The thought of having children can be overwhelming for a lot of people. People who have kids often warn those without them that their kid is going to take over their entire life. They complain that children are extremely expensive and that you’ll never get a good night’s sleep until the child has turned 4.
Now, I have a 5-year-old and the only thing that’s really true is that children cost a lot of money. A big chunk of the cash you spend on a kid is for food. Mine never stops eating. He eats as much as I do and I’m a 45-year-old man.
I hear him say, “Dad, I’m hungry. Can I have some food?” at least six times a day.
I also don’t think that children take over your entire life unless you let them. It’s a sliding scale. When they’re a newborn, they own 90% of your life and you only have the remaining 10%. But, by the time they’re 5, you get about half your life back. While that still seems pretty sad, it’s not a huge problem. Having kids teaches you to be a lot better at time management and to take advantage of free time when it’s available.
When it comes to sleep, smart parents sleep train their kids at a young age so that everyone in the family can get a good night’s rest. It’s not easy, but it pays huge dividends.
Rose Stokes, an award-winning freelance columnist in London, recently learned that she is pregnant and was very anxious about having a kid because of all the things she’s heard from people with kids. So she took to Twitter to ask parents to tell her what they “love about having children” to give her a more positive perspective.
Without wanting to undermine the struggles of parenthood, which I know are huge, I'm getting a bit anxious with lots of people telling me how hard and difficult being a mother will be. As an antidote: parents of Twitter, what big or small things do you love about having children?— Rose Stokes (@Rose Stokes) 1641548612
Stokes received a ton of incredibly positive responses from people who truly love having children. They eased her mind by telling her that she would experience the greatest love of her life after having children. They told her that being a parent is one of the funniest experiences she’ll ever have.
The parents of Twitter also made an important point: Children make you a better person. I always think about parenting as a stress test on your personality. If you want to know what’s wrong with you, have a kid. You’ll quickly figure out all of your weaknesses. The good thing is that once we know our weaknesses we can fix them.
Here are some of the best responses to Stoke's question: “Parents of Twitter, what big or small things do you love about having children?”
It's hard to describe what it's like to have a child.
I think the reason it seems like parenthood is all bad is it’s easy to describe the bad parts and impossible to describe the good parts because they are so good they are other-worldly.— Lucy Huber (@clhubes) January 7, 2022
Mother love. The moment you hold your baby and this new emotion sweeps over you, you are changed forever. You won't believe it until it happens. Your kids make you feel pure joy, happiness, rage and sadness. And they will make you laugh.— Justabaker #hearmeroar (@Justabaker17) January 7, 2022
There are a lot of joyous moments.
So many things. Waking up with their arms wrapped around me, constant cuddles. Saying “I love you” every time we leave a room. Hearing their worries and mad, made-up stories about imaginary fox families; silly kitchen discos every weekend, eating dinner together with “fake wine”— Victoria Richards (@nakedvix) January 7, 2022
To me… being a mother is a lot more like being crazy, head-over-heels in love than anything else. It’s visceral, too - I crave their skin, physical touch; can’t get enough of their hair and breath and laughter. When you love someone so much you could peel them and eat them? That— Victoria Richards (@nakedvix) January 7, 2022
Children change your perspective.
My daughter is two, and her favourite film is my favourite film - Singin’ In The Rain. Watching her watch it has given me a whole new appreciation for it, and she’s shown me new jokes I hadn’t noticed which are obvious to her— Greg Jenner (@greg_jenner) January 7, 2022
It's hard but worthwhile.
It maybe the hardest job in the world but it’s also the best and most meaningful. What I can promise you is that it gets better and better. Mine are now 9,10 and 14 and I wish I could stop the clock right here. Not pure joy. But many moments of it.— Isabel Oakeshott (@IsabelOakeshott) January 7, 2022
My ride to here hasn’t been at all easy. But we’ve found our groove now & have done for quite a while. Chaz will be six in April & has become very funny. He’s also very sensitive & I love that he’s a sponge for knowledge which in my case is biased towards flowers!You’ll rock it x pic.twitter.com/Snt3Wj2liy— Sophie Rumble #JohnsonOut (@sophiearumble) January 7, 2022
It's not as hard as people say.
I found that none of this was the case. The 19 months I\u2019ve had with my son have not been easy of course but they have contained so much joy and adventure and laughter. Seeing the world anew with him, having cuddles and watching him learn are such beautiful things.— Isabel Hardman (@Isabel Hardman) 1641552763
They make you a better person.
People don't tell you that you will find your kids hilarious. That they will add structure and balance to your life. They will improve your time management and make you a more empathetic and forgiving human.— Laura Durcan (@Rheum2improve) January 7, 2022
Watching them see the world in an entirely new way. It makes you see it in new ways, too. Everything is new again, every day.— Heather Cox Richardson (TDPR) (@HC_Richardson) January 8, 2022
They're fun and funny.
Children are funny, even babies, and if you don't take everything so seriously, you can have so much fun watching them grow.— Polly Karr (@karr_pe) January 7, 2022
For every stomach churning, eye-bag making, heart-aching hardship of the first few years, there’s moments of pure wide-eyed magic from the most basic and hackneyed places, and you get to feel it too. They’re also comedy gold without any intention or effort. pic.twitter.com/JmaQOleVm9— Chris Duffy (@vonduffer) January 7, 2022
They are so funny - Finn makes me laugh every single day. Also watching how they grow and develop is fascinating. The way they think and the connections they make - plus how they absorb everything around them. Yes parenthood is tough, but it is brilliant. Xx— Ruth Davidson (@RuthDavidsonPC) January 7, 2022
The great thing about asking a wide swath of humanity about a common experience is that you get so many great perspectives on the matter. Some parents shared the emotional experiences that come with having children. While others focused on how kids can fundamentally change your life. After reading through most of the responses, I think that Stokes probably got a clear idea about what having a child is like.
Well done, Twitter.
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