Recently, I had a discussion with a friend over lunch about the pressure to procreate. As a person that already has one child, I am referring to the external pressure to add another to the mix. Although I'd wager that as a married couple without children, you'd face even more pressure. What's wrong with you? Why haven't you had a child yet? I remember those questions starting as soon as we returned from our honeymoon. Either way, where does that pressure come from? It's a very personal decision (to have a child or to have more children), so why does everyone that knows you or has just met you feel entitled to ask the question?
So, in our case, I am happy being a family of three. I love our son very much and I enjoy being a mother, but I'm just not sure that adding another to the mix is necessary. I know it is not something we are ready or interested in doing at this point in our lives. And yet when I say that I am happy with just one child, it's like I am an oddball. As if because I became a mother, I am now committed to having those 2.5 kids. And hey, there are times that I *think* that having another kid could be nice...maybe. But they are just gut reactions to seeing a cute little blonde boy running around and wondering what a second child would look like. This is not a reason to have a kid. And then I think, am I doing Ben a disservice if we decide that he should be an only child? There are definite pro's (hello, we could not stress so much about money), but you rarely hear an only child say that they loved being the only one. My mom was an only child, and I heard all my life about how much she wished she had had brothers and sisters growing up. And I like the *idea* of Ben having a sibling to rely on when he's older, especially when dealing with the stresses of potentially caring for aging parents. Again, not a great reason to have a child.
At this point, I am firm in my enjoyment of being a family of three. Maybe one day we will change our minds. Either way, stop questioning me about when I will have another. Just because I am a mother does not mean that I want a gaggle of children. And if I choose to have just one, it's just as valid as your choice to have five. And for those married folks out there who are happy without children (gasp), good for you. And for those married folks out there that want kids but just haven't been able to yet, I really, really apologize if I ever contributed to that constant questioning.