OK. Let me repeat that.
I don't hate kids.
In fact, I have a kid of my own and I love him very much. Probably more than I've loved anything or anyone in my entire life.
However, it is my firm belief that all of life's ills and hardships can be avoided by following the simple phrase: "Don't have kids."
I do, however, think that this is something that you're never going to hear from another living person. After all, "Children are little gifts from God," and that kind of thing are what you're more often going to hear.
Once a couple is married, that's often the first question people ask them: "So, when are you going to have kids?"
They're not asking this because they think that it will bring joy to their lives, they are asking this because they want to know how soon these poor schmucks are going to become as embittered as they are. After all, kids are a lot of trouble.
It is never until later, after a young couple has had a child, or even worse, a couple of children, that they realize, "Why the hell did we do this?" I was lucky enough to have someone say, "Well, we wanted you to be as miserable as we are." (Probably the most truthful thing my dad ever said to me.)
They are demanding.
They are money draining. (This subject will come up again...trust me.)
They cause you to have emotions that you would not otherwise have. For instance, once you have a kid, you immediately become a person who would risk your own life to save the life of another. In other words, you're not the most important person in your own life anymore.
They are also a continual source of worry.
You worry about whether they are progressing normally.
You worry if, when they are sick, will they get better.
You worry when one kid is doing something that your kid hasn't done yet.
You worry about them when they start school.
You worry about whether they'll make friends.
You worry about whether they'll get good grades.
You worry about whether they'll get picked on.
You worry about a lot of things that you have absolutely no control over.
And, in the end, you hope you've done "OK" as a parent. (But you never really know.)
If you don't have kids. You don't have to worry about any of these things. Instead you get to worry about whether you should go to the movies or go to a concert. Whether you'll take a trip to the mountains or go to Paris. Whether you buy a new car or a new truck...heck, maybe both.
Rent an apartment or buy a house. (Buy the house, it will make more sense come tax time, but that's just me.)
More to follow, and let me just repeat it one more time: I don't hate kids.
Don't have kids.