thread are complaining about. Don't think that everyone wants to be just like you.

I will say that we will probably have only one, and that we will definitely not plan for more than two. I am a geologist/environmental scientist, and I have studied climate change (modern and geological, with associated extinction patterns, etc.) I am VERY concerned about global warming and what sort of world our children and grandchildren will live in. I would not choose to have more than two children because, given my education and the energy consumption and emmissions associated with every single individual in the United States, to have more than two would be hypocritical and irresponsible of me. I love children, I love my own child more than myself, I think that large families on tv do look like fun but I also know that, regardless of decisions to use cloth diapers, buy local food, etc., choosing to add a whole other person to this world (with all the consumption on down the line, through their own furture households and offspring, etc.) puts an enormous strain on this planet. People can smile and say that it's their decision that only affects their family -- but the fact is that is DOES affect more than your family-- the number of people on this earth will greatly affect the quality of life for all of our children and grandchildren (and for all the other species who live here as well!)
post #112 of 179
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Originally Posted by SweetPotato View Post
I will say that we will probably have only one, and that we will definitely not plan for more than two. I am a geologist/environmental scientist, and I have studied climate change (modern and geological, with associated extinction patterns, etc.) I am VERY concerned about global warming and what sort of world our children and grandchildren will live in. I would not choose to have more than two children because, given my education and the energy consumption and emmissions associated with every single individual in the United States, to have more than two would be hypocritical and irresponsible of me. I love children, I love my own child more than myself, I think that large families on tv do look like fun but I also know that, regardless of decisions to use cloth diapers, buy local food, etc., choosing to add a whole other person to this world (with all the consumption on down the line, through their own furture households and offspring, etc.) puts an enormous strain on this planet. People can smile and say that it's their decision that only affects their family -- but the fact is that is DOES affect more than your family-- the number of people on this earth will greatly affect the quality of life for all of our children and grandchildren.
People have been saying this since Malthus, and not always with pure motives. There are always people using scare tactics to stop people having more children. Personally, I find it mildly offensive that you would imply that being "educated" entails deciding to only have one child. Yes, I think there are huge problems with the way that we consume energy and how much we waste/take for granted in this country--- reproducing in such a way as to eventually become extinct (2 or fewer is not replacement rate) does not sound like a good solution to me. If one is having few children to compensate for "overpopulation" in the rest of the world, then, IMO, that is also not a good plan. We control how we raise our children, not how anyone else raises theirs. Our friends with 7 kids are far and away the best parents I know. I wish *more* of the world would be populated with their children.

I like Martha Sears' response: "The world needs my children." They have manychildren, and I know that at least the 3 eldest are doing a world of good. Without Robert Sears' vaccine books I don't know how I would have found a good ped, for example. Maybe your 5th child is the one who would find the best solution for energy independence? or write the next great American novel?

IMO, raising 6 morally upright children with a sense of responsibility, conservation, and a good education in ways to protect our environment in the future is better than raising 1.5 children who feel entitled to a house full of their own toys, a new car when they turn 16, new cars every 3 years their whole lives, every other meal at McDonalds, etc, etc.

Not at all saying this is anyone here-- I'm sure it's not-- but so many kids out there are being raised this way. I don't want my children to be all alone in the crazy world.
post #113 of 179
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Originally Posted by MaterPrimaePuellae View Post

IMO, raising 6 morally upright children with a sense of responsibility, conservation, and a good education in ways to protect our environment in the future is better than raising 1.5 children who feel entitled to a house full of their own toys, a new car when they turn 16, new cars every 3 years their whole lives, every other meal at McDonalds, etc, etc.

.
And you can just as easily raise 1.5 morally upright children who don't feel entitled to a house full of their own toys, a new car when they turn 16, new cars every 3 years of their lives, and every other meal at McDonalds.

My daughter certainly is not and will not be raised that way. To imply that people who have 1 or 2 kids are raising spoiled, selfish, irresponsible children with no regard for the environment or other people is very unfair and misinformed.
post #114 of 179
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Originally Posted by MaterPrimaePuellae View Post
Personally, I find it mildly offensive that you would imply that being "educated" entails deciding to only have one child.

