Why do people go weird when they have kids?

I mean they suddenly think they've become the centre of the universe and they've done society some sort of great deed.

You've successfully bred. It's not difficult and there are too many people around anyway. Get a sense of perspective.

We didn't get ferried around from one hobby to the next all weekend and every other evening or taken to places designed for kids. 

I mean, this is a bit of a middle class problem, but kids in posh private schools will get the chance to play on sporting teams or in orchestras, perform in plays and the like without their parents needing to ferry them around.

For those whose parents would like them to have the chance to do those things but can't afford or don't want to send them to boarding school, ferrying them around is kind of the only option. I didn't have stuff like that every night of the week or weekends but I did some of it and I'm glad my parents did that for me.

My take :

 

  • In the workplace, I have over the years seen many many bonus decisions and promotion decisions impacted by whether the individual has children or not. Invariably in favour of the parents. of course it's never explicit.  and to be honest I've never bothered to challenge it much. I'd be interested in other people's experience.
  • parents can take a while to adjust to parenthood and will obviously have less time than before.
  •  parents may have different outlooks on how much family time - all of you together - is optimal!
  • people have wildly varying views on how long you can leave a child on their own for without any adult supervision at different ages. my own parents were pretty relaxed on that front compared to what I guess is the norm

I've never heard the OP's question asked by someone who has kids...which shows that those without kids simply can't know, despite thinking they do.

I have, as mentioned, and plenty of people with kids are agreeing this behaviour exists...which shows that your experience isn't universal and that its entirely possible to observe whether people have become self-obsessed whether you have kids or not.

I reckon Bro has been wanting to bin the Lords tede-fest with crusty old Jethers for any number of years, and his new offspring now gives him the perfect excuse.

#TeamBro

I should have been more clear- of course everyone has the ability to assess whether someone has become self-obsessed or not. What I meant was that people without kids cannot truly understand what having kids is like. And therefore will find these “self-obsessed” parents highly annoying.

Saying that, there are plenty of parents who don’t become weird which means they were probably reasonable human beings before they had kids.

I think what's hard for the childfree is that really good friends suddenly think it's ok to always put their children first 

I think most of us would understand that.  It's when people get pompous/self-important about being a parent that it can grate. It costs nothing to say "I'd really love to, but the demands of rugrat A are going to make it impossible" rather than taking offence at the temerity of being asked to do anything other than be with the baby, which is how the OP read to me.

i always limit my nattering about the minutiae of parenthood to my (awesome) NCT group - that’s what they are there for. Parents with kids exactly the same age & stage as yours. 

Pomposity is dreadful no matter who’s delivering it

but all these people pontificating about how easy it is to raise kids and how parents just need to do better are equally pompous

i found raising young babies - particularly my first, who didn’t take a bottle and therefore stayed up all night breastfeeding (as I was at work all day) - extremely hard. I was extremely tired and recovering from an traumatic birth and being back in an intense job and simply didn’t have the bandwidth to dedicate to nurturing friendships at that time. Luckily my friends are not arseholes and waited it out rather than telling me I shouldn’t be finding it so difficult. 
 

 

I think it's fair enough when you have babies, it's tough for a little while.

Lots of people are ridiculous about their kids past the age of 2 though. What Guy said, it's not good for the kids to be treated like a full time job (even if they are one). They need to learn to fend for themselves.

I mean not literally foraging for roots and berries at the age of 3, but you know what I mean.

Also, Geoff appears to think that gay men can't have children, which is an interesting perspective.

I have a question re babies that won't take a bottle (as have heard of this a lot and wondered)

Will they starve to death before converting? Or are they just going to whine for a couple of days until they realise it's this or nothing?

Masky11 May 22 20:09

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I think what's hard for the childfree is that really good friends suddenly think it's ok to always put their children first -  e.. not making an effort to attend friends' very important occasions and so on. Whilst it's natural to put your children first does this really have to be to the detriment of your friendships?

 

To give this balance, another perspective is that, as a parent, its galling when friends without kids expect you to be able to attend things like you did pre-kids and have a strop on when you don't.  Most of the time you'd love to go along, but its a whole different proposition with kids.  

The key is really to understand each other's perspectives and try to make it workable.  But chill about it if its not.

Clergs mine went for about 60 hours without (as various well meaning people said what you said up there) and I wasn’t game enough to push it further as he was getting v dehydrated & it just feels unnatural to not feed at that point. 

Yeah what Sorry said. I had a friend who called me a granny once because I couldn’t join her for bowling one evening because it was scheduled for my then- toddlers’ bedtime.

I had another friend who got angry with me because I couldn’t join her birthday dinner because I was knackered from the demands of my then- two month old’s near constant breastfeeding, which meant I ended up going out of guilt whilst constantly checking the time and having to leave early because he refused to take formula milk.

