It’s For The Best

So everybody has heard of Michelle Duggar’s miscarriage by now. This actually makes the mother of 19’s second miscarriage, the first being just her second pregnancy. This apparently is when she decided to stop taking birth control and “leave it up to God” as she says. Well, as much as I hate to say it, weighing in from an outsider’s perspective, this was probably the best possible outcome that could have come to pass, in all honesty.

Let me preface the content that is about to follow by saying this: I can’t imagine what it’s like to lose a child, or a wanted potential child as the case may be. I will never experience that as a childfree person. In that way, I do have some level of sympathy for the Duggar family. However, sometimes situations come up that may seem like the worst situations that turn out being for the better in the end (and I can attest to this in my own life). Since I’m a fan of bowling and I follow professional bowling, I kind of liken it to the 2011 PBA US Open title match between Norm Duke and Mika Koivuniemi. Koivuniemi all but had it in the bag when he missed a single-pin spare handing Duke the title. Though Duke I’m sure felt bad for Koivuniemi, he was sure happy to win the title. This is pretty much how I feel about this situation.

The couple has 19 children together. With the cost to raise a single kid for 18 years being almost $250,000 US dollars, that’s almost $5 million USD they’re shelling out to raise all their kids. That’s more money than most of us will ever make in a lifetime. Quite frankly if it wasn’t for their TV show, they wouldn’t have been able to support this many kids, so in a way I blame TLC or whatever the hell channel took up a proposal to put them on the air. Yes, shame on you people (the network) for enabling them! I’m absolutely disgusted by you people, because chances are they wouldn’t have kept going had it not been for you and your financial contributions to the family!

That’s not the worst of it though. What’s even worse is the fact that it’s absolutely impossible for them to give enough attention to that many kids. It’s humanly impossible to give all those kids the attention they need to thrive and grow, even if the oldest kids are grown and out of the house. I suppose that’s why the oldest kids have taken some of the parenting upon themselves, to take the workload off of the couple. I’m not entirely surprised. That said, I do have to say something is seriously wrong when the older siblings have to be the “parents” to their youngest siblings. I have a sister who’s eight years younger than I am, and I can’t imagine what it would be like to have to “parent” her. In fact, that would creep me out completely, as it would creep out any normally functioning person!

My next point has to do with the process of pregnancy in general. The human body is not tireless and was not designed to endure this many pregnancies. Every muscle in our body, including the reproductive system, has limitations. The limitations of the reproductive system were made obvious by her last pregnancy which resulted in so many problems it should have been a signal to her to stop, but she ignored it anyway (which actually will lead into my last point, which I will address in a bit).

My last point has to do with this. I can’t help but notice the number of people defending them that say “their choices don’t affect you.” Well, quite frankly, everyone’s choice to have a kid, whether 1 or 19, does affect me. Every additional person on the face of this earth is one more person I have to compete with for resources. Every additional person on the face of this earth is one more individual I will have to compete with in the job market one day, should they choose to follow the same career path as me. Basically, every person born just puts that many more constraints on my portion of the available resources, jobs, and other basic needs I have to merely survive! So don’t go telling me it doesn’t affect me, because it does. There are over 7 billion people on this world right now, and the estimated carrying capacity is about 10 billion. Seeing as how population growth is exponential (meaning it gets faster as time goes on), I’m potentially not going to have enough resources to survive come 20 years from now. So yes, the Duggars’ decision to mindlessly breed in this way does affect me. It also affects you and every other person on the face of this planet in an adverse way. So there goes that “defense.”

Lastly, I will remark and say this: the whole situation with the Duggars is a prime example of the dangers that organized religion pose to society. Michelle Duggar endangered her own life for the sake of her religious beliefs. She endangered the life of another (namely her now dead fetus) for the same reasons. This pregnancy ended in the unnecessary loss of a life, and I would have been willing to bet my life on the fact that one of them wasn’t going to make it out alive, which I would have obviously won. All of this in the name of religion. This is why organized religion is so dangerous. It causes people to act irrationally and gives them a reason (or a scape goat if you will) to rationalize their irrational decisions. Anyone with half a brain knows that the decision to not permanently stop reproduction after all the problems she had with the last one is absolutely irrational. They pass their own responsibility off to a “God” for which there is no proof exists anyway instead of owning up to the part they play in the whole thing. Such a practice is delusional at best, and complete and total mental illness at worst.

So in the end, whereas I do feel for the family, and my heart does go out to them, I have to sort of take the role of Norm Duke here. I’m admittedly breathing a sigh of relief at this point, and it’s best for all parties involved, even though it’s without a doubt a painful loss (the same as Koivuniemi’s US Open loss). I just hope she finally learns from it. Unfortunately, she probably won’t and will try again, which will more than likely perpetuate the cycle of unnecessarily lost life until she goes through menopause. That’s probably what’s more tragic than anything. What happened was without a doubt for the best, and with any amount of luck, a few months down the road the Duggars will realize that and put a stop to their reproductive years.

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About coolchildfreeguy

Childfree guy living in Mexico City. Professional pilot by day, all-around fun guy by night.

Posted on December 9, 2011, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Jim Bob was also part of the Arkansas legislature for some time, so I’m sure that that helps them out, too. But, yes, that money from the TLC show they have going (and all the specials) is definitely helping out.

    It’s also important to remember that Michelle and Jim Bob Duggar are not unique in the Quiverfull movement. There are lots of other families that have around as many kids as these two do, they just weren’t fortunate enough to get offered a television spot like Jim Bob and Michelle. In fact, when they go to meet-ups with other people in their movement we often see them interacting with families just as large, larger, or a only a few children less than Jim Bob and Michelle have. This is an entire movement.

    They’re already writing this off to God, but I’ll be surprised if they actually take the hint from her body and stop reproducing. I don’t think they actively try to have children. That’s not really what they’re doing. They have a wait and see, and whatever happens will happen attitude. They aren’t trying to have kids, but they aren’t trying not to either. It’s their belief that God chooses when or if you have a child, so there’s no point in trying. If you have sex and don’t get pregnant, that’s God’s will and that’s okay. If you have sex and you do get pregnant, that’s God’s will too. I don’t think they’re actively trying anymore than I think that teenagers who have unprotected sex and end up with a pregnancy that is unwanted were trying. It’s just that the Duggars feel that all life is a gift from God so an unwanted pregnancy is a foreign idea to them, whether you were trying to get pregnant or not.

    Also, you can get pregnant while you’re going through menopause. It’s not that uncommon at all, so I wouldn’t be surprised if when she starts to go through menopause we hear of another pregnancy announcement anyway.

    I like your assessment here, though. Her body is telling her that enough is enough. She can no longer safely go through pregnancy and birth. Basically, her reproductive system is a ticking time bomb to the rest of her body and any other fetus(es) it makes. Unfortunately, she probably won’t.

    The kids probably don’t think it’s weird to have to parent their littler siblings, because as far as they know that’s just how family works and it’s normal and it’s all they know. But, it’s probably still a burden. I wouldn’t expect them to admit it, though. Even so, that’s a whole lot of kids that Michelle and Jim Bob are risking leaving motherless.

    But, they’ve already addressed the health concerns that people raise. They have decided that since they’ve asked some people whose mothers “had lots of kids” how long their mothers lived, and got answers that were mostly 80s-90s that that means that lots of pregnancies and births either have no effect on lifespan or have a positive effect on lifespan. I remember hearing Jim Bob explain this during one of the episodes.

    I expect more of the unfortunate same from these people.

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