Monday, May 9, 2011

Happy Mothers' Day: Double-dipped Irony

Caplan on raising kids, and why we should have more of them. The short argument is that “The good news of twin and adoption research is that sacrifice is overrated. Parents are “overcharging” themselves for their kids.” How so?
1.      upbringing has a noticeable effect on the vocabulary of young children. But as children mature, this effect largely fades away.
2.      the “depressing” effect of kids, while consistent, is small. Married-with-kids is far happier than single-without-kids, but happiness researchers rarely bemoan the plight of childless singles. Second, kids do extremely well by another plausible standard: customer satisfaction. Over 90 percent of parents say they’d make the same decision if they had a “do over,” and over two-thirds of childless adults over 40 say they wish they had kids when they had their chance.
3.      That’s why the evidence from twin and adoption research is such good news for parents: Parents can make their lives better today without making their kids’ lives worse tomorrow.
4.      In the Ask the Children survey, kids’ main complaint about their parents wasn’t lack of face time, but what I call “secondhand stress” — the fact that their parents were often tired and short-tempered. The upshot: One of the best ways to be a better parent is to give yourself a break.
Stuff Expat Aid Workers Like on why they maybe shouldn’t have more kids:
Be prepared to always play second fiddle unless your EAW romantic partner gets more excitement, satisfaction and a bigger sense of personal achievement out of your relationship than she does out of attending a cluster group meeting, submitting a grant report or going on a community monitoring visit. … Don’t waste your breath saying that his agency must only believe in child rights for other people’s childrensince the only time he sees his own children is when they are sleeping. Don’t bring up that you could use a little family reunification or peace and reconciliation or gender equity program at home.
The Partners of EAWs Facebook page heartily agrees

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