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 Post subject: Re: Why don't couples not plan before kids accidentally happen?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 01, 2010 9:19 pm 
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shara wrote:
You can't force them into treatment as it violates their civil rights

No it doesn't. Homeless people violate the property rights of tax payers every day. Watch each one until he tresspasses then lock him until he agrees to be treated. We do that with other crimes.
shara wrote:
we as a society want to provide for those that can't care for themselves.
Then they are free to pay for it through donations to charities. Why should my tax dollars go to lazy bums. Give them a job picking up trash or cleaning graffitti.

shara wrote:
...abstinence...

Teaching abstinence is a waste like teaching people to avoid aging because it leads to death. Sure it works in theory but not in practice.


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 Post subject: Re: Why don't couples not plan before kids accidentally happen?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 02, 2010 9:50 am 

Joined: Mon Feb 01, 2010 4:39 pm
Posts: 12
I am not disagreeing about locking people up and forcing them into treatment. I am speaking of laws and society, and there is a flip side. When you start forcing people into treatment you run the risk of abuse like we have had in previous generations, that's why we have the squeamishness now.

I agree with giving to those in need through personal giving rather than tax dollars. I didn't know that was part of the discussion. I was merely pointing out that we are a compassionate society that wants people taken care of, and misguided tax and spending policies have led us to a place where there are more single mother households.

Regarding abstinence I find your comments highly offense. I, and many people I know, have managed to use it quite effectively during our formative years when having a baby would have completely destroyed our future (in an educational and self improvement sense, children are usually a net gain on a person's life). Abstinence is just like anything else that takes self control, like saving your money or getting good grades. Not everyone practices it, but if you teach kids to be responsible they are more likely to then practice the control. It isn't a be all and end all, but as I said: children who grow up in a single parent household are more likely to engage in risky sexual behavior, and up to a certain age that is ANY sexual behavior. Since young people are not likely to save their money are you going to just say "Well, just get into debt safely. You'll likely have higher income before too long. Stay away from those payday loan places and you'll be fine."? But with sex you say "Well, just do it safely. You'll likely be in a position to get married and have kids before too long. So until then just use birth control and you'll be fine." Debt isn't 100% safe and neither is birth control. But strangely people seem more willing to declare bankruptcy out from under bad money decisions, but not give a baby up for adoption after a bad sexual decision.

Aging and death happen to 100% of us. Believe it or not there have been some people in the history of the world who have died without ever having sex. It's a behavior you choose. It's admittedly a challenge to choose to NOT have sex since our hormones are programmed to have us do. But it IS possible to control ourselves.


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 Post subject: Re: Why don't couples not plan before kids accidentally happen?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 02, 2010 5:02 pm 

Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2008 12:19 pm
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Location: Ottawa, Canada
shara wrote:
Believe it or not there have been some people in the history of the world who have died without ever having sex.


That's the saddest thing I've read all day.


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 Post subject: Re: Why don't couples not plan before kids accidentally happen?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 02, 2010 9:24 pm 
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shara wrote:
I agree with giving to those in need through personal giving rather than tax dollars. I didn't know that was part of the discussion. I was merely pointing out that we are a compassionate society that wants people taken care of, and misguided tax and spending policies have led us to a place where there are more single mother households.

Regarding abstinence I find your comments highly offense.


Well, I did not mean to offend you. But you probably made your choice because of some kind of religious ideals. Perhaps that helped you. But people in general do not share those beliefs. Telling them to be celibate is just pointless. Condoms are better than 97% effective. I bet less than 97% of those taught to be abstinant actually comply. We call those that don't "parents." I really don't see anything wrong with your personal choice. And maybe you made it just because you are smart. But as an effective strategy for society in general, abstinence is an impractical choice.

As for your comments about compassion, I happen to give a lot to a charity that supports homeless teens. I do have compassion for them because they got there through no fault of their own. It was usually their parents poor choices. So, I do believe in helping others. But I would not want my tax dollars doing that.


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 Post subject: Re: Why don't couples not plan before kids accidentally happen?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 02, 2010 9:25 pm 
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kombat wrote:
shara wrote:
Believe it or not there have been some people in the history of the world who have died without ever having sex.


That's the saddest thing I've read all day.


And no one said it was by choice!


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 Post subject: Re: Why don't couples not plan before kids accidentally happen?
PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 2010 3:30 pm 

Joined: Mon Feb 01, 2010 4:39 pm
Posts: 12
Simply because you are taught about condoms doesn't mean you will use them. By that logic abstinence should be the only thing taught because it's 100% effective.