Yes, I think there are huge problems with the way that we consume energy and how much we waste/take for granted in this country--- reproducing in such a way as to eventually become extinct (2 or fewer is not replacement rate) does not sound like a good solution to me. If one is having few children to compensate for "overpopulation" in the rest of the world, then, IMO, that is also not a good plan.
I'm sorry if I was unclear. I was stating that MY personal education in the environmental field forces me to make my decisions with that in mind. If I did not have that specific education, then I might make less informed choices.

I also must clarify that enormous families in third world countires are not NEARLY as detrimental to the planet as are even small, thrifty, conscientious, and, yes, morally upright, families in the United States. Given scientific knowledge on the subject, the current rate of overpopulation, specifically in the west, is what will drive us to extinction. Limiting family size is the only thing that will keep this planet habitable for humans in the future.
post #115 of 179
Coming in really late here, but we chose to have only 2 kids for many reasons.

Emotionally and physically I know my limits. Pregnancy was not easy for me the second time around, not to mention PPD.

Financially we are not struggling but not doing great either. I want to fit them both in our car without buying a new one. I want to be able to afford plane tickets when we need to (dh's family is in India and that's about $1200 per ticket!), or all share a room at a hotel. It's just more convenient in practical terms. Any more people in our sq. footage of house would get crowded. Kids need to be clothed and fed. They need to be taken the doctor (ours more than most). So all of that together means having another would be really hard financially.

We try to not impact the earth. I know it's a hot button issue and I won't judge people for having more, but I just know we want zero growth in our family. In the past disease, death in childbirth and accidents, etc kept the population in check. I would never wish for this to be the case again in our history the way it was in the old days. Someone said we have never had the option to control family size before and it's strange. I think it's strange and terrifying to think that that 100 years ago *most* families lost at least one child, usually more, to illness, accidents, or childbirth complications. People also didn't live that long. Now we are living longer and more children are surviving to adulthood and we need to compensate by having less children.

We would probably have had only one child, but I wanted to give my children the benefit of a sibling (I did not have that and I wish I did, especially as an adult with an aging father).
post #116 of 179
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Originally Posted by katheek77 View Post
And you can just as easily raise 1.5 morally upright children who don't feel entitled to a house full of their own toys, a new car when they turn 16, new cars every 3 years of their lives, and every other meal at McDonalds.

My daughter certainly is not and will not be raised that way. To imply that people who have 1 or 2 kids are raising spoiled, selfish, irresponsible children with no regard for the environment or other people is very unfair and misinformed.

I didn't mean to imply that at all-- I probably should have been more clear (though I did say at the end of my post that I didn't think people posting here probably fit into that category). My point was that the problem is not the number of people but the way that people act. I'd rather populate the world with people who are going to do good/hopefully lead others to do good, too, rather than let my family die out because we don't replace ourselves on the earth. Which is what will happen if we all have 2 kids or fewer.
post #117 of 179
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Originally Posted by SweetPotato View Post
I also must clarify that enormous families in third world countires are not NEARLY as detrimental to the planet as are even small, thrifty, conscientious, and, yes, morally upright, families in the United States. Given scientific knowledge on the subject, the current rate of overpopulation, specifically in the west, is what will drive us to extinction. Limiting family size is the only thing that will keep this planet habitable for humans in the future.
But I have heard exactly the opposite argument from people who are also very well educated in the field. Two kids or fewer is not even population replacement, so you must be feeling the need to compensate for overpopulation elsewhere?
post #118 of 179
To put it bluntly, the population is not decreasing.

The population is growing at a rapid rate. There are more people on earth today than there were yesterday, and there will be more people tomorrow than there are today.

I don't think underpopulation is an issue we need to worry about.
post #119 of 179
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Originally Posted by katheek77 View Post
To put it bluntly, the population is not decreasing.

The population is growing at a rapid rate. There are more people on earth today than there were yesterday, and there will be more people tomorrow than there are today.

I don't think underpopulation is an issue we need to worry about.
Underpopulation generally, no; underpopulation in developed countries, if people keep aiming at zero (or less than zero) growth, yes.
I know this is a hotly contested topic, but there are intelligent and well-educated people on both sides of this argument.
post #120 of 179
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Originally Posted by MaterPrimaePuellae View Post
Underpopulation generally, no; underpopulation in developed countries, if people keep aiming at zero (or less than zero) growth, yes.
I know this is a hotly contested topic, but there are intelligent and well-educated people on both sides of this argument.

Why do we need more people in developed countries? I'm being serious. I haven't heard this before, so, I'd like to know the theories/arguments.
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