Abruptly, the dream had come to an end, leaving a nightmare in its wake. New York magazine contributor Jennifer Senior felt deep down that things were not supposed to be this way; parenthood should have been like something out of a Hollywood picture in which love, honor, and tranquility conquered all. What she was experiencing, though, was more akin to that which might be expected to take place during a particularly nasty breakup between two passionate romantic partners. The male in the picture picked up a splintery piece of wood and, in a fit of anger bordering on rage, hurled it at her head. Seeing that the debris had not hit its target, he reached for a screwdriver to finish the job.
Then it was time for bed, though not without a stern, but one-sided, discussion on the rules of the house. Promptly after, Ms. Senior made a beeline for the liquor cabinet as she pondered what her once adoringly innocent two-and-a-half-year-old son had done. A while later, she sat down and began to write a lengthy article on why having children can be, to the shock and repulsion of many, a joyless and bitter endeavor.
While many would indeed perceive the option of refraining from parenthood to be controversial in the extreme, it is an increasingly attractive one for Americans from coast to coast. The reasons for this are numerous and, needless to say, vary greatly based upon the individual, or set of individuals, in question. Nonetheless, as a great deal of researchers have found, one’s happiness is most certainly not assured by membership in the baby boom. As a matter of fact, such a thing can actually result in one becoming a considerably angrier person, lending credence, like nothing else possibly could, to the argument that being a mother or a father simply is not for everybody. With the childless craze receiving perhaps its most notable press yet in a cover story of TIME magazine earlier this year, there can be no denying that the once spat-upon status of child-free is engaging in some serious upwards mobility.