I make the decisions I do based on many factors. Ethics and religion are part of it, but I'm not sure what that has to do with anything since a very high percentage of people profess to be religious in some way, and most religions advocate abstinence until marriage. And most of the people I know who have abstained haven't necessarily done so until marriage, but until they were mature enough to handle the psychological as well as physical implications and complications of sex. Pregnancy and STDs aside, there are many reasons to abstain from sex. Early sex is linked to depression and suicide. This is correlation, but empirical evidence suggests they are also causal. A girl (and boys too believe it or not) will typically have less respect for herself if she is engaging in sex and have a harder time overcoming depression even if the sex isn't part of the descent into depression in the first place, which it often is. Once again this is a complicated situation as both depression and risky behavior (including sex) ARE causally linked to single parent households. Which was wrapped up in my original point about our devolution into a society of single parent households.


And DoingHomework, as an aside: from your comment I think you may have misunderstood my follow up comment about compassion. I was AGREEING with you about government programs vs charitable giving. I think it's fantastic that you give to the charity of your choice. I think the government has a tendency to make things worse because they just can't administer aid like private charities can. I think that is a large part of our single parent epidemic. People who wouldn't dream of accepting a food box from a church accept food stamps because it's less personal. And the government can't make sure it's spent on milk and pasta instead of traded for drugs to the same extent local people can.


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 Post subject: Re: Why don't couples not plan before kids accidentally happen?
PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2010 11:45 am 
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@Shara

Would you care to cite some of the research you allude to? You state there are CAUSAL relationships among various things. Causal relationships are incredibly difficult to establish without manipulation of the experimental subjects and the specific relationships you mention would seem to be highly unethical to manipulate. It is common to see claims by religious organizations claiming these relationships exist but these are almost never supported by any actual evidence or rigorous research.

The fact is, in many countries and societies, free of the religious stigma that exists here, sex is far more open and they do not have the unplanned-pregnacy problems that we have. Obviously sex contributes to unplanned pregnancy but it is only one factor. It is possibel to have sex without a pregnancy, or any other negative consequences, resulting.

So, getting back to the original question, why don't couples plan before having kids? Is it because of ignorance (not knowing what causes pregnancy), recklessness (disregard for consequences), unavailability of birth control, inability to control themselves, or just plain stupidity.

Education can address ignorance but only if it is fact-based. I still believe that teaching abstinence is dumb and only supportable by appealing to religion. An open society that does not stigmatize sex would actually address this I believe. People in cultures where sex is not viewed as something immoral or dirty are usually far better informed about the subject and that leads to fewer "accidents."

If it is recklessness that causes these accidents then maybe we should punish the parents. Get pregnant (or get someone pregnant) before you are capable of supporting the child and you are forced to work to pay for the child's care. If you are such a poor parent that your teenager gets in that situation, you pay for it just like you would have to if the child caused a car accident because of recklessness.

The bottom line is that, all moral and ethical arguments and considerations aside, having kids when you can not take care of them for whatever reason is a form of child abuse. Society should not tolerate it in my opinion.


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 Post subject: Re: Why don't couples not plan before kids accidentally happen?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2010 2:44 pm 

Joined: Mon Feb 01, 2010 4:39 pm
Posts: 12
I didn't allude to any research. What I referred to is empirical evidence, as in observable, that depression/low self esteem/etc and risky sexual behavior are often interdependent.

I think you might be putting words in my mouth. I am working very hard to stick to completely agreeable points rather than get into the grey area of opinion or the even greyer area of social sciences research papers. I THINK that we should all strive for an ideal of no sex until marriage and that is partially due to my own ethics and religion (mostly ethics as I am not overly religious). But I know not everyone agrees. Hence I have distinguished between sexual activities and risky sexual behavior. The latter of which is much more likely to result in an unplanned pregnancy as was the original point. Do we agree there is a fuzzy line of the age at which any sexual activity is risky due to the non-zero probability of pregnancy? Should a 14 year old be having 'safe' sex? Nine year old? Four year old (yes, there are rare four year olds who can conceive another child)?

