Thoughts On Parental Responsibility

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Note: This is a slightly long-winded, rant-y post. As with most things, there are exceptions to everything. This is just a general post. If you're offended by anything I say, that's okay. You're entitled to your opinion and I'm entitled to mine. 

You know what really burns my toast?

People who don't take responsibility for their kids.

I see it every day (it's rampant at work), and it really gets on my nerves. True, part of it might be a little of my own personal bitterness, that whole 'I would chew off my right arm for a baby, yet you don't feel like taking care of the kid(s) you have'. But a lot of it is just the teacher (and human being) in me that just wants to scream 'YOUR CHILD NEEDS YOU! PLEASE TAKE CARE OF HIM/HER!'.

You see it a lot these days, especially with teen pregnancy rates the way they are. And that's not to say teen parent = bad parent, because it doesn't. I know quite a few teen parents who have done their best to build the best lives possible for their children. The best father I know became a dad his sophomore year of high school, and he does everything in his power to provide his boys with the best life he can. The reverse is also true, that being an adult doesn't make you a good parent. I know plenty of adults who don't take care of their children, or neglect or abuse them.

The fact of the matter is, no matter how old you are, if you choose to open up your legs (and this goes for girls AND guys), YOU need to be prepared to deal with the consequences. If you choose to bring a life into this world, YOU need to be prepared to take care of your child. If you're not going to school and don't have a job, you don't have any excuse other than selfishness and/or laziness to not take care of your own child. I see nothing wrong with getting help from family and friends while you go to school, or go to work to support your child, but if you're not at work or school, I really feel like you need to be the one taking care of your kid. 

I'm not saying that you should never have time for yourself, or to hang out with your friends. Everyone needs a break sometimes. But that 'you' time shouldn't be every night. If you're not willing to give up time to yourself, or partying, or drugs or whatever else may distract you from responsibility, you shouldn't be having a baby.


When your baby wakes up, you need to be the one to get up with him/her. When your baby is hungry, you need to be the one to feed him/her. When it's time for your baby to go to sleep, you need to be the one to put him/her to sleep. Family and friends love to help, and that's great. I encourage parents to accept help from loved ones. The problem I have is when you expect your loved ones to take care of your child. Anything they do for you and your child, they do out of love and wanting to bond with the child, not because they don't want you to not have to have any responsibility.

Your baby is just that...YOUR baby. Your baby didn't ask to be brought into this world; you brought him/her into it, and you need to take responsibility for that.

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