Breaking The Pronatalist Drive

A father’s reflection on family planning and leaving a living world for our children

Breaking The Pronatalist Drive
Photo by Jonathan Borba / Unsplash

I’m a father of two wonderful children. They’re great little humans but there were times when I wanted to punch myself in the testicles repeatedly for having them. In the end, I decided it would be easier to get a vasectomy instead.

My partner and I family planned our family and I took charge of my reproductive rights, something that my daughter might not have available to her in the future because of the relentless pronatalist drive.

via Reddit

I found the above meme on r/terriblefacebookmemes and had to laugh. Not having kids is the punk rock thing to do. Free thinking was the hallmark of the punk rock culture as is the choice to have children or abort unwanted ones. 

Saying that having kids today is the “punk fucking rock” thing to do is the arch enemy of punk — Capitalism — attempting a hostile takeover.

Yet, this ideology is pervasive. There’s a baby-making, pro-natalist drive trend that’s sweeping the nation. It’s everywhere you look, TikTok, Medium, and in the GOP-dominated news.

I’m horrified at this strange fascination by certain members of our society who want to put babies in the bellies of women. While I get that the breeding kink is one of the most popular kinks out there, there’s a strange movement afoot to turn fertile women into brood mares.

Why? Because Western populations are in decline. At least, that’s what people like Elon Musk tell us. We have to start breeding more or else.

Or else what?

The population will decline? Good, I say, we in the developed world are the biggest per capita polluters, not those poor schlubs in the developing world with 5 or more children. We in the developed world want instant Amazon deliveries and we want to drink from our plastic bottles.

Our mantra is like the Dead Kennedy’s album “Give Me Convenience or Give Me Death” without understanding the long-term consequences of our actions. We’re leaving behind an ever-increasing inhospitable world for our children.

Elon Musk and his pronatalist ilk never think of those things. Once you had your babies then it’s all “you’re on your own buster! Pull yourself up by the bootstraps you lazy fuck!” No one ever talks about the dying world we’re leaving for our children. No one ever talks about the responsibility we have — right here, right now — to the future world.

We have a responsibility to leave a living world for our children, whether we have them or not. Instead, we’re driving our Teslas into the sunset and leaving the future generation in the dust, because “they’ll figure it out.” We can’t out-race the needs of a growing population with technology, VC funds, or misguided titans of industry.

We’re reaching a breaking point and the answer is not having more babies for the sake of having babies, it’s smart family planning.

I love babies. I love holding those squealing, pooping, cooing bundles of joy. I’m a big believer that the wanted child is the best child to have. My partner and I wanted children and I have no regrets having them. I love being a father, but I’m glad we stopped at two.

There’s an economic and environmental impact to raising kids in this world and I want to leave a better world for them. Yet, this better world I want to leave behind for them is slipping away.

The worst thing we can do is keep having babies for the sake of having them, instead, we need to call out what this pronatalist trend is really about: the making of canon fodder for an out-of-control Capitalism.