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The Highlight of your life (so far)


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#41 of 98 OFFLINE   Chuck Mayer

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Posted October 23 2006 - 11:46 AM

It took a child because, again, a child provides experiential perspective. I can hear all day long what being in a war is like...but until I've done it, I'll never know. I can be told all day long what playing with a rock band on stage in front of 30,000 is...but until I've done it, I'll never know. Same with being a parent. He opened my eyes to the sacrifices my parents make, and showed me the innate connection between all of us. I was empathetic before. But it's just a new paradigm.

I appreciate where you are coming from. No one likes being told they aren't good enough, their life isn't good enough. Many people in our society attempt to push that mindset on people who want no part of it. My aforementioned friends (the wife is an avowed feminist) are quite open about that. I sympathize. I honestly do. It's not fair, it's irritating, and nothing is worse than overbearing parents who think they know what is "best" for other people. I dislike that mindset as much as you. But being a parent doesn't make people like that...they were elitist before Posted Image If you have friends like that, then work with them or get new friends Posted Image I would. You deserve better. Every person's choices should be respected.

But trust me, having a kid does change everything. But it's not for everybody. No one should have kids unless they can make that commitment (or they have an "oops", like my wife and I, and then you have no choice Posted Image ).

Do I wish I was still single and not a parent? Not really.

Do I wish I could chase some young skirts and do some naughty things? Yup. If you can...enjoy it Posted Image

Tradeoff,
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Hey buddy...did you just see a real bright light?

#42 of 98 OFFLINE   MarkHastings

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Posted October 23 2006 - 11:56 AM

Well, not understanding horror because I haven't been in a war, that I can agree to, but why do parents make it sound like you can't understand life if you haven't had a kid? I get told that a lot of times. Example: "Mark, I used to think I knew what life was, until I had kids. You have no idea!" - Isn't that her way of telling me that if I never have kids, I'll never be as enlightened as she is??

#43 of 98 OFFLINE   Cameron Yee

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Posted October 23 2006 - 12:03 PM

Hmm...I guess I live in a pretty progressive area by comparison. I'd say half the time I get the married/have kids question, the follow-up is "Do you want that?" The whole notion of redemption by parenthood kind of makes me nauseous. One may discover certain things about oneself by being a parent (e.g. the depths of one's ability to love and sacrifice), but the conceit to think this makes you a better person than a non-parent? Or that this is only discovered via parenthood? Let me join in the eye rolling. BUT. I should probably admit I am prone to judge those who are always in a relationship or who have never spent time alone. My assumption is these people have low self esteem or don't like themselves. The inability for some people to do things on their own, like seeing a movie or eating in a restaurant, triggers my "I'm better than you." tendencies. So I see this as fundamentally the same narrowmindedness/pre-judging that Mark's friends are guilty of. Maybe I'm right about the self-esteem problems, but I don't think it gives me the right to think I'm better than those people, based on this one issue alone. I think it takes a certain set of "muscles" to be in a relationship/married/have kids and certain set to be single/without children.

#44 of 98 OFFLINE   MarkHastings

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Posted October 23 2006 - 12:14 PM

But I think that's a natural reaction to your experiences. It's looked down upon (in my area) if your single and not married. People are always acting like it's so sad...I think it's that constant barrage that makes us want to defend ourselves by assuming that most married people are weak. I do that from time to time, but I usually realize why I'm doing it. The main difference is, I don't go around telling my married friends how I feel.

#45 of 98 OFFLINE   Cameron Yee

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Posted October 23 2006 - 12:50 PM

Yes, that seems to be the crux of the problem. I should also mention that I do want to be married and have kids, but I don't see it as my life's purpose.

#46 of 98 OFFLINE   Chris Lockwood

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Posted October 23 2006 - 06:08 PM

> Hardly, I think it's just the opposite...everyone seems to be pushing their own POV on me because they think I'd be better off if I lead their lifestyle. Yep, you seem to be the recipient of the "you haven't reproduced, so there's something wrong with you" thinking that those with kids like to impose on those without. They could be a little more grateful for us subsidizing their parenthood.

#47 of 98 OFFLINE   Jerry Almeida

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Posted October 23 2006 - 10:41 PM

So when are you going to change yourself into the type of person that doesn't worry about what other people think of you?
Everybody relax, I'm here. -Jack Burton

#48 of 98 OFFLINE   drobbins

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Posted October 23 2006 - 11:18 PM

Mark, There are many who might say that I am a disgrace to the male gender. I don't hunt, fish, play sports, watch sports on tv, golf, like NASCAR, smoke, or hang out with the guys at a bar. I gave up worrying about what others expected of me years ago. As far as the kids thing goes. I personally want to experience as much in my life as humanly possible. All of life and all emotions both good and bad. Having a family is a major experience that I didn't want to miss. I don't have the ability to put it into words all the life's experiences that I would have missed with out a family. I guess you could see it like this. All the class took a trip to an amusement park except one. When they came back they had all kinds of stories of their adventures and mis-adventures. They all told the kid that didn't go, "You don't know what you missed, you should go next time." If you don't want a family, don't feel pressured into having one. It is you life to do with it what you want.

