Sunday, July 08, 2007

A woman's mission in life?

Yes, I know, it's a biological fact. I, as a woman, am theoretically able to give life to another human being. And unlike a man, who will at the outmost spent ten minutes or so with the task at hand, I have to invest a minimum of ten months to it. (Even if I decided not to raise the child myself, it's another biological fact that pregnancy takes full nine months, so the child is born at the end of month nine or the beginning of month ten.)

I know - at least while I'm not looking at mankind through my most pessimistic pair of glasses - that children are necessary to ensure mankind has a future (although, in my darkest moments, I sincerely doubt we should have a future).

And I know that to keep the level of humans on our planet, every woman should at least have two children, mathematically speaking. That would be one to 'replace' her and one to 'replace' the father(s) of the children. (And, of course, every man should at least father two children - though it's not necessary to father them with the same woman, as vice versa.)

But with mothers in other countries usually having loads of children, I personally look at myself and think "naw, don't bother with it, nobody would want to have you as a mother anyway" on a regular basis. Fact is, I'm not good with children, I don't feel the biological clock ticking (even though, as a 30+ I probably should), I don't have a relationship (and don't desperately want one) with a dependable man and, finally, I have decided as a child (yes, even before I became a teenager) that I didn't want to have children. I feel very grateful whenever I watch a woman with three or more children and think: "There goes one of the children I've never had and it looks happy."

Unlike the ideas you might get when watching the media these days - where you could get the impression that the "dying out of Germans" and the "climate change" are the only problems left in the world - forget people dying of starvation, forget wars, forget social injustice, that's all nothing compared to those two problems - this isn't a "problem" of the modern world. I sincerely doubt that the "climate change" is only made by humans (as ice ages and warm periods have been seen on this planet ever since it started to get some kind of atmosphere). And I can't really feel sorry for a people that doesn't really do anything nice for families dying out.

Statistically, there's not more women forgoing to propagate than there were fifty, hundred or two hundred years ago. There's more women in numbers who do it, but then, there's more people on the world now. We - those who are not having children - still are a small group ... at least when you only count those who don't want to have children. If you count all those who don't have any children, it's different. That's because a lot of young women these days would like to have children, but fears for their future. If I can't find a job to finance my children - and my friend/lover/husband can't either - then how am I going to make sure they ever get a chance for a good life later on?

As I pointed out various times before, most young women these days don't forgo having children because they're egoistical, but simply because they fear for their children's future. And you simply can't call a woman egoistical who cares about an unborn child. But what I find even more disturbing, is the fact that politicians like to reduce the whole mission of a woman in life to give birth to children. Is that really all? Are we just there to make sure the name of our husband is carried on?

I say "No!", because I'm sure if that were all, nature would have given us the same mating cycle other species have gotten. That way we couldn't help it, but have one child after another. But we are able to willingly forgo pregnancy (even before the pill - not sleeping with a man still is the only secure way not to become pregnant, after all).

In the past there was the principle of "maiden, mother and crone" as the three states of womanhood, but that doesn't necessarily mean a maiden can't immediately become a crone - it only means those looking after fate (whether it's the Greek/Roman mythology or that of the Vikings or that of other societies) are always a young woman, a middle-aged woman and an old woman - maiden, mother and crone, no matter what they are called. Most mythologies know the virgin goddess (like Athena in Greece or Vesta in Rome). So, even in old societies, not all women were supposed to have children, some had other missions in life.

A woman should not be judged on her biological parts any more than a man - if a man's only mission in life isn't fathering children, then a woman's only mission in life isn't giving birth to them!

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