Friday, November 30, 2007

The Headlines Have it: Survey Says...

If you go to, or any other news site, a quick glance at the headlines will tell you who the really important people are: celebrities (which includes politicians and professional athletes), murdered women, and children/babies that have been killed or abused.

I just glanced at the headlines on, and the headlines include Johnny Carson, Wayne Newton, politicians (who I think fall under the celebrity category because most of them act like celebrities and hobnob with Hollywood's finest at their campaign fundraisers), a murdered pregnant woman, Natalee Holloway, yet more stories about murdered footbal player Sean Taylor, and a total of three stories relating to child abuse, and two headlines about children's toys.

This headline really spelled it out: "Physics expert, baby among plane dead". So the two victims that the general reading public would be most affected by are the physics expert and the baby. Everyone else who died on that plane - who cares.'s leading headline is the death of Evil Knievel, followed by football player Sean Taylor (oh, yes, the country's major concern is how the Redskins are coping with the loss of Sean Taylor. Somehow I think they can all afford therapy), footbal player Michael Vick, a story about a 13 year old boy that died in a house fire, and several headlines about politicans.

The lead story on both sites is the Clinton campaign hostage situation. The hostage-taker released a child, but is still holding an adult woman hostage. Typical.

Because I Have So Much Free Time

One assumption that alternately sends me into fits of laughter and makes my blood boil is the one that many parents make, assuming that I have so much free time to relax, because I have no children.

It bothers me because they are making many other assumptions that go along with it: that I don't work overtime, that I don't feel exhausted when I get home, that once I get home, there is no housework that needs to be done, that I never have plans with friends or family, that I don't have errands to run, and that since I only take care of myself, how hard can it be?

So apparently, many parents have this idea that child free people go home and do nothing but relax. Dinner? Where does that come from? Apparently for child free people, a healthy, delicious dinner appears out of nowhere. Oh wait, we always just go out to eat, or have food delivered, because we have money to burn since we don't have kids. Right. It's not as if we have to save money for anything. Life is so easy for the child free!

And evidently the household chores that are such a burden to the parents of the world are not an issue for childfree people: dishes, laundry, vacuuming, cooking, shopping for groceries - they are all somehow magically done with the wave of a wand for childfree people!

Then take into account that I happen to live in an area that has one of the highest costs of living in the United States. Townhouses in my neighborhood sell for $500,000 or more. Condos sell for $300,000 and up. Could I find cheap condos? Sure, but in those neighborhoods I'd be afraid to take my dog out to potty after dark.

Oh, and of course, child free people have no responsibilities! We live a blissfully stress free existence, apparently unfettered by bothersome things like rent, mortgage, car payments, car insurance, paying for food, clothes, and medical care. We have so much money we could use it for toilet paper!

And of course, we just fritter away our free time doing selfish, frivolous things like going out with friends, drinking, dancing, and just doing fun things.

I think that one bothers me the most - the assumption that since I don't have kids, I live a frivolous existence that is contributing nothing to society.

I have volunteered for three years for non-profit dog rescue. I now serve as a board member for a rescue organization. I love animals, especially dogs. I have since I was a child. I love my dog deeply and we have a great bond. It breaks my heart do see other dogs of his breed abandoned or surrendered to shelters because the owners made an impulse buy when they saw a cute, fluffy puppy ("like the ones in the movies!") and then got tired of the energetic teenager that the puppy grew into.

I give a lot of my time, and do a lot of work, and evaluate a lot of shelter dogs. I do a lot of driving to help get shelter dogs to their foster homes. I offer training advice to people who want to give up their dogs because they didn't train them and now just want this undisciplined dog taken off their hands. It can be frustrating, depressing, heartbreaking, and incredibly fulfilling. At times I have wished I could just stop and rest. But there are so many, many animals that need homes, that need our help. And there just aren't enough people doing this kind of work. So I rest a little and then jump back in.

So the implication that because I do not have children, I live like a perpetual teenager, free of worries, obligations, with ample time on my hands, and doing nothing but frittering my time away shopping and watching Sex and the City is a huge, huge insult.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Oh, I'm so sorry..uh, I mean, congratulations?

So I found out today that one of my coworkers, who I consider a good work friend, is expecting a second child, or rather, his wife is. They have a 4 year old son, and as I shared an office with this guy for a little over a year, and he talks about his son a lot, of course the question of me having kids came up. He couldn't believe I didn't want kids. Looked as if I'd said that I liked to behead kittens and watch the videos later for relaxation. He did admit that he never gave any thought to having kids, they just did it. To their credit, they did wait almost ten years after getting married, so they didn't have a kid right away, and gave themselves a chance to get established and save some money.

Still, he does admit it has it's drawbacks. He said that for about a year after their son was born, his wife "went crazy". When I asked what he meant, he couldn't really provide details. He did say that they didn't have sex for over a year after the kid was born. I couldn't believe that. A married couple, who seems very close and affectionate, not having sex for over a YEAR???

He said oh yeah, then went on to tell me that many of his friends didn't have sex for even longer periods after their kids were born. He said one couple didn't have sex for about 2 and a half years.