#49 of 98 OFFLINE   Jeff Gatie

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Posted October 24 2006 - 01:38 AM


If you had the type of experience I had on my last "trip to the amusement park", you'd never go on that roller coaster again. As I say to people who ask me why I don't "Settle down with a nice girl" - "Been there, done that, have the T-Shirt and now I use it for a rag when I change my oil." Posted Image

Not that I don't think it is great for some people, it is and I congratulate them. For me (and only for me), I guess I don't breed well in captivity. Posted Image

#50 of 98 OFFLINE   Jay H

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Posted October 24 2006 - 02:01 AM

Been perusing this thread for a bit, unsure of what to write... I think the highlight of my life is Learning to ride a bike when I was young -Not only was it just a fun thing to do..heck, I was a kid, what do I know, but it would lead to a lifelong desire to explore the world, to be free from pressures of society, to get places without any foreign dependency on old dinosaurs. Riding my bike as a young kid meant being able to go visit friends and have a little fun, now it is more global, to see the world, to see friends but perhaps friends in far away places. It has meant so much more than riding a bike. It has instilled a sense of freedom and desire to adventure. It has lead me to take up mountaineering and climbing big mountains and go to far away places. So learning to ride means so much more to me than simply...learning to ride a bike. Jay
You are the crispy noodle in the vegetarian salad of life

#51 of 98 OFFLINE   MarkHastings

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Posted October 24 2006 - 02:48 AM

So now what does one do in my case? I am giving up on what people expect of me, but that means I have to get rid of almost 95% of the people I know. I know it's best to find people in my same situation, but it's virtually impossible. It seems like most guys in my situation are the type that don't want to grow up or want to just party every night or just want to go out and reak havok. I'm stuck in this weird middle phase where I act just like a married guy with kids, but at the same time, don't want to be married with kids. Since I don't do all of the typical "Single Guy" things, most people view me as being sad. Maybe if I did a lot of crazy things, people would be thinking "well, at least he's doing something else with his life", but I'm not doing those things because I am content with what I've got. It just sucks that nobody else is content with what I've got.

#52 of 98 OFFLINE   RobertR

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Posted October 24 2006 - 02:54 AM

I have to smile at reading Mark protesting "I'm happy with my life! I really am!", while also complaining

"it sucks that..."

and

"I have to get rid of almost 95% of the people I know..."

and

"I'm stuck in this weird middle phase"

Posted Image

#53 of 98 OFFLINE   MarkHastings

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Posted October 24 2006 - 03:01 AM

Robert, I'm happy - it's just that I'm the type of person that gets easily influenced by people I am close to. When I'm surrounded by people spewing negative thoughts about me, it bums me out. I can let it roll off my back for so long, then it starts to get to me, especially when I have to hear it constantly.

It was actually SO bad, that I avoided telling anyone that I went on a date back in the spring. Once my mom and friends heard, they immediately had me married and started pressuring me. Ugh! Once I broke it off with this woman (after 3 dates) people acted like I ended a 30 year marriage!! Posted Image

I am finding it harder and harder to deal with other peoples notions of what I am supposed to do with my life.

#54 of 98 OFFLINE   RobertR

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Posted October 24 2006 - 03:05 AM

Yes, Mark, you're "happy" and "getting bummed out". Posted Image

#55 of 98 OFFLINE   Jeff Gatie

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Posted October 24 2006 - 03:19 AM


Why deal with them? Do like I do, laugh them off. Your problem is not that you are content and everyone else is making your life miserable with their unwarranted opinions. Your problem is you are letting other people's opinions interfere with your own contentment. People who "immediately ha(ve) me married and start pressuring me" after one date are a great source of amusement in my family, run with it. They eventually stop their silly ways if they see you are unaffected by it.

Way back when, I broke it off with a girl after 2 dates, when she hit me with her "biological clock" speech after a misunderstanding caused us to think we had plans on different nights. My sister started in with the old "you aren't getting any younger" and "beggars can't be choosers" routine. My dad, God bless him, told her "there is no reason he has to put up with crap like a 'biological clock' after two dates, he's 33 years old and if she's so worried about her 'clock' she should know better than to appear so desperate and would keep it to herself." When my sister started in about giving it more time, my dad replied "Yeah, then at least he could have gotten laid a couple times." Posted Image My sister has never, ever mentioned my personal life again, except to praise me for knowing what I want. Humor can be your friend. Use it to diffuse the busy bodies. If they have nothing else to do in their lives, let them know how silly that is.

#56 of 98 OFFLINE   Colton

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Posted October 24 2006 - 03:22 AM

My wife and I are childless by choice. I have a close friend who has two kids and he is miserable. When I go over to his house, he is always yelling at his kids and never plays with them. Obviously, he wasn't meant to have kids. He just watches TV and plays computer games while his kids are starved for attention. - Colton

#57 of 98 OFFLINE   RobertR

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Posted October 24 2006 - 03:24 AM

See Mark, Jeff makes it much easier to believe that he's truly happy with his life. Posted Image

#58 of 98 OFFLINE   Holadem

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Posted October 24 2006 - 03:27 AM

I am content with what you got. -- H

#59 of 98 OFFLINE   RobertR

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Posted October 24 2006 - 03:48 AM

I'd like to see the raised hand of anyone on this board who worries about whether or not Mark is married.

#60 of 98 OFFLINE   Jeff Gatie

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Posted October 24 2006 - 03:49 AM

Which is great, but the question I have for Mark is: Why are you so concerned about someone else being content with what you've got? Why should someone else's "got" or not "got" even matter to him/her? Both you and the other person would do well to be content with what you've "got" and never mind what someone else has "got" or expects the other to "get". Get it? Got it? Good!




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