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Writer's Block: Kids or child-free?

Whether you've chosen to have children or live child-free, how and when did you (or will you) reach this decision? If you're in a relationship, did you (or will you) decide separately or together?
I chose never to have biological children. I adopted a teenager in my forties and we have a great relationship, my daughter and I are so close I might as well have been her biological father. I had most of my disabilities all my life and was in deep denial till my mid forties. I wasn't capable of supporting them or taking care of them if I'd had biological kids -- and I think that was my deep down reason. Consciously, I just didn't want that much responsibility. Happily I came out a good granddad anyway, something I can keep up with! I don't think I've missed anything. I think my decision saved some kids from a genetic mess of defects combined with a terrible situation.
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( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 11th, 2010 03:43 am (UTC)
Thank you for writing this. This is what I plan to do as well because I'm struggling with a genetic illness that I do not want to pass on and because I know the stats on how few older children and teens in foster care actually get adopted. Making a difference in a child's life doesn't have to begin by bringing them into the world but by helping to create a better life.
Mar. 11th, 2010 06:09 pm (UTC)
Yep. When I adopted Kitten, I was as lucky as she was. She had a succession of disappointing stepfathers (understatement) and she needed me -- and I didn't realize I had such a capacity for fatherhood till I found her. Now I'm a happy grandfather and her children take after her so much that I adore them.

But I would be breaking my heart if either of them had to go through even half of what I did growing up. I wouldn't wish my childhood on my worst enemy. It would've been eased today because they're better about screening for disabilities in schools now, also they legally have to accommodate them. I'd have gotten out of gym in first grade instead of getting tortured, humiliated and injured until I was sixteen. I wouldn't have had my high school graduation up to question because of too many sick days while I was on the honor roll with the current arrangements either, I think.

But still, it's been a hard life and I am so glad my grandkids are so exuberantly healthy. Both of them rock. They do things I could only imagine as a child and take that health for granted -- as they should, there's no reason they need to think about bad things that haven't happened.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )


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Robert A. Sloan, author of Raven Dance

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