That just stunned me. These were people that had kids in their late 20's or early 30's. Ok, everyone gets busy with work, chores, etc., and I'm SURE having kids makes you busier and more tired. But TWO AND A HALF YEARS???. That just seems cruel. I can understand a new mother not feeling phsyically or emotionally up for sex for a couple of months. But nothing for over 2 years? To me, that shows a deep lack of consideration for your spouse. How healthy can your marriage be if there is no sexual intimacy for such a long period of time? I'm not saying it would justify the man having an affair, but I can understand why someone whose wife hasn't wanted to have sex them them for two years would feel awfully tempted.

So, when this coworker said they were expecting another chilld, my instictive response was "Oh, I'm so sorry!" Of course, the way he said it, it was clear that this pregnancy was planned and intentional, so I forced a smile and congratulated him, feeling like a huge hypocrite, but it made him happy. I found out later that he had told other people several weeks earlier. I guess he still has the idea that I hate all kids, which I don't. I don't automatically love all kids. But it was wierd that a good work friend didn't tell me his big news, but told a lot of other people.

Oh well, better him than me. He's the one who will be complaining when his wife goes crazy again!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

I Hate..So Much...These Things...

I can't even put it into WORDS

But I'll try.

Why do I hate them? Well, aside from the fact that someone took an ugly child's toy, enlarged it, and stuck it on the front of a shopping cart - well, that's reason enough. But wait, there's more!

I don't know how long these things are, but they basically double the length of a shopping cart. Yet, the width of the grocery store aisle remains the same. So, guess what happens? These stupid carts take up - you guessed it - twice as much room! So, that's twice as much stuff that you can't get to. AND, as an added inconvenience, if it's at even a slight angle, it can block the entire aisle so that you can't get by! Of course, the parents that push these things (usually moms, in my experience) are so focused on tuning out their annoying, whining, crying, babbling kids that they also tune out everyone else around them.

So when they finally hear you after you practically yell "EXCUSE ME, I NEED TO GET BY!" (only because your first two attempts in a normal speaking tone fell on deaf ears) they startle, then glare at you as if you screamed "HEY, GET THE F*CK OUTTA MY WAY!" and huff as they move along.

So, SO many times, I've been tempted to say something like "Yes, there are other people who need to use this aisle too, and guess what? You are in the way of EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM!", but they are out of my way, so I've held my tongue. Why cause a scene? So I bite my tongue, while the mombie moooves along to inconvenience someone else and pass her sense of entitlement on to her kids.

Rant: Pregnancy Details

No, not all posts on this blog will be about my child free status, the fact that I have no desire to have kids, or at all relating to children. But when something comes up that irks me or bugs me and I want to vent about it, I will vent about it here. That's what this blog is for.

So, I volunteer with a non profit animal rescue organization. Yesterday a volunteer posted an update about a foster dog that had had a severe allergic reaction to a bug bite. He had to be on antibiotics and prednisone for a while. She sent an update saying that he was much better and almost back to normal, which we were all glad to hear.

Then, at the end, she tacks on a sentence about how her daughter will be having her baby any day now, because x event had happened. I will spare you the profoundly private and intimate detail she shared, because it was something I didn't know about until about 5 years ago when a loud, tactless coworker was sharing the details of her pregnancy at a volume where everyone within 15 feet could hear her perfectly. Suffice it to say that immediately after reading about that detail, I have several reactions:
  • I know much, much more about this woman's daughter than I should. I don't know her name, her age, her husband's name, or where she lives, so I should not know this detail about her!
  • WOW, pregnancy is gross! I mean, I knew before that it was messy, yucky, and that I wanted nothing to do with it, but it's even grosser than I knew.
  • I am sooooooooooooo glad I'm not having kids!
  • I am sooooooooooooo glad that my SO does not want kids!
  • Dogs are sooooooooooo much easier than kids!
  • Nausea
  • I think I threw up a little in my mouth, must get a drink of water, no something stronger tasting to get the taste of vomit out of my mouth
  • my SO asked what I wanted to order for dinner. Nothing now!
  • Why, God, WHY did she have to sneak that nasty, nasty pregnancy detail in? There are unsuspecting people like me who don't want to hear about pregnancy, just want to hear how the foster dog is doing, and now feel sick!
  • I bet this woman's daugher would be pissed if she knew her mom had just told a group of 40 people this detail about her

So, to all of you people out there who are expecting, have had kids, or know someone who just had a kid - please, share quietly, and don't foist that information on everyone around you. TRUST ME, there are many, many people who don't want to hear those details. Many of them are just too polite to walk up to you and go "Would you please discuss that in private? Not all of us want to hear about how far apart your contractions were when your water broke."

Introducing...My Blog!

I have other blogs, but they aren't mine. One is a blog about my pet (yes, I love animals) and others are for the non profit volunteer group I volunteer with. This one is MINE. I will be keeping it anonymous, because honestly, I feel a lot more free to honestly express my opinions that way.

So this is my blog, about what I think. I'll post about stuff that makes me think, stuff that I think is interesting, funny, wierd, and annoying.