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The Top Ten BEST and WORST Things About Having Children

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Yep. I said it. There are some “worst” things about having kids. Ugh. Do you think poorly of me now? Please don’t. I am just saying what most of you all are thinking.

Listen…I love my children more than anything in this whole world and they are undoubtedly the best thing that has ever happened to me. Still, there are definitely things about being a parent that aren’t awesome.

This top ten list may serve as confirmation to you that you are not alone in having conflicting feelings towards parenthood. For those of you that don’t have kids yet, it may serve as birth control. You know what though? The list will also serve as a reminder to those of you who do have kids of what an absolute life-altering blessing children can be.

I hope that you are able to relate, and I most definitely hope that you enjoy the list…so here it is:

Top 10 Best and Worst Things About Having Children

Best

1. By far the best thing about having children is the unconditional love they give you. It doesn’t matter if you just got fired from your job, stepped in dog poop or haven’t showered in two days — your child loves you with every ounce of their being, every waking moment. To have someone in your life, whose affection and love for you is unwavering, non-judgmental and constant, is the best thing anyone could ask for.

2. Having children enables you to act like a kid, too, (sometimes) and not be considered crazy by the judging public. Okay, well..they still may think you are an oddball, but parenthood truly does allow for parents to jump in puddles, make silly noises and play in the rain. Having kids allows for you to be yourself with people who genuinely enjoy you, because it is all they have ever known and everything that they love.

3. Having children is like being on an adventure with tiny, fun teachers who are teaching you new things every day along the journey. From the early days of your babies mainly eating and sleeping to the constant changing they are doing from one day to the next as they grow, it an amazing odyssey of growth, learning, and developing new skills, not just for them, but for you as well.

4. Having children helps you realize how awesome you are. Literally, your children will, more often than not, especially if they are young, treat you like a celebrity or a superhero. Kids are so enamored and amazed by their parents from the moment they are born. It is pretty fascinating to have someone hold you up on a pedestal, day in and day out.

5. Having children means that you get to witness, at least once a day, the most beautiful thing this world has ever seen — a child’s smile. You also get the pleasure of knowing that you are the person driving that smile. How rewarding is that?

6. Having kids unveils to you, directly, what your personal strengths and weaknesses are. How amazing is it that our children serve as a mirror for us, to show us our behaviors and habits that may need to be changed. At the same time, they also reflect for us the beauty that we sometimes neglect to see within ourselves.

7. Having children forces you to establish and live your values. Ultimately, for most, you become less vain and less judgmental of yourself and others. Somehow, what car you drive, what clothes you wear and what other people think of you seem so much less important.

8. Having kids forces self-improvement. I do not know any parent that has not, in at least some small way, become a better version of themself by having a child. We owe so much to our children for being the catalyst to self-reformation.

9. Having children lets you take a tax credit! Come on, let’s be practical here guys! Per the IRS website, the Child Tax Credit is an important tax credit that may be worth as much as $1,000 per qualifying child, depending upon your income.

10. Making those precious children is oh so fun! So, yes, that is one of the best things about having kids — that to have them, you have to make them! Totally deserving of a top-ten spot.

Worst

1. They are expensive. Whether it is paying for their education, building a house big enough to contain all of them or securing life insurance so that they will be taken care of, if/when ever necessary, kids are so very costly. Some parents, of course not me, joke that the most expensive thing about children is the cost of all the alcohol you have to drink to put up with them.

2. They are exhausting. Like you think you know what it means to be exhausted before you have kids, and then you have kids, and you are like “WTF?” Yep. That’s parenthood. Jim Gaffigan stated it well when he stated, “I don’t know whats more exhausting about parenting: the getting up early, or acting like you know what you’re doing”.

3. They never leave you alone. You will rarely pee or shower by yourself again. Oh yea, and you were hoping to finish that book that love…that will never happen. Do you like hot coffee? Nope, no more. You will have to learn to like it lukewarm or better yet just order an iced coffee and be okay with it being watered down by the time you get to enjoy it.

4. It will be harder for you and your partner to have time alone to do anything. Unless you schedule and take regular date nights (which I completely advocate that you should), it will be incredibly hard to find time between work for you, work for your partner, kids activities, family time, cooking meals, laundry, etc to have any quality couple time.

5. You will inevitably lose your “sexy bod” and develop “mom bod” or “dad bod”. This is an actual thing and it will happen to you, at least for a short period of time.

6. Having kids forces you to be introspective. Although this is also considered one of the best things about having kids, there are plenty of people in this world who are super-content with their basic self, flaws and all, and don’t desire to engage in any type of deeper self-analysis. If you are one of those people and you have made the decision to have a child, heads up, because some severe self-observation and examination is going to be forced on you.

7. You will now have to put off some of your dreams. You wanted to take a trip to Europe? Nope, sorry…not happening with infants or toddlers. You want to go travel around and follow your favorite band on their U.S. tour? Don’t think attending concerts with your baby-bjorn on is the best idea. You want to quit your job and “find yourself”? Well, you are s**t out of luck.

8. You can’t “let loose” too often. Your new “crazy Friday night” is you and the hubby, one glass of wine, or two (if you are feeling frisky) and maybe you will stay up past 11:00pm to watch a movie on Netflix.

9. Your sleep will NEVER, ever be the same. From infant feedings, to being woken up in the middle of the night to clean a dirty diaper, to comforting your little one from bad dreams, to your child wetting your bed — you will rarely sleep a whole night through again. In all honesty, whenever I get the chance to sleep two hours straight, I feel like a million bucks. That is my new normal, as gone are the days of sleeping in and leisurely making my way out of the bed. So awesome, right?

10. Kids never stop talking. No really, they never stop talking and you are expected and supposed to always be an active, attentive and compassionate listener to every single word they say. Not to mention that it is hard to be a good listener when you are sleep-deprived, alcohol-deprived, private-time deprived, etc.

Well there you go. There is my top ten list of the best and ten worst things about being a parent. I can’t leave you though with a negative outlook on having kids though, as that is not my style.

As I stated earlier, I love my children more than anything in this whole world and they are undoubtedly the best thing that has ever happened to me. This is the life I have chosen, the life that I want and the life I 100% believe I was put on this Earth to live.

Each of us has to choose to live our life in the way that makes us happy. Maybe you are happy without kids and if that is the case, there is no judgment here. But, I will tell you this — if you make the decision to have children, it will be the greatest decision you will have ever made, as it was, and remains to be, for me.

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