So back to my point: depression and risky sexual behavior are interdependent. When you asked for documentation were you referring to my statement that early sex and depression are linked? I can find documentation for that if it isn't a point on which we agree. But a lot of my opinions about teenage sex and its effect on people is empirical: people I know who lost their virginity before a point and those I know who lost it after. Teenage sex doesn't ipso facto lead to depression, but I never claimed it did. Just like being depressed doesn't mean you'll run off to get laid. But statistically there is enough of a correlation to convince me they are related by more than coincidence. And my own observation of teenagers with no problems with depression devolving into it after sex before graduation from HS has firmed that opinion. Yes, that is a skewed sample of those I grew up with, but it's what I have to work with.

That leads me to research (and yes, if you want this research I will try to dig it up as I don't have it at my fingertips) has shown that children of single parent households are more likely to have problems with depression as well as more likely to engage in risky sexual behavior. This is for a number of reasons including: poor supervision, poor relationship role modeling, poor same/opposite sex parent relationship, and a much higher likelihood of both sexual and non-sexual abuse (I believe 16x more likely in a single parent household up to 33x in a non-parent cohabitation household). I speak of statistics more than specific situations, as I know a number of really healthy single parent situations.

If you want actual studies or papers it will take time and energy. If you insist I will do what I can if only to prove I have data to back myself up. But, like you, I have a life. I collect data when I read, but I don't file it away as these studies aren't my job or even my hobby. I didn't see any citations in your post nor do I expect you to throw any up. Like you I know how social science studies have to pass the sniff test so most have to be taken with a grain of salt, but that's true for both sides.


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 Post subject: Re: Why don't couples not plan before kids accidentally happen?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2010 8:37 pm 

Joined: Sat Dec 29, 2007 9:30 am
Posts: 579
anecdote (n) see also something that is not the same as data


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 Post subject: Re: Why don't couples not plan before kids accidentally happen?
PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2010 10:07 am 
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As galactic said, those are anecdotes. They do not show a causal relationship, or even a correlation for that matter. In order to demonstrate a causal relation one would need to hypothesize a mechanism for the cause, design an experiment to test the hypothesis, control for confounding effects, etc. While it is not strictly necessary to manipulate the varibles to demonstrate cause, it is extraordinarily difficult to "prove" causal relationships without doing so. And if you wanted to show that early sexual activity caused depression I think you would have a very difficult time getting a human subjects committee to let you run that experiment!

I don't accept at all that depression and risky sexual behavior are interdependent. They might have the same underlying influences but that still does not make them interdependent. A depressed person might engage in risky behavior (sexual or otherwise) out of some kind of self loathing or other emotions but that does not in any way mean that engaging in risky behavior leads to depression (or is even associated with it.) Do you think skydiving, scuba diving, race car driving, or working on undersea oil platforms leads to depression? These are all risky behaviors that many sane and nondepressed people engage in.

Shara, I respect your opinions, and you articulate them well. But I do not agree with you. But I don't have to, nor do we need to restrict discussion to agreeable topics or ones we agree on. Your opinion is as valid as mine.

But referring to the original question posed, I don't think you can blame sexual ethics for the problem of accidental children that a couple cannot support. You and everyone else are free to establish personal ethics and rules of behavior. But ethics for society in general originate from consequences on others or inherent and generally accepted immorality of acts. I think most of us would agree that killing someone is inherently immoral. There are exceptions (self defense, war, capital punishment) that we might debate but in general I think most would agree that the act itself is immoral.

The same cannot be said for sex. Very few (but admittedly some) of us would say the act of having sex is inherantly immoral. Moral considerations with regard to sex stem from consequences. (Many of the prohibitions on sex originated in the middle ages because of confusion over property rights of concubines and illegitimate children, not because fidelity or chastity were considered important!) But we are capable of managing the consequences now through use of birth control, selection of partners, legal policy, and use of measures to prevent transmission of disease.

To me the availability of these modern technologies has made moral and ethical concerns around engaging in sex moot to society at large. Clearly there are concerns for the people involved, but society should butt out.

I do believe there are moral and ethical concerns for society
when irresponsible behavior leads to children that cannot be properly cared for. So getting back to the original poster's question, I think couples don't plan because they are being irresponsible and reckless. It is as simple as that. Their children then suffer for their poor choices and the rest of us often end up paying for it through welfare and other public aid programs.


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 Post subject: Re: Why don't couples not plan before kids accidentally happen?
PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2010 10:23 pm 

Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2009 2:42 pm
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Location: Huronia Road, Barrie ON L4N 4G2
It's one of those things you don't think is going to happen, but oops. That 99% effectiveness on contraceptives still leaves room for a surprise.

Once the news arrives though, there's no excuse. Anyone can turn their life around in 9 months if needed and really get finances and everything else needed to raise a child in order.

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