Friday, July 11, 2008

Having Kids Makes You Happy?

A recent article in Newsweek talks about the touchy subject of whether or not those that are parents are happier than those that are not.  As I was reading, it wasn't looking good for me. All of my hopes and dreams that Baby I will come home and spread happy juice all over my house and that my life will become happily ever after, the evidence shows...not so much!  DANG!  This is what I learned:
  • 50 percent of Americans said that adding new children to the family tends to increase happiness levels
  • 16 percent said that adding new children had a negative effect on the parents' happiness
  • Parents don't like to talk about their depression brought on by child-rearing... BLASPHEMY
  • Kids were actually worth more in the post-industrial era when they earned their we just have them for emotional reasons.  I wondered why I used to tell my mother she had me only to do the dishes (hee hee).  Always a day late and dollar short!
  • They are expensive to raise in a lifetime: $134,370 to $237,520 (I'm a bargain shopper maybe I can cut that in half), not including college tuition (what about college of hard-knocks...oh, that is free!)
  • Parents are stressed with both working two full-time jobs and less support...huh oh, what does this mean for me as a single parent?  LOL
  • The National Marriage Project's 2006 "State of Our Unions" report says that parents have significantly lower marital satisfaction than non parents because they experienced more single and child-free years than previous generations...ohhh, now I feel better.  LOL
So, the final answer to are parents happier?  Negative.  However, they do feel a greater sense of purpose and meaning in their lives than those that have never had kids!  Happiness is what you make it folks.  I cannot tell a lie, I haven't been the happiest of campers as of late, but is anyone all of the time.  I do know that I'm missing having a sense of purpose in my life.  To know that I am accountable to someone, that I am building a future for someone is scary but it definitely is something that I don't have in my life right now.  Everyday I wake I think about Baby I and know I am ready to be accountable for her.  


VALARIE said...

I used to tell my mother they same thing when she would call me from downstairs to change the channel on the television. You now before remote controls. She would sing that Shirley Cesar song, "For the nine months I carried you -- no charge." LOL.

Anonymous said...

Very true about the purpose and emotional comments. I am training my breed to do 'stuff'around the house right now. Let me know when I can drop off the twins for a 'trail' run at chaos. lol


haze said...

Interesting. I hope no one adopting or having a child expects that child to make them happy. But I certainly look forward to bringing greater meaning and purpose into my life when I become a mother.