Babies or Booze? That is the question…

Is it just me, or is anyone else afraid for our kids? I am not sure what it is, if it is that kids are having kids, or maybe because nobody has enough money anymore so everyones children are raised by ten or twenty daycares who maybe aren’t giving kids the attention they need or teaching kids values. Maybe it is that the media makes things like drugs and alcohol, shopping, and debt seem normal, and even o.k.

I am so sad for the kids who are born today, whose parents have, for whatever reason, learned that if you want something it has to be yours NOW, that you must take care of your wants and needs above everyone elses (including your children). But let’s face it, most of the parents now-a-days weren’t ready or planning to be parents. Sex sounds like a great idea, especially when it is everywhere you look.. but wait.. no condom? Who cares now-a-days. You didn’t get pregnant last time you had unprotected sex, and you don’t *think* you have anything.. and I mean, he said he is clean, and why would he lie to you?

Then all of a sudden, oops, now what? Oh hey, let’s keep it. Looks easy. You didn’t really want to stay in highschool anyway, cause school sucks, and why get an education? You can make ten dollars an hour at McDonalds while your girlfriend stays home with the baby. Then you realize babies cost money, a lot of money. Ok, you can make it work..right?

You work an extra job, she gets child tax for the baby, and you both make sacrifices. But somewhere between birth and 18, you realize that baby needs a lot more than your minimum wage job can offer. Then it gets real, and it gets real hard… doesn’t it? Your friends are out partying, buying cars, houses, playstations, clothes… whatever they want. You are buying baby stuff.

This is where we seperate the men and women from the boys and girls.. do you decide your child doesn’t need a savings account or a house to live in and go partying? Do you buy the playstation or the new stereo for the new car you always wanted, and you will buy the crib next paycheck.. the baby is fine in a laundry basket anyway? OR do you put away money for that baby, buy that crib, step up, and put some money aside so that in 12 months you can buy that car, and in another 12 months you can buy the stereo?

I am writing this note only because these issues pop up everywhere, and I am tired of seeing it. At the doctors office the other day, a young mom and dad and their gorgeous baby boy walked in. Yay! Young parents keeping up on their child’s doctors appointments! They obviously loved him, and cared about him a lot.. and then they sat down near me. This is when the whole waiting room realized the dad, at least, was drunk and reeked of alcohol. Now I am hoping he wasn’t driving…

Moral of the story? You want to have a baby, go ahead, bless the world with the presence of a wonderful bundle of joy. But realize, once you decide to have a baby, it isn’t about you or what you want anymore. Your immediate job is to do what that baby needs, to save for that baby, get somewhere warm for that baby to live, and if you want something, save up for it.

You want to go to a party every once in a while, get a babysitter and plan to go. You want to buy some new stuff, put money away for it. But don’t put the baby on the back shelf to your fun, your friends, your teenage lifestyle.

Grow up. Take care of your responsibilities.

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