So yeah, understanding from both perspectives would be good.

 

 

Babies control you. If you let them cry forever you're worried they'll become permanently damaged  but if you cave they've got you. fookers. 

Breast is best

the ultimate superfood - 

for the hard of thinking NB that does not imply any criticism of women who can’t for whatever reason (vanity and lifestyle are not acceptable reasons)

Those breastpumps that you can strap on are quite cool. You can walk round the house/office being double milked while going about your daily routine.  

fond memories of the hours spent ensuring that little Damien Caligula got his colostrum (taken up in a syringe and then into him through a tube up his nose) and then Mrs strapped to the milking machine for what seemed like 12 hours a day until he was strong enough to latch on….

apologies to childfree folk

I do like the whole empowered culture of breastpumping these days

it's almost masculine in its "yeah and what?" approach (there's probably a better word than masculine in the circs but I mean like just being there and entitled to your space and unapologetic about it)

tc - interesting! so the starvation is an actual possibility. Stupid badly designed human animal strikes again.

"I'm also surprised that my 30 year old niece, rather than going out with her friends on her thirtieth, took them all to her parents' home - seemed to show a lack of independence - but perhaps this is typical and the generations just get on better these days".

I think this is correct, but actually think it is a  return to the norm, until the 1950s the generations pretty much wore the same clothes, listened to the same music and had the same interests, intergenerational socialising particularly with family was the norm (perhaps with a blip in the 1920s).    I think by the end of the 1990s we started to come back to that norm with the 1950s-90s being the exception where each generation had a radically different culture from their parents.  There are some differences still, especially around use of tech etc but I simply dont think generations feel as alien to each other now as they did 30 years ago.

I may be RoF's only mother and grandmother not that that makes me an expert. I always tried not to go on about children at work when I had babies. However it is true that your baby IS the centre of the universe in a sense, the baby certainly thinks its parents are and that is in a sense why it survives. Some of my most enjoyable moments of my whole 6 decades have been quietly in the night breastfeeding a baby (and some of the worst having a screaming very unhappy baby with no idea what to do with it it make it happier and it just screams and screams and screams).

 

Breastfeeding is much easier than expressing (I did express at work when I was an employee with a baby, but the feeding directly is much easier and nicer for those of us women who find it so).

 

I speak to one of my children who has a fairly new baby (first) at home most days so have a fairly good idea of being a new parent in 2022 as well as mine in the 80s and 90s. I don't think until you have a baby you can fully understand what it is like. However I agree with the first post to the extent that parents are not really doing anyone any favours. We have 18m  more people in the UK than when I was born and it is very very crowded and planet earth would probably be happier if 5 in 6 of us died off. Homo erectus survived for 2 million years - much more successful that homo sapiens really  - and did not do the damage to the planet we have

However I agree with the first post to the extent that parents are not really doing anyone any favours. We have 18m more people in the UK than when I was born and it is very very crowded and planet earth would probably be happier if 5 in 6 of us died off. 

Strong words from someone with five children.  

I mean they suddenly think they've become the centre of the universe and they've done society some sort of great deed.

Well, at the risk of stating the obvious, society ceases to exist if people stop reproducing. So yeah, they have done society a favour. 

if you don’t have kids you basically have no idea what you are talking about, and so, yeah have an opinion by all means, just be aware it’s totally worthless

Amen to this.

People without kids can, with the greatest of respect, shut the fvck up about the subject about which they know....literally nothing. 

Parenthood changes you fundamentally - your heart is running around outside of your body. Parenthood makes you put someone else's interests first if not 100% of the time, then 99% of the time.

And with one or two notable exceptions (Doggers) the self-proclaimed childless of ROF do not appear to do much of any obvious benefit to any else - you're not social workers, or nurses, or firemen, or soldiers. You haven't cured cancer, or written a great novel. You primarily describe the benefits of childlessness as the opportunity for self-gratification - but its not even interesting self-gratification - you're not cavorting naked on the moors off your face on LSD whilst listening to obscure Ukrainian ambient techno drill funk. Indeed, based on the perfect picnic thread, your idealised self-gratification is...quiche.

 

Well, at the risk of stating the obvious, society ceases to exist if people stop reproducing. So yeah, they have done society a favour. 

At this risk of stating the obvious, one person is not society. And at the risk of stating the obvious, overpopulation is not doing society any favours.

 the self-proclaimed childless of ROF do not appear to do much of any obvious benefit to any else

What, as opposed to the incredibly valuable contribution you make like posting who get off on videos of people being killed?  

I think the only thing this thread has demonstrated is that qunts are qunts regardless of progeny status.