Why do you want children?

My husband and I have a friend that is struggling with the decision to have kids. We have tried to explain why we wanted children (at his request), why this is so important to us but it doesn’t seem to make an impression. It is a difficult decision to have children – to change your life so drastically. But for me the decision NOT to have children would be so much more difficult.

I knew that I wanted more children because I am not what feels like a “parent” right now to my girls. They are not around all the time. I do not have the luxury of being with them when they are sick, or hurt, or helping with all of their projects. I do not get to take them to volleyball or soccer practice. I don’t even get their report cards unless they decide to show them to me. It is hard being divorced and sharing custody – it is like playing house, and I just never feel like a real mom. Having these boys gives me an opportunity to be a full-time parent.

Knowing that I want to be a full-time parent doesn’t really explain why I like being a parent – why I want more children though, does it? I love watching them develop and grow. I love teaching them things, and seeing how they interpret my advise. I love playing with them, and learning from them. It is amazing to watch my girls change from little girls into women…seeing their sense of humor develop, and watching them mature into their own people. I have never felt a love so unconditional as I do for my girls. There is no work involved…I simply love them. I love them so much that it aches when I cannot be with them. I am sure that this feeling will make it hard when they go to college and start their own families – but those things bring new experiences that I am sure to enjoy as well.

It is truly difficult to say in words why you want children. At least it is for me. And nothing I come up with sounds so convincing as to make our friend feel that he is missing something. I am sure that he will end up having children, but he will be convinced by something definite, intelligent, and concrete – not by emotion or love or the need to have a legacy in this world when death comes our way. He will be convinced by his wife’s need to have children, by her ultimatum – not by any words we come up with. Just the same – why do you want / have children? What was your reason for having a family? What do they bring to your life that you would miss if it were not there?